ESET NOD32 Antivirus Review

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Eset NOD32


Malware and virus identification and protectionEasy installationSimple user interface

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The Bottom Line

ESET NOD32 Antivirus offers basic protection for PCs against common threats like spyware without taking a ton of space on your computer. So you can keep gaming, surfing the web, shopping online, and working without any hiccups. 

ESET’s software offers solid protection, and it’s easy to use, but the products lack features like a VPN and file shredder that come standard with other brands’ antivirus packages. And while NOD32 doesn’t work for Mac and iOS, ESET does have programs compatible with Apple products.


Simple and easy-to-use interfaceHighly rated reviews in independent testsGood variety of plansState-of-the-art malware detectionNo drain on computer speed


Potentially expensive pricesRequired manual updateMissing some standard features

ESET NOD32 Quick Overview

ESET NOD32 Antivirus is the entry-level version of ESET’s security services. It’s ranked among the top antivirus products by independent testing labs. Known for its excellent ability to identify and disable malware without slowing down your computer, ESET NOD32 is a solid choice for Windows users.

Additional security options, like password storage and protection for Macs and Androids, are available with upgrades to other ESET packages.

ESET NOD32 AntiVirus

product image of ESET NOD 32

Best for Basic Windows Protection

Malware and virus protectionEasy installationSimple user interface

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If you tend to do most of your computing on mobile devices (Chromebooks, tablets, phones), you’re less likely to need an antivirus program since those always have antivirus and malware protection built into their operating system. However, ESET does have options for added protection there and even has options for parental controls on your children’s devices.

Pricing and Plans

Here’s an overview of a few of ESET’s most popular plans.

Yearly subscription cost

Scan Downloads

Anti-Spam Features

Secure Password Storage

Webcam Protection

Mac and Android Compatibility


ESET Internet Security

ESET Smart Security Premium

ESET logo

ESET logo

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Visit ESET


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As of 01/13/2020, information is subject to change. 


Compatibility with PC, Mac, and AndroidWhile NOD32 is only for Windows, you can find ESET plans that work for different operating systems.
Easy InstallationTo get started with ESET, you literally just have to click “install” on their website. It doesn’t get simpler than that.
No Issues with Computer SpeedThe worst thing an antivirus product can do is bog down the processing speed of your computer. Most users report that ESET did not do this, and when we tried it, our computers were not slowed at all by the antivirus scan.


No 24-Hour Tech SupportMany competitors offer round-the-clock customer service, but ESET reps are available only during standard business hours.
Expensive Cost for Multiple DevicesIf you want to use ESET for all your different devices, upgrades can get expensive fast.

Features and Usability


Malware and Anti-Phishing ProtectionThe protection from ESET NOD32 is good enough that Google uses it to keep Chrome safe.   
Straightforward User InterfaceWith clearly organized prompts and dashboards, ESET does a great job of making it easy for everyone to use the software.
Sleek DesignWe really like the look of ESET’s software. It’s not cluttered or overwhelming.
Few NotificationsConstant notifications can get annoying quickly. ESET does a great job of notifying you only when necessary.


No VPNVPNs are a big part of keeping your information safe, but ESET doesn’t offer this service. You’ll need to buy another product if you want a private network.
No Automatic BackupESET doesn’t automatically back up its software, so you’ll have to dive into the support forums or contact customer service to figure out how to do it yourself.
No File ShredderESET doesn’t have a feature that permanently deletes files—something that most antivirus software includes.
No Automatic Database UpdateYou have to prompt the system to update the database, which can be easy to forget.


I have Windows Defender. Do I need more antivirus protection?Windows Defender is a good start to protect your PC, but it doesn’t cover everything. A product like ESET can provide added protection from malware, phishing, and other online threats.

Does ESET offer gamer mode?Yes. It automatically detects when an application has gone to full screen and will minimize its intrusions so it won’t interrupt what you’re doing.

I use my tablet or my Chromebook—not a PC. Do I need an antivirus program?While ESET does offer software for mobile devices, most do not need separate antivirus programs because they are built into the operating system. Users who do choose to install a security program on their mobile devices typically want extra protection beyond the basic manufacturer settings.

Does ESET offer products for small businesses?Yes. We reviewed home user packages but they do offer business packages for large and small companies.

Who is ESET? Why haven’t I heard of them before?ESET has been a part of the antivirus and firewall market since 1992. It was founded in Slovakia and is still headquartered in Bratislava but also has offices in the US, Canada, Australia, and other countries. It might be its international focus that kept its profile in the United States a little lower than other antivirus brands.  

How We Evaluated ESET NOD32 AntiVirus

We evaluated ESET NOD32 Antivirus by testing it out ourselves, talking to cybersecurity experts, and scouring online forums. For more information, see our Methodology.

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