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Disable Accessibility Options shortcut

By Morgan Rowe | 04 Dec 2013

If you hold down Command, Option and F5, a window will appear that gives you accessibility options. Although this is a great feature that gives you quick and easy access to the accessibility options, you may want to disable this functionality to prevent your users from enabling options like "Slow Keys", or "Sticky Keys".

Disable Accessibility Options shortcut - Accessibility Options window

Disable shortcut for the users

If you're using Workgroup Manager to manage your user account preferences, you can create a file named com.apple.symbolichotkeys.plist and paste this XML into the file:

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<!DOCTYPE plist PUBLIC "-//Apple//DTD PLIST 1.0//EN" "http://www.apple.com/DTDs/PropertyList-1.0.dtd">
<plist version="1.0">
<dict>
  <key>AppleSymbolicHotKeys</key>
  <dict>
    <key>162</key>
    <dict>
      <key>enabled</key>
      <false/>
      <key>value</key>
      <dict>
        <key>type</key>
        <string>standard</string>
        <key>parameters</key>
        <array>
          <integer>65535</integer>
          <integer>96</integer>
          <integer>1572864</integer>
        </array>
      </dict>
    </dict>
  </dict>
</dict>
</plist>

Apply this preference to all of your users within Workgroup Manager.

This disables the Command, Option and F5 shortcut.

However, this only disables the shortcut to the functionality, and also doesn't prevent users from doing this on the loginwindow.

Disable UniversalAccessControl globally

You can prevent this by renaming the UniversalAccessControl application. Open Terminal (/Applications/Utilities) and run the following command:

sudo mv /System/Library/CoreServices/UniversalAccessControl.app /System/Library/CoreServices/UniversalAccessControl-backup.app

This prevents the application from being executed when the shortcut is performed.

Enable UniversalAccessControl globally

As this method is non-destructive, you can reenable the functionality by running this command:

sudo mv /System/Library/CoreServices/UniversalAccessControl-backup.app /System/Library/CoreServices/UniversalAccessControl.app

Mass deploy

You can mass deploy this modification using Apple Remote Desktop.

Disable Accessibility Options shortcut - Mass deploy solution using Apple Remote Desktop