Interactive Logon Allows Unauthorized Actions in Desktop Process

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Article ID: 260197 - View products that this article applies to.
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If you interactively log on to a computer running Windows 2000, you may be able to perform unauthorized actions because of a security vulnerability.

The unauthorized actions may include gaining access to the display and input devices owned by a computer process with higher privileges. For example, if a malicious user can start a process in the computer desktop, which is owned by the Winlogon process, the new process could record the passwords that users enter when they log onto the computer.


To resolve this problem, obtain the latest service pack for Windows 2000. For additional information, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
260910 How to Obtain the Latest Windows 2000 Service Pack


Microsoft has confirmed that this is a problem in Microsoft Windows 2000. This problem was first corrected in Windows 2000 Service Pack 1.


Once the hotfix has been installed, you can disable the new security behavior by editing the registry. To do this:
  1. Start Registry Editor (Regedt32.exe).
  2. Locate the following key in the registry:
       HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/Software/Microsoft/Windows NT/CurrentVersion/Windows/ 
  3. On the Edit menu, click Add Value, and then add the following registry value:
       Value Name:  SecureDesktop
       Data Type:   REG_DWORD
       Radix:       Binary
       Value:       0 (zero)
  4. Quit Registry Editor.
NOTE: If the SecureDesktop value does not exist in the registry, or if the value is set to some number other than zero, the new security behavior is always active.

For related information about this problem, please visit the following Microsoft Web site:
For additional security-related information about Microsoft products, please visit the following Microsoft Web site:
For additional information about how to install Windows 2000 and Windows 2000 hotfixes at the same time, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
249149 Installing Microsoft Windows 2000 and Windows 2000 Hotfixes


Article ID: 260197 - Last Review: October 20, 2013 - Revision: 4.4
  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Server
  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Advanced Server
  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional Edition
kbnosurvey kbarchive kbhotfixserver kbqfe kbbug kbfix kbqfe kbwin2000sp1fix KB260197

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