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Norton 360 vs Webroot: which antivirus is better?


Is Norton vs Webroot a well-matched competition? No one can argue that Norton is one of the best-known and oldest antivirus providers. However, over the years, it has gained many rivals.

A lesser-known provider, Webroot, is slowly paving its way to a broader user base. But does Webroot have what it takes to compete with the antivirus giant Norton 360? We decided to put the two providers to the test.

Webroot vs Norton 360 comparison explores the protection, PC performance, pricing, UI, and customer support of both providers. Our detailed comparison reveals an unbiased look at both Norton 360 and Webroot to see how they match up. Continue reading to find out which antivirus provider is better.

Norton vs Webroot

Norton AntivirusWebroot Antivirus
⭐ Rating:
4.7
3.4
🥇 Overall rank:#2 out of #25#24 out of #25
🔥 Coupons:Norton Antivirus coupon 66% OFFAntivirus Coupons 2023
💵 Price:From $19.99/yearFrom $25.99/year
✂️ Free version:NoNo
🖥️ Platforms:Windows, macOS, iOS, AndroidWindows, macOS, iOS, and Android

Norton vs Webroot: which offers better protection?

Whether antivirus software offers sufficient protection is not a matter of opinion — to evaluate correctly, we need data. Thus, we turned to independent testing labs to assess providers' malware detection rates, effectiveness against zero-day threats, false positives, and other criteria. The test results are straightforward: Norton 360 has the edge over Webroot.

Check out our best antivirus software article to see our overall top picks.

NortonWebroot
AV-TestTop productCertified
AV-ComparativesAdvanced
SE LabsAAAAAA

During the most recent independent AV-test, Norton 360 scored a maximum of 6 points in protection, performance, and usability. In the Real-World Protection Test July-October 2022 performed by AV-Comparatives, the provider received an Advanced award and scored 2 stars out of 3.

norton av test 2022

Clearly, Norton's protection is bulletproof; Webroot's, on the other hand, not so much. On AV-test performed in June 2019, Webroot scored 2 for protection, 5.5 for performance, and 4 for usability. While AV-test is yet to perform a more recent test on Webroot, what we can see from other tests, the provider's protection has improved.

webroot-av-test-2019

Another recent test performed by SE Labs provided some interesting results. Home Endpoint Security Test awarded both Norton 360 and Webroot with the same category AAA ratings.

However, Norton 360 vs Webroot performance was different. Norton's protection accuracy was rated at 98%, with total accuracy of 99%. Meanwhile, Webroot scored slightly lower. It received 88% protection accuracy and a 96% total accuracy score.

As you can see, Norton 360 continuously demonstrates top-notch protection against threats. We cannot say the same about Webroot. Its protection level is lower than Norton's and can't compare to the best antivirus software on the market.

Malware protection

Norton 360 and Webroot have innovative tools to protect their clients from malware and zero-day threats. The providers aim to catch these threats before any damage is done, but Norton's and Webroot's reliability differs.

Norton 360 offers AI-based real-time protection. It protects your device from malware before it can infect your system. The best part is that the protection also works in the browser to prevent you from unknowingly visiting malicious sites. Judging from the test we performed, Norton's real-time protection does its job well. It effectively detected and blocked all 10 malicious files we planted on the computer.

Webroot's real-time protection is called Realtime Shield. It prevents malware from infiltrating your system by continuously monitoring your device activity. The goal here is to avoid damage to your device. Sounds promising, doesn't it? Well, we decided to test it ourselves. After we planted 10 malicious files on the computer, the result was subpar. Webroot managed to spot only 4 out of 10 viruses.

Scanning

An antivirus suite wouldn't be complete without the scanning option. After all, it’s an effective way to catch malicious files that found their way into your system. Let's see how Webroot vs Norton 360 scanning matches up.

Norton 360 employs smart, quick, full, and custom scans, as well as Norton Insight, which marks any suspicious files that should be checked with a custom scan. During our test, smart and quick scans lasted under a minute but didn't find any of the malicious files we planted for testing. While the full scan took around 11 minutes, it was the only type of scan to find all 10 malicious files.

Webroot has simplified its scanning types into two: Deep Scan to check the whole system and Quick Scan for high-risk areas only. Both scans are customizable, allowing you to choose when and what the software scans. After testing how they work, we got solid but not perfect results. Webroot's full scan detected 7 out of 10 viruses we planted.

Firewall protection

Norton 360 sets a bar pretty high when it comes to firewall protection. The provider employs a smart firewall that monitors network traffic on your computer. It effectively keeps your device safe from intruders.

Furthermore, Norton's firewall has an important extra feature — vulnerability assessment. It works by detecting and protecting the weak spot of your system. Whether it's suspicious applications or weak passwords, Norton's firewall prevents intruders from exploiting you.

Webroot, on the other hand, needs to step up its protection. Even though the provider offers a firewall for Windows devices, it could be more effective. During our tests, Windows Defender's Firewall did a better job detecting and stopping infiltrating malware than Webroot's firewall, which didn't detect a single one.

Features overview

Norton 360 DeluxeWebroot Internet Security Complete
Firewall
Real-time protection
Virus scan
Password manager
VPN
Parental controls
File shredder
Webcam protection
Performance optimization tool

Norton features

Norton 360 delivers a wide range of features to ensure the highest level of security. However, many of them come with specific plans. We detail each plan in the pricing section below.

Available on all subscription plans, Norton's Cloud Backup ensures you won't lose important documents in case of a ransomware attack. Cloud storage is effortless to set up and use. It also features an automatic backup option as well as scheduled backups. The cloud storage size depends on the plan you choose and can vary from 2GB to 50GB.

Norton pc cloud backup with text

Another great feature of Norton 360 Standard and Deluxe plans is SafeCam protection. If your device gets infected by spyware, cybercriminals may be able to record via your webcam secretly. To prevent this breach of privacy, Norton's SafeCam blocks unauthorized access to your PC's camera.

The Deluxe version comes with another handy feature — Norton Parental Control. The feature is controlled with a different app called Norton Family. The app has many settings to prevent children with different devices from accessing adult content. Additionally, the app allows tracking time spent on the device, location, and browsing history. It can also prevent the access to adult-themed websites as well as block certain websites during school hours. With Norton Parental Control, you'll know where your child is and what they are doing online.

Norton parental control with text

While there's a good reason why you want to know what your kids are doing online, there's absolutely no justification for outsiders getting this information. So to protect you and your family, Norton offers a VPN with its standard and deluxe plans. The VPN works with up to 5 devices and has no traffic cap.

Remember that even if you use VPN and take other precautions, your data may still end up on illegal marketplaces. Norton 360 keeps tabs on your data by performing dark web monitoring to check for leaks. Keep in mind that this feature is not available for all countries. It is available in the US, some European countries, and Australia.

Norton-dark-web-monitoring.jpg

Last but not least is Norton's password manager. This handy feature comes with all plans and has some of the best features a password manager can offer. You can generate passwords, fill out forms automatically, store credit card data, and check for vulnerable passwords all in one dashboard.

Webroot features

Arguably, the best Webroot feature is Identity Protection. It is designed to protect your personal data, such as accounts and usernames, against keyloggers or spyware. It also blocks potentially dangerous websites before they have a chance to retrieve your data.

webroot identity protection

Webroot can also optimize your system. It automatically detects and deletes files that take up space but have no purpose. You can easily customize the feature to stay in control of what files it removes. However, this feature only comes with the Internet Security Complete plan. You can check the full cost and feature list in the pricing section below.

If you want your deleted data to stay deleted without any chance of recovery, Webroot Secure Erase is exactly what you need. Also known as a file shredder, the feature overwrites the content in your deleted files with random data, preventing unauthorized recovery attempts.

webroot secure erase

While Webroot does not offer a VPN, it has an HTTP proxy to hide your IP address. Keep in mind that the feature allows you to conceal your true identity but does not encrypt traffic. As a result, only your browser's traffic stays anonymous.

webroot proxy

These days, it’s hard to get by without a good password manager, and Webroot knows it. Available with its Internet Security Plus and Complete plans, the antivirus is powered with the LastPass password manager. With smooth integration, you’ll be able to store and generate passwords as well as autofill your personal details in a breeze.

PC performance

You wouldn't want your antivirus software to reduce the performance of your device, would you? That's why we took the Norton 360 vs Webroot PC performance test and got some interesting results. This time, Webroot took the crown.

Norton's less thorough scans, smart and quick, produced less CPU load. Norton’s quick scan ranged from 25% to 30%. Meanwhile, smart scan increased the CPU load to 40%. But the full system scan topped them both. The CPU load during the full system scan was between 70% and 100%.

Now let's see how Webroot performed. During a full scan, Webroot takes anywhere from 11% to 77% of the CPU. On average, this load was around the 52% mark — much less than Norton's.

It's evident that when it comes to PC performance, Webroot outshines Norton 360.

Pricing

Norton 360 is clearly a best-value provider. When we compare providers’ cheapest plans, we see that Norton delivers useful features for a much cheaper cost than Webroot. The same goes for Norton’s Standard plan — it gives you more features than the equivalent Webroot plan at a similar price. One thing to note: the prices are listed for the first year, and both providers increase their pricing for the second year.

PlanNortonWebroot
Free
AntiVirus Plus vs AntiVirus$19.99/year$25.99/year
Standard vs Internet Security Plus$39.99/year$38.99/year
Deluxe vs Internet Security Complete$49.99/year$51.99/year
Check Norton DiscountsCheck Webroot Discounts

Both providers deliver similar benefits with their basic plans. Norton 360 offers real-time protection, PC cloud backup (2 GB), a firewall, and a password manager for $19.99/year. Meanwhile, Webroot delivers fast scanning, ransomware and identity protection, real-time anti-phishing protection, a firewall, and network connection monitoring starting at $25.99/year.

The list of features changes noticeably in other plans. For $39.99/year, Norton’s standard plan additionally provides VPN, SafeCam, dark web monitoring and increases cloud storage to 10 GB. Webroot’s Internet Security plan tops its basic features with protection for smartphones and tablets, custom protection for Chromebook, and a password manager. The price of this plan starts at $38.99/year.

Both providers step up their game in their highest-tier plans. Norton gives access to more cloud space (50 GB) as well as coverage for up to five devices and parental control. These additional features increase the price to $49.99 for the first year and $99.99 /year after that.

Suppose you decide to go with Webroot’s Internet security complete plan instead. In that case, you will get device cleaning, improved performance, and the elimination of online activity traces for $51.99/year.

While it all comes down to the kind of features you need the most, it’s safe to say that Norton delivers more value than Webroot. However, in the long run, Norton 360 becomes more expensive than Webroot.

Apps and interface: which antivirus is more user-friendly?

The overall look of a user interface is typically a matter of preference and is up for debate. However, the two things that matter the most are user-friendliness and setup. So, how do Norton and Webroot compare according to these aspects? Our verdict is clear — Norton 360 wins this round.

When we tested both providers, we immediately noticed the difference in design. Norton 360 showcases a sleek and modern user interface. Meanwhile, Webroot looks a bit outdated and bulky. However, both providers deliver a user-friendly experience and easy setup. Only the design aspect is keeping us from declaring a draw.

Desktop apps

Norton’s desktop app has an impressive user interface. It is easy to navigate with all the main features in one dashboard window. However, there’s a drawback. You get redirected to a webpage to access additional apps, such as dark web monitoring. Switching between windows is not the most comfortable option and can get slightly annoying.

Norton 360 interface with text

Similarly, Webroot provides easy navigation too. The categories are clearly organized, so you won’t struggle to find a tab for your account, support tab, or any other feature. However, you may not like the look of the user interface. It does feel a bit outdated. Also, if you’re a macOS user, you may experience minor glitches, as we certainly did.

webroot windows

Mobile apps

Both Norton 360 and Webroot come with Android and iOS mobile apps. However, their functionality and effectiveness differ greatly.

Norton offers a powerful app to protect your mobile device. Its UI is sleek and easy to use. The app also has an easy and fast setup. Download the app, log in, and you're ready to use it. The only issue we had with the user experience was that several features come in different apps, such as parental control, VPN, and a password manager.

Norton android new

Speaking of security features, Norton 360, once again, delivers a bang for your buck. After you set up the app, its anti-malware feature starts scanning your device automatically, protecting you from the get-go. Additional security is ensured by Norton's Link Guard, which scans websites for malicious activity.

Now, how does the Webroot app compare to Norton 360? When we tested Webroot's Android app, we were disappointed by it. It has very few useful features. So, don't expect to find a password manager or even real-time protection.

webroot android app

Webroot android app performs only a platform scan. But we have to be honest here — the scan is subpar. It provides no details about the device's security status or the threats it found. The iOS app turned out to have the same issue.

After reading the reviews of Webroot's app, we found out that there were no such issues with the previous version of the app. According to users, before the recent update, Webroot's app was functional and very useful. Hopefully, Webroot will fix the app eventually.

Customer support

NortonWebroot
24/7 live chat
Email
Phone line
Knowledge database
Community support/FAQs

Norton 360 offers several ways to reach out, such as 24/7 live chat. Also, you can always work out a solution on your own. But that doesn't mean you'll have to profusely Google for the answer; instead, try out the knowledge base. Norton 360 offers an extensive collection of detailed articles to help you out.

Webroot also has an extensive knowledge base and even community support. You'll quickly find guides, tips, and FAQs to help with whatever issue you're having. However, if you prefer hands-on help from a support agent, you can always give them a call or send an email. But don't expect a swift response since there's no 24/7 live chat option.

Once again, Norton 360 wins the competition. By covering all the bases, including a 24/7 live chat option, Norton provides a better customer support experience for its users.

Final verdict

NortonWebroot
Protection
Features
PC Performance
Pricing
User Interface
Support

Competing with the best of the AV software market is a challenge that not everyone can handle. The verdict is clear: Norton 360 vs Webroot is not a well-matched competition. In other words, our analysis shows that Norton 360 is a much better antivirus software than Webroot.

Unfortunately, Webroot showed subpar results in every category except for one. When compared to Norton 360, it can only boast about its PC performance.

Webroot needs to step up its game in all other categories, especially protection. Meanwhile, Norton 360 has continuously demonstrated top-tier malware protection through our tests and independent lab testing.

While the pricing of both providers is related to the features you plan to use, one thing is clear — Norton’s basic plan is cheaper, and no matter what feature Webroot throws in, it can’t compensate for the lack of efficient malware detection.

Another Norton 360 benefit is the user interface — it’s modern, easy on the eyes, and simple. That’s something we missed when evaluating Webroot, especially when it comes to the mobile app. Since the newest update, the Webroot's app lacks basic features and usability.

Lastly, Webroot misses the mark with customer support, too. It could really improve its service by simply implementing a live chat feature. Meanwhile, Norton’s support agents respond to users' live chat queries around the clock, 7 days per week.


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FAQ

What is the difference between Webroot and Norton?

The most important difference between Webroot and Norton is protection. Unlike Webroot, Norton has a spotless performance when protecting users against malware. Additionally, Norton provides more features at a better price point and a superior user interface.

Is Webroot a good security system?

No, Webroot is a subpar security system. Independent lab testing shows that Webroot does not efficiently detect malware. As a result, AV-test scored Webroot’s protection 2 out of 6. Since there is much more secure antivirus software at a better price point, Webroot may not be a good choice for most users.

Do I need Norton If I have Webroot?

There are several reasons why you may consider switching from Webroot to Norton. Unlike Webroot, independent lab testing shows that Norton provides flawless protection against malware. Additionally, Norton offers more features, such as a VPN, parental controls, and webcam protection. Lastly, Norton’s basic plan delivers better security at a much lower price.

Do Norton and Webroot do the same thing?

Both Norton and Webroot are antivirus software providers. However, their products are different. Norton 360 delivers a higher level of protection against malware and other threats. The provider also includes features such as a firewall, VPN, and webcam protection. Meanwhile, tests show that Webroot is less secure and provides fewer features.

What does Webroot do?

Webroot is an antivirus software provider. It offers real-time protection, virus scanning, and a firewall. Other features include a password manager, file shredder, and a performance optimization tool. What Webroot does exactly depends on the subscription plan you choose.

Who owns Webroot?

Webroot Inc. is an American cybersecurity software company founded in Boulder, Colorado. The company’s headquarters reside in Broomfield, Colorado. Webroot Inc. also operates in San Mateo and San Diego, as well as Australia, Austria, Ireland, Japan, and the United Kingdom.

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