The Windows 10 Fall Creators Update is currently being rolled out, and among the new features that we have received is a cybersecurity feature designed to protect files from being encrypted by ransomware.
Named Controlled Folder Access, the new anti-ransomware feature is now becoming available. Beginning in July, Microsoft began testing it with Windows Insiders, but now, the general public is finally receiving access to it.
Here is how it works: by enabling this feature, only whitelisted apps can access the files in the controlled folder list. Of course, it is possible to adjust this on an ongoing basis, authorising additional apps along the way.
In order to enable the new feature, visit the Windows Defender Security Center app and toggle Controlled Folder Access. By switching it on, important locations including system folders and Pictures, Documents, Movies, and Desktop folders, will automatically be protected. By clicking the shield icon and altering the virus and threat protection settings, it’s possible to add additional folders to the list.
Furthermore, the new feature will alert you whenever an unauthorised app tries to access or modify files.
Enterprises may have a difficult time applying Controlled Folder Access as the technology is rather new and could potentially stop legitimate apps from functioning correctly. To address this, Microsoft suggests using the audit mode to test the impact before finalising the changes.
In the enterprise, users have received as many as four new components, with Controlled Folder Access being just one of them. The remainder include Network Protection, EMET-based Exploit Protection, and Attack Surface Reduction.