Homeland Security: Avoid Internet Explorer
Feds suggest switching browsers until flaw is fixed
By Rob Quinn, Newser Staff
Posted Apr 29, 2014 4:38 AM CDT
Updated Apr 29, 2014 7:50 AM CDT
Windows XP users are now on their own, Microsoft warns.   (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma, File)

(Newser) – A security flaw uncovered in Internet Explorer is so serious that users should consider switching to a different browser for now, the Department of Homeland Security yesterday warned. "We are currently unaware of a practical solution to this problem," said the department's Computer Readiness Team, which recommends a browser change "until an official update is available," reports USA Today, which notes that users can also avoid hackers by turning off Adobe Flash.

Microsoft says that so far, it is only aware of "limited, targeted attacks" exploiting the flaw, which allows hackers to install malware on vulnerable computers, the New York Times reports. Users of newer versions of Windows can probably expect a security patch soon, but XP users may be out of luck, since Microsoft stopped supporting the operating system earlier this month. Lance Ulanoff at Mashable, however, says the flaw is so serious that it could be a mistake not to offer XP users one final patch. "Windows XP users could be so disenfranchised that they simply switch to Macs and Microsoft ends up losing far more than it can gain by finally getting everyone off Windows XP," he writes. Security firm Symantec, meanwhile, has offered XP users some protection tools on its blog.

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Showing 3 of 56 comments
Charles P
Apr 30, 2014 11:25 AM CDT
Homeland security offering advice is like ASKING A CON MAN/ RAPIST or MASS MURDERER WHAT HE/THEY WOULD LIKE YOU TO DO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WHY LISTEN TO THE CROOKS WHO CREATED MOST OF THE VIRUS' THAT EXIST TODAY???????????????????????? WHY LISTEN TO THE CROOKS WHO ARE THE BIGGEST TROUBLEMAKERS ON THE WEB?????????????? Why not just WALK UP AND SURRENDER TO THE CORRUPT FEDS!!
TwoSheds
Apr 30, 2014 2:04 AM CDT
Homeland security says quit using Internet Explorer because we can't see what you are doing on there. I don't use Windows, but I think a lot of problems can be avoided by using a hosts file that won't allow connections to questionable sites. http://winhelp2002.mvps.org/hosts.htm
K.KRANK
Apr 30, 2014 1:27 AM CDT
at this point y is anyone using Windows anymore? M$FT went out of their way coding Internet Exploder into Windows 98 way back when b/c they "had to" (make IE faster to start than Netscape Navigator back then, but really the reason was to prevent Windows users from installing Navigator or Opera at all in Windows by slowing them down when they started so much it would deter users from running them at all) & that got them in trouble for anti-competitive behavior w/the Feds, an anti-trust trial & ordered broken into 2 companies by the late Penfield Jackson https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microsoft_antitrust it's amazing to me anyone is still using Windows anything today lol