Browsing the internet comes with the perils of phishing and malware. Find out here how to have Edge check page and download safety automatically.

First, People Shooting Peas

at windows could be seen—and, importantly, heard—on the British Isles throughout the Industrial Age‘s every early morning’s hours.

These “knocker-ups” would reliably wake those scheduled to work when alarm clocks were unreliable and expensive. Some knocked with sticks, and some, like Mary Anne Smith, would shoot peas through a blowtube.

Now, if you want to be alerted not to the joys and chances of a fresh morning but to the stale tricks and perils of the Internet Age, Windows’s Edge browser can be on guard for you and knock. It’s reasonably reliable—and it is free:

How to Have Edge Check Page and Download Safety Automatically

To set up Microsoft Edge browser on Windows 10 to check every page and file download for safety risks (such as malware and phishing attempts) automatically as you navigate to it:

  1. Click the Settings and more button (•••) in Microsoft Edge.
    • Keyboard shortcut: You can also press Alt X to open Edge’s main menu.
  2. Select Settings from the menu that has appeared.
  3. Now click View advanced settings under Advanced settings.
  4. Make sure Help protect me from malicious sites and downloads with Windows Defender SmartScreen is On.
    • Not recommended: Turn the setting Off for no checks and possibly a negligible speed boost.

How to Have Edge Check Page and Download Safety Automatically: FAQ

Can I still visit a site that Microsft Edge is warning me against opening?


To override the SmartScreen filter and visit a dangerous site in Microsoft Edge browser:

  1. Click More information under This website has been reported as unsafe.
  2. Now click Disregard and continue.

Edge will open the page but still block unsafe content, such as scripts and Flash apps that might download harmful code.

How does Edge determine unsafe pages?

Edge uses Windows Defender SmartScreen to identify files and pages that are a potential threat.

In addition to checking against lists of known phishing sites and malware, Windows Defender SmartScreen also looks for suspicious content.

Microsoft Edge missed an unsafe page; can I report it?

Yes, you can report a phishing or otherwise unsafe page to Microsoft for Windows Defender SmartScreen.

I cannot change SmartScreen settings in Edge or override warnings; what is going on?

Windows system administrators can centrally and remotely set SmartScreen options for Microsoft Edge. These settings can prevent you from configuring SmartScreen yourself or ignore warnings for unsafe pages and downloads.

(How to Have Edge Check Page and Download Safety Automatically tested with Windows 10; updated June 2018)