Norton Security Deluxe full review
Norton by Symantec is one of the most famous names in the antivirus industry. You'll find it among our pick of the best antivirus. We've been using the latest version of Norton Security Deluxe 2019 to bring you a full review of the latest security software.
As in previous years, Norton continues to make its "100% virus guarantee," promising that an expert will help keep your devices virus-free or your money back if you run into a particularly difficult piece of malware that overcomes its defences. This is a bold claim, and one only an established name such as Norton could feel confident in making. But does Security Deluxe have the tools to minimise the risk?
Right now, we've rated Norton Security Deluxe number two in our overall antivirus chart, just behind Bitdefender. They are both great options, and you can find out more about how they compare by reading our Bitdefender vs Norton review.
Norton Security Deluxe: Price & Availability
Deluxe isn't quite the top of the range Norton domestic antivirus product. That title goes to the Premium offering, which protects 10 devices, offers 25GB of online storage, and parental control tools. If you want something more stripped down, there's always the Standard version, which protects just one device and just includes a firewall and antivirus modules.
The price of Norton Security Deluxe's protection weighs in at £69.99 for up to five devices including PC, Mac, iOS and Android, though hefty discounts are available throughout the year from the Norton website so it's worth a check even if the RRP is out of your budget. That will get you one year of protection, after which you will need to renew. You can choose to sign up for two years at £89.99.
At the time of writing, there was over 50% off, for example.
It's made even more attractive by the inclusion of a year's subscription to Norton's VPN service. This is normally £59.99 on its own.
In the US, Norton Security Deluxe has been renamed Norton 360 Deluxe, and has a different pricing structure. You can pay $9.99 monthly for the service, or $59.99 for a year.
Norton Security Deluxe: Ease of Use & Features
Internally, Norton's antivirus products benefit from technology and cloud support provided by parent company Symantec, including SONAR Protection. This detects malware by examining the behaviour of running applications. The dedicated Intrusion Prevention module also blocks attacks from infected computers connected to your network. This is particularly welcome given the increasing amount of malware seeking to spread to other local computers after an initial infection.
As with last year's offering, after a few weeks of use, it's clear that Norton Security Deluxe is a discreet product, with few pop-ups appearing at all. Occasionally, you'll see a message about the background scan completing, but as it runs because you're not using the computer, it's hardly intrusive. In fact, one of the only times you're guaranteed to see a pop-up is when Norton analyses downloaded files for you, which is a good thing.
With drive-by web attacks still wildly popular, good web protection is essential, and Norton provides plenty of cover. There's Browser Protection, for example, which prevents web-based malware exploiting known browser vulnerabilities as you surf, and sites are flagged by reputation in search results. Web downloads are also analysed, and after scanning, a report on their safety pops up.
Passwords are protected by the integrated Identity Safe password manager plugin for your browser, which helps secure your ID with one click. This saves login details in a secure cloud-based vault, which in turn means that if you download the Identity Safe app for iOS or Android, you can securely access your accounts on your mobile devices.
Another nice feature is Scam Insight, which uses reputation data to identify potentially dodgy sites that ask for personal information, such as your Social Security Number or payment card details.
If you don't add this battery of web protection when you first install the product, after a week or so Norton asks if you'd like to revisit your decision. A downside here is that if you agree, your home page changes to a Norton search page. This may raise the hackles of some users with memories of a time when products would routinely try to change your home page to dodgy search engines that produce commercially skewed results.
The bundled performance tools cover the usual bases, and comprise three modules: Optimise Disk, File Cleanup and Startup Manager. The first re-organises dat aon the disk to make access more efficient.
Likewise, the File Cleanup facility frees up space occupied by temporary files, which is a problem particularly for older computers where disk space is at a premium.
Topping off the performance features is the startup manager, which enables you to delay some services so that you can log in and get going faster,. Finally there's a useful graph showing all major events including malware detections, scans and security alerts, along with the use of performance tools.
After 30 days of use, a Report Card pops up to give you a summary of what the product did for you in the previous month. This includes the number of WiFi networks protected, file cleanups performed, analysed downloads and the amount of disk space cleared of temporary files.
In terms of configuration, plenty of options usually means plenty of confusion, but here everything is laid out in a logical manner, with simple on/off switched, and help is available for every setting.
The app version (Norton Mobile Security and Antivirus) runs on iOS and Android. This contains the essential modules you need, and nothing you'll never use. Along with antivirus and anti-theft, there are modules for web protection, privacy and WiFi security.
Possibly because of a lack of extraneous modules and options, the mobile app is a terse affair, especially when viewed on a tablet where each screen contains little text and small icons.