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Worrying flaw in Windows 10 and Windows 11 is putting PCs at risk – check yours now


Using a VPN to surf the web securely and privately is very common in 2024, but if you are using a computer running Windows 10 or Windows 11 you might find that your internet browsing has just got a little less safe.

Microsoft has confirmed (via Bleeping Computer) that its April 2024 security update for Windows has broken VPN – that’s ‘virtual private network’ – connections for many users. It doesn’t matter what VPN product you’re using, as it appears the nasty bug could stop any company’s service from working.

“Windows devices might face VPN connection failures after installing the April 2024 security update (KB5036893) or the April 2024 non-security preview update,” Microsoft stated on an update page for the security release, which is pushed out to Windows PCs as a free software download. These updates can be found in the Windows Update section of your computer’s settings, and often install automatically.

Microsoft added that it was “working on a resolution and will provide an update in an upcoming release”, suggesting if you have the update installed and your VPN isn’t working, then it will continue not to work until Microsoft pushes out a software update to fix the issue.

The list of affected Windows versions is Windows 11, version 23H2; Windows 11, version 22H2, Windows 11, version 21H2, Windows 10, version 22H2, and Windows 10, version 21H2.

VPNs are useful security tools and are often paid-for services bought from third-party companies, such as the popular Nord VPN or Express VPN. They are commonly used to keep your data safe and secure when browsing on insecure, open public Wi-Fi networks, but they can also be used to watch otherwise geo-locked streaming content.

When travelling abroad, VPNs are also useful to login to personal or work apps that are only available in certain countries. They are also used in business to securely access remote servers – so if you’re suddenly stuck without one it could prove quite inconvenient.

Microsoft is planning to end support for Windows 10 in October 2025, when users could be forced to update their software to the newer Windows 11, or shell out for a new PC if they want the latest secure software but own hardware that is too old to download it.

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