Secure My Screen: An Ideal Alternative to Lock Windows PC

For most of us, personal computer is a place where we live our own world. Here, we do our office work, watch movies, listen to songs, play games etc. So, privacy is an utmost requirement to restrict unwanted interruptions. Microsoft understands this and that’s why there is are options to create multiple user accounts, lock you account and switch to other. But there are some disadvantages in using multiple user accounts. Suppose you have an important job opened in your account and another user using his user account shuts down the PC. Windows does alert in such situation but how often common users respond properly to alerts in a PC! So, if the computer you are using is really ‘Personal’ and not for public usage, it is always recommended to use accounts that are under your control only (password protected). You may give its access to some reliable users by providing them the password.
Windows default account locking has a few disadvantages: To provide someone its access, you need to giveaway your password and he/she may change your password (for joking!) and under that situation there is almost no easy way to recover your password. Secure My Screen developed by Benchtech Software, is an alternative to Windows default account locking that has all its usefulness minus its disadvantages. According to the developer,

Secure My Screen is a revolutionary third party screen locker that is designed to keep your computer safe and secure whilst you are away from it. Secure My Screen employs advanced technology to make sure that your screen stays locked no matter what. Task manager cannot be used to close Secure My Screen and key combinations such as Alt + F4 and the close button will not work. Meaning that your screen really does stay locked. There is a great deal more to Secure My Screen than just screen locking however. Features such as multiple unlock passwords for trusted friends and family, and the ability to turn your screen onto standby when your system is idle make Secure My Screen one of the best screen lockers around.

Download & Installation

  • The installer is only 3 Mb in size, not digitally signed and is free from malware. The current version has the following hash.

SHA256: 3fa13d4ae98f4d41d822f8ead763347f00af9c24ad7b40ba869f4eea14962379
SHA1: 71cd5177762d6b2ed52726adcfe968500eb11584
MD5: 94e4566e2077b8f9f617bd71a03695d5

  • Note: Few antimalware is detecting this software as malware but all are likely to be false positives. I had tested the software extensively & was actively linked to the development of version 3.0. So, I know that it is clean.
  • Installation went on smoothly to the default location [e.g. C:Program Files (x86)Secure My Screen].
  • Desktop icon is not created by default.
  • Software is launched by default after installation.
System Requirements
  • No System requirement is mentioned in the website but to my personal testing it run well from Window XP to Windows 7 both 32 & 64 bit systems.
  • It is able to run on all modern processors.
  • RAM & CPU usage is not much.
  • An active network connection is needed for synchronization of your account.
  • 15.4 Mb of free disk space is required for installation.
  • Administrative rights.
Features & Usage

Confirm that you have not paid for the software

After launching the software for the first time, you will have to confirm that you have not paid for the software. If you have paid for the software you will find options to report that and they will take proper actions to deal with the scam. The developer is keen to maintain this software as free & to stop scammers who will sell their free software.
Create an account
After that please confirm that you’ve not been scammed and not paid for the software to continue further.
Next you will have to create an account by setting an username, first name, surname, password (twice) & security question. It has a number of preset security questions but you may also set yours. Make sure to remember the case of your User Name, First Name, Password & Security Answer because all are case-sensitive. Password must have six or more characters.
While creating an account, you will find that “Run at Startup” option is selected. This option is useful to lock your computer at startup & is recommended. You will get a prompt about this.
You will have to agree to a administrative prompt by agreeing to run Secure My ScreenLaunchSetter.exe after clicking next.
After that you will be presented with a screen for logging in with your details (username & password). You may set the application to remember your username. In case you have forgotten your details you may Forgotten Details link.
Forgotten details
If you have forgotten your login details now or later, you will be asked for the details you’ve forgotten.
  1. If you have forgotten your username, you will be asked for your First Name and Password
  2. If you have forgotten your password, you will be asked for your First Name and User Name.
  3. If you have forgotten both, you will be asked to reset your application by contacting them for a reset code.
  • If you enter wrong login details more that 3 times, your account will be locked out and you won’t be able to enter details for next 120 seconds and then for a single wrong login details, account will be locked for another 120 seconds.
  • Please note that when your screen is locked you won’t get forgotten details prompt. You will need to use Reset Flash Drive to unlock at that time (See Later).
Main Screen
After successfully logging in, you will get to see the main screen.
From there you may check for updates, contact them via the application, lock, logout, close the application to tray. You will be able to get quick actions from tray icon.
Account Manager
You may also click on Edit Details and Settings on the Menu to open the Account Manager dialogue.
  • Account Manager lets you to change your personal information like Username, First Name, Surname, Password and Security Question.
  • If you hate to give your password to others you may create additional passwords with which others can login using your username.
  • Here you may also change the application configuration:
  • Set Password Reset Flashdrive: You may create password reset flashdrive to login to your account. Please note that your system won’t get unlocked if the flash drive is kept inserted.
  • Shortcut Key: Shortcut key or Hotkey combination helps to quickly lock system using keyboard shortcuts. It is set by default to Alt+L.
  • Menu Button Order: With this feature you may change the positions of the main menu of the software. You ay also set that to default place with this option.
  • Screen Standby: You may manage the application to set your screen to standby mode when the screen is locked & is idle for certain amount of time (60 sec by default).
  • Lock Screen Color: You may set the color of the locked screen with this option. Please note that you will also get this option when for the first time you lock screen with this application.
  • Lock PC at Start-Up: If you haven’t done that previously, you may set that from here.
Note: The software requires internet access to synchronize your account that will be used later for password/username recovery.
My Verdict
Excellent application without doubt. They have thoroughly improved it in the current version. I had been active in the beta test and they have kindly mentioned that. I like the fact that the developers are committed to keep it free.
Nothing is perfect and there are still scopes of improvement in this application. All have been reported already.
  1. Official Portable Version.
  2. Schedule automatic screen lock after certain periods of inactivity.
  3. Setting image as lock screen background.
Some tiny bugs:
  • Strength check while setting additional password.
  • Incorrect Version Number during installation. Still shows version
  • Clicking on “Could you help us out?” shows an error. The complete message can be seen by scrolling.
  • Even if username is not set to remember, at startup it remembers the username.
  • After logging in at startup, the main menu Logout button works similar as the Lock Computer button.
Manually Created Portable Version
Until the developer releases an official portable version, you may make your own. Copy the contents of theinstallation folder except unins000.dat & unins000.exe. and run the application by executing Secure My Screen!.exe any time.
Enjoy !!

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