Microsoft enables potential unwanted software detection for enterprise customers

Sysadmins can now turn on the feature in System Center Endpoint Protection and Forefront Endpoint Protection

It’s time to throw adware, browser hijackers and other potentially unwanted applications (PUAs) off corporate networks, Microsoft has decided. The company has started offering PUA protection in its anti-malware products for enterprise customers.

The new feature is available in Microsoft's System Center Endpoint Protection (SCEP) and Forefront Endpoint Protection (FEP) as an option that can be turned on by system administrators.

PUA signatures are included in the anti-malware definition updates and cloud protection, so no additional configuration is needed.

Potentially unwanted applications are those programs that, once installed, also deploy other programs without users' knowledge, inject advertisements into Web traffic locally, hijack browser search settings, or solicit payment for various services based on false claims.

"These applications can increase the risk of your network being infected with malware, cause malware infections to be harder to identify among the noise, and can waste helpdesk, IT, and user time cleaning up the applications," researchers from the Microsoft Malware Protection Center said in a blog post.

System administrators can deploy PUA protection for the specific anti-malware product version in their organization through the registry as a Group Policy setting.

Microsoft recommends that this feature be deployed after creating a corporate policy that explains what potentially unwanted applications are and prohibits their installation. Employees should also be informed in advance that this protection will be enabled to reduce the potential number of calls to the IT helpdesk when certain applications that worked before start being blocked.

If the network is already likely to have many PUA installations, it's recommended to deploy the protection in stages to limited number of computers in order to see if any detections are false positives and to add exclusions for them. Exclusion mechanisms based on file name, folder, extension and process are supported, the Microsoft researchers said.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Lucian Constantin

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?