These days, the sheer volume of scam attempts online makes it difficult to figure out what’s genuine and what’s not. But Norton’s new tool, which has just launched in the UK, is designed to help.
Known as Genie, Norton says it uses artificial intelligence (AI) to analyse images and text, then tell you if it’s likely to be a scam or not. If it thinks you’re being scammed, you’ll be offered advice on what to do next.
To get started, you can head to the web version (on Chrome, Safari, Edge or Firefox) or download the iOS app (version 14.0 or later), then upload a screenshot or paste text from a potential scam. This can be a message, email or link you’ve received, but also a post on social media – the only requirement is that it’s clear enough to easily be read.
After a few seconds, Genie will come to a conclusion that Norton claims is based on millions of scam messages and red flags that it’s already been trained on. But you may still get a ‘Not sure’ result, as I did for an obvious-looking scam text that Google’s messages app had identified as spam. Norton has emphasised that Genie is in its early access phase, and will improve as more people use it.
But the need for a service like this is clear. According to Norton, the average Brit receives 10 scam attempts via email, text or phone every week. And as of spring 2021, anti-phishing company Valimail estimated that around 3.4 billion phishing emails were received each day.
The UK launch of Norton Genie follows its earlier arrival in the US, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand. The next stage of its development will include expansion into other countries and an Android app – both are expected “later this year”.
While Norton Genie draws on parent company Gen Digital’s cybersecurity expertise, it’s a completely free service that’s independent of other Norton software. That includes Norton 360 Deluxe, the best antivirus you can buy.