Defenza is quite an ordinary anti-spyware program providing very basic functionality. It is an on-demand scanner with only three additional functions – quarantine, scheduling and updating. There are no any extra tools.
Assuming such simplicity, it is natural that you expect the program to be worth of money you pay for it, as Defenza is not very cheap – its price is the same as of major leading products – one year subscription costs $29.95. However, purchasing one of the leading products is a much better money investment, because Defenza is not as good as its vendor claims.
We have conducted thorough tests to determine Defenza's spyware detection and removal rate. We also wanted to see how effective and reliable this program is.
At first, a badly infected system was scanned. The application checked running processes, all local hard drives, the Windows registry and web browser cookies. It correctly identified most pre-installed parasites including emerging threats that some competitive spyware removers never find. Defenza has really good malware detection rate. It provides detailed information on found pests and also shows which objects are associated with them, thus giving the user all the information he or she should know in order to perform manual removal.
Unfortunately, automatic spyware removal is a paid function. The program's free version asks to register and purchase the full product.
Updates are disabled in the free version. There is a working link in the program, though. However, all it does is opens a web page that asks to purchase the full product.
After completing tests on infected computer, we used Defenza to scan several different machines, which were never infected with spyware, adware, trojans or any other parasites. All three scan modes have been tested: Quick (takes from 3 to 7 minutes), Full System (25-75 minutes) and Custom. Surprisingly, only the Custom scan (checking processes, registry and cookies) did run as intended. Both full and quick scans seized up without any obvious reason. The program did not crash, though. Even the counter showing the number of files scanned kept running. However, Defenza has stopped examining them. That was definitely a bug in a code preventing us from viewing the results. What is more interesting, we encountered this bug on several different computers with unrelated setups.
According to Defenza's vendor, the program uses a regularly updates spyware definitions database. Considering its relatively high spyware detection rate, this statement seems to be true. However, the program's free version does not provide updates. You have to purchase the full version first.
The application's official web site is www.defenza.com. According to results of a query in McAfee SiteAdvisor, a popular Internet security service, this site is not safe, as it is affiliated with cashengines.com, which seems to be deceptive or fraudulent.
The origin of defenza.com is one of the reasons why Defenza was classified as a questionable spyware remover, although the program itself is not actually corrupt, but rather imperfect. Another weighty argument is poor program quality. As it was said above, the application runs flawlessly on some computers, but fails to complete even a quick scan on others. Furthermore, it doesn't provide free updates. This doesn't make Defenza more reliable than any corrupt spyware remover.
We DO NOT recommend purchasing and using this product.