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Spybot review, pros and cons
12 months
Users Rating

Spybot Search & Destroy Review


This player has a long list of additional features for your safety.

Spybot is one of the most widely used and popular tools to offer protection against spyware, adware, and other suspicious files. It immunizes your system by eliminating and retrieving any infected files.

In this article, we will discuss the various aspects related to Spybot Search and Destroy review, including reliability, security, scanning options, phishing protection, user interface, and ease of use. Let us get into more detail and discuss the Spybot review. 

Spybot Search & Destroy Highlights

  • Feature-rich anti-malware solution for your PC
  • Available in free and paid versions
  • Compatible with all major Windows OS
  • Real-time protection against all types of malware
  • Affordable pricing and excellent customer support

Why Spybot?

Spybot Search and Destroy offers real-time protection and detection of all different types of malware programs that are aimed to infect your files and systems. Since its launch in 2000, it has been one of the most popular anti-malware programs that are available in the industry. It comes in both free and paid versions, wherein the paid version comes with all the necessary features that are required to protect your PC and data. 

Best for

  • All in one, anti-malware and antivirus programs to defend your PC against various online threats. 
  • Efficient free anti-spyware and adware software for users looking to safeguard their information on the internet. 
  • Windows PC users who are looking for a good antivirus solution. 

Spybot Search & Destroy: Pros and Cons

  • Easy to use with sleek interface design
  • Blocks access to the website which could be potential threats
  • Users can choose from home and business versions of the software
  • Offers immunization for different browsers including Explorer, Firefox, Opera, and Chrome
  • Offers deep scanning to detect rootkit level infections
  • Only available for Windows devices and users
  • Malware detection performance is below the industry average
  • Free version available but with a limited set of features
  • Scanning takes a lot of time

Reliability and Security

Reliability and Security of Spybot Search and Destroy anti-malware solution is discussed using its malware protection, scanning options, and phishing protection. 

Malware Protection 

When it comes to protection against malware, Spybot Search and Destroy is undoubtedly not one of the best anti-malware programs available in the industry. The score of this software solution in terms of malware detection and protection is very low as compared to the industry average. 

There are many antivirus solutions available in the market at present that performs relatively well in terms of malware protection as opposed to Spybot. The company needs to improve its malware protection. In our test, the scores stood around 80%, which needs to be improved and brought over at least 95% and above

Scanning Options

With Spybot Search and Destroy, you get an in-depth scanning feature that will scan the system for any infected files and folders. However, the deep scanning option takes a lot of time to complete and utilizes several resources, which impacts the performance of the system. 

You do not get a scan option with the free version and are only available with the paid version of the software solution. Both the Corporate and Technician Edition comes with a Scan option that will also fix the infected machines. You can manual and schedule scans, including registry startup scans.

Spybot review, pros and cons, system scan

Phishing Protection

Spybot Search and Destroy offers the Immunization feature, which is essentially used to block access to malicious websites. The Immunization feature works efficiently and ensures that the users at no time get access to malicious websites designed to steal user information and privacy. The anti-malware program was able to block all of the websites that we tried visiting and ensure optimal protection against phishing. 

Spybot Additional Features

If you are using one of the paid versions of Spybot Search and Destroy, then you will get access to features including real-time antivirus protection, registry startup scan, protection spyware, adware, worms, Trojans and other types of malware. 

However, some of the additional features are missing, for instance, parental control, game mode, and VPN service. There is no firewall available that you can use to block outsider network access. Therefore, there is not much available apart from the basic malware protection, which is also available in some of the free antivirus solutions. 

Is Spybot enough for protection?

Though the software solution is available in both free and paid versions, it does not have enough to offer for complete end to end protection with additional features that users often look for. The free version comes with only a limited number of features and is not optimal for complete protection. 

On the other hand, the malware protection offered by the paid version is not up to the mark and leaves users wanting more. There are several issues related to performance and features offered, which makes it challenging to choose Spybot over other industry leaders in the antivirus segment. 

Ease of Use

The ease of use of Spybot Search and Destroy can be compared to the leading products on the market.

Downloading and Installation

The download and installation process of Spybot Search and Destroy anti-malware solution is quite simple and straightforward. You can download the program file from its official website. Depending upon the package you choose, you will get access to different features. 

During the installation, either you can allow the program to install everything automatically or do it all by yourself manually. You can switch between the automatic mode and manual mode anytime, as required. Overall, the process is fairly smooth and fast. You do not need to have any kind of technical assistance to download and install the solution. 

User Interface

The user interface of the software solution is sleek and has an intuitive design. The product allows users to perform different scans as per their requirements. It allows you to schedule scans as required or run manual scans. In addition to this, all of the features can be accessed from the home menu. The buttons are very-well positioned on the home screen. Though the buttons look a bit outdated, they do the job they are intended to do. 

Spybot review, pros and cons, user interface

Spybot Pricing and Package

The basic package of the software solution can be downloaded and installed for zero cost. In addition to this, there are paid packages as well. All of the packages are discussed in more detail below. 

Spybot Home Edition

The Home Edition of Spybot Search and Destroy is the basic paid package that you can buy for only $15.99 per year for the protection of one device. It offers a simple and easy to use interface, along with all the basic features that are required to safeguard your computer. Some of the features that you can avail from the Home Edition includes, as follows:

  • Real-time protection and constant monitoring of the system
  • Scheduling of scans along with automatic updates
  • Protected Repair Environment
  • Features including anti-malware, anti-spyware, and antivirus

Spybot Corporate Edition

With the Corporate Edition, you get the ability to customize the configuration of the software solution as per your requirements. You can buy the Corporate Edition for just $39 per year for the protection of one device. 

Some of the features that you get access through this edition of the package includes: 

  • Live protection that monitors all of the running and newly created processes on the system
  • System immunization that blocks access to malicious URL websites
  • Secure Shredder that helps to delete the files permanently from your system
  • System Repair Registry

Spybot Technician Edition

With Technician Edition, you get all of the features listed in the Home and Corporate Edition along with some of the additional features. You can buy the Technician Edition of Spybot Search and Destroy for $59 per year for the protection of one device. Some of the additional features that you get access to includes. 

  • Anti-Beacon feature to make sure that all of your private data remains private and safe. 
  • Priority support that will ensure all of your issues are solved as quickly as possible. 
  • Command-line tools to control the system without actual user interaction. 
  • Task scheduling to schedule scans and updates as required by the user. 

Spybot Trial & Free Versions

The free version of Spybot Search and Destroy offers you a limited set of features, which include features such as anti-spyware and antivirus. You will get complete protection from different types of malware infections. Along with this, you get access to system immunization features that will block user access to malicious URLs and protect your data from getting stolen. 

However, if you are looking for real-time protection against viruses and other types of malware, you will have to buy one of their paid packages to get such protection. The free version is decent but limited as compared to other free alternatives available in the market. 

Spybot review, pros and cons, user interface, free version

Money-Back Guarantee

At the time of writing this review, there is no information available on Spybot Search and Destroy official website in terms of the money-back guarantee. There is a free version available to be used. However, there isn’t any refund or money-back guarantee offered by the company. So, it becomes important to choose the package that better suits your needs. As once you commit, there is no surety that the company will refund your money. Though, you might want to get in touch with them to see if you can avail of the refund. 

Spybot for Business

Spybot Search and Destroy come with different packages for different requirements. Whether you need for home or business, you can choose the package that better suits your requirements. For business, you should select the Corporate Edition of the software solution Sophos Intercept X Endpoint which features have been discussed above. 

For one license, you will have to pay $39 per year. However, if you choose a higher number of licenses and PC, then you will have to pay $153 per year for the protection of 5 PC. They are offering bulk discounts for businesses. And for 10 devices, you will have to pay $261 per year. 

Sophos for business - Intercept X

Other products

Some of the other products provided by Spybot Search and Destroy includes Anti-Beacon, Identity Monitor, and File Analyzer, which are discussed below in more detail. 

Spybot Anti-Beacon Plus

If you are using one of those Windows Operating System, your privacy might be at risk without you knowing about it. Do you know that Windows sends some of your personally identifiable information back to Microsoft? Windows secretly tracks your system to serve your personalized ad experience. 

In addition to this, it might also install some software on your system without you want them. All of these can be stopped, and your privacy can be kept intact by using the anti-beacon feature of Spybot Search and Destroy. It is simple to use, the great feature which becomes a must-have for ensuring your privacy. 

Spybot review, pros and cons, user interface, Anti-Beacon

Spybot Identity Monitor

You might have provided your details, including email addresses, birth dates, name, and address, among others, on many different websites for registering and creating an account. Using the Identity Monitor feature of Spybot Search and Destroy, you will get to know if your details are getting misused or got into the wrong hands. 

If the Identity Monitor suggests that your information is indeed getting misused on the internet, make sure you change your password on such services immediately and protect your identity as soon as possible. It is simple to use the feature and a compelling product that is being offered by the company. 

Available for both Windows and Mac, the Identity Monitor is a free piece of software. Plus, unlike most rivals, it’s not a part of Spybot’s antivirus, but rather a standalone tool with its interface. It is a relatively simple program that monitors usernames and emails with very little user interference. All you have to do is supply it with accounts – the Identity Monitor will do the rest.

The number of accounts isn’t limited in any way, and they can all be displayed on the main dashboard. There’s also the option of rerunning checks during the logging in process in case you’re worried something suspicious is going on. All in all, Spybot managed to create a highly useful and friendly tool that’s also 100% free. Detailed account info, fast checks, and a minimal-yet-trendy look – that’s what you’ll get with the Identity Monitor.

File Analyzer

Most people don’t even need any sophisticated tools for analyzing files. But if you’re one of those pros that do want to dig deeper, the File Analyzer may very well be the best pick for you. Exclusive to the Windows OS, it is available both as a standalone and a portable piece of software. The list of supported Win versions includes XP up to 10.

The official website claims that Spybot’s analyzer should be the go-to tool for learning more about the ins and outs of files. And, after a thorough review, we’re happy to say that there’s a lot of truth to that. The list of content that it gives access to includes archives, databases, ADS (alternate data streams), file bitmaps, and more.

File Analyzer checks all of the files on your system and ensures that all of them are entirely safe and secure. It checks the basic file content and shows a standard hex viewer that will help you to understand the purpose of that particular file. 

It is simple to use the feature and can be downloaded directly from the official website of Spybot. Use it and analyze the files stored on your HDD to ensure the safety of your data and system. 

Support and Customer Services

Sophos customer support

When it comes to support and customer services of Spybot Search and Destroy software solution, it is one of the least impressive feature offerings by the company. As a user, you cannot get in touch with the support team through phone or live chat option. You can only get in touch with the customer services team is through a ticketing system. 

They do offer priority support option, but it is only available with the paid Corporate and Technician Edition. We tested the support services by using the ticketing system and found out that they reply to your queries within a day or two. 

In addition to this, there is a FAQ page which can be used to get an answer to basic questions. It is available on the official website of the company. It is useful for users who do not want to wait long hours to get their queries answered. All in all, there is a lot of scope of improvement when it comes to support services. They need to add live chat and phone services as soon as possible. 

Spybot Search & Destroy FAQ

How can I safely download Spybot Search and Destroy?

To safely download Spybot Search & Destroy you need to go to the official website and click Download. After that, you will be offered several options for downloading Spybot Search & Destroy.

How to completely remove Spybot Search & Destroy?

To completely remove Spybot Search & Destroy from your PC you need to go to the Windows control panel. Then select Uninstall a program and find Spybot Search & Destroy there. After that, click on the uninstall button.

Can I use Spybot Search & Destroy for free?

Yes, you can use Spybot Search & Destroy absolutely free. To do this, you need to visit the official website. The free version of Spybot Search & Destroy has many useful features and tools for detecting and removing malware.

What programs are not compatible with Spybot Search & Destroy?

Spybot Search & Destroy is compatible with all known programs. Besides other antivirus programs. If Spybot SD is installed on your computer, you will not be able to use other AVs, since Windows will block them.

Which version of Spybot Search and Destroy is better?

There are currently 5 versions of Spybot Search & Destroy. To choose the best version of Spybot SD, you first need to decide for what purpose you will need AV. Please note that 4 out of 5 versions are paid and only 1 is free.

Spybot Alternatives & Competitors

Our Verdict

Though Spybot Search and Destroy offers a good set of premium features with its paid packages, the malware protection offered by the software solution is not good enough to compete with some of the other better alternatives available in the market. 

Thus, relying entirely on Spybot is not recommended. The free version of the software offers basic protection from viruses and spyware but fails to offer real-time protection that is available in the paid packages. Besides, it uses a lot of resources while running scans on the system and impacts the performance of your device. 

All in all, the overall performance of Spybot Search and Destroy can be improved, starting with malware detection and protection.

User Reviews

  • Jimmy

    You know, I’ve just renewed my license. I had no problem at all with it when working for the whole year. It had missed some of the viruses but it wasn’t a big deal. It’s indeed intuitive and works in an excellent way.

  • Bill Steeler
    Good at protection

    This is not a perfect antivirus, however, it is reliable enough. I installed it on my kid’s computer to give it a try as I know it has adware and spyware options. So far, they are doing great (considering the trash my kid downloads). Unluckily, there is no parental control and slow support response.


    I’m sorry to have to post a bad review about spybot. I’ve lately payed to renew my licence. This operation was done successfully and I was mailed the invoice , but for some unknown reason I haven’t been able to execute the downloaded renewed licence. I was proposed a solution which didn’t work. My renewed claim was met with silence, so as was my proposal to get a refund as it seemed that nothing worked.

  • Helen
    Scnaning is great

    SpyBot is excellent. Really. I’ve been using it for a while now, and the first scan already found some threats. So now my laptop works faster. Besides, it is so elementary to use, that’s for sure. I had some issues while trying some features and get a reply in several days. Still, it is just a minor issue.

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