Shkatov and Kohlenberg’s talk, entitled “We have you by the gadgets”, threatens to expose various attack vectors against gadgets, how malicious gadgets can be created, and the flaws they have found in published gadgets.
If the researchers have managed to find ways to exploit existing gadgets that’s particularly worrying.
“Without Microsoft support, you will no longer receive security updates that can help protect your PC from harmful viruses, spyware, and other malicious software that can steal your personal information,” it reads.
In other words, users need to upgrade to Windows 10 or knowingly expose themselves to cybercriminals.
To get it up and running you need to download the FB Explorer gadget file and run it.
When you run the .gadget file you will be asked to confirm the installation.
Microsoft has started blocking Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 updates for computers running certain new chipsets.
The company announced plans last January to block next-generation Intel, AMD and Qualcomm processors from system updates on older versions of Windows, but didn't reveal when support would be cut. Social media users are reporting that Microsoft is now blocking access to Windows 7 and 8.1 updates on devices running Intel's Kaby Lake processor.
Users of Windows Vista and Windows 7 have been advised to completely disable their Windows Sidebar and Gadgets, in response to what appears to be a serious security risk.
The Windows Sidebar is a vertical bar that can appear at the side of your desktop, containing mini-programs (known as gadgets) that can provide a number of functions such as a clock, the latest news headlines, weather report and so forth.
A security advisory issued by Microsoft’s security team advises that vulnerabilities exist that could allow malicious code to be executed via the Windows Sidebar when running insecure Gadgets.