Digimune, the master distributor for Norton AntiVirus in Africa, has appointed Syntech Distribution as its sole channel distributor for the security giant’s solutions in South Africa.

Through this partnership, resellers registered with Syntech Distribution can now buy industry-leading core security products from Norton.

“Around the world, cybercrime is getting out of hand,” says Simon Campbell-Young, a director at Digimune. “In fact, a recent Cisco report that surveyed 1006 South African consumers aged from 16 upwards, revealed that 74% are concerned about their connected devices being hacked.”

Unfortunately, too many are not taking the necessary precautions to prevent this. For example, nearly three-quarters (73%) said they often send work emails on personal devices, and another 69% have used public networks when doing their jobs. Alarmingly, a staggering 99% claim to share one or more connected devices with others.

Another report by Accenture from 2020 claimed that South Africa had the third-highest number of cybercrime victims globally, at a cost to the economy back then, of R2,2-billion annually.

Campbell-Young says there are several possible reasons for this. “It could be that bad actors believe that South Africans don’t have the right cybersecurity tools in place. It could also be that they have a false sense of security, and don’t think they are a compelling target for attackers. However, nothing could be more removed from the truth.”

According to him, adding to the problem is that today’s increasingly connected digital world presents even more security challenges for consumers. “In part, this is because OEMs of mobile and artificial Internet of Things (IoT) devices have not made any meaningful changes in terms of building security into their products from the ground up. This means that most of the security issues consumers have faced in the past are still a clear and present danger.”

These threats range from Android trojans, spyware, phishing, unsecured applications, and more. “Make no mistake, fraudsters and other malefactors have not been quiet over the past few years, and have dedicated time to honing their tools for maximum success, and distributing them around the world. The unprecedented changes brought on by the Covid-19 crisis have also given phishers a host of compelling themes to use in their phishing attacks. All of this has had a negative impact on consumers’ security and privacy.”

The bottom line is that consumers need stronger protection on their personal devices, and this is why Digimune aims to expand its footprint in South Africa. “This partnership with Syntech Distribution reinforces our commitment to the region, and to protecting local consumers,” Campbell-Young says.

“We are thrilled to partner with a global leader in security such as Digimune, and to help grow Norton’s presence in South Africa. We’ll work with our extensive network of registered resellers to provide consumers across the region access to the cybersecurity tools they need to protect themselves and their devices,” says Syntech Distribution CEO Craig Nowitz. “This partnership enables us to help keep South African customers’ data, devices, and networks secure.”

The Norton products that are currently available at Syntech are Norton360 Premium, Norton360 Deluxe, Norton Antivirus Plus, and Norton360 for Gamers. Currently, these are only available as digital versions. To facilitate digital code delivery, Syntech has launched an easy-to-use Norton redemption tool on its website.

“When one of our resellers purchases a Norton product, they’re able to utilise our brand-new digital redemption tool to access their product keys,” says Ryan Martyn, sales and marketing director of Syntech Distribution. “Since much of the market has moved away from physical software purchases to online distribution, we wanted our resellers to be able to easily redeem their Norton codes or send them directly to their customers online.”

Martyn adds that physical versions of the Norton products may be available in the future, but would only really make sense for specific businesses. “We realise that our resellers are looking for innovative systems and services to help them win in an increasingly competitive market. We hope that our redemption tool helps by reducing unnecessary costs, improving efficiency, and providing increased value to cash-strapped end-users.”