Reviewing Guardio: The Only In-Browser Anti-Virus Chrome Extension

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Guardio is a preemptive cybersecurity solution that provides in-browser protection from malware, identity theft, online scams, and data breaches. It’s a Chrome extension, meaning that you only have to download it once and it can be used on multiple devices, regardless of whether you’re using a PC or Mac. Guardio checks every website you visit, including any extensions you want to download, and blocks any known or suspected threats, before your data is ever breached.

Guardio screenshot

Source: Guardio

I was curious to see if Guardio can actually follow through on its promises, so I signed up for the free 7-day trial. And let me just say, I like what I see so far. Guardio was beyond easy to install, has a slick dashboard, and most importantly, it doesn’t affect my browsing experience whatsoever. If anything, I feel safer knowing that I have an added layer of protection.

Key Features

Chrome Browsing Protection

Nowadays, the majority of people use their browsers exclusively and extensively. Whether you’re shopping online, managing your finances, or catching up on your favorite Netflix series, you’re probably using Google Chrome. What I like about Guardio is that it’s a preemptive security measure, meaning it scans every website I want to visit and blocks my entry if it detects a threat before malware even has a chance to download onto my computer. If for some reason you still wish to access a blocked website, you can add it to your “Website Whitelist,” which will bypass Guardio’s security system.

Guard.io screenshot

Source: Guardio

Chrome Extension Protection

Google Chrome extensions seem to be popping up left and right these days. I don’t know about you, but I’m always wary of adding them, even if the extension comes from a seemingly reputable site. There are too many scammers out there who use Chrome extensions as a ruse to steal your personal information. When I first installed Guardio, it scanned my existing extensions and removed the malicious ones immediately. Now Guardio blocks my ability to install any suspicious extensions in the first place. Then, just like the browser protection, Guardio blocks my ability to install any suspicious Chrome extensions. What’s also great is that Guardio consistently updates its database, making sure that newly added extensions are always vetted before you download them.

Email Monitoring

Email monitoring is my favorite Guardio feature. It scans the websites with my email in their databases, alerting me to possible leaks made by those websites and also gives me a detailed report about what exactly was leaked and when. The feature has an option to add up to five of my own email addresses, even those from different domains. Luckily for me, my Gmail account contained no information leaks, but my Yahoo account was a different story. Guardio found four websites that had prior information breaches, including the May 2016 LinkedIn security breach, where 164 million emails and passwords were exposed. After getting that report, I immediately changed my password.

guard.io screenshot

Source: Guardio

Popup Blocker

Similar to Guardio’s other features, the popup blocker gets the job done. It stops all of those annoying ads that can show up at any given moment, making my browsing experience much more enjoyable. Two days before my free trial expired, I received an email reminding me that my trial is coming to an end and that my paid membership will begin one my free trial was over. I was impressed with Guardio’s honest reminder and defiantly didn’t want to go back to all those popups.

Customer Service

One of my biggest pet peeves is when customer support doesn’t return my emails. Not only did a customer service representative answer my email almost immediately, but they were also cordial and very informative. I felt like Guardio genuinely cared about me as a customer, which gave me even more faith in their product. There is also a set of FAQs on the Guardio’s Help Center. I found the section easy to navigate, and the answers detailed and helpful.

Pros & Cons

Pros:

Easy Installation: Since Guardio is a Chrome extension, I only had to install it once. It took me less than two minutes to adjust my settings, add a second email address (if you want to), and receive information about potential information leaks.

Great User Experience: Guardio is very straightforward. The dashboard is easy to navigate, and there are no complicated settings that require a technical background.

Portability: Guardio protects me when I sign into my Chrome account. This makes it easy when switching between my personal laptop, my PC, and my Chromebook.

Value for Money: Guardio allows you to add up to four accounts under your “Family Plan,” which your family members can add to their Chrome browser and be protected while keeping their privacy.

guard.io screenshot

Source: Guardio

Cons:

Not Supported on Mobile: According to Guardio’s website, Guardio is currently only available for desktop. However, they plan to extend coverage to mobile devices in the future.

Limited to Chrome: As I said earlier, as of now, the Guardio extension only works on the Chrome browser.

How to Install

Like any Chrome extension, Guardio’s installation is quick and easy. You can gain access to the extension by visiting the Chrome Web Store or going to Guardio’s website directly. After you install Guardio, it immediately begins a security scan, and you will need to grant Guardio permission to block popups. Once Guardio completes its security scan, it presents you with all of the threats on your device.

gurdio screenshot

Source: Guardio

As soon as you begin the free trial, the threats are immediately removed. Guardio is added to your other Chrome extensions, which are located on the top right corner of your browser window. To access your account, change your settings, or update your payment method, just click on the extension icon and click “Open Dashboard.” This will take you to the features and settings that I mentioned earlier.

Pricing

Guardio offers two payment options. The first is a monthly subscription for $9.99 a month, which totals to $119.88 for the entire year. Or you can do what I did and pay for the annual subscription, which costs a total of $71.88 per year, saving you up to 40%.

As mentioned earlier, Guardio also offers a family plan at no extra cost. You can add up to four friends or family members, for a total of five users under one subscription.

guard.io creenshot

Source: Guardio

Bottom Line

Guardio is a lightweight but hard-working cybersecurity solution for all Chrome users. It is very reliable at detecting malicious websites and covers all of my social media accounts, without slowing down my browser. Since it’s a Chrome extension, I only needed to install it once, and I can use it on any computer once I log into my Chrome account. From the simple dashboard navigation to the straightforward settings, Guardio was designed with the user in mind. If you’re looking for a flexible and lightweight browser security solution, Guardio is the way to go. You can download Guardio by clicking on this link.