Can You Trust ScanGuard?
A couple of readers have recently asked me about a new program called ScanGuard. One said: “Hey, Bob. Just ran across this on the internet. Article makes it sound really good – maybe too good. Also, what other alternatives are available that do the same thing? Appreciate all the good work you do and the information you share. God bless, Elwyn.” So let's take a look at ScanGuard…
Review of ScanGuard
The item in question is ScanGuard, a PC cleanup, optimization, and protection program. It’s a very new program; according to Whois records, the site came online in June 2016. I don’t find any discussions of ScanGuard earlier than September.
As for the company behind ScanGuard, all I can find is a reference to “a highly regarded Microsoft Solution Provider.” No “about” or “contact” links on the site. That’s a huge red flag. I have no idea who I might be doing business with. Normally, I would stop right here and surf far away from ScanGuard. But Elwyn and other readers would like to know how well it works, so here goes...
My advice is to install strange, suspect software on an old PC that I would not mind re-formatting if the software turns out to be malicious. In fact, I’d re-format the drive even if I didn’t detect anything fishy; something may be lingering deep in the background. At the very least, I would create a Restore Point just before installing ScanGuard, in hope of being able to restore my PC’s settings and files to that time when I am done playing with SafeGuard.
Installing ScanGuard goes a little too fast for my liking. There is no licensing agreement to read, no “I accept” button, no “cancel” button. A corporate lawyer would never allow those items to be omitted. There’s no “Advanced” page where a user can choose the installation folder, where he wants shortcuts placed, and so on. Once you click on ScanGuard.exe, installation proceeds almost without pause. I feel I’ve lost control, and I shouldn’t feel that way.
Now ScanGuard wants me to register, creating an “online account” in the process. Unlike any other site, ScanGuard does not insist that I re-enter my username or password to confirm it. Genuine sites really, really care whether users get registered. Rogue sites do not; they just want you to enter the “standard” password that you use on all or most of the sites you visit regularly. So I enter a password that I have never used and never will use. There are no rules; a password can be any weak thing.
Testing the Program
Finally, I can clean and optimize my system. ScanGuard claims to perform four functions: Antivirus, System Boost, Disk Cleaner, and Web Security. I was not impressed by the Antivirus module; out of 27 files it flagged as “potentially dangerous,” the first five were innocuous, so I stopped there.
The only review of ScanGuard that I could find comes from a brand-new site called Top10BestAntivirus.com, which was registered in October 2016. Warning bells went off right away, when I saw that the top 2 items here are TotalAV and ScanGuard, two unknowns that have the same domain registration information. The reviews for both are glowing and vague, and the other products listed are all affiliate links.
Here's another odd thing I found while researching this software. The domain name for ScanGuard (scanguard.com) is listed as "for sale" on several domain marketplaces, with prices ranging from $10,000 to $22,800. Hedging their bets? Very odd, to say the least.
I would not use ScanGuard or recommend it to anyone. The company is sketchy, and it seems pretty obvious that the "review" site mentioned above is a thinly-veiled shill for the product. The product is crude and not user-friendly. There are much better alternatives, and they are free.
You can find my list of recommended Internet security tools in my article Free Antivirus Programs. For the past few years, I've been using the free version of Avast Antivirus, with an occasional scan using MalwareBytes AntiVirus, and this combo has served me well.
My advice on “system optimizers” is to stick with the tried and true. Advanced SystemCare cleans, optimizes, and protects very reliably. CCleaner is another tool that I've mentioned several times on this site. I also recommend Privazer, a tool packed with utilities to keep your PC in top shape.
You are unlikely to stumble across a brand-new antivirus or system optimizer tool that’s even slightly better than these established competitors. Why pay for something you can get for free? And why risk your privacy and security on an unproven entity? Your thoughts on this topic are welcome. Post your comment or question below...
This article was posted by Bob Rankin on 10 Nov 2016
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Article information: AskBobRankin -- Can You Trust ScanGuard? (Posted: 10 Nov 2016)
Copyright © 2005 - Bob Rankin - All Rights Reserved