Microsoft antimalware support for Windows XP

Microsoft has announced the Windows XP end of support date of April 8, 2014. After this date, Windows XP will no longer be a supported operating system*. To help organizations complete their migrations, Microsoft will continue to provide updates to our antimalware signatures and engine for Windows XP users through July 14, 2015. This does…

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Tech support scams persist with increasingly crafty techniques

(Note: Our Tech support scams FAQ page has the latest info on this type of threat, including scammer tactics, fake error messages, and the latest scammer hotlines.)   Millions of users continue to encounter technical support scams. Data from Windows Defender SmartScreen (which is used by both Microsoft Edge and Internet Explorer to block malicious…

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WannaCrypt ransomware worm targets out-of-date systems

(Note: Read our latest comprehensive report on ransomware: Ransomware 1H 2017 review: Global outbreaks reinforce the value of security hygiene.)   On May 12, 2017 we detected a new ransomware that spreads like a worm by leveraging vulnerabilities that have been previously fixed. While security updates are automatically applied in most computers, some users and enterprises…

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Limited Periodic Scanning in Windows 10 to Provide Additional Malware Protection

Every month, Microsoft’s Malicious Software Removal Tool (MSRT) scans more than 500 million Windows devices for malware and malicious software. This tool aids in the detection and removal of malware from 1 to 2 million machines each time, even on those devices running antivirus software. Meanwhile, many Windows customers continue to use the Microsoft Safety…

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Crowti update – CryptoWall 3.0

After almost two months of hiatus over the holidays, a new campaign of Crowti tagged as ‘CryptoWall 3.0’ has been observed. It uses a similar distribution channel as before, having been downloaded by other malware and serving as a payload through exploits. The graph below shows the spike after two days of no activity from…

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New feature in Office 2016 can block macros and help prevent infection

Macro-based malware is on the rise and we understand it is a frustrating experience for everyone. To help counter this threat, we are releasing a new feature in Office 2016 that blocks macros from loading in certain high-risk scenarios.   Macro-based malware infection is still increasing Macro-based malware continues its rise. We featured macro-based malware…

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Adware: A new approach

​Here at the Microsoft Malware Protection Center (MMPC) we understand advertising is part of the modern computing experience. However, we want to give our customers choice and control regarding what happens with their computers. To that end we have recently undergone some changes to both the criteria we use to classify a program as adware…

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Breaking down a notably sophisticated tech support scam M.O.

(Note: Our Tech support scams FAQ page has the latest info on this type of threat, including scammer tactics, fake error messages, and the latest scammer hotlines.)   The cornerstone of tech support scams is the deception that there is something wrong with your PC.  To advance this sham, tech support scams have long abused…

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