Malware and Virus Protection: ESET Vs. Norton

December 6, 2021
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It’s incredibly difficult to choose an anti-virus provider. The choices are quite varied, and they all seem to be a viable solution too. The reality is that some providers are better than others as they can offer a complete package suitable for your computing needs. Two of the biggest competitors are Norton and ESET. Both have proven credentials in the anti-virus industry and have a package suitable for all your requirements. So, who has the best virus and malware protection, and which should you choose?

Top Features of Norton

Norton has been a popular choice for years and it’s easy to see why. You can get protection from malware and even while using your webcam. There is even access to the Norton VPN (virtual private network) which impresses, to say the least. Norton looks promising and it takes your protection to the next level, especially with their VPN option.

Top Features of ESET

ESET offers lots of quality features, including a file shredder. It also safeguards your privacy, which helps to ensure security on a higher level. ESET also offers secure data encryption and that is important for keeping sensitive data away from prying eyes. ESET does look like an interesting prospect and has so much to offer too.

Anti Virus Features

Comparing Features of ESET and Norton

You will find Norton and ESET offer many of the same features, those include a Firewall, anti-spyware and virus protection, password manager, anti-phishing features, webcam protection, parental control, and protection against ransomware. However, that is where the two begins to differ. For example, ESET offers banking and payment protection, whereas Norton doesn’t. That is quite a surprise but that isn’t where the differences stop. Norton doesn’t offer encrypted storage, where ESET does; Norton doesn’t offer an automatic app update either.

On the other hand, Norton has a VPN and 50GB of PC cloud backup; ESET doesn’t offer either. The truth is that while Norton and ESET have many features and offer a high level of protection for users, they are quite different from one another.

History and Background

Norton is one of the oldest anti-virus software companies. It was first established in 2001 and ever since, has been a popular choice among many. Norton is well-known as an industry leader when it comes to anti-virus and anti-spyware software. It’s thought to have over fifty million consumers around the world; that is impressive. On the other hand, ESET made its entry in this industry in 2003 and has an estimated one hundred million users.

That tops Norton by fifty percent, although, Norton seems to be the one that you’d recognize before ESET. You shouldn’t dismiss ESET as it’s a strong competitor and used in over two hundred countries worldwide.


You need anti-virus software that is easy to use and compatible with your devices. Fortunately, both ESET and Norton are compatible with the main operating systems, such as Windows and Mac OS. They also work with Android devices. This spells great news, regardless of which software you prefer. Ideally, you need anti-virus protection for all your devices, even smartphones. ESET and Norton are compatible with most operating systems, so that’s a bonus.

Subscription Costs

You always need to consider costs when it comes to anti-virus software, but of course, it shouldn’t be the deciding factor. Norton and ESET have different subscriptions and costs vary also. For example, Norton has 360 Standard, 360 Deluxe, 360 and Life Lock Select, Life Lock Advantage, and Ultimate Plus anti-virus software programs. Costs currently range from around eighty dollars a year to three hundred and fifty. ESET has similar packages, those include ESET Internet Security, Smart Security Premium, NOD32 Anti-Virus for Windows, Cyber Security for Mac, and Mobile Security for Android only. Costs range from fifteen dollars a year for Mobile Security to sixty dollars for Smart Security Premium.

There is a massive difference in price, to say the least. ESET is the more affordable choice and while Norton does have so much to offer, ESET has the advantage when it comes to costs. Price really does matter, especially today. Fortunately, there is a thirty-day free trial from ESET, and Norton offers a sixty-day money-back guarantee. That’s good as you might find one isn’t right for your needs.

anti-virus program

Effectiveness and Performance

Norton and ESET are excellent at detecting dangers, as well as false alarms. Of course, it all depends on the type of threats your PC faces online. For instance, you might never face a threat from a hacker. Then again, you might have several viruses sent via a link in an email. It’s difficult to say just how effective each anti-virus program is until it faces a threat. Some threats will be more severe than others.

In terms of performance and ESET doesn’t have a quick scan option available, unlike Norton. However, ESET does have a faster full scan feature. Performance does vary too, depending on what you plan to do during the program scanning.

How Does Installation Work?

No-one likes the sign-up or installation process, especially when it’s all done remotely online. Whether you’re a novice in the technology field or an expert, it’s a pain to install new programs since it usually involves restarting the device to complete the installation. Fortunately, ESET and Norton make it incredibly easy to sign-up and install their software. ESET even allows you to compare their products before you buy, and Norton shows what, if any discount there is.


ESET has a simple interface that offers a modern design and is incredibly easy to understand. For instance, when you open the ESET anti-virus program, you’ll be presented with a dashboard. It’ll either be red, yellow, or green; each representing a different status. Green means you’re protected, and no action is needed, yellow means your attention is required, and red means there is a threat on your device. You can scan the device and take whatever necessary action.

Norton’s dashboard is easy to use too. It shows if you’re protected or if a threat has been detected. You can easily scroll through the performance, identity, and security sections. Both ESET and Norton’s usability is incredibly high.

Customer Support

Customer Support

Customer support is crucial for software programs because if you need help, it must be available then and there. Norton has support available throughout the year; in fact, there is 24/7 support, 365 days. It’s impressive and regardless of what subscription you choose, support is available as and when you need it, so that’s reassuring. There is also Live Chat, FAQ, and online forums available.

ESET, however, differs from Norton. There is no 24/7 customer support; US customers, however, can access support from 6 a.m. to 5 p.m. There is phone, email, and online ticket submission options. There are video and troubleshooting FAQs to assist you. While those things are impressive, Norton does have the slight edge when it comes to customer support. It might disappoint you, however, there is extensive online assistance available.

Who Wins the Battle?

It’s hard to pick a winner as ESET and Norton have slightly different products. Both offer a great anti-virus software, and both are experts in this industry too. Norton edges ESET in many areas, especially in customer support; however, ESET has more features available. Norton and ESET are winners in their own rights because their anti-virus software hits the mark in so many ways. When it comes the time for you to choose between them, you need to decide what features you need and want, along with costs, customer support, and usability.