Many folks feel extremely strongly about multiplayer games that have anti-cheat processes that run when the game boots up, so we feel it fair to report that Valorant is one such game that features this sort of process according to one of the developers themselves.
The alert on the game’s subreddit stresses that this anti-cheat driver fires up at system startup but does not scan anything unless Valorant is running. The process also reportedly takes up “as few system resources as possible” and doesn’t communicate with the game’s servers. It also, apparently, can be removed at any time — simply look for “Riot Vanguard” in your Add/Remove Programs window in Windows.
“We’ve tried to be very careful with the security of the driver. We’ve had multiple external security research teams review it for flaws (we don’t want to accidentally decrease the security of the computer like other anti-cheat drivers have done in the past). We’re also following a least-privilege approach to the driver where the driver component does as little as possible preferring to let the non-driver component do the majority of work (also the non-driver component doesn’t run unless the game is running).
“We think this is an important tool in our fight against cheaters but the important part is that we’re here so that players can have a good experience with Valorant and if our security tools do more harm than good we will remove them (and try something else). For now we think a run-at-boot time driver is the right choice.”