How to Enable or Disable Secure Sign-In for Windows 10

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Windows is the most targeted operating system on the planet. This means that you have to fortify the defenses of your PC to stay safe online and offline. This guide shows you how to enable or disable the secure connection for Windows 10.

The secure connection is an additional component on the Windows 10 login screen. This prevents anyone from accessing your PC if it has your credentials. Instead, Windows 10 removes the login fields until you type a key chain. After that, enter your password or PIN as usual.

This feature aims to thwart malware. Malicious code could reside in the background and spoof the Windows 10 login screen to capture your credentials. Because applications and programs do not usually have access to the Ctrl + At + Del command, you can bypass the fake login screen by using a secure connection enabled by typing this three-key command.

Enable or disable using the Netplwiz command

To get started, run the Run command by pressing the "Windows" and "R" (Windows + R) keys at the same time. A small pop-up window will appear. Type "netplwiz" (without quotation marks) into the text field and then click the "OK" button (or press the Enter key) to continue.

Type netplwiz in the Run command

You can also access the User Accounts panel by typing "netplwiz" into the search field on the taskbar and selecting the Resulting Execute command.

The User Accounts panel will appear on the screen. Click on the "Advanced" tab (it's not loaded by default). Locate the "Require users to press Ctrl + Alt + Del" option listed under "Secure Login." Check to enable or disable to disable.

Click on the "Apply" button and then on the "OK" button to finish.

User Accounts Set a secure connection

Enable or disable using the local security policy

Here is another method that is a bit more loaded than following the instructions of the user accounts. Use this method if you want to take the scenic route but avoid the Windows registry.

Launch the Run command by pressing the "Windows" and "R" (Windows + R) keys at the same time. A small pop-up window appears. Type "secpol.msc" (without quotation marks) into the text field, and then click the "OK" button (or press the Enter key) to continue.

Type secpol in the Run command

As before, you can also access the Local Security Policy panel by typing "secpol.msc" into the search box on the taskbar and selecting the resulting desktop application.

In the Local Policy window, expand "Local Policies" listed on the left and select the "Security Options" subfolder below. Then scroll down to the right and double-click on the entry "Interactive logon: Do not require CTRL + ALT + DEL".

Secure connection to local security policy

The Input Properties panel appears on the screen with the "Local Security Settings" tab displayed by default. Click a radio button to enable or disable this feature. Finish by clicking on the "Apply" button and then on the "OK" button.

Secure connection to the interactive connection

Enable or disable the use of the registry

If you want to take the hardcore route, why not edit the registry? Do not forget, walk lightly: any changes you make could cause system instability. This option is for experienced people who like to dig deep in Windows.

RELATED: Windows registry demystified: what you can do

Launch the Run command by pressing the "Windows" and "R" (Windows + R) keys at the same time. A small pop-up window will appear. Type "regedit" (without quotation marks) into the text field and then click the "OK" button (or press the Enter key) to continue.

Type Regedit in the Run command

You can also access the Registry Editor by typing "regedit" into the search box on the taskbar and selecting the resulting desktop application.

In the Registry Editor, expand the following folders in this order:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE> SOFTWARE> Microsoft> Windows NT> CurrentVersion

In the CurrentVersion folder, select the "Winlogon" entry to view its settings in the right pane. Double-click the "DisableCad" entry to change its values.

Registry Editor Change Winlogon Settings

In the "Change DWORD Value (32-bit)" pop-up box, edit the value data with one of these values:

Click on the "OK" button to finish. Restart your PC to save the settings.

Registry Editor Change the value of Winlogon

Note: If you do not see a "DisableCad" entry in the "Winlogon" settings, right-click "Winlogon", select "New" from the context menu, and then click "DWORD Value (32-bit)" in the following list. Name this new DWORD "DisableCAD" (without the quotation marks) and change its value.

Registry Editor Create DWORD

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