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Microsoft Defender malfunctions, erasing the Taskbar, the Start menu icon, and other things

Some Windows users have reported that after installing the latest version of Microsoft Defender, their shortcuts have disappeared.

Windows icons and programme shortcuts disappeared from the Taskbar and Start Menu for no apparent reason due to the strange problem.

Antivirus software seems to have caused problems for clients all across the globe, including those using Windows 10 and Windows 11.

Trouble with Microsoft’s Anti-Spyware Response

Many people are upset by the timing of the issue, even though it seems that just a subset of shortcuts, and not the actual programmes, have been impacted. The Thirteenth of Friday.

Many of whom have posted complaints on discussion forums like Reddit and Microsoft’s Tech Community.

Reddit user “I can’t access firefox by using the windows key and entering the name I have to go to programme files” reveals the problem also affects the Start menu.

After upgrading to security intelligence builds between 1.381.2134.0 and1.381.2163.0, Windows Security and Microsoft Defender for Endpoint users may have experienced a string of false positive detections for the Attack Surface Reduction (ASR) rule “Block Win32 API calls from Office macro,” according to a statement released by Microsoft (opens in new tab).

The problem “mainly impact[s] Windows shortcut (.lnk) files,” the author says, adding that users who have not activated the “Block Win32 API calls from Office macro” rule should not be impacted.

Another user fixed the problem, but then noticed that several taskbar icons were missing.

Despite the fact that the corporation has released a patch for their antivirus, many companies still complain that they have not been adequately served. Some users have raised concerns that the patch “doesn’t restore Microsoft Office shortcuts which were distributed per-user,” while others have sought for instructions on how to roll out the update through Intune.

Every day, more people express their frustration with the persistent Defender mistake, making it evident that Microsoft has to take something. The team at TechRadar Pro has reached out to Microsoft for comment.