Founded in 1991, Norton is one of the biggest names in the security business. It's a veteran, for sure, but clearly not outdated. It consistently tops our yearly ranking for its unbeatable detection rates and real-time protection against viruses, malware, ransomware, spyware, and other types of threats. We're also loving all the new bonus features like School Time, Credit Monitoring, SafeCam, Phone Takeover Monitoring, Bank & Credit Card Activity Alerts, and so much more. Fast and efficient, Norton offers a wide range of plans and services tailored to your needs. Read our review in full to get detailed information on features, pricing, customer service, ease of use, system impact, and more.
- Protects against all kinds of malware, viruses, spam, and more
- Detects and blocks phishing websites and suspicious emails
- Proactive protection with Smart Firewall + Intrusion Prevention System
- SafeCam blocks unauthorized access to your webcam
- Strong identity theft protection
- Allows customization of security features
- Offers cloud backup storage
- Excellent mobile security tools
- Fast and quiet scans with minimal system impact
- Round-the-clock protection on home and public wireless networks
- Not resource-intensive, so it can work on older devices
- Reasonably priced
- 60-day Money Back Guarantee and Virus Protection Promise
- Requires a little bit of learning curve for first-time users
- Limited reporting capabilities
- Some features like Parental Controls and SafeCam are not supported on MacOS
- Not available for Linux
NORTON ANTIVIRUS KEY DATA
Price: From $14.99
Money-back Guarantee: YES
Platforms: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS
Real-time Antivirus: YES
USB Virus Scan: YES
Auto Virus Scanning: YES
Manual Virus Scanning: YES
Registry Startup Scan: YES
Scheduled Scan: YES
Adware Prevention: NO
Chat/IM Protection: NO
Personal Firewall: YES
Gamer Mode: NO
Smartphone Optimizer: NO
Safe Browser: NO
Parental Controls: YES
VPN Service: YES
Device Tune-up: YES
Live Chat: YES
Email Support: YES
Phone Support: YES
Ticket Support: NO
SEE WHAT USERS HAVE TO SAY
"I am a senior and am not tech-savvy. I got my identity stolen and needed to find a way to secure my computer and other smart devices. I tried many but had not found a single one that was able to secure my accounts. Then I found NORTON 360! I purchased a premium package, which was extremely reasonable, and a new IP address and their password manager have been a Godsend! I've not had a single breach on my desktop, phone or security system when before I subscribed, I had to make new passwords for my various accounts monthly! The product is superior, the customer service unsurpassed, and you don't need to be a technical wizard to use it! They are, without a doubt, the best security software I've bought (and I've bought many)."
"This is an excellent product that I've used for several years. it always has high marks/rewards at the independent malware testing labs for protection, is light on my system, and has one of the best 2-way firewalls on the market. What I really like is the insight module that rates the safety of a program. my kids love Minecraft mods, and it is useful to see how many people have safely used one and how long it has been on the market."
"I have been using Norton 360 for over 10 years, and the problems of it slowing things down have disappeared. I don't use Norton Safe Web, and from reading some of the reviews, that is likely the problem. It does scan in the background only when my pc is idle. I haven't checked the settings in a long time, but I think many of the problems others are having could be easily fixed. I haven't had to contact tech support except on the renewal, and if you use chat, they respond within minutes."
Norton uses a combination of machine learning and heuristic analysis along with a massive malware directory to provide real-time protection against all kinds of cyber threats. It works quietly behind the scene, ensuring that our devices are safe from viruses, worms, trojans, keyloggers, exploits, bots, botnets, rootkits, ransomware, spyware, and many other malicious programs. Norton's anti-malware engine is second to none, and this was proven when it successfully detected 100% of malware files from our test database.
We also really like Norton's Smart Firewall, which dramatically improves what we already have built-in on our devices. A firewall acts as a gatekeeper, keeping your personal information in and cyberthreats out. Norton's firewall consists of 5 layers: Intrusion Prevention Wall, Antivirus File Scan, Reputation Database, Behavior Monitoring, and Powerful Erase and Repair. During our tests, Norton was able to detect every single network intrusion. The firewall is powerful enough for a novice without further configuration, but advanced users will enjoy the impressive range of customization options.
Norton also offers two features designed to help you shop online or browse and search the web more securely. These browser-add-ons are called Norton Safe Web and Norton Safe Search. Don't confuse one with the other. Norton Safe Web offers website protection by analyzing websites that you visit. Based on the safety ratings, you can tell if the website is free from any threats or is laden with viruses, malware, spyware, and more. You can also browse the Web in "isolation mode" to protect sensitive information when navigating financial sites like your banks or Paypal.
On the other hand, Norton Safe Search is more like a search engine. When you run it, your search results are annotated with color-coded assessments — green means safe, orange means potentially unsafe, and red means dangerous. When combined, these features not only enhance your online experience but also keeps you safe from phishing, identity theft, and other online scams.
ARE THERE ANY EXTRAS?
But of course, Norton is one of the most robust and feature-rich security products out there, so they go beyond malware and virus protection. Depending on your antivirus package, you can enjoy the following extra features:
As you can see, Norton takes privacy and identity theft protection quite seriously. Just remember that not every plan includes the features mentioned above; some are locked behind higher-tiered packages.
IS IT SAFE AND RELIABLE?
Speaking of higher-tiered plans, you won't have to worry if you're eyeing the less comprehensive but more affordable plans. After all, each of Norton's antivirus packages is powered by the same malware engine. You might be missing out on a few extras, but you get the same level of protection against viruses, spyware, malware, ransomware, and other current and emerging threats. We also checked how Norton fared in three of the most popular testing labs that evaluate security solutions: SE Labs, AV-Comparatives, and AV-Test Institute.
SE Labs replicate live targeted attacks and gives 4 letter-based scores depending on how well the security program performed. AAA is the highest, followed by AA, A, B, and C. Norton received an AAA certification in the most recent test.
AV-TEST Institute evaluates security solutions based on their protection, performance, and usability (maximum 6 points for each). A solution that scores between 17.5 - 18 points in a 2-month test cycle earns Top Product status. Norton clinched that distinction with a perfect score of 18 points.
Meanwhile, AV-Comparatives evaluates solutions based on these criteria: performance against real threats in both lab and real-world conditions, detection of common malware, false positives, protection against bodiless threats and exploits, and impact on system performance. Depending on the result, a security solution can get Standard, Advanced, or Advanced+ certifications. Norton received one Advanced and two Advanced+ out of 3 tests.
Based on how Norton performed in these three independent lab tests, Norton is undoubtedly one of the most reliable security solutions in the market today.
EASE OF USE AND SETUP
We purchased the Norton 360 Premium for this review, and we were pleased with how straightforward the setup was. After clicking on the "Subscribe Now" button and completing the payment process, we were prompted to run and install the software. It only took a couple of minutes to load before you're launched to the Quick Start Guide and your Norton dashboard. From there, you can set up and customize your Norton protection. Using it is a breeze, too, thanks to its intuitive user interface. Nothing seems out of place, and you can access menus and launch scans in a single click. Despite its wealth of features, Norton is easy to navigate, even for a complete novice.
WILL IT SLOW DOWN MY COMPUTER?
Norton Antivirus used to be notorious for being a resource hog, taking up too much RAM, and slowing down computers. We're happy to see that Symantec's efforts to address these concerns seem to be paying off. Sure, it still requires 2GB of RAM space, but once it's up and running, it only needs about 50MB, putting it on par with top security solutions in the industry. What does 50MB mean exactly? It means it's fast enough to let you surf the web, and work even on decade-old computers.
PRICING AND PLANS
The great thing with Norton is that they have a plan for pretty much everyone: students, professionals, small businesses, gamers, families, enterprises, and more. Right now, they have 4 comprehensive plans: Norton Antivirus Plus, Norton 360 Deluxe, Norton 360 Premium I, and Norton 360 with Lifelock Select. Price varies from time to time as they run seasonal promotions throughout the year. Visit our link to get between 50-85% off and pay only $9.99 to $79.99 on your first year!
You can contact Norton customer support in four different ways. Phone support is available during business hours from 9am to 9pm Monday to Sunday. If you need to talk to someone outside these hours, you can jump on the chat that's open 24/7. We tried the chat option, and it took less than a minute to connect to a live agent. The CSR was helpful and even offered remote assistance! Norton is also available on Facebook and Twitter and has a comprehensive community forum. However, we noticed that posts don't really have that much engagement, so unless you're trying to get feedback from other users, you're better off contacting support via chat.
All in all, we can see why Norton is so popular these days. It has a powerful anti-malware engine, impressive security tools, unique features not found on other security solutions, an intuitive online dashboard, and friendly customer support. What's more, it's light enough to work on older devices and is compatible with all major platforms — Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS. If you're looking for an affordable antivirus solution with features on par with the more expensive products, Norton is definitely worth a try.