I’ve known the answer to that question for a long time. AVG is clearly the better anti-virus software. However, at the end of this article will be a chance for everyone to chime in. A friend of mine once said that Norton itself is a virus, couldn’t agree more.
I’ve cleaned all the crapware off a new computer on several occasions. I remember once, I couldn’t remove it. Norton was literally fighting for its survival just like a virus. It took me hours.
To a certain degree, AVG protects itself from malicious activities, but never strong-armed users into keeping it. AVG is completely free and optional and rarely nags about upgrading to its paid anti-virus + firewall version. Norton on the other hand, has a contract with Microsoft and comes pre-installed against your will as an annoying trial. Norton is annoying bloatware and intrusive. Once that free trial month is up, it nags you to death for your credit card info.
I’ve seen many people taken advantage of by Norton’s scare tactics. Ironically enough, most people that use a computer, aren’t very computer-savvy. I’ve seen people lay down hundreds of dollars because they simply thought they had to. The Norton scare tactic nag screens were so persuasive, people simply didn’t know any better. They thought this was apart of Windows, that it was all apart of being able to use their computer and the internet properly.
It’s just plain wrong. Symantec (basically the same company as McAfee by the way), the parent company of Norton AV software, is borderline unethical with these practices, in my opinion. I’ve wanted to write this article for a long time, but was really pushed by a commercial they ran recently on Hulu Plus:
This commercial (narrated by Casey Affleck), is far more lighthearted than some of the tactics I’ve seen Norton use, yet still manages to be atrocious. Obvious subtle scare tactics throughout and what kind of materialistic message is that at the end? How insulting is that? Trying to lower us to the value of our “stuff”. In other words: “Give us your money or your stuff will get stolen and you’ll be worthless.”
UPDATE — I had a pretty long debate with someone over on the original YouTube page for this video and their best source and rebuttal to back up how great Norton was, was to refer me to an apparent authority on the subject, AV-Test. On this very site, I found their latest report on various anti-virus software and on all marks, AVG was rated higher than Norton! That’s too funny. This person then did the most predictable thing when someone is stumped, tried to somehow discredit the info or convolute it instead of nobly admitting that they’d been bested.
Norton reminds me of GoDaddy (see that article). They’re actually horrible companies with pure junk for software, yet they have enough money to make you think they’re the best by becoming a household name. If you’re using Norton, stop shelling out your hard-earned money and go with the completely free match-up that anyone that knows what they’re talking about, would recommend over Norton: AVG + ZoneAlarm. Also, it wouldn’t hurt to run Malwarebytes every now and then too.
So What Do You Think?
I’m thinking of making the switch over to Mac soon, so I won’t have to even worry about this stuff too much anymore. What’s your setup?