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Stop the Madness, Switch Web Browsers Now

There's continued evidence that running Microsoft Internet Explorer is a security risk. According to ZDNet, Microsoft has issued cumulative security patches aimed at solving problems, but the patches don't provide as much protection as they appear to at first glance. This is just the latest half measure Microsoft has taken to close security gaps in this important piece of software.

Anything you can do to deviate from the standard configuration of Windows, Outlook (or Outlook Express), and Internet Explorer limits the risk that your machine will be exploited successfully. CTDATA recommends switching browsers and email clients where possible.

A nice alternative for both web and email is Mozilla, the Open Source web browser that evolved from the Netscape Communicator product line. News Factor Network reports that "Mozilla is overtaking Internet Explorer in terms of features, if not yet market share". According to the article, Mozilla incorporates ad blocking features and W3C standards that Internet Explorer does not.

Mozilla has the added advantage of being Open Source. This is particularly important when security risk assessment must be done. When a security issue is suspected with Mozilla, independent researchers can refer to the source code to determine the scope of the impact. With IE, these independent researchers must do all of their investigation through inference or reverse engineering. This increases the time associated with finding and reporting problems with the software product.

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