herdProtect Anti-Malware Scanner is a fast and free Windows desktop program which detects malicious threats, spyware and adware by utilizing 68 industry anti-malware scanners. It has no impact on your system resources and uses the herdProtect cloud-based scanning engine. The scanner is a second line of defense and is designed to work perfectly with your existing anti-virus software (we highly recommend you use another anti-malware product with herdProtect). Best of all, it's FREE.
Please note, this is a beta version. If you encounter any bugs or have a suggestion, please contact us
How does it work?
The scanner works by taking a snapshot of all the 'active' files on a user's PC. We generally define an active file as one that is currently executing on the system or has the ability to automatically execute by means of an auto-start procedure (such as an extension, task, etc.). This snapshot, is stripped of any personally identifiable details to make sure that the report is 100% anonymous and securely sent to the herdProtect servers to be analyzed. Upon arriving, the system quickly sorts the files as known or unknown entities. Known entities are then categorized based on the detections that were discovered when scanned by all 68 anti-malware engines
. For known infections, these are then re-categorized based on the number of detections by each of the scanners and reported back to the user. All unknown files on the user's PC are then stripped of important metadata and sent to the herdProtect servers to be analyzed in real-time by each of these anti-malware scanners. Upon completion (which takes a 5 to 30 minutes), the reports are then sent back to the user and displayed in a final report. If any detections are discovered you can remove them from your PC with herdProtect's powerful removal technology.
What you should know
- herdProtect does not install or bundle any additional software, this of course includes malware, adware or toolbars (of course we don't but just want to make this clear).
- We do our best to make sure we strip all possible personally identifiable information (PII) from a file's metadata.
- If a file comes back as unknown, in some cases we might need to upload the file to be remotely scanned (please refer to the Terms of Service for exact details).
- The herdProtect Scanner is not a complete anti-virus solution and is more of a second opinion scanner as of this release (currently real-time protection is not enabled). Using a full commercial anti-malware platform is highly recommended in conjunction with herdProtect.
- All reports and other communication between a user's PC and herdProtect's servers are encrypted.
- False positives are minimized by our scoring algorithms which will weight detections and hide those we feel are false positives, those that fall on the border will be displayed as inconclusive detections with recommendations.
- herdProtect is 100% free with no strings attached and we will never sell you anything or ask for your email address, etc. If you find someone is attempting to sell you a service associated with herdProtect, please refuse it and report it to us.
- We have found a number of 3rd-party download managers that are illegally distributing herdProtect in adware bundles, please stay far away from them and make sure you always download directly from this page.
What it currently does not do (although we are constantly adding new functionality)
- This version is a scanner and malware/adware remover only (real-time protection is not part of this release).
- There is no real-time scanning functionality, you must initiate a scan on demand.
- The scanner performs very limited runtime binary patched scanning as compared to a full top-tier anti-virus engine.
- The scanner provides limited rootkit detection functionality.
- herdProtect does not run in the background, after running a scan, when you close the scanner down it completely terminates. There is not auto-starting, etc. giving you full control of when and how to run it.
- herdProtect will only make modifications to your system if you manually decide to remove a detected file. If this is the case the file itself along with any registration points associated with the file will be removed. (Registration point refers to how the file is integrated into Windows which includes but not limited to the shell, browsers, auto-start execution pionts, etc.)
- Can I remove multiple detections at once? Yes! By default removing multiple detected files at once is turned off. However, you can easily enable this feature by clicking the little 'settings' icon on the top right of the herdProtect main window. Locate the option 'Enable multiple removal functionality' and check the box. Once enabled you will see a 'Remove checked' button on the scan results screen (after a scan).
- Can I re-enable a file after I have removed it with herdProtect? No. Well not directly in the current release. herdProtect will not delete the file from your PC, instead it simply removes it from your system and renders it in-active and places it in the Quarantine folder (which is a sub-directory of the Scanner (/Program Files/Reason/herdProtect/Scanner/Quarantine). While the file can be restored (we have a tool for this), the registration points cannot be restored at this time. With that said, be very careful with what you end up removing and pay close attention to our recommendations. We are very aggressive at ruling out false positive detections but you should look at each detection before removing it (this is why multi-removal is off by default).
- How is herdProtect free? We plan on keeping all versions of herdProtect completely free. In order to operate and maintain our platform we run very limited ads throughout this web site (we do not provide any ads in the software). In addition we accept donations via if you would like to support us even more!