Norton vs TotalAV

The internet has opened avenues that were once thought impossible, but innovation has brought along dangers too. Malware and cybercrime represent a real threat to internet users’ privacy. Thankfully, antivirus software can help.

Finding the right antivirus software can be quite difficult. I have made the choice easier for you with my comparison of Norton and TotalAV, two leading antivirus software systems.

Can’t wait to find out who the winner is? Norton is my recommendation. Norton offers a range of very useful features which help secure your data. It also helps protect younger users of the internet by including parental controls. Norton came out on top for malware protection during my research with excellent results.

DEAL ALERT: For those on a tight budget TotalAV offers a very competent antivirus product that is currently discounted to $20.

Read on to find out more about Norton and TotalAV and all the features they have to offer.

Summary: Norton vs TotalAV

Norton 360 Deluxe

  • Strong malware protection results
  • Webcam protection
  • VPN

TotalAV

  • Ransomware protection
  • System tune-up
  • Cloud scanning
FeatureNorton 360 DeluxeTotalAV
Antivirus and antispyware
Firewall
Webcam protection
Password manager
Anti-phishing
Ransomware protection
Banking and payment protection
Parental control
Network attack protection
Encrypted storage
Automatically update apps
VPN
PC cloud backup✔ (50 GB)
File shredder
Performance optimization
Identity theft protection
Run suspicious apps in sandbox

Background

Norton

Developed by Symantec Corporation, Norton has been around since 1991. It’s a very popular choice for consumers, and one of the leading antivirus software providers on the market. Norton held a 61 percent US market share in security suites back in 2007. Over 50 million people have purchased Norton worldwide. This software protects the data of individuals and businesses all over the world.

TotalAV

Still rather new in the antivirus world, TotalAV antivirus software has become well-established against its competitors. TotalAV has won an array of awards for its features and malware detection. With over 25 million users trusting TotalAV to protect them online, it is clearly popular with consumers. It is currently registered in the United Kingdom and owned by Protected.net Group Limited.

Pricing and compatibility

One of the first things to consider when choosing antivirus software is the price. Below you will find an outline of the prices and packages Norton and TotalAV have to offer.

As you can see in the table above, Norton’s standard and premium products vary largely in price. Prices start at $79.99 per year and go up to $349.99 per year. There is a wide range of products available to choose from on Norton’s website, including one just for gamers. The Deluxe version offers the most with parental controls and the option to cover five devices.

TotalAV’s pricing structure is very simple. It offers both paid and free versions. The paid version allows you to protect three, five, or even six devices.

At the time of writing, both Norton and TotalAV offer discounts. Norton offers discounts on your first year’s subscription. Norton 360 Deluxe is $60 off for the first year, making it an affordable $39.99. Of all the discounts from Norton, this is one of the biggest we have seen yet. TotalAV also offers a discount of 80 percent off the paid version. This makes TotalAV Antivirus Pro only around $20 for three devices. You will then be charged the full fee once the first year’s subscription is completed.

If you are unhappy, Norton allows you to get your money back within 60 days of purchase. TotalAV takes a different approach by providing you with a free 30-day trial.

You will be pleased to know that Norton and TotalAV work with all major operating systems including Windows, MacOS, and Android devices.

Effectiveness against malware

There are many ways malware can affect your operating system. Malware includes Trojans, worms, ransomware, and more. Such threats grow as technology develops. I conducted some tests to discover the effectiveness of Norton and TotalAV against malware.

My first test involved downloading malware samples from the European Institute of Computer Antivirus Research (EICAR). The second test used live malware samples to see how the antivirus fared in real time.

Test FileEICAR Sample 1EICAR Sample 2EICAR Sample 3EICAR Sample 4Live Sample 1 (Adware)Live Sample 2 (Trojan)Live Sample 3
(Trojan)
NortonBlockedAllowedAllowedAllowedBlockedBlockedBlocked
TotalAVAllowedBlockedAllowedAllowedDetectedDetectedDetected

As the table shows, Norton blocked the first EICAR sample. It also blocked the two zipped EICAR samples upon extraction. Norton performed well against malware threats, detecting and deleting three live samples. TotalAV only blocked one EICAR sample and allowed the other three. The live samples were all detected but they were not blocked from being downloaded. It is clear to see that Norton performed better in fighting malware threats.

To further back up my findings, I decided to look at recent independent tests conducted by third-party organizations. These include AV-Test which assesses the protection of antivirus software. Norton scored 100 percent in its most recent test from May 2020 and June 2020. TotalAV scored slightly lower with 98.2 percent in May and 98.9 percent in June.

I also looked at another independent testing site which reports on the protection levels of antivirus software. AV-Comparatives’ most recent Real-World Protection test summary from February 2020 to May 2020 gave Norton a 100 percent protection rate. TotalAV once again scored less with 98.5 percent.

False alarms occur when an antivirus identifies safe files as a threat, and can be quite confusing and inconvenient for users. I found Norton registered 28 false positives while TotalAV only had two false alarms. Nevertheless, the superb protection that Norton offers helps make up for its poorer performance in this test.

Weighing up all the evidence from my own findings and the latest statistics from leading testing websites, Norton is the winner of this round. It performs admirably in nearly every task, and offers the greatest protection against malware.

Impact on PC performance

If you use your PC regularly, it’s vitally important to make sure your antivirus software doesn’t negatively impact your PC performance in terms of things like CPU and memory utilization. I ran some tests to see the effects Norton and TotalAV had on my PC whilst running a full and quick scan.

Test TypeFull Scan Time (minutes)Full Scan Items ScannedControl CPU Utilization % (no scan)Control Memory Utilization % (no scan)Control Disk Utilization (MB/s) (no scan)Quick Scan CPU Utilization %Quick Scan Memory Utilization %Quick Scan Disk Utilization (MB/s)Quick Scan Time (seconds)
Norton121970000147213377641171
TotalAV199120000817533294154751740

The table above outlines the results of full and quick scans on both Norton and TotalAV.  Norton’s full scan took 121 minutes compared to TotalAV’s 199 minutes. Norton also scanned a great deal more items than TotalAV’s 120,000, resulting in a more thorough check. TotalAV’s quick scan resolved in 1,720 seconds which is much longer than most leading antivirus software. Norton’s quick scan took just 171 seconds which isn’t the best out of all competitors, but still respectable.

The table below shows the impact made on my PC’s performance when no scan was processing and when a full scan was running.

Test TypeControl CPU Utilization % (no scan)Control Memory Utilization % (no scan)Control Disk Utilization (MB/s) (no scan)Full Scan CPU Utilization %Full Scan Memory Utilization %Full Scan Disk Utilization (MB/s)
Norton1472138475381
TotalAV817533210082101

TotalAV used a considerable amount of disk utilization when no scan was taking place. Norton used only 14 percent CPU utilization when no scan was running and just 84 percent when a full scan was in place. Overall, Norton had far less of an impact on PC performance.

To back up my findings, I looked at AV-Comparatives’ recent performance test from April 2020. This test is particularly helpful in showing the impact antivirus software has on PC performance when engaged in eight tasks:

  • Downloading files
  • Browsing websites
  • File copying: First and subsequent run
  • Installing and uninstalling applications
  • Archiving and unarchiving
  • Launching applications: First and subsequent run

Norton scored a fast rating for archiving and unarchiving, launching applications when they are first run, and installing and uninstalling applications. This trend continued with fast results in all other tasks. TotalAV also scored fast in most areas, except for installing and uninstalling applications. The score here was rather poor.

It is evident from my own data and independent tests that Norton, once again, comes out on top. TotalAV only scans a fraction of what Norton covered with a full scan and uses more resources when performing scans.

Features

I have compared pricing, performance, and malware tests so far, but now it is time to look at the functionality of Norton and TotalAV. Comparing antivirus software can be quite confusing, so I have chosen some of the standout features from each.

 Norton 360 Deluxe

  • Cloud backup 50GB
  • Real-time threat protection
  • Password manager
  • Secure VPN
  • Dark web monitoring
  • PC SafeCam
  • Parental control

TotalAV Antivirus Pro

  • Ransomware protection
  • Protection against phishing scams
  • Protection against adware and spyware
  • Free up system space
  • System tune-up
  • Web shield extension
  • Browser cleaner and manager
  • Cloud scanning

Norton 360 Deluxe

50GB cloud backup: This allows you to store and secure your important files and documents, offering protection against failures, stolen devices, and ransomware.

Parental controls: It is vitally important to protect your children online. This manages your children’s digital activity, keeping them safe and secure.

PC SafeCam: This feature notifies you if hackers try to access your webcam., leaving you safe in the knowledge that your privacy is safeguarded.

TotalAV Antivirus Pro

Cloud scanning: Cloud scanning ensures your device is scanned and protected quickly and efficiently. It is the quickest protection against zero-day malware threats.

System tune up: Want to maximize the performance and speed of your device? This tool determines any potential areas that could help your device run smoother.

Protection against phishing scams: This important tool blocks the latest phishing URLs, protecting you against any dangerous scams that may target your device.

There are many great features offered by both Norton and TotalAV. The tools go beyond just malware scanning to deliver important protection in other areas. Norton stands out as it includes more comprehensive features that focus on the security of the user. Norton protects your personal information and keeps you safe.

Signup and installation

Signup and installation should be an easy task. This isn’t always the case, but whether you’re a novice or an advanced user, the process with both Norton and TotalAV is quite simple.

Norton’s website includes a yellow Subscribe Now button. Clicking this takes you to the subscription form where you can see a summary of your order. This page is easy to understand and Norton outlines the number of devices covered and the level of backup storage you are getting. It also shows compatibility and renewal costs for the next year. If you don’t want to renew, you can simply add a reminder to your calendar. Although not automatically included, there is also the option to add Norton Computer Tune Up for an additional $9.99.

As soon as you select the product you want, TotalAV takes you immediately to checkout. As with Norton, TotalAV distinctly shows you how much you are saving. It also states how much ‘free tune up’ and ‘free additional devices’ are, and the screen then shows that they are added to your product.

How easy is the interface to use?

An interface is essential for any software that is installed on your device. If you’re going to use it often, it’s important that it’s straightforward and intuitive.

As you can see below, Norton’s dashboard is displayed in its signature colors of yellow and green. It clearly shows the status of your current protection along with details of the number of licenses that are used. Security, backup, and performance status is shown in the bottom panel and is easy to understand with the use of clear icons and labels. There is the option to access a web portal that allows you to manage all of your devices.

TotalAV has a very simple design. For more novice users of antivirus software, this could be comforting to see. The screen immediately informs you that you are protected as soon as it is opened. You are then asked to run a simple smart scan. Settings can be adjusted via the left-hand icon.

Customer support

The best antivirus software providers offer excellent customer support. Norton offers around-the-clock support for all of its products, including the lower-priced option. There is a live chat support function which is helpful, along with online communities, FAQs, and support on social media platforms. Norton really stands out from its competitors with such thorough support.

TotalAV offers 24/7 live chat support via its website. This is quick and easy to use, and the most popular method of communication with TotalAV’s users. You can alternatively phone or email, or use the comprehensive FAQ and support pages on TotalAV’s website.

Conclusion

In conclusion, I have found that Norton is the winner. Norton outperforms TotalAV in just about every area including malware protection in my own and independent tests. Although TotalAV is somewhat cheaper, you can’t put a price on protection, and Norton clearly provides the greatest all-round protection for your devices.

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