This page has an unspecified potential security risk.

With Vista (and probably XP and IE7) right clicking on a zip file on a network share brings up an Internet Explorer dialogue:

This page has an unspecified potential security risk. Would you like to continue?

It appears that the OS thinks that your network share is in the Internet Zone rather than the Intranet Zone. This is easily fixed by:

  1. Control Panel > Internet Options > Security.
  2. Select Local intranet > click Sites > Advanced.
  3. Type your server name into the textbox (e.g. If the server is called FileServer just type FileServer) and click Add.
  4. Click Close > OK > OK.

24 thoughts on “This page has an unspecified potential security risk.

  1. Thanks, that worked a treat.

    I’m on Vista Ultimate. I’d browsed to a folder on my other XP machine and was simply right clicking on a ZIP file there and then got this unspecified potential security risk message from Internet Explorer! Weird!!



  2. I’m using XP and had this problem browsing another XP machine on my network. Helpful information.

  3. Thanks for the tip.

    Once again Microsoft fails to get even the most basic fundamentals to work properly.

  4. I’ve got this exact issue. I’ve added our file server everywhere in the security settings, tried naming it every which way, but the machine flatly refuses to open anything without moaning about it. The start menu, my docs, app data etc are all redirected back to a central location, and guess what, the ‘my docs’ folder, desktop shortcuts, quick launch etc are all ‘potential security risks’…. it’s driving me mad! I had this before and got rid of it, but this time it just won’t go away!


  5. I had some reservations as I was using a drive letter mapped to the server and thus wasn’t sure if this would work, but this worked perfectly. Many thanks.


  6. I use DFS and i had to put my NTDS domain in to access net drives correctly as I use redirection of all shares.



    might map to \\fileserver\billybob and \\fileserver2\billybob

    but I had to put bubba.local in the server name referenced in original post.

  7. Thanks John.

    This sorted out my problem. I was panicking for a minute or two. I thought I might have got a virus infection on my NAS server!

  8. The path to the share will be something like \\servername\folder. In this case servername is what you need to enter.

    If you have mapped the share to a drive letter the drive will probably be called something like

    folder (\\servername)(X:)

  9. This won’t work for me. I’ve got Windows XP running in VMWare Fusion on Mac OSX, and it has a path of “\\.host\username\” to access my home directory in OS X. But the security preferences is refusing to let me add that because of the dot in the name. Also, it’s not dependent on IE7, as I still only had IE6 running in that virtual machine. There must have been some other security update that made the change. If I knew which one it was, I’d just uninstall that particular update.

  10. I typed in the drive letter as the server name and it converted it to file://*.servername.domain

  11. Here’s a simpler solution. In Control Panel, go to Internet Options> Security> Custom Level> Miscellaneous. There’s an entry titled “Launching Applications and Unsafe Files (not secure)”. Set it to “enable”.

    Worked for me!

  12. Yep that stops that annoying message popping up when clicking in windows explorer MS windows network and going to other pc’s in my house with public folder sharing to get files.I just enter the other computer names and it dont pop it up no more.

  13. Something was changed that would allow websites to be ‘marked’ by IP address; I have 192.168.*.* in my zone, and that USED to work. 🙂

    I have letter-mapped drives, so heading to My Computer and putting in the name that appears in the ()s before the drive, works like a charm! Thanks for the info, and thanks for being so high on the search engine. 🙂

  14. In this case the server is just the computer where the files are stored. I do think that a minimum amount of technical knowledge should be required before changing windows security options though.

  15. I get this error message when i sign out of yahoo messenger…plz help me. is this some kind of a virus or a phishing software??? i havent got this message until a few days ago.

    Plz help folks!!!

  16. not as though it’s hard to click OK, but still more vista lameness from MS.

  17. I hardly ever post to any boards, but this problem is an example of the stupidity that is Microsoft and how, despite Microsoft people help each other to resolve issues.
    To me, it seems that the only people Microsoft can keep from doing something nefarious on your computer is you. Of course, that does depend on using the definition of nefarious as “something I need to do!”
    Ironically, every time I see the message “This page has an unspecified potential security risk.” I think to myself, “Duh! It’s running Windows, of course it does. It is!”
    Remind me again why we don’t all use Macs?

  18. Despite the senseless “use Macs” comment (as Macs are just as ridiculous with other issues), ThePopp does make a good point about Windows only letting other people do nefarious things:

    I ran into this problem with right-clicking on .zip files on a remote share. I had no problem right-clicking on .exe files, however. Apparently .zip files are dangerous but .exe files are A-OK! So anyway, I changed the intranet settings to enable right clicking. Unfortunately, I still could not copy the file to my local directory (UAC “Try Again”). Other files could be copied, but not .zip. Instead, I had to walk over to the remote XP box and copy the file TO the Vista computer over the network.

    In short: Windows wouldn’t let ME copy a file TO MY computer, but it was perfectly fine with letting the REMOTE computer send the “potential security risk” TO the same box. Ludicrous!

    *head explodes*

  19. Just so that any users of Parallels on the Mac get this problem when opening ‘My Documents’, try following this advice, adding ‘\\.psf’ as a ‘Local Intranet’ site.

    Ignore the warning about this location being in the ‘Trusted Sites’ already (perhaps this is a bug in where Parallels setups up the default security settings, or due to the default security level).

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