Our Story

We protect people—like you—across all devices, both directly and via our OEM partnerships.
We provide a wide variety of best-in-class solutions to enhance your protection, performance, and online privacy—ranging from antivirus to VPN and cleanup technologies.

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Our achievements

30 years
of security software expertise
30 Million
Threats detected per day
~ 500
~ 100 Million
Quality Antivirus
Avira's detection tops the industry's awards lists

Our Journey

Ours has been a journey marked by strong growth in a volatile industry. Driven by the vision of providing online freedom, Avira offers powerful security for multiple devices. As a pioneer of the Freemium business model, we have grown into a 500-strong multinational company that protects the digital lives of millions of users worldwide.

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Our History

The shores of Lake Constance, where Avira was founded and has its HQ still today, belong to surrounding countries, but the lake itself is the only place in Europe where no borders exist. It’s a fitting detail for one of the world’s most successful pioneers of the ‘freemium’ software business model, a result of ‘thinking without borders’ that has contributed to Avira’s success in the IT security profession for almost 30 years.

  • 1986

    Electrical engineer Tjark Auerbach (b. 1957) and a partner set up IT company H+BEDV Datentechnik near Lake Constance, in Tettnang, Germany. The ‘H’ and ‘B’ are the initial letters of their wives’ first names

  • 1988

    H+BEDV launches the protection program AntiVir, one of the first antivirus programs, to combat some of the first dangerous computer viruses (e.g. Cascade and Jerusalem) that are already spreading at a phenomenal rate. AntiVir protects and is able to repair infected MS DOS systems. Business security solutions are also launched at this time.

  • 1990

    Management incorporates the company, and so H+BEDV Datentechnik gets Germany’s “GmbH” status – with only six employees.

  • 1991

    Infection of DOS systems continues to rise, with AntiVir continually undergoing improvements to counter new threats. The European Institute for Anti-Virus Research (EICAR) is founded to help IT-security experts to counter the growing threat.

  • 1993

    AntiVir is integrated with the virus scanner AVScan, which works with special search routines and with the QCDRV device driver. The program is awarded top marks in several renowned industry publications.

  • 1994

    The product range is extended to include AntiVir for Windows 3.x and AntiVir for Novell NetWare.

  • 1995

    Launch of more software versions: AntiVir for Windows 95/NT (Workstation and Server), AntiVir for Linux (Workstation and Server, free to consumers) and AntiVir for OS/2.

  • 1996

    AntiVir FDBlock, one of the few memory-resident DOS antivirus programs, is introduced, to stop boot-sector viruses from spreading.

  • 1997

    Avira develops increasingly sophisticated software enhancements that include: integrity monitoring with different check sum algorithms, an automatic Update Wizard, the quarantine directory, the ability to define the level to which archives are unpacked, alerts sent by email, negative classification of boot and master boot sectors, and heuristic macro virus detection.

  • 1998

    Launch of AntiVir for Windows 98. The company creates the Campus license: schools and universities and other educational institutions can obtain AntiVir at particularly good rates – "AntiVir for the computer room" campaign.

  • 1999

    The Personal Edition for private, non-commercial use is made available to download at no cost, making it one of the pioneers of the ‘freemium’ business model. The company presents a global first in AV Guard, the first resistant virus guard under Linux, and Secure AntiVirus Application Programming Interface (SAVAPI) virus protection as a component. With SAVAPI, third-party manufacturers have the option to include virus protection functionality in their products, and Watchdog and MIMEsweeper are among the first to use it.

  • 2000

    AntiVir for Windows ME is launched, and MailGate for Linux joins the product family to offer email protection. A particularly noteworthy step: as of this point, everyone can be protected from viruses. Over 2000 downloads every day, via the "CHIP" download portal alone, show how enthusiastically the user-friendly "Campaign against Viruses" has been taken up.

  • 2001

    The company makes virus protection available for Windows XP at the same time as it is launched, setting a milestone in speed and customer orientation. AntiVir for OpenBSD/FreeBSD is introduced.

  • 2002

    The AntiVir Rescue System offers a rescue tool that boots and scans for virus infections without using an external OS. In cooperation with a partner, the company develops virus protection for DSL networks software (AntiVir for AVM KEN!). The company H+BEDV continues to exert influence worldwide on the development of standards in H+Unix. The newly developed data access control module Dazuko scans files in real time upon opening, closing, and execution. AntiVir receives accreditations from many sources, including ICSA Labs, and the AntiVir online shop launches.

  • 2003

    The company develops the F-1 scanner for Check Point FireWall-1 and integrates a Content Filter module for the first time with AntiVir Wall. Launches for the year include proxy server protection AntiVir WebGate for Linux, FreeBSD and OpenBSD, AntiVir Milter for Sendmail, AntiVir Lotus Notes/Domino, AntiVir ISA Server and AntiVir Exchange for Servers 2000/2003. Partnerships form with SuSE, Red Hat, Group Technologies, Clearswift (AntiVir MAILsweeper, AntiVir WEBsweeper), Pyramid Computers, and Central Command.

  • 2004

    The company establishes a significant branch office in Bucharest, Romania. Protection from Internet dialers is integrated in AntiVir, which is welcomed by users. A Convenience Package is introduced: customers get a bootable CD-ROM (with updates made available by mail), a printed installation manual, free support, and a command-line scanner. AntiVir for FreeBSD is equipped with an on-access scanner. Other launches include the Security Management Console, the SPAM filter AntiVir eXpurgate, AntiVir for Sun Sparc Solaris, AntiVir SmallBusiness (first full protection bundle for businesses), and AntiVir for Windows 2000. Annual sales rise to over 8 million euros, with just over 120 employees.

  • 2005

    AntiVir version 7 is launched and the company reaches its 10 millionth user. To meet new threats (such as phishing, pharming, adware, spyware, botnets, and rootkits), the company enhances its security offerings. AntiVir Mobile Security for PDAs and smartphones is introduced. AntiVir Virus Scan Adapter (for SAP Solutions) becomes the first virus protection solution in the world to be SAP certified. The company begins to offer Security Consulting to commercial businesses. H+BEDV receives numerous VB100 certifications, attains Microsoft-Gold partnership level, is accredited by Germany’s Association for Technical Inspection (TÜV), and begins close cooperation with the German Federal Office for Information Security (BSI).

  • 2006

    H+BEDV Datentechnik GmbH and its sister company AntiVir PersonalProducts GmbH merge into Avira GmbH. The name for the various software offerings remains AntiVir. Avira GmbH opens a new branch office in Austria.

  • 2008

    Avira makes a major update to its scan engine, which increases scanning speed by 20%. The company now has 200 employees, is officially SAP certified, is a founding member of IT SMIG (IT Security Made in Germany), and launches a French version of Avira Free Antivirus.

  • 2009

    Avira opens branch offices in Switzerland, Japan, and Malaysia and celebrates 10 years of its freemium software offerings by reaching its 100 millionth user – all with around 300 employees.

  • 2010

    In addition to opening new branch offices in Beijing and Hong Kong, Avira obtains an office in the Netherlands when it acquires the company CleanPort, to help bring managed security services “in the cloud” to the Avira portfolio. A new Virus Lab is opened in Kuala Lumpur.

  • 2011

    Avira launches both its SafeSearch toolbar and a freemium version for Mac OS X. Now with 500 employees, the company builds a new HQ building in Tettnang, Germany, and opens a branch office in the USA’s Silicon Valley. The company partners with Qihoo in China.

  • 2012

    Avira acquires Social Shield network protection, to help parents protect their children from questionable social-network content. The company launches Android Anti-theft, Avira Answers, and Avira Cloud protection technology, and it begins partnerships with Baidu and Tencent in China.

  • 2013

    Co-founder Tjark Auerbach steps down as CEO, but remains the majority shareholder of Avira. Travis Witteveen replaces Mr. Auerbach as CEO beginning of H2 2013. Avira expands its Android security offering and launches both iOS security and its Online Essentials solution.

  • 2014

    Avira develops Browser Safety and SafeSearch – two browser extensions for Chrome and Firefox. The company also launches the Avira App Store, a premium version of its Android app and Identity Safeguard, which enables users to check whether their email has been compromised. Avira opens an office in Munich, Germany.

  • 2015

    Avira’s premium security earns the industry’s best scores for detection, usability, self-defense, repair, and low system impact, while extending its protection to another 100 million or so customers through OEM partnerships. New software launches include the Chromium-based, ultra-secure Scout browser (beta), iOS Vault, and Android Optimizer. Antivirus Security for Android gets upgraded with new AppLock and Privacy Advisor features. And not only does Avira add detection of potentially unwanted apps (PUAs) to its antivirus software, but as well takes some offenders to court for spreading PUA bundled with legitimate software – and wins!

  • 2016

    The year of major launches, Avira drastically extended its product portfolio. These include privacy apps, such as the multi-device and cross-platform Phantom VPN and Password Manager, as well as the smart AppLock+ for Android. In optimization technologies, Avira launched Software Updater for Windows, while simultaneously enhancing its security offering with premium Antivirus for Mac. 2016 was also the year Avira launched the world’s premier all-in-one Free Security Suite for Windows with an innovative approach to digital security. In other news, Avira introduced a monthly subscription model for its VPN product, and partnered with DriveLock to offer a Management Console for enterprise.

  • 2017

    With a completely revamped website and enhanced portfolio, Avira expanded its OEM product offering. In the consumer section, Avira continued to launch new products, including Avira Prime—which offers exclusive access to all Avira products across all devices—and a premium version of Software Updater. Avira also introduced Free Security Suite for Mac and enhanced its Mobile Security app for iOS with anti-phishing protection. And in the Internet Of Things space, Avira launched its own solution: SafeThings.

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  • Outstanding antivirus protection in real-world situations
  • Top award for our anti-ransomware protection technology
  • Ranked best antivirus in the industry for our repair capabilities
  • Top product award for our protection, performance, and usability

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