How to Disable Windows Smartscreen?

by Ugnius Kiguolis - -
12

Question

Issue: How to Disable Windows Smartscreen?

I'm using Windows 10, and recently I came across “Windows Defender SmartScreen prevented an unrecognized app from running” notification. It started to annoy me as the alert prevents me from running legitimate and not dangerous applications. Could you please show me how to disable Windows SmartScreen?

Solved Answer

Windows SmartScreen is an inbuilt technology which helps users protect their computers from potentially unwanted and dangerous applications. Initially, it was designed for Internet Explorer[1] to block phishing sites and malicious browser applications. Although, Microsoft now has implemented the technology directly to the Windows OS[2]

Once users enable SmartScreen, it starts collecting information about the applications you download and install on your computer. The gathered data is transmitted to Microsoft's servers where it is being compared to the report of malicious programs. 

If the details of the app match the information of a potentially unwanted program[3], Microsoft's servers inform Windows and users receive the following notification:

Windows protected your PC
Windows Defender SmartScreen prevented an unrecognized app from running. Running this app might put your PC at risk.
More information

However, users report that Windows Defender SmartScreen might get annoying as well — If Microsoft's servers have no information about the program you just downloaded, you will continue to receive the message indicated above and prevented from running the app. 

Windows Defender SmartScreen

Nevertheless, Windows SmartScreen is a useful feature which can help you build an extra layer of security. However, some people might want to learn how to disable Windows SmartScreen and get rid of annoying alerts. Note that we would recommend keeping the technology enabled. Although, you can find instructions on how to turn it off below.

Easy steps to disable SmartScreen on Windows 10 and 8

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Deactivate SmartScreen on Windows 8

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  1. Click Windows key + R and type Control Panel;
  2. Once it opens, go to System and Security > Action Center;
    Turn off Windows Defender SmartScreen
  3. Find Change Windows SmartScreen settings button on the left pane and click on it;
  4. Check the mark next to Don't do anything (turn off Windows SmartScreen) and press OK.

Turn off SmartScreen on Windows 10

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  1. Type Windows Defender Security Center on the Menu search and click on the shortcut;
    Disable Windows SmartScreen
  2. Find and hit App & browser control;
    Deactivate Windows Defender SmartScreen
  3. Select Off below Check apps and files option.

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About the author

Ugnius Kiguolis
Ugnius Kiguolis - The problem solver

Ugnius Kiguolis is the founder and editor-in-chief of UGetFix. He is a professional security specialist and malware analyst who has been working in IT industry for over 20 years.

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