New features include an exploit blocker, advanced memory scanner, vulnerability shield and ESET social media scanner.
The exploit blocker works by targeting the process of exploiting vulnerable applications by viruses. It also provides protection against zero day threats.
The advanced memory scanner aims to detect the outstanding malware sets that other technologies haven't spotted. It helps protect against malware that is actively trying to evade detection by employing obfuscation techniques.
The vulnerability shield, an extension of personal firewall in ESET Smart Security, operates on the network level and protects against misuse of known vulnerabilities in network protocols.
"These days' cyber criminals often deploy heavily-encrypted malware designed to evade detection. To further increase the probability of infection and damage, malware is typically being distributed by exploiting vulnerable applications such as web browsers, PDF readers, email clients or MS Office components," said Palo Luka, ESET's CTO.
In developing the software, ESET says its research teams have focused on both detection and malware cleaning - The cleaner module has been improved to address rootkits removal and a specialised cleaner has been added to help with the most resistant malware.
"At ESET we create security products that enable safer enjoyment of technology," said Ignacio Sbampato, ESET's sales and marketing officer.
"Our new products retain the same low system footprint ESET is known for, while offering even greater protection from new and yet undiscovered malware thanks to unique core technology improvements."
Both, ESET NOD32 Antivirus and ESET Smart Security are officially certified for Windows 8 and Windows 8.1.