Configuration

How to fix security warning accessing network files on Windows 10

If you're getting a security warning every time you try to open a network file, then try this workaround on Windows 10.

This file is in a location outside your local network warning

On Windows 10, if you’re using a NAS (Network Attached Storage) to share files across network with solutions like unRAID or FreeNAS, you may see various Windows Security warnings trying to open files.

For instance, when trying to move files between folders, you may see the warning: “These files might be harmful to your computer.” “Your Internet security settings suggest that one of more files may be harmful.”

Or if you try to run an application, Windows Security may show you the: “We can’t verify who created this file” warning. Along with the “This file is in a location outside your local network. Files from locations you don’t recognize can harm your PC.”

Although you can confirm and open the files, it can be annoying getting the same messages every time you access the network share. However, if you’re getting these or other security warnings, you can adjust the Windows 10 internet settings to resolve the issue.

In this guide, you’ll learn the steps to stop the Windows Security warning as you access shared folders in the local network.

How to stop security warnings opening network files on Windows 10

If you’re getting the “These files might be harmful to your computer” or “We can’t verify who created this file” messages, then you need to change the Windows 10 Internet Options settings.

Stop security warning opening files from network share with these steps:

  1. Open Settings.

  2. Click on Network & Internet.

  3. Click on Status.

  4. Under the “Advanced network settings” section, click the Network and Share Center option.

    Status settings on Windows 10
    Status settings on Windows 10
  5. Click the Internet Options from the bottom left corner.

    Control Panel Internet Options
    Control Panel Internet Options
  6. Click the Security tab.

  7. Select the Local Intranet zone.

  8. Click the Sites button.

    Windows 10 Internet Options security settings
    Windows 10 Internet Options security settings
  9. Clear the Automatically detect intranet network option.

  10. Check the Include all local (intranet) sites not listed in other zones option.

  11. Clear the Include all sites that bypass the proxy server option.

  12. Check the Include all network paths (UNCs) option.

    Windows 10 local intranet settings
    Windows 10 local intranet settings
  13. Click the Advanced button.

  14. In the “Add this web site to the zone” option, confirm the local network address including an asterisk to indicate the network mask. For instance, if your local network is 192.168.1.1 with a subnet mask of 255.255.255.0, then use the 192.168.1.* address.

    Windows 10 add trusted network configuration
    Windows 10 add trusted network configuration
  15. Click the Add button.

  16. Clear the Require server verifications (https:) for all sites in the zone option.

  17. Click the Close button.

  18. Click the OK button.

  19. Click the Apply button.

  20. Click the OK button.

Once you complete the steps, reopen File Explorer, and trying to open a network file or launching an application should no longer show the security warning.