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Norton Secure VPN review

Verified by Nick Jones

While Norton’s good reputation comes from its antivirus software, it also offers consumers a subscription-based virtual private network (VPN) solution. Consumers can purchase and use Norton Secure VPN both as a stand-alone product or in a bundle with other Norton tools, such as antivirus software. 

With its “bank-grade encryption” of all traffic and its split-tunnelling and kill switch functionalities, Norton Secure VPN ensures a high level of security for consumers’ internet protocol (IP) addresses and browsing activity. With more than 1,500 servers across 29 countries, Norton Secure VPN can allow you to shield your online browsing activity and IP address from your internet service provider (ISP) and enjoy content available in other countries, such as the US.

Our researchers spent many hours analysing and testing Norton Secure VPN’s speed, pricing, customer service, performance, compatibility and capability to ensure security and privacy. They then compared them to other popular VPN tools on the market.

60-second review

Rating: ★★★

Norton is well known for its antivirus programs and Norton Secure VPN’s popularity among consumers proves that it should not be underestimated in this market. 

While Norton Secure VPN does not offer monthly subscription plans for its UK users, its 10-device annual subscription starts at £69.99, which makes it £5.83 per month for 10 devices. Furthermore, it offers a free trial option for UK users. 

In terms of data security, Norton claims that it uses bank-level encryption to protect user data. However, it does not specify what this refers to, whether it is AES-128 or AES-256 encryption technique.  

Another area where Norton fails in transparency is its total count of servers. Norton does not disclose or verify how many servers it owns or operates.

When it comes to privacy, there is both good and bad news for Norton secure VPN users. While it has a no-logs policy, it is not yet independently audited and the company still collects some user data, such as device identifiers and usage data.

As for speed, Norton Secure VPN’s download speed drops negligibly when compared to browsing without a VPN. However, upload speed suffered considerable decreases in comparison to not using a VPN.

How we research and rate VPNs


Our reviewers are dedicated to bringing you the most accurate and up-to-date information so you can make an informed decision when it comes to buying a VPN. We will only recommend a VPN after hours of testing, extensive head-to-head feature comparisons, and after taking into account verified customer feedback and reviews, and the opinions of industry experts.

Our review scores are determined by the following categories:

  • Privacy and performance (30 per cent)
  • Features and functionality (30 per cent)
  • Reputation and credibility (25 per cent)
  • Plans and pricing/value (10 per cent)
  • Customer experience (5 per cent)

We research and test a total of 25 elements within these categories, including:

  • Number and location of servers
  • Streaming service accessibility
  • Security features such as AES-256
  • Performance (upload and download speeds, latency)
  • Value for money, guarantees and customer service
  • Independent server-site security audits

All of our VPN articles are fact-checked and verified by our in-house team of fact-checkers, so you can be assured that our content is as accurate and up to date as possible. To find out more, read our article on how we review VPNs.

Norton Secure VPN overview

Lowest price: £9.99

Free version: No

Maximum number of connected devices: 10 

Number of servers: Unverified 

Encryption: Unverified (While Norton claims it is bank-level encryption, does not disclose what it refers to)

VPN protocols: OpenVPN and IPSec

No-log policy: Yes

Audited: No

Headquarters: US

Pros and cons

Pros Cons
Good speed Compatibility issues
Free trial and a money-back guarantee Servers are in limited countries and in repressive countries
Bank-grade encryption and split-tunnelling and kill switch functions Collects too much data

How does Norton Secure VPN compare?

VPN Monthly price Cheapest price Free version Number of servers Maximum devices supported Netflix BBC iPlayer Disney Plus Prime Video HBO Max Audit
Norton Secure VPN No monthly plan for UK users £5.83/month for 10-devices on annual subscription No (Unverified) 10 No
Mozilla VPN £8.11 £4.05/month for the annual subscription No 415 5 Yes
ExpressVPN £9.99 £5.31/month for one-year subscription No 3,000+ 5 Yes
NordVPN £10.89 £3.02/month for a 2-year subscription No 5,400+ 6 Yes
Surfshark £9.69 £1.89/month for two-year subscription No 3,200+ Unlimited Yes
VPNSecure £7.91 30-day trial for £0.80 No 75 5 No
CyberGhost £10.33 £1.68/month (£49.95 upfront) for 24 months (plus three months free) No 9,773 7 Yes
Best alternative to
NordVPN is one of the most trusted VPN providers in the world, offering top-notch encryption, incredible speeds, and extra features to make all your online activities more secure.
Excellent Trustpilot rating
24/7 customer support
AES-256 encryption

How much does Norton Secure VPN cost?

Unlike its competitors in the market, such as ExpressVPN and NordVPN, Norton Secure VPN does not offer its UK customers a monthly subscription option. While it provides an option for a 30-day free trial, it only has an annual subscription plan once the free trial ends. 

The cost of an annual subscription for UK customers depends on the number of devices chosen, which can be one, five or 10. For example, if you purchase a one-year subscription for 10 devices, the total cost will be £69.99. 

However, if you do not cancel your subscription after one year, it will automatically renew at an increased price. For instance, the one-year subscription plan for 10 devices increases to £79.99.

Subscription term One-year plan for one device One-year plan for five devices One year plan for more than 10 devices
Price £19.99 for the first year and £39.99 per year thereafter £39.99 for the first year and £59.99 per year thereafter £69.99 for the first year and £79.99 per year thereafter

Payment options

Norton provides two payments methods for customers to subscribe to its Norton Secure VPN tool:

  • Credit card and debit card: Visa, Mastercard or American Express
  • PayPal

Norton does not currently recognise cryptocurrencies as a payment method.

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Norton Secure VPN features

When it comes to making comparisons between two VPN tools, a few key criteria play a vital role:

  • Does the VPN tool use the most advanced and robust security techniques, such as Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) with 128 or 256 bits?
  • Does the VPN tool collect data about your browsing activity, IP address or device identifiers?
  • How does it perform in terms of speed? Is it compatible with various systems and devices?

Norton Secure VPN has a no-log policy and does not collect or retain data about your browsing activity. However, it still collects certain data about your device such as device type, device ID and language settings.

While Norton claims to use bank-level encryption to hide your IP address and browsing activity, the specific encryption standard it uses cannot be verified. Furthermore, it offers kill switch and split tunnelling functionalities. While enabling you to protect your online activity from your ISP and malicious third parties, it barely affects your internet speed, presenting a negligible decrease.

Server count and countries

Norton Secure VPN has servers across 29 countries. Compared to other popular service providers on the market, Norton has fewer server locations. 

However, Norton leaves its users in the dark when it comes to total server count because it does not disclose how many servers it operates. If the Norton Secure VPN has fewer servers compared to its competitors, this might be a disadvantage because it may suffer from low connection speed and limited scope.

Norton Secure VPN’s servers are spread across a range of countries, including the US, Canada, Germany, Poland, Australia, South Africa, Hong Kong and Japan. It also has servers in Turkey, which is known for its repressive internet policies. While you can select the specific region of the server you want, you cannot select the cities that host the VPN servers.

Norton Secure VPN provides OpenVPN and IPSec protocols.

No-log policy and headquarters

Norton Secure VPN does not collect or retain your online browsing activity, such as the websites you visit, content you stream and purchases you make. However, this has not been audited by a third-party. 

Despite having a no-logs policy, Norton Secure VPN still collects vast amounts of data about its customers and their devices. According to its VPN-specific Privacy Policy, the following types of data can be collected:

  • Device data, such as device name and type, OS version and language settings 
  • Usage data to assist with debugging a problem with the service
  • IP address data, but this is not stored unless it detects undefined “suspicious activity”

It states in its privacy notice that it may collect IP addresses if it detects “suspicious activity.” Since the limits of what constitutes “suspicious” behaviour is unclear, it raises concerns about what Norton might do with IP addresses. 

That being said, as Norton Secure VPN does not retain any data on your browsing activity, it is not able to disclose your browsing activity to any third parties – even governmental authorities.

Norton’s headquarters is in the US, which has laws and executive orders that give its intelligence agencies a wide range of powers to access user data. For instance, the USA is a party to the Five Eyes, Nine Eyes and 14 Eyes Alliances, which enable the participating countries, such as the UK, Australia and the USA intelligence units to collect and share data with each other. 

For example, the UK national intelligence units may circumvent the UK privacy laws, ask their USA counterparts to provide data about the UK nationals through these alliances.

Kill switch

A VPN tool without a kill switch defeats the entire purpose of using a VPN. If your VPN becomes unstable or disconnects, your IP address and network activity will become immediately exposed.

 A kill switch is a feature that keeps your information secure and private by immediately cutting off your internet connection if your VPN becomes unstable. 

Our researchers were able to turn on the kill switch on a MacBook by visiting the “settings” section:

norton kill switch vpn settings
Turn on “Connect on demand” to activate the kill switch (Norton)

Split tunnelling

VPN split tunnelling allows users to select which URLs and apps are protected with the VPN’s encryption and which are allowed to can connect to the internet without VPN protection. The biggest advantage of split tunnelling is that it increases your internet speed and performance because it reduces bandwidth. 

While Norton Secure VPN comes with the split tunnelling feature, it is only available on Windows and Android devices and not for macOS or iOS devices.

Encryption and privacy

Norton Secure VPN boasts about using “bank-grade encryption”. However, it is not transparent what it refers to, whether it is AES-128 or AES-256 or another type of encryption standard. 

Norton Secure VPN test results

When an internet user uses a VPN tool, they want to protect their privacy without suffering any loss in internet speeds. 

When it comes to testing internet speeds, three principles need to be considered:

  • Download speed: the rate at which digital data is transferred from the internet to your device
  • Upload speed: the rate that data is transferred from your device to the internet
  • Latency (ping): the time it takes for a set of data to be transmitted to a server on the internet and back to your device again

Our researchers put Norton Secure VPN to the test to find out how much using the service affected internet download and upload speeds. Testing the internet speed without using a VPN first gave us a baseline to work with and helped calculate the degradation between the speed with and without using Norton Secure VPN. Our reviewers used Speedtest for this research.

Download speed (Mbps) Upload speed (Mbps) Latency (ping) Percentage of base download speed Percentage of base upload speed
No VPN 24.8 14.65 32ms
UK to UK 23.3 9.9 34ms 93.90% 67.50%
UK to US 30.83 6.32 322ms 124.30% 43.10%
UK to Australia 20.74 8.73 553ms 83.60% 59.50%

Across all the tests we carried out, Norton Secure VPN presented good performance in terms of download speed. Except for minor decreases, it maintained similar levels of speed when compared with not using a VPN. 

The UK-to-US VPN was 124.3 per cent as fast as when not using a VPN and for the UK-to-UK VPN, its download speed was 93.9 per cent as fast as not using a VPN. 

Similarly, the UK-to-Australia VPN did not suffer high levels of drops in download speed and was 83.6 per cent as fast compared to not using a VPN.

In terms of upload speed, Norton Secure VPN experienced significant drops across all tests compared with not using a VPN, which may be bad news for gamers and those who torrent.

Unsurprisingly, the UK-to-UK VPN performed best, as the upload speed was 67.5 per cent as fast as without using a VPN. However, both the UK-to-US and UK-to-Australia VPNs experienced significant levels of drops in upload speed, at 43.1 per cent and 59.5 per cent, respectively.

norton vpn test on ookla
No VPN (Ookla)
norton vpn test on ookla
UK to Australia (Ookla)
norton vpn test on ookla
UK to UK (Ookla)
norton vpn test on ookla
UK to US (Ookla)

Overall, Norton Secure VPN showed great performance in terms of download speed. However, it had considerable drops for upload speed.

WebRTC leak test

Web Real-Time Communication (WebRTC) is a collection of standardised technologies that allows web browsers to directly communicate with each other without the need for an intermediate server. The benefits of WebRTC include faster internet speeds and less lag for video chats, file transfer and live streaming. 

For WebRTC to work, the two devices would need to know each other’s IP addresses. However, any leak of your real IP address to a third party is a threat to your privacy. 

Our researcher performed a WebRTC leak test, which tells you if your IP address is exposed, with and without using a Norton Secure VPN server. When performing the test while connected to the VPN, the IP address was undetectable and no WebRTC leak was detected. The test showed that a WebRTC-exposed IP address was found when performed without using a VPN.

Breaches and audits

Norton Secure VPN has not gone through an independent third-party audit and it has not published a transparency report so far. As of the date of this report, there are no known data breaches that Norton Secure VPN has been exposed to, but Norton Password Manager was reported to have had a data breach in 2023, in which nearly a million users’ data was at risk.

Norton Secure VPN compatibility

You can use Norton Secure VPN on PCs, Mac computers, Android smartphones and tablets, iPads and iPhones.

Furthermore, it is compatible with these operating systems: 

  • macOS X 10.12.x (Sierra) or later
  • Android 8.0 or later
  • Microsoft Windows 11/10 (all versions except Windows 11/10 in S mode)
  • Microsoft Windows 8/8.1 (all versions)
  • Microsoft Windows 7 (32-bit and 64-bit) with Service Pack 1 (SP 1) or later

However, Norton Secure VPN cannot be used with gaming consoles.

Desktop app

After you download the desktop app, you can immediately start using it by turning on the VPN and choosing one of the 29 regions. Furthermore, it blocks ads by default.

If you want to delete all data held about you, you can go to your “My Account” page on Norton’s website and click “Delete My Data.”

When you want to choose a server location, you go to the “VPN Region” section and choose the region:

norton vpn desktop app
norton vpn desktop app

Mobile app

Norton Secure VPN’s mobile app is easy to use and offers the same capabilities as the desktop app.

norton vpn mobile app

With the mobile app, you can turn on the “auto-protect” function, which enables you to automatically connect to VPN when you are on an unsecure network.

norton vpn mobile app

Norton Secure VPN’s mobile app also allows you to block ads. You can turn on the “ad blocker”  function from the home page.

norton vpn mobile app

After you are connected to the VPN, you can go to the “Regions” section to select the VPN location.

norton vpn mobile app

Router compatibility

Norton Secure VPN cannot be set up on a router. Some users prefer VPNs with router compatibility because setting up a VPN on a router allows all devices connected to the router to benefit from the VPN. Therefore, users will not have to install the VPN on each device separately.

norton account screen

Norton Secure VPN customer support

When you subscribe to Norton Secure VPN and need help, you can log into your account page to receive customer support customised for the product you use. You can use the following tools:

  • Customer support form

If you have a question, you can submit a contact form with a description of your query.

norton support
  • 24/7 live chat

Norton Secure VPN also offers a 24/7 live chat. However, when asked how many servers Norton Secure VPN operates, it answered “32,” which is not the total count of servers.

norton chat
  • Social support team 

On Facebook and Twitter, you can get in touch with the social support team with your queries.

What do customers say?

There is not a TrustPilot rating specifically for Norton Secure VPN, but on the Apple App Store it receives 4.1 out of five stars with almost 10,000 reviews and on Google Play Store is rated at 4.3 out of five stars with 262,000 reviews. 

On Google Play Store reviews, Norton Secure VPN users often praise the VPN for protecting their online security and for not causing significant drops in speed. However, their biggest complaint seems to be that the VPN connection can shut down at random moments.

“I’ve been using Norton for 25 years. I’m also a former programmer myself. I’ve always preferred Norton over other security suites. My biggest complaints have always been the [number] of resources used, causing degraded mobile and PC performance. Unfortunately, like many reviews on this product, I too experience the VPN shutting down at random moments, causing me to be kicked off of secure sites. However, I don’t plan to stop using Norton, but [I] would love to see these issues resolved…”

  • Metrolina, via Google Play Store

Similarly, reviews on the Apple App Store are also mixed with both praise and complaints. While customers talk about how they enjoy a secure and speedy VPN, they also complain about random connection problems:

“I have been using this service for some time now. I have been having problems with my phone just shutting off randomly and suddenly overheating. I immediately turned it off, cooled it down then ran Norton’s security in an attempt to remedy the problem and it still exists… I also can never tell if my VPN is actually functioning; when I open up the app it is usually off and I have to turn it on, so it is giving me false security with the VPN icon on but the actual app is not actually on! Please let me know if this is something you can remedy or if I should find a new service to cover my devices…

  • Cindi, via Apple App Store

Independent Advisor’s verdict

Our research demonstrates that Norton Secure VPN claims to be using “bank-grade encryption”, however, it is not transparent whether this refers to AES-128, AES-256 or some other technique, leaving its users unsure about how their data is processed. 

Norton Secure VPN relies on OpenVPN and IPSec protocols. Furthermore, it has split-tunnelling and kill switch functions that users can turn on. 

While it does not retain your IP address or browsing activity, Norton still collects certain categories of data about its VPN users, such as device identifier and usage data. 

When it comes to speed, Norton Secure VPN does not decrease your download speed, which is good news for those who want to stream content. However, there were considerable drops in upload speeds, which might affect gamers and traders negatively. Another disadvantage to consider is that Norton Secure VPN’s servers are only available in 29 countries. 

The name “Norton” is well-known when it comes to online security and its Norton Secure VPN product’s popularity among internet users indicates that the VPN strikes the delicate balance between providing online privacy and maintaining good internet speed. However, it still collects some user data and it fails on the transparency front when it comes to server count and the level of encryption it uses.

Rating: ★★★

Reputation ★★★★
Privacy ★½
Performance and features ★★★★
Plans and pricing value ★★½
Customer experience ★★★★
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Ali Pinarbasi


Ali is an authority in the fields of VPN, online privacy, and data protection. With extensive experience as a certified GDPR compliance and Contract Law Consultant, his expertise encompasses both legal intricacies and cutting-edge technology.

Armed with a CIPP/E qualification and a Master of Laws Degree in Data Privacy Law and IP Law from King’s College London, Ali possesses an unparalleled command of the legal dimensions of online privacy. His journey through esteemed law firms in London, where he worked as a GDPR compliance consultant and contract law specialist, has fortified his proficiency in navigating complex regulatory landscapes.

Ali’s insightful writings unravel the complexities of VPNs, data protection, and privacy laws, catering to both legal professionals and the general public. With a reputation built on unwavering expertise, Ali is a beacon for those seeking to comprehend and fortify their online privacy.

Nick Jones

Editor in Chief

Nick Jones is a highly experienced consumer journalist and editor, who has been writing and producing content for print and online media for over 25 years.

He has worked at some of the UK’s leading publishers including Future Publishing, Highbury Entertainment, and Imagine Publishing, with publications as diverse as Homebuilding & Renovating, TechRadar, and Creative Bloq, writing and editing content for audiences whose interests include history, computing, gaming, films, and science. He’s also produced a number of podcasts in the technology, science, gaming, and true crime genres.

Nick has also enjoyed a highly successful career in content marketing, working in a variety of topics such as health, technology, and finance, with market-leading global companies including Cisco, Pfizer, Santander, and Virgin Media.

Now the Editor-in-Chief of the Independent Advisor, Nick is involved in all aspects of the site’s content, where his expertise in finance, technology, and home products informs every article that’s published on-site. He takes a hands-on approach with our VPN content, penning a number of the articles himself, and verifying that everything we publish in this topic is accurate.

Whatever the area of interest he’s worked in, Nick has always been a consumer champion, helping people find the best deals and give them the information they need to make an informed buying decision.