Fake Windows 11 Installer Could Destroy PC Data

BACKGROUND:

With the new OS from Microsoft already highly-anticipated, many users have flocked to the Windows Insiders program to experience and download Windows 11 preview versions. However, security experts have warned eager users to take care when downloading and installing preview versions of Windows 11 after detecting malware-laden fake installers, reports Tech Radar. Hundreds of such attempts have already been nullified, according to Kaspersky, who have detected fake malware-laden Windows 11 downloaders that install and run other applications in the background.

In one example, a 1.76GB installable file called ‘86307_windows 11 build 21996.1 x64 + activator.exe’, made to look like a genuine Windows Installation Wizard, contained only a DLL file with some useless information. However, running this file starts downloading other applications in the background. This second installable file even has a license agreement that states that the installer will install some sponsored apps to install Windows 11 on your PC. The moment a user agrees, it starts downloading and installing malicious files from the internet, causing a serious threat to the data saved on the device. Windows 11 is not yet available to download or purchase commercially, with Microsoft stating the software may only be available around the end of the year.

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Jake Moore
Jake Moore , Cybersecurity Specialist
InfoSec Expert
July 27, 2021 11:27 am

<p>New Windows operating systems always attract early adopters, who are eager to test new features and functionality, but unfortunately this usually also attracts malicious actors not too far behind. Those who want to test the latest OS from Microsoft will often find themselves with problems if they choose an unusual way of getting their hands on it – often causing issues with any personal data stored on the machine.</p>
<p>Before a genuine release date, it is advised to only test out new software on air gapped devices with little or no data to mitigate any possible risks. When the Beta version of Windows 11 has been acquired from outside the Windows Insider program, it increases these risks dramatically – even if the target machine is not connected to anything sensitive.</p>

Last edited 1 year ago by Jake Moore
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