Publisher cannot be verified, are you sure you want to run this app [FIX]

Tashreef Shareef
by Tashreef Shareef
Windows & Software Expert
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4 ways to fix publisher cannot be verified error Windows 10

For security reasons, Windows 10 tries to verify the software that the user is trying to install on their system by checking the publisher certificate. If the system fails to identify the publisher it may show an error and abort the installation. The full error reads Publisher cannot be verified, are you sure you want to run this application.

One user shared the problem on the Microsoft Answers forum.

When I reboot my Laptop I always get the “Open File – Security Warning” of “the publisher could not be verified.  Are you sure you want to run this software”.  It has a check box of “Always ask before opening this file”, I have tried unchecking but does not help.

If you are also troubled this error, here are a couple of fixes to resolve this error on your Windows computer.

How to disable Publisher cannot be verified pop-up

1. Disable the Error Message

  1. Type Internet Option in the search bar. Click on Internet Options to open the Internet Properties window.
  2. Choose the Securities tab and select “Local Intranet”.
  3. Click on the Sites button beside Local Intranet.
    Disable Publisher could not be verified message
  4. In the new window, click on the Advanced button.
    Disable Publisher could not be verified - add server name
  5. In the Add this website to the zone field, you need to enter the server name or domain. Your server name is the address that appears after the “From” in the Security warning window.
    disable publisher could not be verified - add server name
  6. Make sure you uncheck “Require server verifications (https:) for all sites in this zone” message and click Close.
  7. Close all the Internet Properties and Internet options window.
  8. Now try to run the software and check for any improvements.

2. Disable Read-Only Permission

  1. Right-click on the program that is giving you the error and select Properties.
  2. Open the General tab in the new window.
  3. Now at the bottom of the window, uncheck “Read-only” and “Hidden” attributes. Publisher could not be verified - change program attributes
  4. Click “Apply” and OK to save the changes.

Did you know that User Account Control might cause installation errors? Learn what to do about it here.

3. Enable Launching Applications and Unsafe Files

  1. Type Internet Options in the Cortana search bar. Click on Internet Options from the search result to open it.
  2. In the Internet Properties window, go to Security tab and click on the “Custom Level” button.
    Enable custom level security Internet Options
  3. In the new “Security Settings” window, you need to look for “Launching applications and unsafe files” section.
    Enable Unsafe Files and Application Option
  4. Under the section, make sure you select “Enable (Not secure)” option.
  5. Click OK to save the changes.

4. Disable Error Message for All the Programs

  1. Press Windows Key + R to open Run.
  2. Type Regedit and press OK to open the registry editor. Fix the publisher could not be verfied by deleting the registry key
  3. In the registry editor, navigate to the following location:
    KEY_CURRENT_USER -> Software – > Microsoft -> Windows -> CurrentVersion -> Policies -> Associations
  4. Now you need to find and delete the following key:
  5. To delete the key, right-click on it and select Delete.


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