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You can finally update to Windows 11 without a Microsoft account

TechRadar published by Daryl Baxter

Thanks to a tool called Rufus, here's how


When Windows 11 launched, the Home version of the update required users to have created or logged in with a Microsoft account in order to finish the installation, but utility software Rufus can finally remove this need for all users.

It's been a frustrating decision from Microsoft, as there's really no need for all users to have an account. You can use Windows 11's apps and services perfectly fine without one, but we suspect it's more to do with its Office and OneDrive packages.

Sun Valley 2, Windows 11's first major update launching later this year, will force Windows 11 Pro users to comply with this requirement as well, so Rufus 3.19 (opens in new tab) has come just in time to alleviate the frustration with users of both editions.

Using the utility is a simple affair, where you can use an installation image of Windows 11 to make a bootable USB drive. So you can insert the stick into a PC, and it will install the operating system without needing an associated Microsoft account.

However, it doesn't just get rid of this frustration - it also removes the TPM requirement for PCs that don't have this chip installed.

If you're unaware, TPM is a chip inside your PC that monitors whether any unsavory code is trying to latch onto your computer. If there is, this chip lets the PC know, and it's essentially quarantined and deleted.

But the majority of PCs don't have the required version of this chip, and coupled with Microsoft's less than stellar messaging about it in 2021, users have been holding off from upgrading to Windows 11.


However, this tool looks to remove a lot of frustrations, and if you've been holding off, Rufus 3.19 looks to be a great opportunity to upgrade your PC from Windows 10.

Kids are earning pocket money selling malware on Discord

TechRadar published by Sead Fadilpašić (June/29/2022)

Minors are working together to build and distribute malware via Discord

A group of minors has been spotted building, advertising and selling various malware and ransomware strains on Discord, earning pocket money for themselves in the process.

Cybersecurity experts from Avast recently discovered a Discord server in which a group of hackers discussed building, upgrading and selling malware families such as Lunar, Snatch and or Rift.

After a closer inspection of the discussion, researchers concluded that the group consisted of mostly minors, as they kept mentioning their parents and teachers, as well as throwing various age-related insults at each other.

To join the group, and essentially become the user of the malware-as-a-service, one must pay a fee, which ranges from anywhere between €5 and €25. Avast says up to 100 accounts have paid to access one such group.

Trickery and deception


The group in question builds and exchanges various types of malware, including those with password-stealing capabilities, infostealers, those capable of mining various cryptocurrencies for the attackers, and in some cases, even running ransomware attacks.

When it comes to distributing the malware, the process is more-or-less the usual, with a little twist. The crooks create a YouTube video, demonstrating a crack for commercial software or a popular computer game, and include a download link for the fake crack in the description.

To help build authenticity, other members of the Discord group then add comments to the video, thanking the author for their contribution and “confirming” that the file on the download link is actually legitimate.

This, Avast claims, is a lot more sinister, compared to the usual practice of using bots to add comments, as it’s almost impossible to detect fraud when genuine accounts support a video.

Spreading ransomware, infostealers, and other malware might be an illegal, malicious practice, but with this group, in many instances, it’s all perceived as pranking, Avast concluded.

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