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Best plagiarism checkers of 2021

Someone using a laptop.
(Image credit: Pexels)

The best plagiarism checkers make it simple and easy to check if digital content has been copied and stolen.

This is important, because if you're running a blog or a website, manually checking every article submission for plagiarism can take a whole lot of time. It’s easy to think that a few slips here and there should your eyes miss some details as you scour through every article manually won’t cause too much harm, but damaging your reputation as a writer, or your blog’s reputation as a whole can be more serious than you think. That is of course if you want your blog to stay on the radar. 

If you’re keen on driving more traffic to your website for more sales leads, you should already know that copied content is dead weight in achieving your goal. Not only is it frowned upon, it is also illegal. While preventing the use of copied content can be easy if you’re the solo writer of the website you’re running, it can also be fairly difficult if you have multiple writers or contributors. 

Here then are the best plagiarism checkers currently available.

We've also featured the best free writing software.

(Image credit: Unicheck)

1. Unicheck

Achieve authenticity with this intuitive plagiarism checker

Reasons to buy
+Supports bulk uploads+Real time search+Quick checking (4 seconds per page)+Google Docs add-on feature

Unicheck prides itself for being able to help 1 million users from over 90 countries across the globe. They’ve checked over 120 million files in the process, and with as little as four seconds for a similarity report, it’s no wonder they’re one of the best options not just for individuals but also for businesses and universities. 

One of their primary strengths include a set of features that make them stand out. These features include a Google Docs add-on so detection happens simultaneously as you’re writing. This means as you pour your thoughts into that Google Docs file, Unicheck will be highlighting citations and similarities at the same time. This ultimately saves you more time than you thought you could save. Aside from Google Docs, Unicheck also offers Add-Ons for Google Workspace and Microsoft 365, which you can use for convenience. 

Any sensitive data Unicheck receives from you is protected through their secure private cloud so nobody else can access it, and for superior scalability, simultaneous checks are done real-time even in bulk with relative time efficiency. Unicheck promises 99.9% uptime and chat, email and phone support available 24/5 should you encounter any difficulty while using it.


(Image credit: Scribbr)

2. Scribbr

Check your work by comparing it to a huge database

Reasons to buy
+Large plagiarism database+Own sources checker+Detailed reports+Support for 20 languages

Scribbr is one of the students’ best choices in plagiarism checkers in the market. Its accuracy is designed to detect any type of plagiarism present in your work as it is checked against their large source database. One of their most notable features is the Own Sources Checker so you can check for self or auto plagiarism easily. Though this comes with a fee, this add-on tool proves to be a big help especially for students who are publishing a manuscript but have no time to cross examine their work. 

Detailed plagiarism reports that include accurate plagiarism percentage, a report of sources that matched, access to settings to customize your report, and a guide to improve your text. Scribbr protects your privacy not just by securing their server cloud, but by not storing your files in any database at all. Scribbr is also known for their advanced software in detecting plagiarism to give you more accurate results each time you run a plagiarism check. 

Scribbr’s database includes journals and books, which gives them quite an advantage over other plagiarism checker alternatives. This is the reason why Scribbr is preferred by a vast number of students to detect plagiarism. Another reason is the ease in getting started: get your Word or PDF file uploaded, run the plagiarism checker, get a comprehensive plagiarism report where any similarity is highlighted with its corresponding source, and then you can get started in fixing your content. Scribbr also supports twenty languages.


(Image credit: Grammarly)

3. Grammarly

Check for plagiarism while improving your writing

Reasons to buy
+Free+Instant report+Data security+Scans 16bn web page sources

You’ve probably heard of Grammarly as a writing assistant. It detects grammar mistakes as you write when you have its extension installed on your Google Chrome browser. Not everyone is privy to Grammarly’s high quality plagiarism checker, though. Not only does it check for issues in your grammar or tone (this is a new feature), it also cross checks your material from the internet and ProQuest databases. This free service in itself provides accurate plagiarism checks every time. 

Social integrations for Grammarly have become very strong in their attempt to help you scan your work while you write emails, messages, documents, and even posts on Gmail, Yahoo, Slack, Google Docs, Jira, LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook. This is why after every plagiarism check, Grammarly offers you feedback on the structure of your work grammar-wise. 

Ease of use is one of the reasons users prefer Grammarly for plagiarism checks. As soon as you hit scan after pasting your content, Grammarly will let you know in an instant whether or not you have copied or unoriginal content, and paying for Premium will also grant you access to the resources you need so you can cite and credit properly, avoiding plagiarism altogether. 


(Image credit: Ouriginal)

4. PlagScan

Color coded a la carte plagiarism checking

Reasons to buy
+Side by side reporting+Easy-to-use interface+European Network for Academic Integrity (ENAI) certified+Color coded for easy identification

PlagScan is well-known for its plagiarism detection and has been performing well since 2009. It gives you the options to either copy and paste your text or upload a file directly to start plagiarism detection. Utilizing Yahoo's BoSS-API to scan for plagiarism, each scan is as accurate as you need it to be. There are different plan options you can choose from to start scanning, depending on your needs. 

Lite, Professional and Enterprise plans are also available for monthly fees, ideal for business purposes. These plans can include URL checking, plagiarism checks, full reports, and customer support. All available plans are easy to use and understand, so you can cross match with how many pages you need checked. This flexibility is what makes PlagScan an excellent choice for both students and entrepreneurs alike. There are even plans for higher education, schools, and large enterprises. PlagScan lets you find the plan that’s custom fit to your needs. 

As you use PlagScan, you will be given access to a source list. Matches are then displayed in color coded reports, and you will appreciate its side by side reporting which shows you comparisons and your own work on a single screen as you type. It’s simple to use, accurate, secure and convenient. 


(Image credit: Quetext)

5. Quetext

Check your writing for plagiarism with advanced algorithms

Reasons to buy
+Fast scans+Commitment to privacy+Interactive snipped text+Accurate scans+Free trial

Quetext introduces us to their DeepSearch technology which is essentially using a more advanced technology for their algorithms to perform contextual analysis and word placement in plagiarism scans. This results in fast, accurate scans, making it a preferred choice by most bloggers, teachers, writers, professionals, etc. 

For a monthly fee, Quetext provides feedback that has corresponding color codes when it detects exact and unclear matches. You can have a side by side view of your text and matches so you can work while getting it scanned simultaneously, a feature that’s easy to pass off as common among plagiarism checkers, but is actually extremely convenient. Your text is then cross matched against billions of sources before your plagiarism score is handed over to you. 

Quetext’s free tool allows you to scan up to 2,500 words or five pages of documents along with the use of their ColorGrade feedback tool, contextual analysis, fuzzy matching and conditional scoring. A monthly fee gives you access to their premium features including 100,000 words or 200 pages, DeepSearch Extended, their exclusive citation assistant, a downloadable report, custom URL exclusion, Interactive Snippet Text, and premium support. Quetext does not store your files in any database, so you can be assured of your data’s security as you scan for plagiarism. 


(Image credit: Plagramme)

6. Plagramme

Free plagiarism checking without word limits

Reasons to buy
+Fast +Accurate+Checks against 80m scholarly sources+Supports up to 129 languages

Plagramme features real time plagiarism checking. The process starts with detection of the possible types of plagiarism - copy and paste plagiarism, invalid sources, mosaic plagiarism, auto plagiarism, etc. Once a report is generated, you will be given a similarity score where you can see the number of similarities found in your work. Any plagiarism or similarities detected are highlighted so you can go ahead and correct them. It’s simple and easy, and this is why students and educators alike prefer Plagramme. 

There is no word limit when you use Plagramme’s free software version so you can check for plagiarism across all your content. Writers, authors entrepreneurs, students and educators alike find Plagramme extremely helpful in checking for plagiarism. The evaluation gives you a percentage point which determines how much of your content is original, and how much is unoriginal. Plagramme also offers their advanced plagiarism checker for the convenience of research paper and thesis authors. 

Signing up for a free Plagramme account is fairly easy, and once you create your own account, you’re free to use the software and check away. With billions of indexed websites, Plagramme creates an in-depth report for a small fee which gives you a better look at the available sources you can cite to avoid committing plagiarism. The results and analysis are real-time and accurate, which you can then download for your convenience. 

What is plagiarism?

Simply put, plagiarism is cheating. it refers to the act of copying one’s content and passing it off as your own. Grabbing someone’s photo and using it without permission and/or proper credits can be considered an act of plagiarism. Taking some text from a source and using it on your website without proper citation is also an act of plagiarism. 

In college, getting caught plagiarizing can lead to expulsion and can ultimately end any plans you have for your future. Stealing content for your own blog is not considered a form of flattery either, nor is it legal. Copying content for your own website can get you reported and your website taken down. 

Common types of plagiarism

There are a couple of ways to commit plagiarism, but here are the five most common types:

  1. Verbatim plagiarism - This is a common crime wherein a text or content is copied exactly as it is written without any form of credit or citation. 
  2. Mosaic plagiarism - This type of plagiarism involves copying content from different websites or sources and combining them without any form of credit or citation. 
  3. Global plagiarism - This means deliberately claiming someone else’s entire work as your own. 
  4. Self plagiarism - This is when you resubmit your own work when you’ve already used it. It’s also known as auto plagiarism.
  5. Accidental plagiarism - This occurs when you unintentionally commit plagiarism by paraphrasing a content and failing to cite or add credits. 

As content is a vital ingredient in SEO ranking which is always a neck to neck competition, websites are usually trying to come up with more content than they likely would have expected to be needing. A team of writers usually solve the problem, but it’s also where a new problem arises - monitoring the content.

Whether it’s an intentional copying of content or a missed citation, quote or credit, plagiarism isn’t as easy to detect if you’re dealing with tons of articles to check. The good news is that there are resources available - plagiarism checkers - that you can utilize to make it an easier task.

We've also featured the best website defacement monitoring services.

Anna is a freelance copywriter with extensive knowledge on the technology sector. She writes about a variety of topics for TechRadar including web hosting, website builders and cybersecurity. She also has a knack for writing deals, guides and versus articles.