A warning will often appear in Microsoft Office 365 applications such as Word if you include a hyperlink to an EXE or other type of file that could be harmful to your system. The message will read:
Microsoft Office has identified a potential security concern.
This location may be unsafe.
Hyperlinks can be harmful to your computer and data. To protect your computer, click only those hyperlinks from trusted sources.
Do you want to continue?
A registry edit will prevent this warning from appearing. Just follow these steps:
- Hold down the Windows Key and press “R“.
- Type “regedit“, then press “Enter“.
- Expand the plus sign next to HKEY_CURRENT_USER
- then Software
- then Policies
- then Microsoft
- then Office
- then 16.0 (May be 15.0, 14.0 or other depending on version)
- then Common
- Select the “Common” key, select “New” on the “Edit” menu, and then click “Key“.
- Type “Security“, and then press “Enter“ to name the key.
- On the “Edit” menu, point to “New“, and then select “DWORD Value“.
- Type “DisableHyperlinkWarning“, and then press “Enter“ to name the entry.
- In the right pane, right-click “DisableHyperlinkWarning“, and then select “Modify“.
- In the “Edit DWORD Value” dialog box, select “Decimal“, and then type “1” under “Value data“.
- Close Regedit and restart the computer.
Restart your Office application and the warning message about hyperlinks should no longer appear when you attempt to open files from Office applications. This will apply to Word and Excel.
I made the changes, but why does it still not work?
Try restarting your entire computer. If you are in an enterprise environment, the setting may be controlled by a system administrator. This would cause the setting to revert. In that case, there may be no solution to get rid of the message.