In 2021, Norton added a crypto mining tool to its “360” suite. There was little mention of it for some time until December, when users began noticeably complaining about it. It appears the feature is difficult to get rid of completely.
Norton constantly ranks high on lists of the top antivirus vendors. Its 360 offering is a complete security package.
It includes additional tools, such as a password manager and a VPN. Although the latter is not as versatile as other dedicated VPN solutions, it is still a decent offering.
Moreover, it comes with Norton Lifelock, a formidable ID theft protection tool. But users got a bit more than they bargained for last year when the company added “Norton Crypto.”
This tool mines Etheruem while a user’s computer is idle. If they have a multi-device subscription, it can run on multiple computers at once.
Norton reportedly takes 15% of what user’s mine, as well as transaction fees that differ depending on the wallet they use.
If subscribers don’t want the tool, they can disable it with a toggle. Getting rid of it for good, though, is much harder. Some users report being unable to install it at all. Others have had some success by digging into system files.
A point of contention for many is the fact that this tool isn’t highlighted during the installation process. Some users were unaware it was there until everything was set up.
This is simply more bad PR for a company that hasn’t had the best relationship with its customer base. Lack of transparency has always been an issue, which aggravates situations like this.
It also may be why consumers are less likely to seek Norton out for its privacy-focused tools. They often prefer other VPNs and password managers.
Still, most users will likely be okay with simply turning the tool off. Of course, they’ll need to check up on it to make sure it doesn’t kick into gear again.