If you were quick to update to the new Windows 10 Creators update, you are probably having some fun checking out all the new features. You may have also noticed the new Windows Defender Security Center icon in your system tray. If you have tried the usual methods to remove it, you may also have found that the Windows Defender icon has been deliberately left off the list. Don’t worry though, if it's making your OCD flare up, this guide will show you how to remove it.


How to Hide the App List on the left-hand Side of your Windows 10 Start Menu.

The Windows Defender Security Center is a great little backup tool if you aren’t already using other third-party protection. Programs like Avast for antivirus, Malwarebytes for antimalware and perhaps a firewall like ZoneAlarm are all popular alternatives to Windows Defender and widely used on Windows 10. For this reason alone, you might want to remove the Windows Defender notification icon as it is a duplicate service on your system, consuming resources that could be spent better elsewhere.

The main problem with Windows defender is that even if you opt to use other services to protect yourself, the icon in the system tray refuses to go away. If you are like me, you have probably tried all the usual workarounds, venturing into the settings app and flicking all sorts of toggles to hopefully remove it. Unsurprisingly, removing the Window Defender icon is one of those annoying situations where you have probably overlooked a super simple solution. I should also mention that even if you are using The Windows Defender Service you can still remove the icon from the system tray using this method. (The program will still run just the notification icon will be removed)

Removing the Windows Defender Security Center System tray Icon.

First, you will need to open the Windows Task Manager, which can be done in a ton of different ways, generally though, right-clicking on your taskbar and selecting Task Manager or pressing Ctrl+Alt+Delete are the easiest two ways to find it.


Once you have the Windows Task Manager open it will be in its most compact version so you will need to click on More Details at the bottom of the window to display the full list of tools. From here jump on over to the Start-up Tab and search for: Windows Defender Notification. As the list is alphabetical, you should be able to find it towards the bottom of the list.

When you have found the entry, right-click on it with your mouse and select Disable from the drop-down menu that appears. You should now see the status change from Enabled to Disabled. Now all you have to do is Restart your computer for the changes to take effect. As soon as you log in, your computer will boot without the Windows Defender icon in the system tray. Keep in mind that all the services of Windows Defender you have active will remain running. Only the notification component of the service will be disabled.