What is MSASCuiL.exe?

The genuine MSASCuiL.exe file is a software component of Microsoft Windows 10 by Microsoft Corporation.
Microsoft created the file "MSASCuiL.exe" in 2016 for the "Redstone 1" anniversary update of Windows 10. Its function is (or was) to display the icon for the Windows Defender antivirus program in the Windows taskbar, also known as the Windows Defender Center. (As early as May 2017, users alleged it has been merged into SecurityHealthService.) Residing in "C:\Program Files\Windows Defender", it runs at startup and can be disabled through Task Manager. Care must be taken not to confuse it with "msascui.exe", which is Windows Defender itself. On any older Windows OS, (8.1/8/7/Vista/XP), or in another location, it is disguised malware. Microsoft Corporation, located since 1979 in Redmond, Washington, USA, was founded April 4, 1975, in Albequerque, New Mexico, USA, by Paul Allen and Bill Gates. It is today the world's largest software maker by revenue despite repeated litigation and regulatory action in multiple countries.

MsASCUIL stands for Microsoft Antivirus Security Center User Interface Logo

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 MSASCuiL.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 MSASCuiL.exe related errors

MSASCuiL.exe file information

Windows Task Manager with MSASCuiL
MSASCuiL.exe process in Windows Task Manager

The process known as Windows Defender notification icon belongs to software Microsoft Windows Operating System by Microsoft (

Description: The original MSASCuiL.exe from Microsoft is an important part of Windows, but often causes problems. The MSASCuiL.exe file is located in a subfolder of "C:\Program Files" (common is C:\Program Files\Windows Defender\). Known file sizes on Windows 10/8/7/XP are 631,808 bytes (36% of all occurrences), 630,168 bytes and 6 more variants. 
MSASCuiL.exe is a Windows system file. MSASCuiL.exe is a trustworthy file from Microsoft. The program has no visible window. MSASCuiL.exe is able to monitor applications. Therefore the technical security rating is 3% dangerous; however you should also read the user reviews.

Uninstalling this variant: If there are any problems with MSASCuiL.exe, you may want to do the following:

Recommended: Identify MSASCuiL.exe related errors

Viruses with the same file name

Is MSASCuiL.exe a virus? No, it is not. The true MSASCuiL.exe file is a safe Microsoft Windows system process, called "Windows Defender notification icon". 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 such as TROJ_GEN.R03BC0PB918 (detected by TrendMicro), and Win64:Evo-gen [Susp] (detected by Avast).
To ensure that no rogue MSASCuiL.exe is running on your PC, click here to run a Free Malware Scan.

How to recognize suspicious variants? If MSASCuiL.exe is located in a subfolder of the user's profile folder, the security rating is 86% dangerous. The file size is 4,405,760 bytes (14% of all occurrences), 4,402,176 bytes and 5 more variants. There is no file information. The program has no visible window. It is not a Windows core file. MSASCuiL.exe is able to manipulate other programs, record keyboard and mouse inputs and monitor applications.

Important: Some malware camouflages itself as MSASCuiL.exe, particularly when located in the C:\Windows or C:\Windows\System32 folder. Therefore, you should check the MSASCuiL.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

its windows defender

Rating chart

Summary: Average user rating of MSASCuiL.exe: based on 10 votes with 2 user comments. 3 users think MSASCuiL.exe is essential for Windows or an installed application. 3 users think it's probably harmless. 2 users think it's neither essential nor dangerous. One user suspects danger. One user thinks MSASCuiL.exe is dangerous and recommends removing it. One user is not sure about it.

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Best practices for resolving MSASCuiL issues

A clean and tidy computer is the key requirement for avoiding problems with MSASCuiL. This means running a scan for malware, cleaning your hard drive using 1cleanmgr and 2sfc /scannow, 3uninstalling programs that you no longer need, checking for Autostart programs (using 4msconfig) and enabling Windows' 5Automatic 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 6resmon command to identify the processes that are causing your problem. Even for serious problems, rather than reinstalling Windows, you are better off repairing of your installation or, for Windows 8 and later versions, executing the 7DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth command. This allows you to repair the operating system without losing data.

To help you analyze the MSASCuiL.exe process on your computer, the following programs have proven to be helpful: ASecurity 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. BMalwarebytes Anti-Malware detects and removes sleeping spyware, adware, Trojans, keyloggers, malware and trackers from your hard drive.

Other processes

MSASCuiL.exe [all]