The fight against malware is a constant battle that evolves as technology becomes more powerful. It’s wise to use every tool at your disposal to keep your computer safe.
What you might not know is that Chrome on Windows has its own malware scanner. This runs periodically to clean junk up in your browser, but you can actually run a scan right now to make sure everything’s clear.
How to Unlock Chrome’s Built-In Malware Scanner
- Click the three-dot Menu button in the upper-right corner of Chrome and choose Settings.
- Scroll down to the bottom of the list and click Advanced to show all options.
- Continue scrolling down until you see the Reset and clean up header at the bottom of the list. Click Clean up computer.
- Inside is the Find and remove harmful software option, which is Chrome’s malware scanner. Click Find to run a scan.
- Once complete, Chrome will let you know if it finds anything harmful on your PC. If so, you can proceed with removing it.
- Next time, you can get to this menu quickly by entering chrome://settings/cleanup into the address bar.
If you don’t see this option, make sure you’ve updated Chrome by visiting Menu > Help > About Google Chrome.
Note that this isn’t a general-purpose malware scanner. It only checks for harmful software related to Chrome. Thus, you still need to keep a trusted antivirus installed.
It’s a good way to weed out any browser hijackers, so give it a try if you see a barrage of popups, unfamiliar search pages, or alerts about viruses. If Chrome seems slow and the scanner doesn’t help, something else could be slowing down your browsing.