How to protect Windows 10 and 11 PCs from ransomware

Credit to Author: Preston Gralla| Date: Tue, 02 Aug 2022 03:00:00 -0700

CryptoLocker. WannaCry. DarkSide. Conti. MedusaLocker. The ransomware threat isn’t going away anytime soon; the news brings constant reports of new waves of this pernicious type of malware washing across the world. It’s popular in large part because of the immediate financial payoff for attackers: It works by encrypting the files on your hard disk, then demands that you pay a ransom, frequently in Bitcoin or other cryptocurrency, to decrypt them.

But you needn’t be a victim. There’s plenty that Windows 10 and 11 users can do to protect themselves against it. In this article, I’ll show you how to keep yourself safe, including how to use an anti-ransomware tool built into Windows.

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A week in security (July 25 – July 31)

Credit to Author: Malwarebytes Labs| Date: Mon, 01 Aug 2022 09:51:04 +0000

The most important and interesting computer security stories from the last week.

The post A week in security (July 25 – July 31) appeared first on Malwarebytes Labs.

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Microsoft clamps down on RDP brute-force attacks in Windows 11

Credit to Author: Christopher Boyd| Date: Tue, 26 Jul 2022 15:37:05 +0000

Microsoft is taking RDP attacks to task in Windows 11, with default lockdowns for too many incorrect passwords entered.

The post Microsoft clamps down on RDP brute-force attacks in Windows 11 appeared first on Malwarebytes Labs.

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Think twice before deploying Windows’ Controlled Folder Access

Credit to Author: Susan Bradley| Date: Tue, 05 Jul 2022 07:29:00 -0700

As ransomware attacks gained steam in the mid-2010s, Microsoft sought to give Windows users and admins tools to protect their PCs from such attacks. With its October 2017 feature update, the company added a feature called Controlled Folder Access to Windows 10.

On paper, Controlled Folder Access sounds like a great protection for consumers, home users, and small businesses with limited resources. As defined by Microsoft, “Controlled folder access helps protect your valuable data from malicious apps and threats, such as ransomware. Controlled folder access protects your data by checking apps against a list of known, trusted apps. Supported on Windows Server 2019, Windows Server 2022, Windows 10, and Windows 11 clients, controlled folder access can be turned on using the Windows Security App, Microsoft Endpoint Configuration Manager, or Intune (for managed devices).”

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Trouble with Windows? You have support options

Credit to Author: Susan Bradley| Date: Tue, 21 Jun 2022 05:15:00 -0700

So, you finally got around to installing a Windows update from Microsoft, and there’s a problem. Where do you go for support and assistance?

Short answer: it depends.

If you are an Enterprise customer and have an issue with your work computer — whether in the office or remote — there should be a designated IT administrator or help desk for you. You either call the help desk or open a trouble ticket and someone gets back to you. Often, they have tools to remotely connect to your computer and see what’s going on.  If the issue is so serious your machine can’t be fixed, they’ll deploy a new computer or reimage your PC using tools such as Autopilot to deploy a fresh copy of Windows for you.

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Windows 11: Should you bypass the hardware block?

Credit to Author: Susan Bradley| Date: Tue, 31 May 2022 12:55:00 -0700

If you’re like most PC users, your current computer can’t run Windows 11. Microsoft has placed a line in the hardware sand to ensure that only modern machines with certain specifications that harden security can run Windows 11. 

Well, sort of. The company provides a workaround, as I’ll discuss in a moment. Whether you should take advantage of this loophole to upgrade PCs (whether yours or your users’) to Windows 11 is the question.

First, if you want to know if a computer can run Windows 11, you can use the PC Health Check app, Microsoft’s diagnostic tool. But if your PC doesn’t support Windows 11, Microsoft’s app doesn’t do a great job of explaining why. Instead, I recommend using either the Windows 11 Requirements Check Tool from or WhyNotWin11, available on Github. Both tools provide granular detail about why a machine won’t run Windows 11. On my personal laptop at home, for instance, the processor can’t support hardware for hypervisor enforced code integrity, nor does Windows 11 like the graphics display.

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Just what does Windows 11 bring to the table?

Credit to Author: Susan Bradley| Date: Mon, 09 May 2022 07:43:00 -0700

The other day, my Dad — my bellwether for technology — mentioned in passing that he’d read online that Windows 11 shouldn’t be used and that the operating system wasn’t being adopted.

Dad had a point. He’s more of an Apple user now — I have him on my phone plan to support his tech needs, he uses an iPhone and has an iPad. As his needs have changed, his reliance on Windows devices has decreased. In fact, his current Windows needs involve applications not on the Apple platform. (And because he’s a standalone user, not a domain user, many of the advances in Windows 11 having to do with authentication won’t be available to him.)

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Windows 11 — we haven’t seen anything, yet

Credit to Author: Rob Enderle| Date: Wed, 06 Apr 2022 10:24:00 -0700

Disclosure: Microsoft is a client of the author.

Microsoft this week had an analyst event about Windows 11 and a variety of productivity, management, and security features the company has planned. Over the last couple of years, Microsoft has aggressively improved both Windows and Office 365, but the big change ahead is the potential blend of Windows with Windows 365. We’ll see that start by the end of the year. The end game should be what appears to be a Windows desktop that integrates so well with the cloud that it can, when necessary, seamlessly switch between instances to comply with company policy, assure security, and provide recourse on automatic demand from Azure Cloud. 

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