SoftPerfect Wifi Guard is a simple tool which makes it easy to detect intruders on your local network.

The program requires no installation (the Windows build, anyway) - just run it, and SoftPerfect Wifi Guard will quickly scan your network and display any devices it finds. Anything that's clearly a part of the infrastructure, like the PC you're working on or your router will be flagged as green, but everything else will be marked as red: a potential intruder.

If you recognise a device as legitimate - a network storage device, say, or another system on your network - then right-click it, select Properties, check "I know this computer or device" and it'll be removed from the danger list. Which, initially at list, will probably dwindle to nothing at all.

SoftPerfect Wifi Guard will scan your system every half hour, though, and if anything new and unknown has connected in the meantime then you'll be informed via a suitable pop-up alert.

Plainly this is no substitute for proper wireless network security, such as using the highest levels of encryption supported by all your network devices.

SoftPerfect Wifi Guard does provide a simple extra layer of protection, though. It's also lightweight and entirely free (no adware concerns), so if you're interested then you can try the program without suffering any hassles, penalties or problems.

Please note, the program is free for Windows and Linux, but the Mac version costs $9.99.

Version 2.0.0 (see changelog for more):

- WiFi Guard is now commercial software. To facilitate its further development, we introduced a licence fee.
- Reintroduced macOS and Linux versions all built from the same codebase.
- Fixed launching audio and EXE files with non-Latin characters.
- Using system-independent date-time format in XML export.
- Numerous high DPI fixes and reworked detection notification dialog.
- Preventing multiple application copies from running on Windows and instead activating the current one.
- Added recording device activity by day and hour to track when it's been online.
- Updated and refined vendor database for easier identification of new devices.

Verdict

It's no substitute for real network security, but SoftPerfect Wifi Guard does provide a simple extra layer which might detect intruders