Microsoft Changes Windows 7 Feature to Fight Malware
Microsoft announces it is altering the AutoPlay feature in Windows 7 to prevent it from enabling the AutoRun task for USB devices. According to Microsoft, this was done as a security move because malware, including the notorious Conficker worm, is increasingly abusing the AutoRun feature to propagate.Microsoft is building a small but important change into Windows 7 to help slow the spread of malware. According to Microsoft, the company is changing the way the AutoPlay feature operates to prevent it from enabling the AutoRun task for USB devices. The move, Microsoft officials said, was done in response to malware-most notably Conficker-taking advantage of the functionality to spread.
"The reason we're making this change is that we've seen an increase, since the start of 2009, in malicious software abusing the current default AutoRun settings to propagate through removable media like USB devices," blogged Christopher Budd, security response communications lead for Microsoft. "The best-known malicious software abusing AutoRun is Conficker, but it's not alone in that regard: There is other malicious software that abuses this feature."