Microsoft: We're switching off Excel 4.0 macros by default to protect you against security threats

Microsoft has disabled Excel 4.0 macros by default in the latest release of its spreadsheet software to help customers protect themselves against related security threats.

That setting, released as an optional configuration in Excel Trust Center setting in July, is now the default when opening Excel 4.0 macros (XLM), Microsoft said in a blogpost

A macro is a series of commands that you can use to automate a repeated task, and can be run when you have to perform the task. But unexpected macros can pose a significant security risk. You don’t have to enable macros to see or edit the file; only if you want the functionality provided by the macro. But crooks will try to trick the unwary into enabling macros and then using that functionality as part of their attacks.

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The move to restrict Excel 4.0 macros is an attempt to counter a rise in ransomware and other malware groups using Excel 4.0 macros as part of an initial infection. State-sponsored and cybercriminal attackers started experimenting with legacy Excel 4.0 macros in response to Microsoft in 2018 cracking down on macro scripts written in Visual Basic for

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