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Norton LifeLock review

IT proportal 2020-08-19 19:30:41

Our series on identity theft protection apps evaluates the features, pricing options, competition, and the overall value of using each app. However, these are not full hands-on reviews, since evaluating identity theft protection apps is almost impossible. It would require several months of testing, purposefully hacking accounts to see if the protection app works, handing over personally identifiable information, performing multiple credit checks, and risking exposure of the reviewer’s personally identifiable information.

Norton LifeLock, formerly known as Symantec, is an established consumer security brand with nearly 40 years of history. While this alone doesn’t prove the platform’s effectiveness, it does demonstrate the company’s ongoing commitment to cybersecurity. Trust is critical when it comes to your identity, and you can rely on Norton LifeLock to provide industry-leading identity theft protection.

Plans and pricing 

One unexpected downside of Norton LifeLock is that its pricing scheme is quite complex, especially compared to other identity theft protection providers. While the service itself is reliable, its subscription model is overly complicated, and it can be tough to find the plan that suits you best.

The base Standard subscription comes with $25,000 in insurance coverage against identity theft. It also provides protection for a single device through credit check and social security number monitoring. Upgrading to LifeLock Select unlocks VPN access and support for as many as five devices. Surprisingly, Standard and Select are priced the same for the first year. After that, Standard costs $12 per month, while Select is $15.

The subscriptions go beyond Standard and Select, however. At $20 per month, Lifelock Advantage includes $100,000 in insurance coverage, support for up to 10 devices, and alerts for bank fraud and other crimes committed in your name. Finally, Ultimate Plus comes with $1 million in coverage, credit bureau monitoring, support for unlimited devices, and protection for 401(k) plans.

(Image credit: Norton LifeLock)

Interface 

Norton uses a simple but professional interface that matches the gravity of its services. Its yellow color scheme should be familiar to most users, and the main dashboard makes the platform’s features extremely accessible. Norton has a comprehensive set of tools to protect against identity theft, and its excellent design prevents everything from getting overly complicated.

It’s worth mentioning that the Norton VPN is a perfect match for the company’s identity theft protection services. In contrast to many competing platforms, which offer VPNs for an extra charge (if at all), Norton includes the VPN for users at the Select tier and above. VPNs play a critical role in keeping your information safe, and they’re especially important when entering credit card numbers, bank account information, and other sensitive data.

(Image credit: Norton Lifelock)

Features

While the Norton LifeLock interface separates it from many competitors, its features largely align with those of similar apps, like IDShield and IdentityForce (all three are among the top identity theft protection services in 2020).

Key features available with LifeLock include credit monitoring, alerts for crimes that involve your name, and 401(k) protection, the latter being limited to the most expensive subscription.

(Image credit: Norton Lifelock)

Unfortunately, LifeLock is missing a few key benefits that are available with some competitors, such as consultations with experts or social media monitoring for expanded protection. Furthermore, certain features that only come with LifeLock’s more expensive plans are available at lower tiers from other businesses. 

The competition 

Norton has been around for far longer than most of its competitors, as the company’s work as Symantec goes back to the 1980s. By having one of the most famous antivirus programs, Norton is as close to a household name as there is in cybersecurity.

Therefore, it’s no surprise that many users consider Norton the gold standard for virus protection, VPNs, identity theft protection, and other services. On the other hand, name recognition isn’t everything, and a growing number of companies are offering comparable security at more affordable prices.

There are countless identity theft protection apps worth mentioning, but a select few stand out from the rest. Intuit, another well-known company, now provides strong identity theft protection through its TurboTax service. IDShield, IdentityForce, and similar brands may not be quite as famous, but they provide extremely competitive features and even offer more than Norton LifeLock in some areas. ADT is another example of a top security brand that works in identity theft protection.

That said, Norton LifeLock remains one of the best overall options in the field. Its ease of use and professional design make it accessible to all users without sacrificing quality or complexity.

Final verdict

While other brands provide certain unique benefits, Norton LifeLock remains the standard for identity theft protection. Of course, it isn’t a perfect service—its subscription model is rather confusing, it’s missing a few notable features that are available with other apps, and some providers may be more affordable—but it’s a great option for anyone who wants to protect their identity.

Norton LifeLock comes with a number of advantages, but its clear interface is what sets it apart from providers that make the experience more complicated than it needs to be. Regardless of technical experience, any user can quickly get used to the LifeLock design and find exactly what they’re looking for in just a few clicks. This is just one of many factors that make Norton a top service for identity theft protection in 2020.