- Is your computer running slower than usual? Or has it started acting all weird?
- It may have been infected with malware. Hundreds of new malware strains are released to the Internet every day.
- We comprehensively tested several free malware removal tools. Malwarebytes and Kaspersky Virus Removal Tool topped the list.
5 Best Free Malware Removal Tools
Malware is short for Malicious Software. It is any program or file that is harmful to a computer user. That includes viruses, worms, Trojan horses, adware, spyware and rootkits.
Modern malware is very dangerous. It can create backdoor access to your computer and allow hackers to take full control of it. It can then steal sensitive data and cause substantial financial losses.
If you are feeling a little intimidated by all this, fear not! There are some excellent malware removal tools that are free.
How We Tested? On our test system running Windows 10, we tried the malware removal tools on the latest strains of malware and evaluated their effectiveness. We then obtained data from trusted sources to come up with the top free malware removers list.
If you suspect a malware infection, Malwarebytes should be your first port of call. It is a veteran malware hunter that has built an impressive fan base globally.
- Malwarebytes is rated highly by independent testers such as West Coast Labs and Google’s VirusTotal service.
- It uses proprietary Chameleon technology to get installed on infected computers even when a malware is attempting to block it.
- The robust anti-malware engine can scan and remove viruses, spyware, Trojans, worms, adware, dialers, rootkits and more.
- Makes use of signature-less behavioral detection to catch emerging malware threats.
- When a malware is detected, it displays a short description of the malware and what it can do to your computer.
- Can run alongside other security programs.
- It has near-perfect detection rates and is consistently updated to stay on top of new security threats.
- Malwarebytes can run on lower-end computers that are old as well as the new ones.
- It doesn’t offer real-time protection in the free version.
- Free version comes with manual updates.
- No scheduled scans and malicious website blocking.
2. Kaspersky Virus Removal Tool
Kaspersky comes with state-of-the-art new technologies built to seek and destroy malware infections.
- Its powerful and comprehensive scan can detect and remove all the latest malware threats.
- You can also opt for the Manual Disinfection method to perform an in-depth analysis of your computer.
- User-friendly interface design makes Kaspersky easy to use.
- It doesn’t conflict with most of the other anti-virus programs.
- Installation is quick. Can run in the Windows Safe Mode.
- Smaller footprint on system resources.
- Kaspersky’s full system scan takes a while to finish.
- This malware remover lacks options and settings.
3. Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition
It focuses entirely on protecting computers against the latest malware threats and leaves out the extras.
- Installs in seconds, runs at max speed without slowing down your system.
- Powerful scan engines ensure detection and removal of all malware, from viruses, worms and Trojans, ransomware, zero-day exploits, rootkits and spyware.
- It compares files against known malware signatures and watches software behavior for indications of infection.
- Any identified threats are automatically sent to the quarantine, where you can decide whether to delete or keep them.
- Bitdefender’s Protection Shield continually scans for infections in real-time and protects your PC.
- The interface, which has a modern and elegant design, is simple to use.
- No customization options.
- No quick-scan or scheduling.
- Advanced users may want more control.
4. Emsisoft Emergency Kit
Emsisoft Emergency Kit is a portable tool designed to scan for infected files and disinfect a computer.
- Has an advanced dual-scan engine with different scan options.
- The database is packed with more than 10 million malware signatures.
- Detects, quarantines, and removes a variety of malware infections.
- Deletes complex and stubborn malware infections on boot up.
- On-demand updates are available in a click.
- It has a command-line option for professionals and is perfect for batch jobs.
- No installation required. It can be run straight from a USB drive.
- Can run on most computers and laptops without any problems.
- Initial update takes more time.
5. Microsoft Safety Scanner
Microsoft Safety Scanner is a freely downloadable malware removal tool that is designed to be fast and reliable.
- Just choose the type of scan you need and allow the tool to check your system for threats.
- It thoroughly scans to identify infiltrated malware and if any, attempts to remove it.
- Tries to reverse the changes made by these malicious malware to the system.
- Displays stats like the currently scanned file, the number of scanned and infected files, start time and time elapsed.
- Given its overall simplicity and wizard-like user interface, the tool can be used by all types of users, regardless of their experience level.
- Microsoft Safety Scanner can work alongside other antivirus applications.
- It is recommended that you always download the latest version of this tool before each scan.
- This malware removal tool expires in 10 days after being downloaded.
- It has no configuration settings.
Malware Removers Are Handy!
Most computers do have antivirus software installed primarily to prevent infection. Sometimes when they fail and the computer gets infected, it is better to use a malware removal software to eliminate the infection.
A stand-alone malware remover provides a convenient way of finding and removing malware.
I recommend you run such a tool at least once a month.