Windows 10 has built-in antivirus called Windows Defender. Microsoft recently changed the name of Windows Defender to Windows Security. Like most other antivirus software, Windows Defender can protect itself from being modified by other programs or malicious software. This is called as tamper protection. Follow the below steps to enable Windows security tamper protection on Windows 10.
When compared to other antivirus software, Windows Defender is pretty capable. The best thing about Windows Security is that it is lightweight and uses fewer system resources. Most of all, it works silently in the background without bothering users with unnecessary notifications and alerts.
For instance, McAfee constantly bothers its users with upgrade notifications, file access alerts, unnecessary alerts, etc. That is the reason why I created a detailed guide on how to properly remove McAfee from Windows.
Without further ado, let me show you how to enable Windows Defender tamper protection.
Note: Windows Defender Tamper protection is added in May 2019 update (v1903). So, make sure that you are using v1903 before proceeding.
What is Tamper Protection
To put it simply, the tamper protection makes sure that no other software, malicious or otherwise, from changing Windows Defender settings or configurations.
In Microsoft's own words:
Tamper Protection in Windows Security helps prevent malicious apps from changing important Windows Defender Antivirus settings, including real-time protection and cloud-delivered protection. If Tamper Protection is turned on and you're an administrator on your computer, you can still change these settings in the Windows Security app. However, other apps can't change these settings.
Steps Enable Windows Security Tamper Protection
1. Open the Start Menu, search for Windows Security and click on it. This action will open the Windows Security app.
2. In the Windows Security app, click on the Virus & Threat Protection option in the main page.
3. In the Virus & Threat Protection page, click on the Manage Settings link appearing under the Virus and Threat Protection Settings section.
4. This page hosts all the settings related to Virus & Threat protection. Scroll all the way down, find Tamper Protection section and toggle the switch under it to the On position.
The settings are saved automatically. From this point forward, no software can change Windows Defender settings without your knowledge.
Disable Windows Security Tamper Protection
Windows Security allows you to disable the tamper protection. This is generally useful if some other software is in conflict with Windows Defender.
Now, unless you know what you are doing and are absolutely sure, don't ever disable the tamper protection.
1. Open Windows Security and go to the Virus & Threat Protection page. Here, click on the Manage Settings link under Virus & Threat Protection settings section.
2. Toggle the switch under Tamper Protection section to Off position.
That is it. Keep in mind the Windows Defender might turn on the tamper protection after your reboot Windows. This is a good thing as you don't have to remember to manually enable defender tamper protection.
Hope the that helps. If you like this article, do check out how to enable ransomware protection on Windows 10. With ransomware protection, you can protect important folders from being taken hostage of ransomware.