Previously it was reported that on security intelligence updates version 1.381.2140.0 in Microsoft Defender, apparently made Defender remove all shortcuts with format (.ink) located in ProgramDataMicrosoftWindowsStart MenuPrograms.

Well, Microsoft itself has confirmed this in their tweet, you can see a separate article about this on the WinPoin page following.

And you know what, in the follow-up confirmation from Microsoft that was released on WindowsHealth Dashboardwith heavy they say that sadly shortcuts cannot be restored, in which case the affected users will have to create or restore shortcuts with other alternative methods.

This issue is resolved in security intelligence update build 1.381.2164.0. Installing security intelligence update build 1.381.2164.0 or later should prevent the issue, but it will not restore previously deleted shortcuts. You will need to recreate or restore these shortcuts through other methods.said Microsoft.

Meanwhile, users are asked to update Windows Defender Secure Intelligence to version 1.381.2164.0, because problem prevention has been presented there, even though users can no longer restore what has been deleted.

via: Microsoft

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