The sheer volume of security problems with Internet Explorer has
prompted TurboTas to consider a new strategy for protecting businesses.
It’s simply to install two browsers. Bear with me because it’s not as
daft as it sounds. I began this train when I read yet another
vulnerability with IE. The otherwise respectable security website
provided as a fix ‘Change Browser’.It may have been flippant, it may have smart, but it’s not helpful.
Now, I have to say that I don’t actually like IE. I only use it when I
have no choice like on a machine that’s not mine or where policy
dictates I must use it. That having been said, there are some important
points to make about it.
IE’s main problem stem from the high level of integration that it
has with other of Microsoft core components. Firstly, it ties in very
closely with the OS. Secondly, it uses some poorly secured technologies
like ActiveX and Active scripting.
And herein lies the rub: Businesses do like IE because
it lets them deliver rich applications to their employees in a
controlled environment: they make use of these enabling technologies.
Application development time is reduced as the app vendors can write
big chunks of code that live on the users PC: Kind of like treating the
Browser as the delivery vessel for the App rather than the container
the App runs in.
All this makes it really hard for a business to stop using IE. Things like Oracle eBusiness suite would stop working.
The fix becomes obvious: Use IE for internal websites and use Mozilla or better still Firefox for Internet traffic.
The stunningly obvious step here is to remove the choice
from the user: make sure that technical controls separate the two:
Firefox is unable to contact internal sites and IE is unable to contact
Firefox is doing you a great favour here: It runs on enough
platforms that it can’t afford to be inextricably linked to the OS. It
displays HTML and runs Plugins. Period.
Don’t let’s get carried away here: Firefox still has bugs. It’s
also build to encounter security problems. Nevertheless, it’s a sight
better than surfing the net with IE: You take your PC’s life in your
hands at the moment.
Firefox has unexpected advantages to. The most noticeable is
speed: It loads fast. It has ‘tabbed’ browsing, and best of all if you,
like TurboTas run multiple OS’, you et the same browser look and feel
on all the OS’s you care to use.