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I am a little concerned. I have a new Windows 10 Laptop, where I put some copnfig files from my desktop PC via good ol' windows shared folder (I'm not quite sure about the english translation). I forgot to unshare it afterwards. I noticed today when I was in a public network (at university) and when I unshared it, it said there was a user connected to it. Since it was in a informatics course with 150 might-be hackers around me, I panicked a little. When i checked netstat there was still some connection going on. So I shut the system off asap.

Probably the user in the shared folder was just me and the connection was supposably some browser window in the background.

But it made me wonder, which security risks are you taking if you have a shared folder with write permission in a public network?

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It depends on what permissions were set for the share folder.

If they had write access, your biggest concern is them putting a malicious file in that folder and fooling you into running it or getting another program set to run or open things from that folder to run it (hopefully you haven't set up something like that). They could also have modified a file you already trust in that shared folder in order to compromise something the next time you open it.

If they had read access only, your biggest concern is information disclosure depending on what you had in the drive.

Of course they could have done something to try to get you in trouble too like place some illegal content in your shared folder, but you would have noticed that.

Unless some vulnerability is found in the windows file and folder sharing protocol that you don't have patched, you don't have to be concerned with too much else.

  • Thanks! So if the folder was empty (afterwards) I'm rather save? They can't place and execute files unreadable for windows in it? – hsling May 5 '17 at 17:07
  • I'd check to see if there are hidden files, but yes, you should be safe if it's empty and you know that nothing was executed by you or a service on your computer (unlikely) and then deleted. – S.C. May 5 '17 at 17:22
  • I also didn't mention issues like someone transferring many large files to attempt a denial of service attack, but you would have noticed if that was happening and that's not much of a concern as soon as the the share has been disabled. – S.C. May 5 '17 at 17:27

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