One of the most common activities we do with a computer connected to the Internet is to download programs, games and applications. It’s a pretty straightforward process, one that we’re all too familiar with by now. Nevertheless, we do not always pay attention to the sites from which we download. Therefore, we want to talk about whether Softonic is safe to get software.
This website is one of the most popular in its branch, however, it is usual that its security aspects generate doubts and mistrust. In that sense, we are going to review this matter to have a concrete answer on how recommendable it is to use Softonic.
What is Softonic?
Nowadays we take for granted the fact that downloading programs is something simple, but it has not always been like that. That is why the final project of the Spaniard Tomás Diago broke into the internet market as a very innovative option. A website that concentrates the links to download software from the official pages of the manufacturers. Over time, the catalog grew a lot and so did the dynamics of Softonic.
Now, instead of offering a link to the main site to get the program you want, the first option is to use an intermediary software created by Softonic. It is a Downloader that is responsible for managing the download of applications, something that not only hinders the experience, but also has elements that lead us to distrust.
Is Softonic safe to download programs?
This doubt is important because when we search for the name of some software in Google, the web in question is found within the first links that are shown. In that sense, It is easy for anyone to enter and follow the steps indicated by the platform, without knowing if Softonic is safe.
Let’s break this down, starting with the fact that if we go through the process with the site wizard, we’ll always end up with the program we want. The real problem lies in the fact that we are practically forced to install more than one application, without consent..
For example, if you try to download WinRAR from Softonic, you will need to install Downloader first. During this process, if you choose to do it the quick way, you will end up with a browser bar and a so-called system optimizer. This is nothing more than what is known as Adware, software installed on your computer in a deceptive way for the purpose of displaying advertisements.
This means that, Softonic is not secure, taking into account the need to be careful during the installation process so as not to end up with additional applications. In addition, software that is embedded silently or out of the question of not doing so is considered malicious. Another reason why it is not reliable is that some programs are downloaded in outdated versions, which represents a security risk.
Is it possible to download Softonic programs safely?
Although it is best to go directly to the official pages of the programs we need, andIt is possible to carefully navigate through Softonic and avoid Adware. To do this, we must be very careful during the installation process, where the options to avoid additional programs are not very visible. However, we must emphasize that in the current version of the portal they have already become a little more noticeable.
To safely install programs using Softonic, use the first download option it offers. This will trigger the download of the wizard which has a weight of 5.1 MB, at the end, run it and click on the “Download and install” button.
Then it will start downloading the application installer, while the window offers to add additional tools.
At this point, it will be enough to click on “Decline”, repeating the action with all the offers that appear until the program finishes downloading.
Using alternate links
On the Softonic download screen, we see that the first option shown is the native one, where we must follow the previous process. Nevertheless, it is possible to make a direct download from the official servers of the application in question. For this, we have to scroll down a bit and we will see the alternative downloads.
You can choose between Softonic servers and an external server. Select the second option, since it usually points to the official website.
Additional considerations about Softonic
Although there are methods that reduce the risks when downloading from Softonic, it does not mean that it is a completely reliable website. Evenwhen we scan your Downloader installer with Virus Total, 4 antiviruses mark it as unsafe. Perhaps the most accurate diagnosis is given by ESET NOD32, indicating that it can install potentially unwanted software.
This is another sign that Softonic is not safe, so if you want to download programs, we recommend you go directly to the manufacturer’s site.