- 24/7 Protection- real-time scanning
- Protection against: trojans, malware, adware, spyware, ransomware, and phishing scams
- Remote firewall protection
- Mobile protection- AU$2.95 Monthly Plan
- Antivirus Pro 2019- AU$39.95 per year for three device
- Ultimate Antivirus 2019- AU$59.95 per year for five device
Scanguard is a relatively “new kid on the block” in the world of antivirus and security software. They have been around since 2016 and their reputation is the subject of many discussions on the internet. We’ll focus on the Scanguard product portfolio and what it has to offer.
Much like many of its competitors in the market, Scanguard offers a complete security suite for all of your devices. It places itself among the leading suppliers of security software: “Scanguard’s complete protection consists of all the features you would expect from an industry leading security suite”. Let’s see how Scanguard lives up to its claim.
As far as the Scanguard offer goes, things are pretty much standard: complete protection for all your devices with one simple to use product. The most important features that Scanguard highlights on its website are the advanced antivirus engine, online privacy & protection, PC optimization, and real-time protection. That is basically the composition of the security suite for PC, but Scanguard also offers advanced protection options for mobile. For this review, we’ll be covering the complete Scanguard security suite, with a special focus on the Scanguard Android app for smartphones, available in the Google Play store.
During our research on antivirus software, we’ve identified five key criteria for you to consider when choosing an antivirus software: 1. Threat Protection 2. Resource consumption 3. 24/7 protection/real-time scanning 4. Extra must-have features 5. Platforms/Devices accessibility. Our reviews will examine each antivirus software in accordance with how well it delivers on these five criteria.
How Scanguard meets the 5 criteria?
1. Threat Protection
The Scanguard Quick Scan specifically scans for malware. After the scan has finished, you can decide to take action.
Normally, spyware will be detected by the system’s Real-Time Protection feature. However, there is an extra security measure, if you like. A free Chrome extension (Scanguard Safe Site) “that detects and safely redirects searches away from websites that may pose a threat to your system. This privacy-enhanced search engine will keep you protected from phishing, malware and malicious websites, stopping hackers and snoopers from gaining access to your personal data.” You can activate this extension straight from your Scanguard account dashboard.
From the moment you turn on your PC, the Real-Time Protection feature is automatically activated. If desired, you can exclude certain paths from this automatic scan, and you can also set which file types are scanned (all, smart or custom).
Phishing Websites Protection
To protect your PC from potential phishing attacks, Scanguard, first of all, offers the Safe Browsing (VPN) option. However, activating this feature will cost you another $39 (discounted price, originally $78). Apparently, the safe browsing option is not part of the Antivirus Pro subscription. A bit of research in Scanguard’s Knowledge Base, part of the Help Center, offers a cheaper solution: we can install a free Chrome extension (Scanguard Safe Site) “that detects and safely redirects searches away from websites that may pose a threat to your system. This privacy-enhanced search engine will keep you protected from phishing, malware and malicious websites, stopping hackers and snoopers from gaining access to your personal data.” You can also activate this extension straight from your Scanguard account dashboard.
Adware, while widely considered the least dangerous form of malware, is generally still unwanted on any PC. It might not be super harmful, but it does have a major effect on your computer’s performance. Scanguard offers the Ad Block Pro feature to “remove unwanted & annoying adverts” on four major browsers (Chrome, Edge, Firefox, Opera). It is not a free feature, unfortunately.
2. Resource Consumption
Let’s see how much CPU power the Scanguard Security Suite takes up. The task manager gives us an indication of the resources it uses. When the program is running in its default state, which means real-time protection is enabled, it doesn’t seem to interfere with your PC’s regular performance. When running a system scan, Scanguard takes considerably more of the CPU power, but still not a whole lot. Very rarely does it take more than 5% of the CPU resources during such a scan, so we can safely say Scanguard’s CPU usage is modest.
Scanguard offers users a tool to boost your PC’s performance. The System Boost offers to optimize your startup menu, helps you get rid of applications that take up a lot of space on your PC, and assist you to improve your internet experience by clearing up cookies and browsing history of all browsers installed on your system.
3. 24/7 Real-time Scanning
Scanguard’s Real-Time Protection feature monitors your computer 24/7 for dangerous activity. Once Real-Time Protection is enabled, Scanguard will automatically block harmful threats and notify you you of any unwanted activity.
4. Extra Protection Features
A security suite that comes with a whole lot of bells and whistles might need those extras to cover up a lackluster performance in its main features. Scanguard’s focus is on a strong performance of its main features, not so much on the available extras. It does offer some extra features, most of which come at an additional price. The extra features that are available in the standard package, are the following:
- Firewall. The Scanguard Firewall feature is not actually an additional feature of the security suite. It is a combination of recommended system settings, which you are able to activate through Scanguard. For starters, Scanguard makes use of the existing Windows Firewall, which it recommends to turn on. It also recommends to Allow Outbound Traffic, which means that “any application which is installed on your PC is allowed to make a network connection”, with the exception of existing firewall rules that deny applications to make such a connection. The recommended setting for inbound traffic is to not allow applications or persons to connect to your PC.
- The Disk Cleaner feature comes with a Duplicates remover that deletes duplicate files to free up disk space. While this is definitely not a core feature, it is a ‘nice-to-have’ option. It is also not a standard feature in other security suites, which is basically the reason for listing it as an extra protection feature here.Additionally, you can purchase extra features to add weight to your Security Suite:
- The Safe Browsing (VPN) feature protects your privacy online by encrypting your internet traffic. Scanguard highly recommends you to purchase this extra feature to “stop snoopers & hackers watching your every move” and they offer you a discounted price to do so. It is a very good feature to add to your security setup.
- Scanguard offers a Password Vault to keep all of your passwords safely stored in one central place. The vault provides a safe location to store your passwords, all of which will be stored locally, on your PC, encrypted with a master password. Your passwords will be inaccessible to anyone unless they know the master password, even if your device is stolen.
5. Platforms/Devices Accessibility
When you log into your Scanguard account and access your dashboard, you have the option to add the Scanguard Security Suite to additional devices. You can add your smartphone, for example, which is very easy. A download link is sent to an email address of your choice, you click the link in the email on the device you want to install Scanguard on and the program will be installed. Three devices are offered by default, and if those three are used, you can add more by clicking the “Add additional devices” button.
After we installed Scanguard on a Windows PC, we also installed it on a smartphone running Android. This can be done straight from your account. You add an extra device in one of the available slots and indicate that you want to install the suite on your Android smartphone. You will receive a link in your inbox. Clicking the link will take you to the Google Play store, where you can choose to install the app. After installation, you’ll see the Android phone registered as a device using Scanguard in your account.
The app installation went very smooth and the first impression of the app is positive: not complicated, offering an intuitive workflow.
When opening the app, the main screen tells us our device may currently be at risk.
So, we follow the advice given and start a system scan. All apps are scanned for both malware and adware.
This process takes a couple of minutes, after which we receive the 100% notification congratulating us on being protected against malware and adware.
Now that we’re protected, we can use the Cleaner option to free up some space. First, the Cleaner analyzes the phone’s storage space.
The result of this analysis is an overview of duplicate or very similar photos that you can delete to free up space. The second part of the analysis shows us the cache size that we can delete to free up even more space.
Other features are available, but we have to open the app menu to get to those.
The App Lock can be regarded as a parental control feature, because it offers the option to lock apps for privacy protection, to prevent unauthorized access. Scanguard recommends specifically to lock several messaging apps, although it does not include Facebook Messenger and Google Hangouts in the list of recommendations.
The Incognito Browser option opens the Scanguard Safe Search browser, comparable to the incognito option Google Chrome offers.
The app works well and scans fast. The options are basic, but definitely sufficient to make sure your phone and the data on it are secure.
Scanguard offers a security suite that focuses on simplicity and usability. The main advantage of this particular focus is that it is very easy to monitor the status of your devices – the dashboard will tell you exactly what to do and where to take action. Our test showed that the program functions well, both on our desktop PC and on our Android smartphone – the most important conclusion. We would have preferred a little less focus on the availability of additional features, but overall we’re happy with the way the program functions.
AU$2.95 / Month
- Phone Compatible
- Optimize Performance
- Protect Browsing
AU$24.95 / year
- Real-Time Antivirus Protection
- Remote Firewall Protection
- PC Performance and Optimization tools and shopping
- Smartphone Optimizer & Protection
AU$39.95 / year
- Scanguard Essential Antivirus
- Protect Multiple Devices
- Web Shield Extension
All of the options include free 24/7 Priority Super-Fast Support and a 30 Day Money Back Guarantee. Note: as far as the Scanguard website goes, the password vault feature is not actually part of any plan. However, we assume it is part of the Ultimate plan.
Support and Customer Service
Scanguard offers its customers a Help Center that covers a wide variety of subjects, including information about the latest security threats available. It offers a searchable and roughly organized Knowledge Base/ FAQ section, but makes the most urgent issues available on the homepage of the Help Center, which is helpful and shows Scanguard listens to their customers.
The Help Center also contains a set of video tutorials that cover all the product features and how they work. Good for getting to know the product.
Besides the Help Center, Scanguard offers several options to get in touch with their support team:
- A 24/7 live chat option, regardless of the plan customers are on – definitely a plus.
- Email support, via a dedicated email address or by filling in a support request form.
- 24/7 phone support