Those who care about personal data security and identity protection should duly appreciate the virtues of PC Tools Privacy Guardian – efficient software which is aimed at cleaning up the activity traces that might reveal some facts about you to individuals whose intensions are not commendable, to put it mildly. This program’s primary focus is to completely erase the items that might well be compared with your fingerprints, in the digital sense. In fact, everything you do on your computer leaves its traces, and these remnants thereof might be privacy-infringing: the apps you’ve used, browser data and a variety of files stored on the hard drive.
More specifically, the things like web browser history, auto complete form data, cookies, recent downloads, blocked folders and some types of malicious objects you might not have known of which can’t be completely deleted through the regular Windows options – these can now be smashed up within a few mouse clicks. Furthermore, while using this utility you may be certain the shredded and demolished data is removed for good and no file recovery tool will be able to restore it. Privacy Guardian may as well enhance the performance of the workstation as it frees the disk space, so the operating system boots up faster and takes less time to process and complete plenty of tasks concurrently.
As per the research we have conducted, this product by PC Tools is a piece of software where efficiency and reliability are combined to deliver pretty much the best you can get. As long as you are using this simple and intuitive application, you can rest assured issues Internet privacy, system performance deterioration are no longer an issue, due to effective removal of unused tags, files, folders and other redundant or sensitive data. This is what people actually need – a true breakthrough due to which there’s no need to worry about encroachments on the identity and personal information.
- Windows XP SP3 (32 bit only) / Windows Vista (32/SP2 64 bit) / Windows 7 (32/64 bit)
- For Windows XP:
- CPU: 300 MHz or higher
- At least 128 MB of available RAM
- For Windows Vista / Windows 7:
- CPU: 1 GHz or higher
- 1024 MB of available RAM (32 bit) / 2048 MB (64 bit)
- 50 MB or more free space on HDD
- Video Adaptor: SVGA (1024×768)
- CD/DVD Drive (unless installing from the internet)
- Internet connection for activating the product and receive product updates
There’s nothing complicated about installing Privacy Guardian. Everything is basically the way you expect it to be. The distributive is available on PC Tools official website (www.pctools.com), so just hit the button to initiate the process. Moreover, the vendor offers a free computer scan as an alternative to the immediate purchase transaction, so you can first give it a shot and see how good the product is before making up your mind on buying it. As to the commercial version, the price seems more than reasonable as for only $19.99 USD you get full annual protection for up to 3 machines.
The installation process is intuitive and clear, hence doesn’t take special expertise to complete – just follow the prompts, and you’re done. The app suggests running an optional initial scan before it actually opens, which we recommend you do. Additionally, you can go adjust Privacy Guardian to your specific needs by browsing the ‘Settings’ tab which consists of 3 sub-menus: ‘General’, ‘Shredder’ and ‘Scheduler’, each one consisting of configuration items with check fields next to them. Under ‘General’, there are 6 options (Clean IE tracks, Hide ‘low disk space’ warning message, Check for open browsers during Privacy clean, Show warning messages during Disk Bleaching, Log Clean Results, Restart Windows Explorer after Privacy Clean), as well as the language select tool. ‘Shredder’ provides a choice of data wiping algorithms to pick: pseudorandom algorithm, US DoD 5220.22M or Gutmann 35-Pass algo. ‘Scheduler’ enables configuring the scan frequency or turning off scheduled scans.
Privacy Guardian is no burden for your computer. The resource consumption does not influence the performance of the machine, actually on the contrary, the time required for startup and some routine tasks should get gradually reduced due to disk space recovery, hence higher productivity. So, one of the prime advantages of this product is the remarkable quality and the ability to operate within Windows without affecting the system performance.
- ‘Clear Your Windows History’ enables detecting and processing the following objects: temporary and recent file history, temporary file folders, recently opened files lists, recently Run lists, Find and Search bar, document history and Clipboard. As you can see, this one focuses on supplying everyday computing privacy by spotting and clearing the history of you activities which is typically stored and can therefore be retrieved, whether you like it or not.
- ‘Clear Your Browsing History’ feature makes your online life safer. Not only do temporary Internet files, cookies, search history, cache, address bar requests etc. take up memory space and slow down certain processes – they are also easily trackable, so you don’t want anyone to get hold of these stats on your Internet activities. PC Tools Privacy Guardian is as well fit to process and secure the data from chat programs, media players, FTP browsers, email clients and peer-to-peer file transfer programs to cover basically all possible privacy-related side effects of web-surfing and using all types of web services whatsoever.
- ‘Clear Your Third-Party Software Traces’ helps you maintain privacy while working with the software you’ve installed and used. This instrument mainly applies to handling third-party application plug-ins which are some of the debatable things in the world of IT security. Having scanned your system, Privacy Guardian provides you with an extensive list of such applications and advises on further processing them.
- ‘Bleach Disks’ feature is responsible for complete and permanent deletion of potentially fingerprintable objects from your disk that might lead to identity theft or different types of user tracking implementation. This option also deals with the ‘waste material’ that might cause problems to the machine by interfering with software execution, cluttering the disc space or simply annoying and bothering the user.
- ‘Shred Files’ – the name speaks for itself. This is a tool to erase data once and for all. It helps keep your OS running smooth and protects your privacy. The files and folders that you no longer need, or the ones that you deleted via Windows options will be shredded using the military-standard algorithm so they it can’t be recovered.
Overall, Privacy Guardian appears to be a perfect privacy solution for both active Internet surfers and the people who store sensitive information on their computers and take cybersecurity seriously.
PC Tools Privacy Guardian is based on a brand-new data destruction engine which provides top speed and extremely high level of thoroughness and efficiency. Any kind of data (as well as its traces) can be easily exterminated with just a few mouse clicks, while the reliability of such transactions leaves no room for doubt as the program employs DoD level of security to guard your data. The extraction of information connected with your web-browsing, such as cookies, search request history, cache, address bar stats, downloaded programs folder etc. takes literally a few seconds. The distinctive feature of Privacy Guardian is that it is compatible with Microsoft Office apps, different media players, FTP browsers and online chat clients, which helps this product occupy one of the leading positions among the privacy utilities software on the market. So if you need a compact, fast and efficient utility for complex protection, Privacy Guardian is your right pick.
Help & Support
Help and support policy is what makes PC Tools Privacy Guardian a yet more attractive product to have. The vendor is clearly focused on giving its clients the best support opportunities, which has been proven over time. In case you’re experiencing malfunctions or other issues with the app, you got a choice of several options to address those: telephone, email and online chat. So, if you happen to run into a problem or have an enquiry, and there’s no appropriate solution in the user manual, all you need to do is visit the official website at www.pctools.com and ask for assistance there. Furthermore, you get the option of contacting the developers and support team through the community forums. Anyway, when it comes to help and support, Privacy Guardian has it all.
- Light-weight and fast
- Intuitive and easy-to-use interface
- Securely deletes browser history
- Erases all traces of previously used software
- Exempts disk space
- Reasonable price
- Saves system resources
- Task scheduling
- Remarkable support policy
- Annoying restart requests after data processing
- No stealth mode
- May delete items you need, e.g. bookmarks
PC Tools Privacy Guardian accommodates unique benefits for a surprisingly low price, so it’s nearly the best you can get in this niche. The application uses reliable and proven information shredding algorithms and, what is more, gives you a choice between 4 of those. Our test did not spot any flaws in efficiency of this process. In addition to the direct privacy protection objectives, the software can definitely improve productivity of your machine by eliminating redundant items, thus increasing the disk space. Therefore if you look for a fast and efficient privacy solution, Privacy Guardian should at least match or even exceed your expectations.