How to Turn Off Microsoft Defender in Windows 11

By | February 27, 2022

If you need to disable Microsoft Defender for any reason, here’s how to do it in Windows 11.

You may have noticed that Microsoft Defender is an antivirus that comes pre-installed with Windows 11. And it’s great to have as it forms a solid line of defense to protect you from harmful malware.

But there are times when you prefer to disable Microsoft Defender. Like when you want to download software that you know is safe, but Microsoft Defender won’t allow it. So let’s see how to turn off Microsoft Defender in Windows 11.

How to Temporarily Turn Off Microsoft Defender With Windows Security

You might like the protection Microsoft Defender provides, but want to disable it for a while to test the app. You can do this through the Windows Security app in Windows 11:

Click icon Search/Search on the taskbar and search for Windows Security.

Click Windows Security under Best match or click Open in the right pane below Windows Security App.

On the page that opens, click Viruses & threat protection.

Click Manage settings under Virus & threat protection settings.

Turn off the blue switch below Real time protection.

Click Yes at the UAC prompt (to do so you need to be an admin on your PC)

Once done, Microsoft Defender will now be turned off.

After you finish testing the app, make sure to re-enable Microsoft Defender again to keep your PC safe. Luckily, if you forget to turn it back on, Windows will automatically do so after a certain amount of time.

Turn off Microsoft Defender Only When Needed

Now you know how to turn off Microsoft Defender in Windows 11. But you shouldn’t disable it too often, as it does a great job of protecting your PC, and is included for free with Windows 11.

If you want to get rid of Microsoft Defender, you can install a third-party antivirus instead and Windows will automatically disable its own security.