Kaspersky Total Security Multi-Device review
In our recent round-up of internet security suites, Kaspersky Internet Security 2015 took first place. Total Security is the company’s more feature-filled offering: you get all the features of the regular internet security suite, including the Safe Money feature, vulnerability scanner and parental controls, plus a password manager, an encryption tool and a backup module.
The password manager is the same one that Kaspersky sells as a standalone product for £10.49 per year. It can synchronise your passwords across multiple devices, generate strong credentials and automatically fill web forms. Encryption meanwhile is handled by creating “data vaults” – on-disk archives using 256-bit AES encryption. When mounted with the right password, each vault appears in Windows as a regular volume, so you can seamlessly open and save files from any program.
It’s all simple stuff, and the backup tool continues the theme: it’s easy to carry out one-off or scheduled backups to local storage, or to a network drive or FTP server. You can password-protect your backups and decide how long to keep old versions for, to save space.
If you’re looking for cloud backup, however, you may be disappointed: Kaspersky no longer runs its own backup servers, so you’re guided instead towards Dropbox. You don’t get anything more than the default 2GB of storage here, even if you’ve splashed out for a 10-device licence, which seems pretty mean to us.
On the upside, this being a Multi-Device package, if you buy a licence for 3, 5 or 10 devices you can choose to install Kaspersky’s software not only for Windows, but also on OS X, iOS and Android devices. The OS X package doesn’t have as many features as the Windows one, but you get a variety of browser add-ons to protect you from phishing and identity theft, plus a decent set of parental controls, including website filtering and time restrictions.
For technical reasons, the iOS package is more stripped down, including only the Safe Browser and the password manager – but the Android client is fairly substantial, offering the ability to scan installed apps for malware, to block calls and texts from certain contacts, and to hide your contacts, call history and SMS correspondence. There’s also an anti-theft tool too that can locate your phone; unlike Android Device Manager, this includes the neat ability to capture a photo of the person using your phone.
Since Total Security uses the same anti-malware engine as Kaspersky Internet Security 2015, it delivers equally excellent protection against viruses, achieving an exemplary 99% score in our most recent tests against real-world threats. Only Eset Smart Security 8 did better, with a perfect 100% score. However, that package fared slightly worse when it came to false positives, making Kaspersky the best performer overall.
Thanks to Kaspersky’s odd pricing model, the Total Security Multi-Device package actually has a slightly lower RRP than the regular Windows-only Internet Security 2015 package. Online, though, you’ll currently pay £40 for a three-device licence, while the standard package can be had for £25. Frankly, we’re not sure the premium is worth it: while the additional features work well and are easy to use, their functions can be entirely duplicated with free software. And you don’t get any cloud storage beyond the free Dropbox allocation to sweeten the deal.
Still, there’s an appeal to having everything in one place, and Kaspersky products do sometimes see deep discounts. If you have a variety of different platforms to protect, keep an eye out to see whether Total Security comes around at a lower price: if it does, it’s well worth considering as an alternative to the regular product.