Home » How-To » How to Fix “Windows protected your PC” Pop Up

How to Fix “Windows protected your PC” Pop Up

Are you getting a “Windows protected your PC” pop up message when you’re trying to run an app?

Here’s the second part of the error, “Microsoft Defender SmartScreen prevented an unrecognized app from starting”.

Followed by “Running this app might put your PC at risk” and a “Don’t run” option.

If you trust the app or program, you might be looking for a way to bypass the pop up and run it.

In this guide, you’ll learn how to remove, disable, bypass, or fix the Windows protected your PC pop up message and what is it.

What does it mean by Windows protected your PC?

Windows protected your PC means that Windows does not recognize the app or program that you’re trying to run.

This can happen if you’ve downloaded an app from Google Drive, SourceForge, Itch.io, and other third party websites.

This feature called “Reputation-based protection”, and it’s part of Windows Security.

The “Check apps and files” feature protects your device by checking for unrecognized apps and files from the web.

How to fix “Windows protected your PC”

To fix “Windows protected your PC”, you can choose to run the app or program anyway.

You can also disable the “Check apps and files” feature or remove malware from your PC.

Fix 1: Select the run anyway option

  1. Double-click the app or program that you’re trying to run.
  2. Select the “More info” option.
  3. Select the “Run anyway” option.

Note: Only run the app anyway if you trust it and you’re certain that it doesn’t contain any viruses.

Fix 2: Disable “Check apps and files”

  1. Search for “Windows Security” using Windows Search and open it.
  2. Select “App and browser” control.
  3. Select “Reputation-based protection settings”.
  4. Disable “Check apps and files”.
  5. Double-click the app that you’re trying to run again.

Fix 3: Remove malware from your PC

  1. Download MalwareBytes for your PC for free.
  2. Run “MBSetup” and select “Install”.
  3. Choose your protection type and skip the customization.
  4. Open MalwareBytes and select “Get started”.
  5. Enter your email address to start a 14-day trial.
  6. Select “Scan” to start your first scan.
  7. Remove any malware that’s detected on your PC!

Further reading

How to Fix “Error downloading the file content” in Outlook

How to Fix Microphone too Quiet in OBS

How to Record Minecraft with OBS

About the author

Lim How Wei

Lim How Wei is the founder of followchain.org, with 8+ years of experience in Social Media Marketing and 4+ years of experience as an active investor in stocks and cryptocurrencies. He has researched, tested, and written thousands of articles ranging from social media platforms to messaging apps.

Lim has been quoted and referenced by major publications and media companies like WikiHow, Fast Company, HuffPost, Vice, New York Post, The Conversation, and many others. One of his articles about the gig economy was quoted by Joe Rogan who hosts The Joe Rogan Experience (arguably the most popular podcast in the world), in the This Past Weekend podcast by Theo Von.

In his free time, Lim plays multiple games like Genshin Impact, League of Legends, Counter-Strike, Hearthstone, RuneScape, and many others. He creates guides, walkthroughs, solutions, and more on games that he plays to help other players with their progression.