Formerly known as Norton WiFi Privacy, Norton Secure VPN is a VPN solution developed by Norton, the leading American provider of cybersecurity software and services. The VPN can be purchased independently or as a part of Norton’s premium software package. It protects your security and privacy when using public WiFi networks. Based on bank-grade data encryption, this VPN allows you to stay completely safe and anonymous while surfing the Internet. Given that users report that this application provides excellent speeds and can be used to successfully unblock streaming services such as Netflix, we decided to try it out and see how good it really is. Read our Norton Secure VPN review to find out whether it is worth investing in one of the world’s most trusted cybersecurity brands.
Norton Secure VPN features a nicely designed but pretty basic user interface. The installation process is short and simple. The application is accessed by clicking on the tray icon in the taskbar. There are 3 tabs, the first of which you can use to connect to the VPN service and see your currently selected server and public IP address. The second tab is where you choose your virtual location, that is, your preferred server. You can use the auto-select option to connect to a server or you can select one from a list of servers. The third tab lets you enable ad tracker protection and view ad tracker data.
Additionally, you can choose to launch the application at system startup and automatically establish a VPN connection. There is neither a killswitch nor any of the advanced features that you get to enjoy with top-tier VPNs.
Performance And Reliability
Norton Secure VPN relies on a network of servers in 25+ different locations around the world. The current server locations that can be selected from the app menu include the following: United States, Canada, Australia, Mexico, Brazil, Japan, Singapore, South Africa, Turkey, United Kingdom, France, Germany, and a number of other European countries. With servers on six continents, the server distribution is satisfactory. However, Norton’s network is still relatively small, especially when you consider that high-end VPN services offer a significantly higher number of server locations.
While the server network may not seem particularly promising, we are happy to inform you that Norton Secure VPN generally provides above-average speeds and stable connections. The service currently works well with streaming services such as Netflix. In addition, we did not spot any DNS or WebRTC leaks during our testing, which is excellent news for all users who are concerned about their online privacy.
In terms of multi-platform compatibility, Norton Secure VPN provides dedicated clients/apps only for major operating systems, including Windows, MacOS, iOS, and Android. Unfortunately, Linux is not supported and this solution cannot be installed on routers or gaming consoles.
Given the fact that this is not a feature-rich VPN, it may not be suitable for demanding users who are accustomed to configuring their VPNs and using advanced options. However, as a reliable and easy-to-use application that safeguards your privacy and security, Norton Secure VPN may fulfill all the needs of inexperienced or casual users.
Even though it does not include many of the advanced features, this VPN solution employs top-notch encryption, enabling you to browse safely and protect your data, even on public Wi-Fi hotspots and unsecured networks. You can use Norton Secure VPN to effectively bypass geo-restrictions and access your favorite online services, apps, and websites from anywhere in the world.
The VPN comes equipped with ad tracker protection. With ad tracker blocking enabled, the app prevents advertisers from following your online activity by intercepting cookies at the HTTP level and removing your personal information – such as your login session data, websites you frequently visit, and search keywords you type. Thus, you can browse the web freely without constantly being followed.
With mobile apps, you get additional protection from unsecured networks. You can choose to receive warnings or enable the option to automatically turn on the VPN when you connect to an unsecured network.
Finally, it is worth mentioning that Norton Secure VPN does not allow torrenting and, as such, is not suitable for fans of P2P file sharing. Perhaps the biggest weakness of the VPN lies in the fact that it does not have a killswitch, which has become a must-have security feature of modern VPN services.
Security And Privacy
Norton Secure VPN uses strong AES-256 encryption with OpenVPN and IPsec protocols to provide full protection for your data. OpenVPN technology is employed on Windows, MacOS, and Android devices while iOS devices rely on the IPsec protocol. The connection protocol cannot be changed in the app settings.
This service falls under the jurisdiction of the United States, a “5 eyes” country with strict data retention laws, which is one of the least desirable places in the world to be used as a base for VPN operations. However, Norton Secure VPN emphasizes its no-logging policy. It collects only subscriber information for communication purposes, mobile device data (i.e., device name, type, OS version, and language), and aggregate bandwidth usage. No logs are kept of the user’s originating IP address and Internet data traffic. In other words, Norton does not store logs of VPN usage that can be linked to any individual user.
Norton provides customer support in various forms, including the comprehensive FAQ section on the company website with lots of useful information for both current and potential users. In addition, Norton Community is a meeting place for customers, employees, developers, and other people interested in the company’s products. Here you can get excellent advice and find solutions to many common software issues. You can contact the company 24/7 by phone or via live chat. However, in our experience, you may have to wait about half an hour to get in touch with a chat support representative. You can also interact with the company over social media channels.
As we already mentioned in this Norton Secure VPN review, you can choose a subscription plan for 1, 5 or 10 devices. The monthly subscription costs $4.99, $7.99, and $9.99 for 1, 5, and 10 devices, respectively. With the current discount, the yearly subscription costs $39.99 for 1 or 5 devices. You need to pay $59.99 to use the service on 10 devices. The subscription automatically renews after the first term and the price is subject to change.
We should also mention that for $9.99/month or $59.99/year, you can purchase Norton Secure VPN as a part of Norton 360, which is a comprehensive security package that can be used on up to 5 devices.
Norton’s yearly subscriptions come with a generous 60-day money back guarantee. There is a 30-day refund guarantee for monthly subscriptions. As far as payment options are concerned, Norton accepts only credit cards and PayPal.
Norton Secure VPN’s Pros And Cons
As we wrap up this Norton Secure VPN review, here’s a quick overview of the features that wowed us and the aspects of the service that could use some improvement.
- Strong encryption
- Good speeds
- Ad tracker blocking
- No-logging policy
- Good customer support
- 60-day money-back guarantee for annual subscriptions
- No killswitch
- No torrenting allowed
- Limited server network