Scanguard Review: Quick Expert Summary
Scanguard has great malware detection rates and offers a range of useful security tools. It performed well throughout my testing, and its virus scanner was able to detect a wide range of malware. Besides good malware protection, Scanguard includes anti-phishing protection, a password vault, a system optimizer, a VPN, and a data breach checker.
However, Scanguard’s extra features are quite expensive, and it would probably make more sense for users to buy better standalone products instead. For example, the VPN’s yearly plan costs the same as CyberGhost VPN (one of our highest-rated standalone VPNs).
While testing and researching Scanguard, I found that it’s an almost identical service to TotalAV and PCProtect — even down to the interface design. This is because they are all sold by the same company, which offers slightly different packages for each one. This is strange, but because they all use the very good Avira antivirus engine, at least you know you’re getting high-quality malware protection.
Scanguard is covered by a 30-day money-back guarantee so you can try it out risk-free and see if it’s the service for you.
|Overall Rank||#29 out of 68 antiviruses|
|🌐 VPN||✅ (paid add-on)|
|🎁 Free Plan||✅|
|💵 Pricing||$29.00 / year|
|💰 Money-Back Guarantee||30 days|
|💻 Operating Systems||Windows, Mac, Android|
Scanguard Full Review
Scanguard is a secure antivirus with an intuitive interface that makes it easy to use and customize its many features.
It uses the same Avira anti-malware engine as TotalAV and therefore comes with the same flawless malware detection rate. But to make use of its full suite of features, including the VPN and ad blocker, you’ll need to pay a lot more than the starting price.
Having said that, the starting price for the paid plan is a reasonable $29.00 / year and it comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Scanguard Security Features
Scanguard uses the same antivirus engine as Avira (which provides excellent malware protection) to deliver real-time malware scanning and on-demand antivirus scans. Avira is an award-winning engine and one of our top-rated antiviruses for 2023.
You can choose between 4 different types of scan:
- Quick scan — Scans currently running processes, temporary files, and browser files in under 5 minutes.
- System scan — Performs a full scan of your device.
- Smart scan — Quickly scans and finds suggestions to improve system performance.
- Custom scan — Allows particular drives, files, or folders to be scanned.
All the scans worked great in my tests. By downloading test files from a malware database, I was able to ensure that the scans could find potential dangers and malicious files hidden throughout my device. The system scan was relatively quick (it took just over one hour), and the quick scan was completed in under 2 minutes.
In addition to active scans, Scanguard comes with real-time malware protection. This is designed to block you from downloading harmful files as well as opening malicious programs. These protections work well, even identifying suspicious zipped files.
I’d put Scanguard’s malware protections up there with the best antiviruses available in 2023. However, brands like Norton and Bitdefender offer the most powerful malware protections along with added extras like specialist ransomware protections.
WebShield provides protection against malicious sites, including phishing sites that are designed to steal user data. It has several customization options, including activating on startup and blocking access to ‘Low Trust’ websites — sites that may not be completely malicious but are somewhat suspicious and could potentially have malicious content and scam adverts.
During my tests, WebShield stopped me from accessing most malicious sites, including verified phishing sites. However, it didn’t stop me from accessing all of the malicious sites. In comparison, Bitdefender’s web protections are much better, catching virtually all verified phishing pages in my testing.
Overall, Scanguard’s web protections are very good. It was able to detect the majority of dangerous sites I tried to visit, but it did miss a few others.
Scanguard’s Password Vault is a standard password manager with some decent security. It’s easy to set up and use, and it can be fully integrated into Chrome, Edge, or Firefox.
Password Vault only requires users to remember one password (the master password), meaning you can access your vault and auto-fill login details using just one password. Also, its seamless web browser integration makes it easy to access your passwords as needed and create strong and secure passwords for new online accounts.
However, there aren’t many extra features available. Apart from some very basic customization options, there isn’t much more to this password manager. I would have liked to at least see one two-factor authentication (2FA) option so I could add an extra layer of security to my password vault.
Unfortunately, Scanguard’s offering is nowhere near as good as standalone password managers like 1Password or Dashlane, both of which include a wide range of additional features like advanced two-factor authentication, breach monitoring, secure password sharing, and more.
Overall, Scanguard’s Password Vault works well and should suit users who only need a basic password manager without many extra features. But if you’re looking for a password manager with a wide range of features and advanced security, you’re better off trying a standalone option like 1Password.
Scanguard’s System Tune-Up feature comes with various programs to help optimize your device, including:
- Junk Cleaner.
- Duplicate File Finder.
- Application Uninstaller.
- Startup Manager.
- Browser Cleanup.
The Junk Cleaner allowed me to clear nearly 500 MB of unnecessary files — the files were identified and deleted in under a minute. I also used the Duplicate File Finder to get rid of some unwanted copies, including duplicate photographs that have been taking up a lot of storage space.
While the available tools functioned really well, I would have liked to see a few more. Unlike some similar services such as TotalAV, Scanguard’s System Tune-Up doesn’t include disk optimization tools like a disk usage analyzer.
I would have also liked some sort of performance-boosting options, like Norton’s Game Booster (which improves system performance while gaming) or Avira’s System Speedup Pro (a huge range of tools to improve overall system performance, including startup times).
Having said that, Scanguard’s tools worked well throughout my testing. Each feature was easy to use and worked quickly to help tune up my system. While I would like to see Scanguard offer more device optimization features (like the tools offered by Avira and Norton), its current optimization work as intended.
Safe Browsing VPN (Virtual Private Network)
Scanguard’s Safe Browsing VPN provides a surprisingly good experience for browsing and streaming. But it comes at an extra cost (it’s an add-on feature that isn’t included in Scanguard’s premium plan).
The VPN has industry-standard features such as browsing data encryption and a kill switch, which cuts you off from the internet if the VPN goes down, ensuring you’re not online without its protection.
It also provides users with access to 42 server locations in Europe, the Americas, Africa, and Asia. While Scanguard’s range of server locations is quite good, I would like to see more server locations available. Premium standalone VPNs like ExpressVPN offer over 90+ server locations.
I had success accessing my accounts on several streaming services including Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Disney+. However, unlike many standalone VPNs, Scanguard’s offering doesn’t feature optimized streaming servers, so consistent streaming with minimal lagging or buffering isn’t guaranteed.
Here are my speeds without a VPN:
Here are my speeds while connected to a server in the UK (from my location in the UK):
And here are my speeds while connected to a distant server in the US:
Generally, the speeds held up well, even on the distant servers. The VPN was quick enough for browsing, streaming, and even torrenting (but torrenting is only available on its non-US servers).
But the major issue I had with the VPN was the price. While the service worked well, it costs as much as a premium VPN like CyberGhost VPN or ExpressVPN, which has way more features, including a huge range of optimized servers and many more server locations.
All in all, Safe Browsing is a solid VPN that delivers security and good speeds even on distant servers. However, because of the high price, I would recommend trying a standalone VPN instead to get access to a much larger network of servers, optimized streaming servers, and more.
AdBlock Pro is an ad and tracker blocker browser extension, but it’s a paid add-on. It does a good job of blocking ads and trackers but doesn’t offer more for the price than a standalone ad blocker or VPN with ad blocking (such as ProtonVPN or Private Internet Access).
During my tests, AdBlock Pro blocked over 20 ads and tracking links within the first 15 minutes of using it. However, while I’m impressed by how effective it is, you can get an ad blocker that is just as effective with a top antivirus like Avira without having to pay extra.
Data Breach Checker
The data breach checker scans a database to check if any of your online account login credentials have been leaked onto the dark web. The feature worked well. It alerted me to one of my online accounts that had been leaked, which allowed me to access said account and change the password before hackers gained access to it.
However, I much prefer Norton’s dark web monitoring feature, which is not only far more advanced (it scans the dark web for credit card details, home addresses, ID documents, and a lot more), it scans the dark web in real-time time and provides instant alerts.
Scanguard’s data breach checker doesn’t do any more than free sites offering the same service, but it at least includes this feature with your Scanguard subscription (unlike AdBlock Pro or the Safe Browsing VPN, it doesn’t incur any extra cost). However, if you’re looking for more advanced data breach protection, Norton’s dark web monitoring tools are the best on the market currently.
Scanguard Plans & Pricing
Scanguard has one free and one premium option, but it also offers a wide range of add-on features that come at an additional cost.
The free plan only offers a basic quick system scan. For access to full system scanning and real-time scanning, you need to upgrade to Scanguard’s premium plan.
Its paid plan, Essential Antivirus ($29.00 / year), includes many features and covers up to 5 devices (including PC, Mac, and Android devices). More device connections can be added from the store, but this can really cause your costs to climb.
Essential Antivirus includes access to malware protections, WebShield, data breach checker, password vault, and system tune-up tools. But for add-on features like the VPN, AdBlock Pro, and Advanced Scanning (cloud-based real-time malware scanning), you need to pay extra.
Scanguard’s paid plan is covered by a 30-day money-back guarantee.
The Scanguard store has a variety of add-ons available, ranging from a cyber security eBook to unlimited device connections. While these offerings vary in quality — the VPN performs pretty well but the ad blocker is very basic — none of them justify the cost. The VPN performed well during my testing, but it also ended up costing more than the base subscription of Scanguard itself.
Overall, I don’t think Scanguard offers a good value. Not only is its paid plan far more expensive that antiviruses that offer much better products, but it also charges extra for feature that are included with othe rantivurs packages by default. For example, Norton 360 Deluxe offers much better features, including a VPN, advanced dark web moniting, performance optimzation tools, and more, while costing far less than Scanguard’s Essential Antivirus plan.
Scanguard Ease of Use & Setup
Scanguard uses an intuitive interface with a sidebar that makes finding all of its tools and features very straightforward. The interface lays out its features in an easy-to-use sidebar, displaying:
- Malware protection.
- Internet security.
- System tune-up tools.
- Password vault.
- Family sharing accounts.
I had the Windows app installed in under 3 minutes by following the wizard’s instructions and had no issues. I tested what was offered on the free plan (just a basic scan) before upgrading to the paid plan. The tools included with the paid plan were made available to me immediately (though extras like the VPN took a few minutes to become available after purchase).
The settings tab is well-organized, allowing users to easily customize each feature. While it may take a bit of time to fully understand each settings, it’s very easy to adjust each one to suit your needs. I really liked the scan scheduling settings, which allowed me to customize almost all aspects of the scan, including start and end time, scan type, and even the type of files for which the anti-malware engine scans.
Overall, Scanguard’s desktop apps are very easy to use. With features ranging from antivirus scans to a VPN to a data breach checker, it could be easy for things to feel cluttered. However, even with a good amount of customization options available for each feature, I never felt confused or overwhelmed by the interface.
Scanguard Mobile App
Scanguard only offers a mobile app for Android (there’s no iOS app available). I tested the Android app using my Samsung Galaxy device and I was generally happy with how well it worked. The app has an easy-to-navigate interface, and I didn’t encounter any glitches throughout my testing.
Many features available on the desktop apps have been well integrated to the Android app, such as the malware scanner, VPN, and junk cleaner. Each of these features worked just as well as they did for my Windows tests.
However, some competitors offer features that are notably missing from Scanguard’s mobile apps. For example, Scanguard’s app doesnt include spam and fraud call alerts, scam SMS message filterings, and dark web monitoring (all of which are included with Norton’s Android app). I would have liked to see a few more extras included within the Android app.
Overall, I found Scanguard’s Android app to be about as good as its desktop version. I didn’t experience any glitches or slowdowns, and the integrated features all worked well. This app was also easy to use, but I much prefer Norton’s antivirus app as it offers many more features and support for both Android and iOS devices.
Scanguard Customer Support
I was initially impressed by the wide variety of support options Scanguard had available. Unfortunately, the quality didn’t match up to the number of services.
I tried emailing Scanguard about the VPN, but I never received replies to my emails.
Contacting the phone service led me to discover that it was for billing issues only; I chose the option for technical support and was told to email. The call was then terminated.
Live chat was the best experience I had with Scanguard’s customer support — as the support rep was at least friendly and prompt. Unfortunately, I still didn’t have my questions answered even after asking on multiple occasions.
Scanguard’s customer support is pretty bad overall, particularly if you need technical advice. I never received a response to my email (though I noticed an expensive add-on for priority support in the store), and live chat didn’t answer my questions properly.
Is Scanguard a Good Antivirus Program in 2023?
Scanguard is an okay antivirus service with some good but overpriced add-on features. It’s a pretty expensive choice for 2023 — even if you avoid the add-ons. If I’m honest, you can get a lot more for your money by trying another premium antivirus program, like Norton or Bitdefender.
That said, Scanguard still offers decent malware and web protections. Its malware scanner is powered by the same effective Avira anti-malware engine used by similar services like TotalAV and PC Protect. When I tested the malware scanner on my Windows and Android devices, it found the test malware I downloaded with no issues.
Scanguard’s Safe Browsing VPN worked great during my testing, but it is very overpriced (it is only available as a paid add-on). The VPN allowed me to connect to 40+ global locations while maintaining good enough speeds for browsing and streaming, but it costs about the same as CyberGhost VPN — which offers access to a network based in 90+ countries, dedicated streaming and torrenting servers, and a 45-day money-back guarantee.
Scanguard’s customer support was pretty bad, despite having a wide range of support options. I wasn’t able to get a basic tech question answered despite multiple attempts using email, phone, help center, and live chat.
Overall, there are much better antiviruses on the market that offer a better range of features for less than the cost of a Scanguard subscription. Alternatives like Norton and Bitdefender offer many more features, like dark web monitoring, advanced ransomware protections, and cloud-based scanning for much less than the price of Scanguard’s paid plan.
Scanguard — Frequently Asked Questions
Is Scanguard safe?
Scanguard is a legitimate company that provides antivirus software and other internet security tools. All of its products are safe to use, from its antivirus to its system cleanup tools.
Its antivirus uses the same trusted anti-malware engine as Avira (one of our top-rated services), which offers highly-effective malware protection. Scanguard’s web protections are also effective at blocking malicious websites, including phishing pages.
While Scanguard is legit and safe to use, there are many great antivirus alternatives that offer much better features for a better price. For example, Norton offers more advanced data breach monitoring, a VPN, and a password manager all for a lot less than Scanguard.
Does Scanguard have extensions?
Scanguard offers a free extension that works with Chrome, Firefox, and Edge. It can protect you from potentially dangerous phishing sites. It also integrates AdBlock Pro to stop ads and trackers, though this is a paid add-on.
However, some antivirus services include good ad blockers as part of their plans and not as a paid add-on feature. Bitdefender Total Security is a good example of this and is covered by a 30-day money-back guarantee so you can try it before you buy.
Can I use Scanguard for free?
Scanguard can be used for free in a very limited capacity. The free version only offers a basic quick malware scan, meaning free users don’t get access to the 4 types of system scans (including the full system scan), real-time malware protection, data breach checker, WebShield, etc.
However, Scanguard does offer a 30-day money-back guarantee on its plans so you can try it out risk-free and see if it’s right for you.
Is Scanguard the same as TotalAV?
Scanguard is owned by the same company as TotalAV. Scanguard uses the same Avira anti-malware engine as TotalAV and a number of other services sold by the same company, including the VPN, ad blockers, and password manager.
These services are very similar (the interface is virtually identical) but have small differences in what is offered in each plan. For example, Scanguard offers more device connections that may be more suitable for a large household, while TotalAV’s plans offer a much better value overall.