Norton Antivirus vs Kaspersky

Last updated on November 6, 2018 Views: 2442 Comments: 4

In the highly competitive and fast-evolving world of internet security, Norton Antivirus and Kaspersky Antivirus have both made a big impression. With extensive features and competitive pricing, choosing between these two great products is as tricky as deciding whether you’d rather lose an arm or a leg.

To make life a bit easier for you, we’ve examined the pros and cons of each product, summarizing their best features and enabling you to decide which is the best anti-virus service for your individual needs.

Lowest Price$19.99$29.99
Free 30-day trialYesYes
Malware, Spyware, and Adware ProtectionYesYes
Extra Options
Multiple Device OptionsYesYes
Parental ControlsYesYes
Identity and Privacy SafeguardsYesYes
File BackupYesYes

1. Cost

One of the most important considerations for the majority of people is cost, and with the cost of internet security packages varying from free to over $12 per month, potential clients have a wide range of options to rummage through.

Both Norton and Kaspersky sit in the mid-range in terms of cost, with both companies offering a variety of packages aimed at addressing the needs of a wide range of clients. In addition to their home-use products, both companies also offer competitive packages for small businesses.

The starter product offered by Norton is a basic form of anti-virus protection which promises to protect your device from the complete spectrum of online threats, from spyware to viruses. This standard package also keeps your personal online banking activities just the way you want them – private. So confident are they about the efficacy of their product, Norton even offers a refund should your device become infected while under their protection. This package is advertised at $69,99 for the year, but, with the company running regular discounts and deals, it usually amounts to just $39,99.

Kaspersky’s standard entry-level product is much the same, although it offers protection for three devices rather than one, and comes out a little cheaper, with the basic price being $59,99 for the first year, discounted to $29,99 for new clients.

Moving up through their more advanced options, the prices remain consistent, as indicated in the screenshots below.

Our verdict: Kaspersky wins this round.

2. User Interface

While computer geeks may enjoy puzzling over a complex user interface, most of us prefer easy to navigate, colorful screens that make operating a program more of a pleasure than a test of our intellect and computer expertise. Many internet security services have tweaked their designs to make them more inviting, especially as anti-virus software has proliferated in response to the increasing levels of cyber-crime.

Both Norton and Kaspersky present their products using a basic grid design that simplifies navigation and graphically depicts each of the product’s features cleanly. The usability of the products is impressive, and the designs are simple enough for a small child to grasp. Choosing between the two competitors in this regard is challenging, although Norton just pips Kaspersky to the post with their clean, white screen and simplistic language.

Our verdict: Norton wins this round.

3. Customer Support

With internet security being such a competitive and cutting-edge field at the moment, most companies offering anti-virus and VPN services are at the top of their game when it comes to customer support. Both Norton and Kaspersky offer comprehensive FAQ sections on their websites, covering such topics as how to download a product, and general troubleshooting.

Kaspersky’s additional resource center is comparable with Norton’s internet security center, with both offering in-depth articles about the latest developments in the field and the most recent threats to cybersecurity. Norton goes the extra mile, however, in providing a community forum on which users can share useful information, like how to remove the latest viruses and security scams.

While Kaspersky may be lacking in the community forum stakes, their 24/7 online support is available to everyone, regardless of whether or not they already have an account with the company. Norton’s online support works a little differently, with users subscribing to the service according to their needs. Having said that, Norton offer in-depth technical support through this medium which distinguishes them from their rivals, making it look like Norton’s playing world-class chess while Kaspersky is still fiddling around with tiddlywinks.

In terms of social media presence and online business reputations, there’s little to choose between the two. Both Norton and Kaspersky have jam-packed YouTube channels where they post impressive videos highlighting the online risks that threaten all internet users while tackling issues such as bitcoin safety and bulletproof hosting.  Similarly, both companies maintain relevant and engaging pages on both Twitter and Facebook, responding promptly to customer reviews and inquiries.

Given how level the playing field is, it’s difficult to select a winner in this particular category, but Norton manages to sneak ahead with their thorough online support and impressive community forum.

Our verdict: Norton wins this round.

4. Extra features and add-ons

While we are all aware that there is some free anti-virus software available, most us are also astute enough to know that you get what you pay for, which is why choosing either Norton or Kaspersky can give you peace of mind and privacy online. Nevertheless, once you’ve signed up for one of these anti-virus programs, both companies are keen to sweeten the deal with added extras and free additional features.

Kaspersky’s free tools section on their downloads page boasts a range of additional features, from malware protection to a safe browser that gives you an extra layer of protection for your journey into cyberspace. You can even download a virus removal tool or rescue disk that will enable you to get your PC or Mac back in working order without running up huge bills with the local IT company.

Norton’s range of free tools is a little more limited and considerably more arduous to navigate. Nevertheless, they have some pretty cool features available, including their free app lock tool which can help protect your personal information and data, provides parental control so you can safeguard your kids, and enables your device to put on an extra raincoat of security should it be lost or stolen.

The other two free tools offered by Norton are a safe search option which gives you an automatic rating for each of your search results and helps you to avoid infected sites while browsing. The other tool is a handy cleaning service that will get your device shipshape in no time while also removing data from online advertisements.

It would seem Norton need to up their game a little if they are to challenge the market leaders in terms of the provision free tools and additional features.

Our verdict: Kaspersky wins this round.

5. Privacy and Security Features

Given that any company operating in the realm of internet security is constantly considering security risks and seeking to protect their clients’ privacy, their own privacy policies and security features should be on the cutting edge. Kaspersky certainly seems to take this aspect seriously, featuring both a standard privacy policy and an anti-corruption policy on their site.

While their privacy policy is primarily aimed at protecting the customer, the anti-corruption policy is more concerned with the ethical behavior of the company and its employees. This is a reassuring and unusual addendum, especially in light of the recent controversy surrounding the company. Last year, Kaspersky came under intense scrutiny after the Department of Homeland Security raised concerns about the Russians using Kaspersky products to access government information.

Norton has escaped such scrutiny and has even introduced a new level of protection with their Norton Core product, which is designed to protect the home at the router level. In keeping with such advancements, Norton has one of the most comprehensive and user-friendly privacy policies in cyberspace, with downloadable addendums available in five different languages.

Organized into sections with graphics to break up the text, Norton’s privacy policy uses simple explanations to communicate their commitment to user security and a variety of specific contact options available depending on the product or issue.

Once again, Norton proves themselves to be market leaders in this respect and gain the upper hand over Kaspersky.

Our verdict: Norton wins this round.

6. Features and Functionality

Kaspersky’s anti-virus software goes a long way to protect your PC, but if you’re hoping to shroud your Mac or Android under its protective shield, you’ll be most disappointed. Unlike most internet security companies, including Norton, have created adaptable cross-platform products that work as effectively on iOS as PC, Kaspersky’s anti-virus program is only available for PC, limiting its options and its potential users.

This is by no means the only drawback of the Kaspersky product and, while their anti-virus package will protect the consumer against viruses and other cybersecurity threats, to gain access to other features, such as parental controls and password management, Kaspersky clients have to upgrade to one of their more comprehensive security products.

In comparison, Norton’s anti-virus software is considerably more far-reaching, incorporating everything from financial protection to parental controls.

Having assessed the features contained in our rival packages, their comparative value for money becomes more obvious. While Kaspersky makes all the features that Norton has available in their internet security packages, the consumer will end up the same price for fewer features. To gain access to facets such as parental control or password protection, the Kaspersky client must upgrade to their Total Security package, at a cost of $39,99 per year – $10 more than Norton’s best price.

Our verdict: Norton wins again.

7. Performance and Protection Protocols

Getting down to the nitty-gritty in terms of performance, the protection protocols employed by our rivals are intrinsic to their ability to perform effectively and securely. While Norton has some of the best protection rates around, its capacity for identifying and blocking potential malware threats is somewhat lackluster in comparison to Kaspersky’s. Having said that, Kaspersky wobbles a bit when it comes to detecting potentially harmful URLs.

In terms of scan times, Kaspersky wins hands down, with a full scan taking less than half the time of the same operation run on Norton. Furthermore, Norton tends to slow your device down overall, especially if you’re operating on an older system.

Both competitors are constantly on the lookout for the latest online security threats and, while they both offer comprehensive protection against known risks when a new danger emerges, they both experience some lag time before they can guarantee protection.

Norton seems to get quite a lot of criticism for its tendency to leave certain adware and other threats that Kaspersky will remove. Having said that, should your device be highly-infected, Norton will probably be able to rescue it, especially with the use of their free rescue service, while Kaspersky will flounder. Similarly, pre-existing problems or malware threats often go untouched by Kaspersky.

This is a close one and, to be honest, both products reveal proportionally comparable pros and cons.

Our verdict: a tie.


Although both Kaspersky and Norton are offering reliable anti-virus programs, Norton’s goes the extra mile in terms of incorporating advanced features such as password protection and customizable parental controls. With more features available for less money, Norton sneaks into the lead in this head to head. However, Norton isn’t completely without its faults and some further development of their malware and adware removal functions would boost their product considerably.

The limited capacity of Kaspersky’s anti-virus software appears to encourage consumers to opt for a higher premium package which makes it feel as though their putting the screws on a little to ensure you part with as much money as possible. Norton overs a much more comprehensive protection service at a slightly reduced price and in a manner that doesn’t leave the consumer feeling as though they’ve opted for second best.

While both companies provide excellent customer support, Norton again manages to get their nose in front with their customer forum while, in terms of privacy, Norton establishes itself as a truly international company, publishing privacy policy addendums in five different languages.

With the recent headlines adding further instability to Kaspersky as a whole, Norton comes out the champion in this head to head but remains humble enough not to beat its chest about it.

Article comments

O says:

Thank you! This is helpful.

Lola Olsen says:

Glad we could help!

Luis da Costa Sousa says:

Thank you

Lola Olsen says:

Hi Luis,
You are very welcome