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Microsoft makes recall optional after wave of criticism

With the Recall feature for Windows 11, Microsoft is back on track. After criticism surrounding data protection and security, Recall is only active if you sign up for it.

In a blog, Microsoft announced the changes to the Recall feature, which has not yet been rolled out. Recall records your screen at regular intervals so that nothing you do on your PC is lost. Normally the feature would be enabled by default, but Microsoft is changing this and making Recall an optional feature.

Microsoft says it is doing this based on customer feedback, but it wasn’t just customers who had something to say about Recall. The position was in the eye of the storm from day one. Security experts openly questioned the security surrounding Recall. Microsoft previously reacted resignedly to this criticism, but has now decided to intervene.

Own choice

The most important adjustment to Recall is that the feature is only active when users log in. Users must enable Recall through a login screen that must be confirmed with Windows Hello. This prevents Recall from being enabled accidentally, and Windows also makes it clear to those watching with an icon in the taskbar, according to Microsoft.

Windows callback opt-in
The opt-in screen for recall. Source: Microsoft

In addition, Microsoft takes some additional measures to protect screen recordings. The search index database is encrypted and Microsoft applies just-in-time encryption to the snapshots. This means that you can only view the screen recordings after authentication. Microsoft emphasizes that Recall screen functions are also only stored locally on your PC and that Recall can be paused or turned off at any time.

Microsoft is rolling out Recall to Windows 11 starting June 18. The feature is exclusive to Copilot Plus PCs with an approved NPU. The first units with the Qualcomm Snapdragon X chip will be available starting June 18. AMD and Intel will follow later, but there is still some uncertainty about whether these Copilot Plus laptops will have Copilot features at launch.

Source: IT Daily

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