What is lsass.exe?

The .exe extension on a filename indicates an executable file. Executable files may, in some cases, harm your computer. Therefore, please read below to decide for yourself whether the lsass.exe on your computer is a Trojan that you should remove, or whether it is a file belonging to the Windows operating system or to a trusted application.

Click to Run a Free Scan for lsass.exe related errors

Lsass.exe file information

Windows Task Manager with lsass
Lsass.exe process in Windows Task Manager

The process known as LSA Shell (Export Version) or Local Security Authority Process or LSA Shell or Generic Hosts for WinService or Userinit Logon Application or Stub Application or AVP - spyware removal module or (xpclient.010817-11489)

belongs to software Microsoft Windows Operating System or IPSEC Services, Protected Storage, Security Accounts Manager or symantex or CNG Key Isolation, Security Accounts Manager or symdfsdf or update or worm2007 or NT LM Security Support Provider, IPSEC Services, Protected Storage, Security Accounts Manager

by Microsoft ( or MskSoftStudy or Microsoft Windows Operation System or noOrg ( or AceSoft Corp all rights reserved or IT University or s708051Jm103533QSt619382493o or Jznof.

Description: The original lsass.exe from Microsoft is an important part of Windows, but often causes problems. Lsass.exe is located in the C:\Windows\System32 folder. Known file sizes on Windows 8/7/XP are 13,312 bytes (88% of all occurrences), 11,776 bytes and 13 more variants. 
The program is not visible. Lsass.exe is a trustworthy file from Microsoft. The application uses ports to connect to or from a LAN or the Internet. Therefore the technical security rating is 10% dangerous, however you should also read the user reviews.

Recommended: Identify lsass.exe related errors

Viruses with the same file name

Is lsass.exe a virus? No, it is not. The true lsass.exe file is a safe Microsoft Windows system process, called "LSA Shell". However, writers of malware programs, such as viruses, worms, and Trojans deliberately give their processes the same file name to escape detection. Viruses with the same file name are e.g. Trojan.Win32.VB.bdo or Trojan.Win32.Refroso.cez (detected by Kaspersky), and Backdoor:Win32/VB.AT or VirTool:Win32/Injector.gen!AD (detected by Microsoft).
To ensure that no rogue lsass.exe is running on your PC, click here to run a Free Malware Scan.

How to recognize suspicious variants?

External information from Paul Collins:
There are different files with the same name:

Important: Some malware disguises itself as lsass.exe, particularly when not located in the C:\Windows\System32 folder. Therefore, you should check the lsass.exe process on your PC to see if it is a threat. We recommend Security Task Manager for verifying your computer's security. This was one of the Top Download Picks of The Washington Post and PC World.


User Comments

Safe, but...uses more resources than my anti virus while scanning. Thats real High, for a process that controls user log ons.Why is this so high especially if I'm logged on
This file is vital to the Windows operating system. To what I know, it operates within Windows 7 and is a module to assist in the Winlogon process. It's safe as long as it's from the "(drive letter):\(your windows directory)\System32" directory.
I am doing a defrag of C: using the windows disk defragmenter. When I look at Task Manager, lsass.exe is churning out I/O byte writes like crazy, so this lsass must have something to do with file system management also.
It is not a virus
lsass is a part of Microsoft Security is called by two services. These services are default configured to: adjust action recovery not allowed (via management mmc), service failure: restart pc. Service Name: SamSs (Security Accounts Manager) user data Service Name: Protected Storage (Protected Storage). private data ... whatever. Microsoft definition gives false impression, he is a smartass if security is not available, find another solution than this shit!
It is used for NT authentication
It is only a virus IF something infects you're computer. So, if you have never received a shutdown message you're safe, if you have, you're computer has a 75% chance of it being a virus.
lsass by SYSTEM is not a virus
More comments can be found here:
    (further information)

Rating chart

Summary: Average user rating of lsass.exe: based on 698 votes with 9 reviews. 258 users think lsass.exe is essential for Windows or an installed application. 29 users think it's probably harmless. 130 users think it's neither essential nor dangerous. 82 users suspect danger. 199 users think lsass.exe is dangerous and recommend removing it. 71 users don't grade lsass.exe ("not sure about it").

Do you have additional information?
What do you know about lsass.exe:
How would you rate it:
Link for more info:
Your Name:

Best practices for resolving lsass issues

A clean and tidy computer is the key requirement for avoiding problems with lsass. This means running a scan for malware, cleaning your hard drive using cleanmgr and sfc /scannow, uninstalling programs that you no longer need, checking for Autostart programs (using msconfig) and enabling Windows' Automatic Update. Always remember to perform periodic backups, or at least to set restore points.

Should you experience an actual problem, try to recall the last thing you did, or the last thing you installed before the problem appeared for the first time. Use the resmon command to identify the processes that are causing your problem. Even for serious problems, rather than reinstalling Windows, you are better off doing a repair of your installation, or in the case of Windows 8, executing the DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth command. This allows you to repair the operating system without losing data.

To help you analyze the lsass.exe process on your computer, the following programs have proven to be helpful: Security Task Manager displays all running Windows tasks, including embedded hidden processes, such as keyboard and browser monitoring or Autostart entries. A unique security risk rating indicates the likelihood of the process being potential spyware, malware or a Trojan. Malwarebytes Anti-Malware detects and removes sleeping spyware, adware, Trojans, keyloggers, malware and trackers from your hard drive.

Other processes

lsass.exe [all]