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ie7logoA big vulnerability has been found in Internet Explorer. You don’t even have to know what version of Internet Explorer you are using because all the current versions from 6 to 11 are affected. If you are clicking on the “big blue E” to get on the Internet, you are affected.

NOTE:

Microsoft has finally patched the hole that was talked about in this article, so the risk has been dissipated. However, you may want to read this just to see that it is important to have an alternative browser to use in cases like this.

Both the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the UK National Computer Emergency Response Team have issued advisories that say this security hole could lead to "the complete compromise" of an affected system. Both are advising people to use an alternative Internet browser until Microsoft can correct the problem.

This is really BIG because the NetMarketShare research firm reports that 55 percent of the world’s computer users are using one of these versions of Internet Explorer.

You should immediately switch to an alternative browser like Chrome or Firefox. These browsers are free to download, but be careful. If you simply Google to find them, the first several results will be ads that will download unwanted programs along with the browsers. You must make sure that you are downloading the programs from the manufacturer. In the case of Chrome you will look at the address to make sure it is google.com and for Firefox, you will look for Mozilla.org.

To make it easier for you. Here are the correct links:

Chrome - https://www.google.com/intl/en/chrome/browser/

Firefox - https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/new/

For anyone who is using a newer operating system like Vista, Windows 7, or Windows 8, Microsoft will be issuing a patch, hopefully soon. For anyone still using Windows XP, there will be no patch making staying on Windows XP more dangerous than ever.