Norton 360 is arguably the best-known software security suite in the world, but that doesn't necessarily make it the best. However, in this latest version Symantec responds aggressively to user complaints concerning resource-hogging while including improvements in botnet detection, warnings for suspicious online retailers, and virus-definition file updates pushed every 15 minutes.
The suite includes antivirus, antispyware, antiphishing, antispam, antirootkit protection, a firewall, Symantec's SONAR (Symantec Online Network for Advance Response) behavioral-monitoring software, and a vulnerability assessment tool to see what Windows updates your computer might be missing. It also rolls in 2GB of free online storage for backing up your most important files, which can be upgraded for a price. The resources manager lets you streamline your boot cycle to start faster when the computer's off. The new install time is blazingly fast, and should clock in for most users at under or around one minute.
The interface overhaul is much easier to manage, with horizontal navigation and clearly delineated categories. Advanced options are available from two text links on the top nav, Tasks and Settings. From here, users familiar with Norton 360 will find more choices than ever before to customize and tweak protection behavior. In many ways, this version of Norton 360 has finally caught up with the times. Although it may pain the cynics to hear this, Norton 360's revamped approach to security and ease of use and its emphasis on speed make the program worthy of consideration again.
Norton 360 delivers all-in-one security for everything the computer users in your family care about, providing automatic and transparent protection from viruses, spyware, fraudulent Web sites, phishing scams, intrusions, and the latest online threats. With a renewable subscription, up to three PCs in your household are continuously protected, safeguarding your family when they shop or bank online, play games, send email, or download files. Norton 360 also helps keep your PCs tuned for peak performance. Plus, it protects the data on them by making it easy to automatically back up and restore important files locally or to a secure online storage service. Requires high-speed Internet access. 2 GB of online storage included, with option to purchase more.