If you are using any Avast Antivirus, including the free version and some of the major desktop e-mail clients (Microsoft Outlook, Mozilla Thunderbird, Zimbra Desktop, eM Client, Inky, Claws Mail), Avast automatically inserts e-mail footer signature into all your clean outgoing messages.

From the version 2016 also if you are using a web-based client (Gmail, Yahoo! Mail, Outlook Mail, Live Mail) in Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox or Internet Explorer. The only browser in which the Avast signature is not inserted is Opera.

Apparently the similar tactics is being used by the AVG Antivirus.

Quick Summary

  1. Right-click on the Avast orange icon in the Windows system tray and open Avast UI
  2. Go to Settings
  3. Un-check ‘Enable Avast email signature’ and confirm
  4. Restart your browser or e-mail client

Read more detailed steps and other options including screenshots below

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It’s a part of the Avast Mail Shield, not the Anti-spam feature. The message is same for all users:

  • ‘Virus-free’ if you are using Avast 2017
  • This email has been sent from a virus-free computer protected by Avast‘ if you are using Avast 2016
  • This email has been checked for viruses by Avast antivirus software‘ if you are using Avast 2014 or 2015
  • This email is free from viruses and malware because Avast Antivirus protection is active‘ if you are using Avast version 8 or older

Message can’t be customized, only turned on/off. By default it’s always enabled.

Latest Avast 2017 Footer Signature in Web-based Clients (Gmail, Yahoo! Mail, Outlook Mail, Live Mail)

Latest Avast 2017 Footer Signature in Web-based Clients (Gmail, Yahoo! Mail, Outlook Mail, Live Mail)

Avast Footer Signature – Both in Plain Text and HTML Formats

Avast Footer Signature – Both in Plain Text and HTML Formats

If you don’t like this message, there is a simple way how to disable it and remove it from your e-mails. Just follow the removal steps below.

Removal Steps for Avast 2017 (Latest Version)

Disabling the signature is really easy if you are using the latest version of Avast 2017. Doesn’t matter if you have the Mail Shield installed or not. Follow the instructions below to do so:

  1. Go to your Avast interface by double-clicking on the orange icon in the Windows system tray. Or you can find Avast in the Windows Start menu » All Programs » Avast
  2. Once you’re in go to ‘Settings‘ by clicking on the cogwheel icon in the top-right corner of Avast user interface
  3. In the ‘General‘ section find option ‘Enable Avast email signature‘, simply un-check it and confirm by clicking on the ‘OK‘ button. See the screenshot below for reference
  4. Restart your browser and that’s all – your e-mails won’t contain the Avast e-mail footer signature anymore
Disabling the Avast E-mail Footer Signature in the Latest Version is Really Easy

Disabling the Avast E-mail Footer Signature in the Latest Version is Really Easy

If you can’t find the settings directly in the ‘General’ section, you are probably using older version of Avast. Read the steps below which works for older versions.

Removal Steps for Avast 2016.11.1.2241 and Older, if you Have the Avast Mail Shield Installed

Follow these steps if you have the Avast Mail Shield component installed on your computer. If not follow the instructions in the next section ‘If you Have NOT the Avast Mail Shield Installed‘.

1. Open the Avast Interface

  • Go to your Avast interface by double-clicking on the orange icon in the Windows system tray. Or you can find Avast in the Windows Start » All Programs » Avast
  • Once you’re in go to ‘Settings’ » ‘Active Protection’ » Click on the ‘Customize‘ link in the ‘Mail Shield‘ row

List of active protection in the Avast 2016 – Look for the Mail Shield SettingsList of active protection in the Avast 2016 – Look for the Mail Shield Settings

2. Disable the Avast E-mail Footer Signature

  • Once the ‘Mail Shield Settings‘ windows will open, go to ‘Behavior‘ (second item from the top)
  • Now just look for ‘Insert note into clean message (outgoing)‘, simply un-check it, and confirm by clicking on the ‘OK‘ button
  • Restart your computer
  • That’s all – your e-mails won’t contain the Avast e-mail footer signature anymore

Mail Shield Behavior Settings in the Avast 2016 – Disabling the Footer Clean MessageMail Shield Behavior Settings in the Avast 2016 – Disabling the Footer Clean Message

Removal Steps 2016.11.1.2241 and Older, if you Have NOT the Avast Mail Shield Installed

If you don’t have Avast Mail Shield component installed you can either add it, change the settings and remove or you can change the settings via EmailShield.ini file.

Solution #1 – Add the Mail Shield Component, Change Settings and Remove It

  1. Navigate through the Start menu to ‘Programs‘ » ‘Programs and Features
  2. Find Avast in the list and click on ‘Change
  3. Avast Antivirus Setup will appear, click on ‘Modify‘ and check (if un-checked) the ‘Mail Shield‘ component. Click on ‘Change‘ and wait until the setup finishes. See the screenshot below for the reference
  4. Follow the steps above in the section ‘If you Have the Avast Mail Shield Installed‘ to disable the mail signature
  5. (Optional) Remove the Avast Mail Shield component same way you have added it

Adding/Removing Avast Mail Shield Component in Avast 2016Adding/Removing Avast Mail Shield Component in Avast 2016

Solution #2 – Change Settings in the EmailShield.ini File

  1. Open Windows Start menu and search for ‘notepad
  2. When the Notepad application appears (blue notebook icon), right-click on it and select ‘Run as administrator
  3. In the Notepad go to ‘File‘ » ‘Open…‘ (or press CTRL + O) and put there following path
    • Windows 7, 8, 8.1 and 10: C:\ProgramData\AVAST Software\Avast\EmailShield.ini
    • Windows XP: C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\AVAST Software\Avast\EmailShield.ini
  4. Once the file is opened find these rows and change its values to zeros:
    • InsertNoteCleanMsgOut=0
    • InsertNoteCleanMsgIn=0
    • InsertNoteInfectedMsgIn=0
  5. Save the file by going to ‘File‘ » ‘Save‘ (or press CTRL + S) and confirm Avast dialog if needed

Disabling the Avast E-mail Footer Signature by Editing Settings in EmailShield.ini FileDisabling the Avast E-mail Footer Signature by Editing Settings in EmailShield.ini File

In case the file EmailShield.ini doesn’t exist, create it with the following contents and put it on the exact location from step 1. Alternatively you can download EmailShield.ini here (right-click » save link as).

[EmailScanner]

InsertNoteCleanMsgOut=0
InsertNoteCleanMsgIn=0
InsertNoteInfectedMsgIn=0

Content of the EmailShield.ini File for Disabling the Avast E-mail Signature

Big thanks for this solution to liam-89, who have posted it on the Avast Forum.

Additional Notes

Although we have used Avast Free Antivirus 2016 screenshots in this article, these steps are also applicable for all Avast Antivirus solutions (i.e. also for Avast Pro Antivirus, Avast Internet Security, or Avast Premier) running the latest version available.

Steps are relevant for all Windows versions – Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1 and Windows 10 (including Anniversary Update).

Steps for removal will work on the following e-mail clients:

  • Desktop Microsoft OutlookMozilla ThunderbirdeM Client, Windows Live MailInkyClaws Mail, Zimbra
  • Web-based – Gmail, Yahoo! Mail, Outlook Mail, Windows Live Mail

And on following browsers Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer

Written by Paul B. | Team GetAvast.net

My name is Paul and I love Avast since the Home Edition v4.8 (2008). I am recommending it to all my friends, but I realized they don't know how to use it. So I started this site in order to help others getting maximum from this awesome antivirus. Feel free to contact me via Facebook, comments below or this form.

This article has 267 comments | Did we miss anything? Just let us know in the comments!

  1. Johan Reply

    I am NOT OKAY with you silently adding this feature and automatically injecting my e-mails with it.
    This has made me very uncertain whether I want to continue using Avast and I sincerely consider uninstalling it and get another antivirus software instead, I have to disable this or a similar “feature” again, I will uninstall and never look back.

    You guys behind Avast really need to understand that this is not acceptable.

  2. hgfhfg Reply

    This feature is absolutely horrible. Okay I get it, its a free software but I find it totally unacceptable that you add something to my sent emails. Goodbye Avast.

  3. Neil Reply

    The email signature was causing an error on Gmail today (13th April) and not allowing messages to be sent until I disabled the option, thanks Avast!

  4. Jayden Reply

    I use my laptop to WORK. It’s UNACCEPTABLE to add anything to my professional emails WITHOUT my consent. I didn’t receive any message like: “If you update Avast, we will add signature to your emails”. Oh no I didn’t give you permission to do that. And now I CAN’T find the settings section in Avast and don’t have any solution but have to uninstall it.

  5. Julian Reply

    This is an extremely, extremely intrusive thing to add automatically to my personal and professional correspondence, especially without opting in and automatically enabling it after an update. Very shady behavior on your part and a very direct reason for me to swith to a more reputable anti-virus program. Incredibly disappointed and angry.

    • sc Reply

      I agree. If I were on the receiving end, I would sooner trust a regular email from a co-worker, than an email from a coworker with a “Virus free, believe me, nothing to worry about” footer.

  6. Dave Reply

    I did NOT give you permission to add things to my messages. I did NOT give you permission to install Chrome. You just did it. Automatically. STOP IT. I handle professional emails from my home computer sometimes, and it is unacceptable for an antivirus program, or any other program, to add things to these emails without my consent. It’s mail fraud. Do not EVER DO THIS AGAIN. Do not enable this by default. Do not re-enable it after an update.

  7. Mat Reply

    Why can’t I see the results from the pool in this article. As soon as I click on View results, pool dissapeares and no results are shown.

    • Mat Reply

      And regarding the function of inserting commercials into peoples emails is definitely a fail. I’m setting up about 3-5, sometimes even more, new PC’s a month for people, for the past 4-5 years now and was always recommending avast as antivirus option. The great service was commercial enough for me to recommend it to all these people, but now (or at least since they introduced pop-up commercials, sudden email footers, etc. more aggressively) I stopped recommending it to people.

    • Desch Reply

      I was able to view it in Chrome. Results on 2017/04/10:
      I don’t like it and I will remove it from my e-mails (51%, 9,007 Votes)
      I hate it and I will uninstall Avast because of this (48%, 8,385 Votes)
      I like it and I will keep it in my e-mails (1%, 121 Votes)

      A program that enables email modification by default without explicit consent is malware. It is intruding upon your emails and modifying them *as you send it*. It didn’t ask me if I wanted it to install firefox or chrome addons either, but it did it anyway and I had to discover that on my own before disabling the useless additions that I CANNOT REMOVE. As I’m not a business user I can go an entire year without any issues just by using adblock and NoScript. I only keep antivirus around just in case for that one occasion it’s suddenly useful. I may very well remove it after this nonsense.

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