In late April 2014, a major vulnerability was found in Microsoft’s Internet Explorer effecting versions 6 through to 11. Known as “Use-after-free”, the bug allows unauthorised access to computer systems through the application.
In essence, Internet Explorer will not warn a user when they click a malicious link nor will it attempt to block it. This allows malicious applications, such as spyware and malware which we’ve all experienced, to bypass the browser and install onto the users’ computer without them knowing.
The bug effects users on Windows XP, Vista, 7, RT, 8 and 8.1 using Internet Explorer versions 6 through to 11.
Government security agencies have strongly advised people to switch to a different browser until a fix is found for the browser.
There are a number of other browsers that are not affected by this bug and offer better security by warning users when a malicious link is clicked or blocking malicious content altogether including:
If you are a Macintosh/OSX user or a Linux user then you shouldn’t need to worry about the bug affecting you as Internet Explorer is a Windows only/proprietary application that comes default with the Windows Platform.