Hands on: Norton 360 2014

By Pat Pilcher

9 comments

Having reviewed previous editions of Norton 360 over the years, it is one of the better security suites on offer. Not only does it have a big list of features but it can also be installed on 5 iOS, Windows and Android devices.

Norton 360 also has one of the more flexible parental control implementations. Norton's parental controls can restrict kids access to approved websites between specified times. Access schedules and permissions can also be changed using a smartphone if away from home.

Norton 360 also brings robust malware protection into the fray. Norton 360 also scored highly in independent tests from the likes of AV-Test labs.

Reviews of Norton products used to see a flood of reader complaints complaining that Norton apps had transformed their systems into sluggish nightmares. Symantec addressed this with slimmer code several years back. Impacts on system performance with this year's version were almost non-existent.

Malware aside, Norton 360 also address other avenues of attack. Able to protect from malicious links and downloads; Norton 360 also has a configurable firewall plus file sharing protection. Removable media such as USB drives plus network traffic are also scanned.

Other Goodies

If it were just keeping the kids safe and systems malware free, that'd be great, there's also a bunch of other goodies. Norton 360 comes with online backup storage of 25GB. This means documents don't get lost should a hard drive fail or if your device is stolen. Norton 360's backup utilities can also do backups to external hard drives.

The bundled password manager also deserves mention. It helps create and store secure passwords, entering them into websites so they don't get picked up by key loggers.

Then there are utilities for system maintenance. Chores such as erasing deleted files, cleaning the registry, and managing start-up apps all happen in the background, freeing up valuable time.

CPU activity is also monitored and Norton 360 will let you know when an application is hogging system resources. This proved handy for identifying apps that were creating system slow-downs.

Norton 360 is also able to be installed on up to 5 devices, making it ideal for use in a typical household.

Verdict

Norton 360 is great for busy families. Able to keep devices secure, its flexible parental controls are a definite bonus for parents. Norton 360 can be installed on up 5 devices, providing a suite of utilities to keep hardware running smoothly, there's a lot to like.

- NZ Herald

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