What is Msascui.exe

Windows Defender User Interface - Microsoft® Windows® Operating System - Microsoft Corporation

File description

Msascui.exe with description Windows Defender User Interface is a process file from company Microsoft Corporation belonging to product Microsoft® Windows® Operating System.
The file is digitally signed from Microsoft Corporation - Microsoft Time-Stamp Service
We do not recommend removing digitally signed files from Microsoft Corporation

What is MSASCui.exe?
MSASCui.exe is part of the Windows Defender anti-spyware software. It is responsible for performing spyware scans providing the interface through which you can configure Windows Defender. Windows Defender is also installed as part of Windows Live OneCare. The following is a screenshot of Windows Defender running under Windows XP Service Pack 2:



This process is an nonessential system process and can safely be disabled. Note that disabling this process will disable your Windows Defender spyware protection. If you choose to disable this process, you should do so through the Windows Defender or Windows Live OneCare interface so as not to cause errors. The screenshot below illustrates how this process should appear in the task manager:



As you can see in the above screenshot, MSASCui.exe typically runs as the current user (in this case, Mike). A process with this name that is running as another user may be indicative of a malware infection.

Dangers of MSASCui
As this is a relatively common process in that it runs on any system with Windows Defender installed, it is possible for virus writers and spyware vendors to disguise their malware as the genuine one.

Some malicious files may have the same name but be stored somewhere other than in %ProgramFiles%\Windows Defender. Other malware may use a name that appears similar to it but with slight differences in spelling or with appended digits. While there are currently no known viruses, Trojans, or adware applications that disguise themselves as this process, you should look out for this file in an incorrect location or with a slightly different name.

There is typically no more than one instance of this running at a given time. The presence of multiple instances may be an indicator of a malware infection. If you do not use Windows Defender, the presence of this executable may indicate that your system is infected.

Common problems
  • This process uses excessive CPU time
    • There are a myriad possible causes for this problem. Try reinstalling Windows Defender and ensuring that it is up-to-date.
    • If the problem continues, it is recommended that you uninstall or turn off Windows Defender.
  • "Windows Defender encountered an error 0x80508018"
    • This problem is known to occur in isolated cases. Try reinstalling Windows Defender.

Automatic startup locations

001 Running Processes
002 Autorun registry entries local machine
003 Autorun registry entries Current User
004 All users startup startmenu
005 Current user startup startmenu
007 Roaming Start Menu\Programs\Startup
073 %windir%\Tasks
135 Current User Runonce (+ subkeys)
166 HKCU Policies\Explorer\Run

Digital signatures found for this file

    Certificate 
21 Microsoft Corporation - Microsoft Time-Stamp Service
9 Microsoft Corporation - Microsoft Timestamping Service
8 Microsoft Corporation - VeriSign Time Stamping Services Signer
8 Microsoft Windows - Microsoft Timestamping Service
3 Microsoft Windows - Microsoft Time-Stamp Service
3 Microsoft Windows - VeriSign Time Stamping Services Signer
1 Microsoft Windows Publisher - VeriSign Time Stamping Services Signer

MD5 security rating in our database

51 files (Not yet rated and not signed)
6 files (Not yet rated and digitally signed)
53 files (Safe and digitally signed)
Some versions of this filename have not yet been checked for safety.
Warning: Some malware might rename itself to msascui.exe. Always make sure that your file is from a verified publisher.

User ratings for this file

File rating: Average rating of msascui.exe: by 110 files and users.

Application errors

Fix msascui.exe application error:  Run a FREE registry scan

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