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Windows 10 Cortana allows attackers to open malicious websites

A vulnerability in the Windows 10 voice assistant, Cortana, allows attackers to open malicious websites on a user’s device even when a PC is locked.

Israeli researchers Tal Be’ery and Amichai Shulman discovered that they could bypass password locks to instruct a device to visit websites since the devices continue to listen for voice commands even when locked and because many users haven’t bothered to train the voice assistant to only obey a single user’s commands, the researchers demonstrated in a YouTube presentation.

Threat actors could insert a USB network adaptor to a locked device and simply give a verbal command instructing Cortana to open the web browser and head to an unencrypted HTTP webpage. The adapter inserted into the USB drive would then intercept the request and redirects the browser to a malicious webpage instead.