The World Wide Web is a dangerous place these days with a lot of hackers and people up to no good trying to plant malicious software on your computer. If you remember, it wasn’t too long ago that WannaCry and Petya were affecting millions of users worldwide, encrypting all of their information, data, and holding it for ransom. This is all because of a virus that some people planted on computers — and it spread like wildfire, because the virus was capable of infecting computers on the same network. That’s how it spread so fast.
A large part of the reason why the virus wasn’t shut down by computers is because of poor security practices. Many folks didn’t have proper antivirus on their computers, with some not even keeping Windows Defender enabled, one of the most basic first lines of defense.
So, if you’re one of the people that isn’t sure whether you have Windows Defender enabled on your PC or not, be sure to follow along below. We’ll show you how you can enable it to keep your PC protected in just a couple of simple steps.
Why Enable Windows Defender?
There are a lot of people that will tell you to disable Windows Defender because it doesn’t provide nearly enough security that it should. That might be true in some sense, but it’s better than no security. And if you were to disable Windows Defender for that reason, you should always replace it with a better piece of antivirus — there’s plenty of options out there that are free.
Still, even though many say Windows Defender isn’t a very good solution, it is. It’s grown a lot over the years, and Microsoft keeps it updated with all of the latest practices to keep your computer protected against massive viruses like WannaCry. It’s also worth keeping it enabled even if you have other antivirus on your PC — just as another line of defense, though some other antivirus applications will
How To Enable Windows Defender
If you’re wondering how you can enable Windows Defender on your Windows 10 PC, it’s actually really easy. Follow these steps:
- Open the Settings app in Windows 10. This can usually be accessed from the Start menu at the bottom left of the screen, or by a quick search in the Search box.
- If you’re trying to access it from the Start menu, click on the Settings gear icon.
- Next, you’ll want to click on the Update & Security section.
- Navigate down to the Windows Defender option on the left navigation pane.
- Here, you’ll want to click on the Open Windows Defender Security Center button in the center of the page.
- This opens the Windows Defender Security Center where we can enable our Windows Defender features.
- Next, we’ll need to open the Settings menu for Windows Defender. This is the gear icon at the bottom left of the screen.
- Here, we can actually manipulate what’s enabled and disabled. Next, we’ll click on the Virus & threat protection settings option.
- Under the header that says Real-Time Protection, click on the button so that it turns blue and white. Do the same for under the section that says Cloud Delivered Protection. You can repeat the step for the Automatic sample submission option as well.
What about Windows 7 and Windows 8?
If you’re on Windows 7 or Windows 8, the steps are a little easier to enable it. Here’s how:
- Open up the Start menu, and search for Windows Defender.
- When it appears, select it.
- In the Windows Defender application, you’ll want to look for the Tools section. You should find this near the top of the page.
- Next, under Tools & Options, click on the Options link. This will take take you to a new page where you will need to select the Administrator tab in the left navigation pane.
- There’s a setting that says Use This Program. Next to it, you should see a checkmark box. To enable it, you’ll want to make sure that box was checked. If you want to disable it, you obviously want to make sure that it’s unchecked.
- Congratulations, you’re now using Windows Defender!
As you can see, it’s fairly easy to enable Windows Defender in Windows 7 and 8. If you’re on Windows 10, there are some specific features that you need to enable in order to make sure that Windows Defender is running. If you keep Windows Defender enabled and updated, you can ensure that you’ll always be protected against the latest viruses and malicious software out there.