Symantec has made free beta versions of its Norton Antivirus 2011 and Norton Internet Security 2011 available to web users.

Both new security programs benefit from Download Insight 2.0, which uses the security vendor's reputation technology to analyse every download from the web, whether it's from a website, or contained within an email or instant message, and alert PC users if the file is harmful.

Norton Antivirus 2011 and Norton Internet Security also offer System Insight 2.0 which identifies if any programs are significantly impacting on a PC's system resources.

"With the Norton 2011 release, we're determined to continue delivering a fast and very effective security suite for the market," said Jens Meggers, vice president of engineering, for Norton products.

Symantec is also offering two free security tools designed to keep web users safe on the net.

Norton Safe Web for Facebook scans Facebook news feeds for malicious URLs, and flagging them up before a user clicks through to the linked site, while Norton Power Eraser will detect and remove any scareware or fake programs impersonating legitimate software.

The two tools join the Norton Bootable Recovery Tool, which is currently only available to Norton subscribers and allows users to create a CD, DVD or USB that will boot infected PCs that will not start.

"Further to this, our customers are looking for value beyond 'core security' and the free new tools we're bringing to market will keep the Norton community and the community-at-large safer from the cybercriminals who find new ways everyday to target people's identity for a profit."

The software can be downloaded for free from Norton's Beta website.

See also: Symantec offers free Norton Safe Web Lite