Users of Microsoft’s Internet Explorer web browser are at risk after a major security flaw was discovered.
The bug could allow hackers to gain control of a victim’s computer and Microsoft admitted there had already been “limited, targeted attacks” to exploit it.
The flaw affects versions six to 11 of the popular browser, which is pre-loaded on Windows computers and accounts for more than half of the world’s browser usage.
Microsoft said hackers attempting to exploit the flaw would have to host a “specially crafted website”, before luring potential victims to the site to gain access to their computer.
It warned: “An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could gain the same user rights as the current user.”
Gaining user rights would allow the hacker to do everything from adding and removing software to changing passwords.
The flaw was pointed out to Microsoft by security firm FireEye.
One simple temporary solution to avoid the vulnerability is to switch to an alternative browser such as Google Chrome or Mozilla’s Firefox.
Microsoft is scrambling to patch the problem but those still running Windows XP will not receive any updates to fix the bug.
The company discontinued support for the 12-year-old XP operating system earlier this month.
Source : Yahoo