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Microsoft release Explorer patch

Friday, May 02 13:56:13

Microsoft has confirmed that a fix for the vulnerability in Internet Explorer (IE) that had received news coverage in recent days has gone live.

The fix has taken effect for most customers as an automatic update, which means that they do not have to take any action to receive it.

Those with automatic updates switched off are encouraged to turn them on to attain the fix. Such users are invited to click the "Check for Updates" button on the Windows Update portion of the Control Panel.

Adrienne Hall, General Manager, Trustworthy Computing, Microsoft, wrote in a blog post entitled "Updating Internet Explorer and Driving Security" on the company's website yesterday that the extensive news coverage of the vulnerability was driven in part by the fact that it coincided with the end of support for Windows XP.

"Of course we're proud that so many people loved Windows XP, but the reality is that the threats we face today from a security standpoint have really outpaced the ability to protect those customers using an operating system that dates back over a decade. This is why we've been encouraging Windows XP customers to upgrade to a modern, more secure operating system like Windows 7 or Windows 8.1," she wrote.

The update provided by Microsoft to fix the vulnerability encompasses all versions of Windows XP. This is an exception to the company's policy of not providing security updates for a product it had finished supporting. The decision was taken to provide the update for Windows XP as the vulnerability emerged in close proximity to the end of its support period.

Those using Windows XP are encouraged to move to a newer version of Windows and the latest version of Internet Explorer.

"Our modern operating systems provide more safety and security than ever before. The latest version of Internet Explorer has increased support for modern web standards, better performance, and expanded the ability to deliver an immersive experience from within the browser. In other words, cool stuff that you need even if you didn't know you need it," Hall wrote.