Microsoft security threat: Salem expert weighs in on how to avoid it

Roanoke Valley News

SALEM, Va. (WFXR) — A serious vulnerability involving Microsoft Windows operating systems is causing user concerns.

Jonathan Wills owns Valley Computer Service & Sales in Salem. When it comes to computer hacking, he says he’s seen it all.

“Any kind of hack is serious,” said Wills.

The latest target is Microsoft.

After accidental exploitation by Sangfor, a cybersecurity company, hackers can now access users’ computers through the print spooler service. The service enabled multiple people to access a printer.

The flaw is known as “Printernightmare.”

The threat is already living up to its name, threatening everyone from businesses to individual users.

Microsoft warns hackers who exploit vulnerability could install programs, view and delete data, or even create new user accounts with full user rights. Company officials say that gives hackers enough command to do some serious damage to a user’s computer.

Microsoft says the best thing to do is update the computer with the latest security features.

“Right now, they’re asking you to either turn off your print spooler on your computer or actually run the updates,” said Wills.

While all Windows users are at risk, populations like senior citizens are most vulnerable.

“I see a lot of older people who get scammed with a lot of things like this, or they’re trying to hit your bank accounts,” said Wills. “I mean, we’ve had people come in here recently that are having to shut down all their bank accounts.”

Wills says knowing the risk is half the battle, and when hackers are present, it’s best to leave it to the professionals.

“Just cut it off, bring it to us or just have somebody look at it and we’ll make sure that doesn’t happen to you because we don’t want people to get scammed,” said Wills.

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