Australian, British and US governments have advised computer users to use alternatives to Microsoft's Internet Explorer browser until the company fixes a security flaw that hackers used to launch attacks. The Internet Explorer bug, disclosed over the weekend, is the first high-profile computer threat to emerge since Microsoft stopped providing security updates for Windows XP earlier this month. That means PCs running the 13-year-old operating system will remain unprotected, even after Microsoft releases updates to defend against it. Until Microsoft does fix the flaw, versions 6 to 11 of Internet Explorer remain vulnerable across all operating systems.
The Department of Homeland Security's US Computer Emergency Readiness Team said in an advisory that the vulnerability could lead to "the complete compromise" of an affected system.
The Australian government's Stay Smart Online alert service said users could deploy two different types of temporary fixes as suggested by Microsoft. But it said a simpler alternative was to download and install a different browser such as Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox.
There you have it, ladies and gentlemen. If you are still using Microsoft Internet Explorer for whatever reason, it's in your best interest to stop doing so immediately.
Here are links to alternative browsers - download and install one right away: