Seriously, the anti-virus/anti-malware brands you mentioned are, in fact, all very effective, yet they all have some limitations.
1. Choose a brand you feel comfortable with. Your choice may be based on reviews, recommendation of a friend, cost, or a combination of all these.
*Important: Your chosen program runs continuously in the background. Only have one anti-virus/anti-malware program running at a time. If you run two or more simultaneously there may be a conflict and it may noticeably slow your computer down.
2. Additional protection is available.
3. A second "on-demand" program is good to have. A very well-known one is the free version of Malwarebytes. You open it and run a scan whenever you want, but it doesn't run continuously in the background. Sometimes Malwarebytes can catch malware that other programs missed.
4. Your chosen internet browser will most likely offer a layer of protection by warning you of malicious websites (if you happen to click on a link that looks OK but actually goes to a bad website). Google Chrome, Firefox, and Edge all offer this.
5. Free programs from Avast, Avira, AVG, etc. offer excellent basic protection. Premium (pay) versions offer extras such as ransomware protection, etc. Read the fine print before paying for these.
6. An excellent layer of protection is to always use a "standard" or "guest" user account instead of a full-privilege administrator account when you're on the internet. Standard and guest accounts are harder to break into or infect than an administrator account.
7. Create a password for whatever account you decide to use. The password for a standard/guest account should be different from your administrator account. Make it long and strong, and something you can remember. Example: y0uCan'tgu355Mypa55w0rd! (you Can't guess My password!).
8. Use a password manager to create and store passwords for various internet websites. Usually, this will be a free add-on "extension" for your browser.
9. Purchase an external hard drive that plugs into a USB port on your computer. Make regular full "system image" backups. Connect the external drive, create a backup on the drive, and then UNPLUG the external hard drive until the next backup time (use Windows' "safely remove attached drive" feature before unplugging). Keep at least two full backups - one from last time plus the one you're making now. A good quality 2TB external or portable hard drive is around $60-plus. This backup-then-disconnect means if you are ever struck by horrible malware or ransomware you can restore your full system within an hour or less.
10. At home we use Windows 10 with Windows Defender anti-virus , Windows 8.1 with Avast free anti-virus, Malwarebytes free version, Chrome browser, Avast Secure browser (included with Avast free anti-virus), Firefox browser, LastPass free password manager on all browsers, a WD 2TB My Passport and a Toshiba Canvio 2TB (both are physically small portable/external hard drives).
11. My backup-backup plan is if something goes wrong after all that, blame it on my girlfriend. Wait! - is she looking over my shoulder right now ??
Note: Post was edited by forum admin to add line breaks for easier reading.