How to Turn on Ransomware Protection in Windows 11

This post shows you how to enable and use Windows Security to protect your sensitive data from being compromised by ransomware in Window 11.

Microsoft Security has ransomware protection that users can use to help stop ransomware from taking over their sensitive files and locking them for ransom. You probably have heard or read countless news stories of big and small institutions data being held ransom, requiring payments to regain access to their files.

Well, you can put an end to that by configuring controlled folder access in Windows 11.

We recently showed you how to use Microsoft Security to secure and protect your computer. You can read this post here. We mentioned that the moment you start Windows 11, Microsoft Security is actively protecting your machine, continually scanning for malware, viruses, and security threats in real-time.

However, if you haven’t enabled controlled folder access in Windows 11, your files and folders may still be vulnerable to ransomware.

The new Windows 11 will come with many new features and enhancements that will work great for some while adding some learning challenges for others. Some things and settings have changed so much that folks will have to learn new ways to work with and manage Windows 11.

One legacy feature that’s also in Windows 11 is controlled folder access which help prevent your files and folders being held ransom. This post shows you how to enable that in Windows 11.

To get started with enabling controlled folder access in Windows 11, follow the steps below:

How to enable controlled folder access in Windows 11

To stop ransomware in Windows 11, you can turn on controlled folder access. To do that, follow the steps below:

Windows 11 has a centralized location for majority of its settings. From system configurations to creating new users and updating Windows, all can be done from its System Settings pane.

To get to System Settings, you can use the Windows key + i shortcut or click on Start ==> Settings as shown in the image below:

Alternatively, you can use the search box on the taskbar and search for Settings. Then select to open it.

Windows Settings pane should look similar to the image below. In Windows Settings, click Privacy & security, select Windows Security on the right pane of your screen shown in the image below.

On the Windows Security settings pane, click on the button “Open Windows Security” as highlighted below.

When Windows Security app opens, click Virus & threat protection on the left menu items, then scroll down and click the highlighted link to “Mange ransomware protection

On the ransomware protection settings pane, toggle the button to the On position to enable ransomware protection.

By default, folders in your home directory are added to the protected folders list. Click on the Protected folders link under Controlled folder access to view the complete list of folders that are protected.

You can choose to add more folders to the list by clicking the Add a protected folder button shown below.

This will help prevent these folders from being compromised and held ransom.

Sometimes interfere with legitimate programs and block access. You can look in the block history under, Controlled folder access to view programs that are blocked and unblock legitimate programs from access those locations. You can also proactively allow legitimate program through to these protected folders.

How to use OneDrive to restore folders in Windows 11

Setting up OneDrive as your backup location will also help you to restore ransom folder should you fall for ransomware. Click on the link to setup OneDrive to backup your folder to.

For more about setting up OneDrive backup in Windows 11, read the post below:

That should do it!

This post showed you how to enable controlled folder access to prevent ransomware and stop your folders being held ransom. If you find any error above, please use the comment form below to report.

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