(Updated on May 17th, 2021)

Is Norton 360 antivirus a worthwhile buy in 2021? This extensive review will find out if Norton 360 gives you value for money and if it is a must-have for 2021.

Cyber-attacks and online threats are on the rise every day. Anyone can fall victim to these malicious attacks since cybercriminals always cast a wider net. Moreover, with the evolving technology, individuals and organizations are now more exposed to malware, data breaches, and viruses.

According to BigNewNetwork, a cyberattack takes place every 39 seconds. For as long as technology and computers are in existence, there will always be a need for an antivirus suite. An all-rounded security suite is, therefore, necessary for 2021 to keep you and your devices safe.

A paid-for antivirus product ensures comprehensive security in the digital realm. A paid-for security suite provides you with total protection against malware, viruses, ransomware, and emerging threats. It also protects you from offline and unforeseen threats.

Additionally, a premium antivirus suite offers superior features that free products don’t have. These include cloud backup, VPN, password manager, system optimization tools, webcam protector, firewall, identity theft protection, among others. They also support multiple devices and are cross-platform.

This Norton 360 review will look at aspects such as features, protection and performance capabilities, user interface, pricing structure, compatibility, and customer support.

Let us get started.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Virus detection:  Norton 360 has 100% virus detection and virus protection. If Norton is unable to remove any virus, they guarantee you a full refund on your subscription.
  • Perfect malware protection: Norton 360 has an award-winning antivirus engine with multiple layers of protection. It is also coupled with machine learning and artificial intelligence. This technology enhances total protection against malware and other online and offline threats.
  • Unlimited VPN:  Norton 360 offers a secure VPN with unlimited traffic.
  • Excellent mobile app: Norton also offers smartphone protection via the Mobile Security plan included in various subscriptions of Norton 360. This worthwhile protection safeguards your mobile device against any cyber threats.
  • Parental control features: This robust feature ensures your children are protected against various cyber threats. You will easily supervise what they do on their devices. There is also a school mode feature that enables you to control remote and online learning.

Cons

  • No shredder or file encryption feature: The file shredder allows you to delete files securely. The encryption feature prevents unauthorized persons from accessing your information. The Norton 360 suite lacks these two.
  • Limited functions on Macs and IOS: Apple has placed some restrictions on their operating systems. Due to this, Macs and iOS devices do not enjoy all features. You will miss the Safe Cam, cloud backup, and some parental controls features.

Short Verdict

The Norton 360 line provides essential products for your device and online security. These products are Norton 360 standard, Norton 360 Deluxe, and Norton 360 with LifeLock. Through its robust antivirus engines, Norton 360 can protect you from online and offline threats.

You can further protect your online identity and do an online backup. Norton 360 products are cross-platform; hence they support windows, Macs, iOS, and Android devices. They also offer multidevice subscriptions. Overall, Norton 360 offers excellent value for your money.

1. Features

Norton 360 products have multiple features. These features are distributed through Norton 360 standard, Norton 360 Deluxe, and Norton 360 with LifeLock packages.

We will review Norton 360 features in the following three categories; device security, online privacy, and identity theft protection.  We will further go ahead and highlight each Norton 360 product with its respective feature.

Device security

  • Robust anti-malware engine: Norton 360 incorporates artificial intelligence and machine learning into the antivirus engine. This ensures that it can monitor all types of cyber-attacks. AI will detect and protect you against any malware before it can cause damage. The antivirus engine also protects you against online threats such as viruses, existing and emerging malware, spyware, and ransomware. You are also assured of offline protection.
  • Firewall:  Norton 360 has a two-way smart firewall that works seamlessly. It works by monitoring any unauthorized inbound or outbound internet connection. When it detects any suspicious activities in your network, it goes ahead to block them. The firewall ensures you are safe from outsider attacks and even from malicious apps. Combining the firewall with vulnerability assessment, Norton eliminates any potential weakness in your machine and alerts you when any is detected. It further recommends a solution to help resolve any arising problem.
  • Password manager: It is tedious having to remember multiple and complex passwords. You might end up forgetting some. Setting a weak password also exposes you to easy online hacking. With Norton’s password manager, you can avoid these risks. Using the autofill function, the password manager will always fill in all your login details. You will also get to use two-factor authentications, sync passwords with your devices, vault auditing, and auto-save.
  • Cloud back up: Norton 360 offers secure online storage for your information. Hence, you will never lose your important data if something happens to your machine. Norton offers various cloud storage capacities depending on your subscription plan.
  • Parental control: This feature is crucial for parents who want to monitor their children’s online activities. Parental control helps you set up boundaries to what your kids can access. You can always prevent them from accessing inappropriate sites. Norton also advocates that you should have a smart talk with your children. Parental control also comes with the newly released School time mode. This feature helps you limit the time your kids spend online during certain hours. Hence more study time.

Online privacy features

  • Secure VPN: Norton beefs up your online security with its secure Virtual Private Network (VPN).The VPN encrypts your online traffic and hides your IP address. This way, no one can see your location, identity or trace what you are doing online. All your online activities always remain private. This VPN is also useful when using publicWIFI. It creates a safe space, and you won’t have to worry about man-in-the-middle attacks.
  • Privacy monitor: This feature monitors your information on the open internet. It will scan various sites and let you know which ones have your information publicly. You can then request them to delete your info. This way, you will have greater control of your data.
  • PC SafeCam:  Cyber attackers can use spyware to spy on you using your webcam. They can use the information they get to blackmail you. Norton’s Safe cam helps block any unauthorized access to your webcam. It also informs you when someone is trying to access your camera. This gives you a chance to halt any actions you have not permitted.

Identity protection features

  • Dark web monitoring: Like the privacy monitor, this feature scans the dark web for your information. It will then alert you if it finds any of your credentials on the dark web. It scans for details such as your bank account numbers, insurance IDs, driver’s license, credit card, addresses, phone numbers, and even your mother’s maiden name. This is after you’ve added this information to your Norton account
  • Remediation features: Norton offers some remediation features. This is through Norton LifeLock. If any of your information gets compromised, Norton will help you with the restoration and mediation processes.

Norton 360 line of products and their specific features

Starting us off is Norton 360 Standard. This is the cheapest plan and is only for one device. It packs the following features:

  • Anti-spyware, antivirus, malware, and ransomware protection
  • Online threat protection
  • 10 GB PC Cloud Backup
  • Smart Firewall
  • Password Manager
  • 100% Virus Protection Promise
  • Secure VPN
  • SafeCam for PC
  • Dark Web Monitoring

Up next is the Norton 360 Deluxe, which protects up to five devices. Features in this plan are similar to those of the standard plan but with the addition of:

  • 50GB of PC cloud backup
  • Privacy monitor
  • Norton’s parental controls and school time

Next is the Norton 360 with Life Lock Select. This is a high-end product, and it includes Norton LifeLock. In addition to the above features, this plan has other unique features such as;

  • 100 GB of cloud storage
  • LifeLock’s Identity theft protection features.
Norton features

2. Anti Malware Protection

Norton 360 has a robust antivirus engine. This antivirus engine delivers multi-layered protection against online threats. It is reinforced with artificial intelligence, machine learning, and real-time threat detectors. Not only does it protect your devices but also your online privacy and your identity.

Multi-layered protection is offered in many ways. Norton uses protective exploit protection, and an intrusion prevention system backs up the smart firewall. There is also a power eraser and behavioral and reputation protection.

This protection ensures that potential and suspicious online threats are blocked before they can impact you. You also get protection against high-risk programs, persistent threats, and even zero-day attacks.

To get a clear picture of Norton’s anti-malware protection capabilities, we will use the latest evaluations from independent labs such as AV-Test. This lab assesses antivirus capabilities against the protection of threats. It tests antivirus protection against zero-day malware attacks and the detection of prevalent and widespread malware.

Here is how Norton 360 antivirus products fared in the latest AV-Test protection evaluations.

Anti Malware Protection 1

From the above results, Norton bags a protection score of 6.0/6.0. It also has a detection and protection rate of 100% against zero-day malware attacks and prevalent and widespread malware. Besides the great score, Norton also assures you of a full refund when you encounter a virus they cannot remove. 

3. System Performance

Nowadays, Norton 360 products deliver comprehensive protection without compromising your system performance. A while ago, Norton was known to strain your device’s resources while undertaking heavy scans.

Their latest innovations ensure minimal to no impact on your devices’ performance. However, active scans are resource-hungry than background scans. To avoid interruptions, Norton has a silent mode feature. This mode pauses updates and halts pop-ups.  

To assess Norton’s system performance, we will again rely on results from AV-Test. AV-Test does performance evaluations on daily computer activities. These include frequent file operations, browsing and downloads, and installing and launching frequently used apps.

Here is how Norton 360 antivirus products fared in the latest AV-Test performance evaluations.

system performance 1

From the above performance evaluations, Norton got a score of 6.0/6.0. Overall, Norton products have a lower influence on performance as compared to the average industry standard. The lower, the better.

4. User interface

Norton has been gradually streamlining its interfaces to make them more appealing. The navigation is quite straightforward, easy, and clean. You will find most of the features on the main menu.

However, most of the home page is covered by pictures of people climbing a mountain.

The Norton 360 products have the default My Norton interface and the Norton antivirus interface. The default interface has the dashboard laid vertically. There is a vertical pane hosting the features and the inspirational picture of a mountain climber.

The space could have been used for more feature shortcuts. The features on this interface include; dark web browser, device security, parental controls, secure VPN, and Cloud back up.

The antivirus interface is the Norton classic. This one has features in a horizontal array, much like most antivirus suites. This interface is very simple and straightforward. It sports features like; Device security, Online security, Performance, Cloud back up and my Norton shortcut.

User interface

Overall, both interfaces are user-friendly, and accessibility is hassle-free.

5. Pricing

Norton 360 products have different subscription plans. Here are the introductory prices for each of the subscriptions.

  • Norton 360 Standard, which is the basic in the line, goes for $39.99 per year for the first year. This subscription covers 1 PC, Mac, smartphone, or tablet.
  • Norton 360 deluxe costs $49.99 per year for the first year. This subscription offers protection for up to 5 PCs, Macs, smartphones, or tablets.

The Norton 360 with LifeLock has three packages under it. These are Norton 360 LifeLock Select, Advantage, and Ultimate Plus. Unlike the standard Norton 360, this subscription has more advanced features for identity protection. Below are the introductory prices for the three products under this Tier;

  • Norton 360 with LifeLock Select retails at $99.48 per year for the first year. This subscription covers up to 5 devices (PCs, Macs, smartphones, and tablets).
  • Norton 360 with LifeLock Advantage costs $191.88 per year for the first year, and it covers up to 10 devices.
  • Norton 360 with LifeLock Ultimate Plus goes for $299.88 per year for the first year. This subscription covers unlimited devices; restrictions may apply.
Norton Products Regular Price Discounted Price
Norton Antivirus Plus$59.99/yearCheck here
Norton 360 Standard$79.99/yearCheck here
Norton 360 Deluxe$99.99/year Check here
Norton 360 with Lifelock Select$149.99/year Check here
Norton 360 with Utimate Plus$349.99/yearCheck here
Norton Small Business SecurityVariesCheck here

6. Compatibility

The Norton 360 line offers cross-platform products. They are compatible with Macs, Windows, iOS, and Android devices. The subscription plans also offer multidevice support.

Windows and Macs get the most features and comprehensive protection. The Macs, however, lack some functionalities available on Windows.

This is also the case with smartphones. Android has more features than iOS. iOS only gets basic protection. In Android, you have to install separate apps to get the full Norton functionality.

The lack of features in Apple products is due to the restrictions in these their operating system.

7. Customer Support

Norton offers a wide range of customer support services. Most of the services are provided via their support page. The services include an FAQ, a ticket system, call support, a community forum, and a 24/7 live chat. You can also get assistance through your Norton account.

The FAQ and the forum give you immediate answers to most issues. The FAQ is well organized, and there’s a search bar. The live chat is responsive, and for it to work, you need to enter your username. This is somehow limiting for new users who want to try the service.

Support agents are based in different countries, and Norton supports a variety of languages. Tutorial guides also offer solutions to various problems. At an extra cost, the Norton support center will attend to you with the utmost attention.

Final Thoughts

Norton 360 is a good antivirus and a viable buy-in 2021. If you want to maximize features, Norton 360 Deluxe should be your option. This does not mean the others are to be disregarded. Each subscription ensures total device protection, privacy, and identity theft protection. Norton is all about giving the best.

Frequently asked questions

What is the difference between Norton antivirus and Norton 360?

Norton 360 was recently introduced in 2019. The main difference between the two is that Norton 360 has a secure VPN, PC SafeCam, cloud backup, dark web monitoring, and ultimate protection.

Is Norton 360 Standard better than Norton 360 Deluxe?

No. Norton 360 Standard is not better than Norton 360 Deluxe. The latter has more features better than the standard version and supports more devices.

Do I need Norton 360 with Windows 10?

If you want to enjoy exclusive features and top-notch protection and performance, Norton 360 should be your selection. Although Windows 10 has Window Defender, which is free, you will only have basic features.

Can I buy Norton 360 without renewal?

Yes. However, auto-renewal is recommended. Some additional essential free features and benefits rely on auto-renewal.

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