The new Internet Explorer vulnerability has prompted both the United States and United Kingdom governments to issue a world-wide warning – STOP using Internet Explorer. The alarming recommendation is for all the versions of Internet Explorer browsers from the past 10 years.
Appropriately termed “the zero-day exploit” due to the fact that it is an unpatched flaw and previously unknown. This exploit allows hackers to attack your computer, installing malware without your permission. That malware can be used to gain control of your computer, track your online behavior, and worst such as steal personal data. The flaw is being used with a known Flash-based technique to attack defense and financial organizations in the U.S. by means of Internet Explorer 9, 10, and 11. However, the exploit is present in Internet Explorer 6 and above. Ever wondered why you can’t view Flash-based content on any Apple mobile device such as the IPhone, IPad, etc? Now you know. Apple doesn’t want to open their code to vulnerabilities such as this.
It is recommended that Internet users take this warning seriously. It’s a serious enough security flaw that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the U.K. Computer Emergency Readiness Team in England are warning you to not use Internet Explorer until a fix is found.
Normally, anti-virus software and patches keep computers up-to-date and relatively safe from virus attacks. Not this time. Anti-virus software and patches will not work for this type of exploit. For this type of security flaw, if you browse the Internet using any version of the browser, click a malicious link or website, and especially if your computer is running Windows XP operating system, your computer will most likely be affected and you won’t even know it.
Basically, why use this browser anyway with all the more stable, reliable, and well-coded browsers such as Firefox, Safari, and Google Chrome readily available to you. However, should you still prefer to use Internet Explorer browser versus one of the aforementioned, Microsoft is fiercely working to find a fix for this security breach.