‘Malware alerts’ when starting LAStools or laslook on Windows

Sometimes Windows refuses to start a program. This may be caused by Windows‘ internal security mechanism or by external virus scanners installed by users to protect their computers against viruses, malware programs, serious damage or theft of data. The Microsoft Windows operating system tries to prevent programs from randomly starting that appear suspicious, (e.g., if you downloaded them from the Internet or received them via email). Unfortunately, it often also prevents programs from starting, even though they are harmless.

How to proceed:

First, check whether the software you want to use is dangerous or suspicious. To check programs or executable files, we recommend Virustotal , which checks against around 40 virus scanners. If less than 5% receive a positive result, the program is most likely safe, and the 1 or 2 positive checks are false positives. If you are unsure, please contact your local IT or an IT specialist.

If the program seems safe and you need to force Windows to run it:

If you work at a company or institution in a managed Windows environment, it’s best to contact your local IT department. They can set an exception for this application. If you are using a home or field computer without external management, you can try setting an exception for this program.

What you should NOT do:

On web resources, you may come across recommendations to install third-party software to clean your computer. This software typically costs money, may itself pose a security risk, and does not help to solve the initial problem.

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