Windows 10 Anniversary Update’s BSOD QR codes can be a security risk

By: Costea Lestoc
Less than a 1 minute read

PC users are familiar with the infamous blue screen of death, a cryptic message that appears after a fatal system error. But no one could actually decipher these messages and troubleshoot the problems they encountered, so Microsoft will introduce QR codes in the Windows 10 Anniversary Update that will do just that on August 2. Theoretically, this is a great idea, but Panda Security is worried that cybercriminals could take advantage of this change to infect devices with malware.

These QR codes will contain links cyber criminals could use as tools to attack people’s devices. Panda Security explained how attackers would proceed to infect devices with malware: “First, a cybercriminal could simulate that your computer has an error, and send your computer a fake “blue screen of death”. Then the criminal could add a QR code with a link that will take you to an unexpected and malicious website that will install drive-by malware.”

If they want “to be very sly, they could design an entire website that looks like an official Microsoft one and use it to phish for log-in information and personal data. Uneducated computer users are the easiest victims for this type of trap,”  warned Panda Security.

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