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Office; Tweak to protect against DDE attacks
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Office; Tweak to protect against DDE attacks

Do you use Office? There is a vulnerability in DDE, a feature contained in Office applications that is currently used by many to attack. DDE or Dynamic Data Exchange is a Microsoft Office feature designed to enable applications to exchange data between them.

You can use DDE for example to update a table in a Word document using Excel data.protection - Office; Tweak for protection against DDE attacks

The protocol is widely used, not only in Microsoft Office applications such as Word or Excel, but also through Visual Basic And much more.

What makes the vulnerability very worrying is that it does not require macros. Attacks that are currently being made use e-mails to distribute malicious Office documents.

Users who open these documents receive warning alerts in Office. Word for example displays the warning “This document contains links that may refer to other files. Do you want to update this document with the data from the linked files? ”

Most security applications do not detect any threat to Office documents.

Of course you can always protect your data by selecting "no" when Office prompts appear. Below we will see how you can add another level of protection. This will allow you to protect your system regardless of the choices that Office users make when encountering such malicious documents.

Obviously, this is only one option if the DDE attribute is not required. Let's say that home users do not lose something if they turn off DDE, but companies may need it and so they may not want to completely disable the feature.

Turn off DDE

If you are using Microsoft Word 2016 or Microsoft Excel 2016, select Options> Advanced and uncheck the "Update auto-open links" option.

On our Excel, you should also select "Ignore other applications that use Dynamic Data Exchange (DDE)".

The settings are in the following ways:
On our Excel, Management Templates> Microsoft Excel 2016> Excel Options> Advanced.

Ask to update the automatic links
Ignore the other applications
doc - Office; Tweak for protection against DDE attacks

For Word Management Templates> Microsoft Word 2016> Word Options> Advanced.

Update the automatic links to the opening

Below we will see how you can do all this with one click ... from your computer registry:

The file you include in zip contains the following code:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER \ Software \ Microsoft \ Office \16.0\ Word \ Options]
 "DontUpdateLinks"=dword:00000001

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER \ Software \ Microsoft \ Office \15.0\ Word \ Options]
 "DontUpdateLinks"=dword:00000001

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER \ Software \ Microsoft \ Office \14.0\ Word \ Options]
 "DontUpdateLinks"=dword:00000001

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER \ Software \ Microsoft \ Office \16.0\ Word \ Options \ WordMail]
 "DontUpdateLinks"=dword:00000001

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER \ Software \ Microsoft \ Office \15.0\ Word \ Options \ WordMail]
 "DontUpdateLinks"=dword:00000001

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER \ Software \ Microsoft \ Office \14.0\ Word \ Options \ WordMail]
 "DontUpdateLinks"=dword:00000001

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER \ Software \ Microsoft \ Office \16.0\ OneNote \ Options]
"DisableEmbeddedFiles"=dword:00000001

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER \ Software \ Microsoft \ Office \15.0\ OneNote \ Options]
"DisableEmbeddedFiles"=dword:00000001

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER \ Software \ Microsoft \ Office \16.0\ Excel \ Options]
 "DontUpdateLinks"=dword:00000001
 "DDEAllowed"=dword:00000000
 "DDECleaned"=dword:00000001

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER \ Software \ Microsoft \ Office \15.0\ Excel \ Options]
 "DontUpdateLinks"=dword:00000001
 "DDEAllowed"=dword:00000000
 "DDECleaned"=dword:00000001
 "Options"=dword:00000117

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER \ Software \ Microsoft \ Office \14.0\ Excel \ Options]
 "DontUpdateLinks"=dword:00000001
 "DDEAllowed"=dword:00000000
 "DDECleaned"=dword:00000001
"Options"=dword:00000117

Open the zip on your computer (for example, on the desktop) and double-click on the file.

Download the zip

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