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Here’s how to disable it locally and at the Group Policy level. The reported flaw would require an attacker to have physical access to the victim’s computer, but the analyst who discovered it said it would be an easy jump to create malware capable of remotely triggering the same exploit by mounting a virtual drive.

AutoPlay and AutoRun both make life easier for PC users, but automatic execution of media can be dangerous. If you want to protect your PC, or those on your network, from attacks like this you need to disable AutoPlay and AutoRun in order to be safe. Here’s how to do that both from the Settings app and in Group Policy. The easiest way to find the appropriate item in Windows 10’s Settings app is to simply tap the Windows key or click on the Windows icon in the lower-left corner of the screen.

When the Start menu opens just type autoplay and Windows should find the appropriate item Figure A. The window that pops up will show the appropriate items you need to toggle Figure B. That’s it! For a deeper level of control, and to disable AutoRun as well, you’ll need to turn to the Group Policy Editor. Windows administrators should be able to find the necessary policies by following these same steps but will need to apply them to organizational units in order to make them take effect across their domains.

Start by opening the WIndows Start menu again, but this time type gpedit. It’s important to disable both AutoPlay and AutoRun, as they have different functions: AutoPlay pops up a dialog window prompting a user to do something with inserted media, whereas AutoRun simply looks for an INF file and starts executing it to install software. Both are risky. First, click on the Turn Off AutoPlay item.

On the screen that opens Figure E set the item to Enabled. Look for the Options window, which should default to All Drives when you enable the policy. Leave that as-is. Click Apply and the window will close. Click on that and you should see the screen shown in Figure F. If it does, leave it, and if not, choose that option. Click Apply and you’re all set. At this point, individual users won’t need to take any other actions, but they will need to manually launch CDs and other media inserted into their PCs.

That adds a bit of hassle, but it’s nothing compared to having to save a compromised machine or dealing with the fallout from stolen data. Strengthen your organization’s IT security defenses by keeping abreast of the latest cybersecurity news, solutions, and best practices. Delivered Tuesdays and Thursdays. Brandon writes about apps and software for TechRepublic. Watch Now. More about cybersecurity Ransomware attackers are now using triple extortion tactics How to prevent another Colonial Pipeline ransomware attack Top 5 ways to protect against cryptocurrency scams End user data backup policy TechRepublic Premium.

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Add an app to run automatically at startup in Windows 10 – Disable Autoplay via Group Policy

Select the Start button and scroll to find the app you want to run at startup. Right-click the app, select More, and then select Open file location. 1. Press windows key + r · 2. Copy the run command Shell:common startup · 3. It will reach C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Startup · 4. Creat.