Protect your Windows Computer by Disabling the Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) Service

By: Nichole Gladky
Last Updated: May 15, 2019

It is always advisable to disable unnecessary services to decrease risk to the Stony Brook computing environment. Follow the below instructions to disable the Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) service, which is commonly leveraged by adversaries to attack Windows computers.

What is Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP)?

Remote Desktop Protocol allows us to connect to our workstations from other computers/locations.  But there are lower risk practices for accessing files from another computer. 

Are there Alternatives?

Options for accessing files include using VPN with Shared Department Folders, using cloud storage like Google Drive and MySBfiles and if you want to access software check to see if it is available on the Virtual SINC Site.  Contact your IT professional or create a service ticket to see if there are other options available for your specific needs.

To safeguard University data it is highly recommended that the Remote Desktop Protocol options are turned off.  

Windows 10 Instructions

  1. Click the Windows Start button and type "Allow Remote Access to your computer".  This will quickly search for the remote settings dialog box of the System Properties.
  2. Make sure "Allow Remote Assistance connections to this computer" is unchecked.
  3. Select "Don't allow remove connections to this computer" under the Remote Desktop section and then click OK.

Windows 8 and 7 Instructions

  1. Click the Start button and then Control Panel.
  2. Open System and Security.
  3. Choose System in the right panel.
  4. Select Remote Settings from the left pane to open the System Properties dialog box for the Remote tab.
  5. Click Don’t Allow Connections to This Computer and then click OK.
  6. Also, make sure "Allow Remote Assistance connections to this computer" is unchecked.

Windows XP

  1. Right-click on the My Computer icon on the desktop
  2. Select Properties in the menu
  3. Click on the Remote tab
  4. Uncheck "Allow users to connect remotely to this computer" under the Remote Desktop section.
  5. Also, make sure "Allow remote Assistance invitations to be sent from this computer" is unchecked.

* If you do not see Remote Desktop as an option, don't panic, you may have Windows XP Home.  Remote Desktop is only available on Windows XP Professional.

 

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