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The best antivirus software for gaming PCs in 2024

Whether you’ve been shopping the best gaming PC deals or already have a lot invested in one of the best gaming PCs, some antivirus software is the first step in keeping it secure. With a lot of games accessible through online means, and with multiplayer action taking place primarily online nowadays, securing your setup is important. There is a lot of antivirus software out there, and while many of them offer similar features, their differences are important to note. We’ve tracked down the antivirus software we feel is the best for gamers to consider, and we’ve even narrowed the selections down into specific use case scenarios.

The best antivirus software for gaming PCs in 2024

  • Buy if you want the best antivirus software for gaming PCs.
  • Buy if you want the best antivirus software for full-screen gaming.
  • Buy if you want the best antivirus software for optimized gaming.
  • Buy if you want the best antivirus software for customized protection.
  • Buy if you want the best antivirus software for multiple gaming device coverage.

Norton Security 360 for Gamers

Best antivirus software for gaming PCs

The Norton Antivirus logo against a white background.
Norton
Pros Cons
Coverage for up to 3 devices Somewhat pricey
Game optimization
50GB cloud backup
Dark web monitoring for gamer tags

Norton Security 360 isn’t just the best antivirus software for gamers, but some of the best antivirus software for Windows and Mac in general. Its gamer edition is particularly impressive, however, offering features like dark web monitoring for your gamer tags and personal information. It’s designed by PC gamers for PC gamers, so features like Notification Optimization and Full-screen Detection Mode are expert inclusions.

Specifications
Devices PCs, Mac, smartphones, tablets
Free trial 30 days

Bitdefender Total Security

Best antivirus software for full-screen gaming

The BitDefender logo with glowing lights behind it to reflect its many features.
Bitdefender
Pros Cons
Full-screen mode prevents distractions VPN costs extra
Anti-phishing protection
Webcam and mic protection

Bitdefender îs a popular antivirus software option amongst gamers.Some of its gaming-specific features include a full-screen mode that temporarily halts pop-ups, adjusts visual settings, and pauses unimportant background activities to allow you to enjoy the full power of your gaming PC without distraction. It also offers webcam and microphone protection to prevent eavesdropping. Bitdefener has had the industry’s best detection rate for the past five years.

Specifications
Devices PCs, Mac, smartphones, tablets
Free trial 30 days

McAfee Total Protection

Best antivirus software for optimized gaming

The McAfee Antivirus logo against a white background.
McAfee
Pros Cons
Game Mode optimization Basic Plan doesn’t offer much
Secure VPN included
24/7 identity monitoring alerts

McAfee has been providing antivirus software for almost as long as the PC has been. It’s knowledgable across all use-cases, but gamers should be particularly interested in McAfee because of its Game Mode. This offers optimized gaming and ensures the antivirus software doesn’t bog down your system while you play. It also includes an App Boost feature that recognizes which apps require the most resources at any given time.

Specifications
Devices PCs, Mac, smartphones, tablets
Free trial 30 days

Webroot

Best antivirus software for customized protection

The Webroot logo on a white background.
Webroot
Pros Cons
Lightning fast scans Lowest plan lacks essential features
Always-on security
Multiple plans for various needs

Webroot is another antivirus software option a lot of gamers lean toward. This is mostly due to its speed, as it offers blazing fast scans without interruption and fast install times. But something Webroot offers that you won’t find among many antivirus software options is several different plans that each improve on feature offerings over one another. This effectively makes your plan selection customizable, the base plan offering basic coverage and the premium plan including everything Web root has to offer, and the Webroot’s middle plans covering all of the ground in between.

Specifications
Devices PCs, Mac, smartphones, tablets
Free trial 14 days

Aura

Best antivirus software for protecting multiple gaming devices

The Aura logo against a light blue and white gradient background.
Aura
Pros Cons
Protects minimum of up to 10 devices No gaming-specific features
Premium identity theft protection
$1M identity theft insurance
Well priced

Aura offers a range of protection services, and among them is antivirus software. It allows you to protect your digital footprint from multiple threats, and many gaming PCs and laptops are now coming with Aura pre-installed. Aura is also a great option if you’re hoping to cover multiple gaming devices, as its Individual Plan will protect up to 10 devices, and its Family Plan will cover up to 50 devices.

Specifications
Devices PCs, Mac, smartphones, tablets
Free trial 14 days

How we chose the best antivirus software for gaming PCs

When it comes to choosing antivirus software, most options offer a wide range of features. When it comes to narrowing things down to the best antivirus software for gaming PCs specifically, there are a few things you need to pay more attention to. These include things offerings like game optimization and protection for peripheral devices such as webcams and mics in addition to ensuring protection is provided during online gaming sessions. We took all of these things into account in narrowing down antivirus software into the best options for gaming PC users, and we factored in things like pricing and the number devices covered with each option as well.

This article is managed and created separately from the Digital Trends Editorial team.

Editors' Recommendations

Andrew Morrisey
Andrew Morrisey is an independent writer and filmmaker with a love for tech. You can read his books, blog, and other stories…
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