Popular Web browser Microsoft Internet Explorer has been hit by a vulnerability that makes it highly vulnerable to attack, Recode reported. The bug was discovered on April 26 and reportedly could impact up to 56 percent of Internet Explorer’s current functionality. The vulnerability comes in the form of a remote code execution, meaning that a hacker will not only be able to infiltrate, but also to run his or her own malicious software. This could create an easy channel through which cybercriminals can dupe Internet Explorer users into going to a malware-laden website, according to a warning released by Microsoft.
“An attacker could host a specially crafted website that is designed to exploit this vulnerability through Internet Explorer and then convince a user to view the website,” the company said.
The attack space opened up by news of the vulnerability puts significant pressure on users, particularly businesses, to equip themselves with the tools to prevent an attack. According to Microsoft, these preventive measures should include the strengthening of safeguarding measures within a computing platform, including the installation of anti-malware software. What this endpoint security software does is work on an enterprise’s behalf to make sure that a user does not experience a criminal intrusion.
Hackers are already seeking to exploit flaw
The time is now for businesses using Internet Explorer to strengthen their security, since as The Washington Post pointed out, hackers are already finding ways to take advantage of the vulnerability. Microsoft reported that there have been a limited series of attacks since the vulnerability was announced, and that these incursions were mainly centered on versions 9 through 11. In order for these attacks to work, a user has to take the bait by either opening a malicious email or clicking a link that will redirect them to a malware site. But all too often users will fall into this trap, since to many, a malicious email can seem no different than an ordinary message. That is because cybercriminals are getting better than ever at disguising their attacks, and operating under the veil of legitimacy.
Microsoft is taking measures to contain the vulnerability, but in the meantime it is not withholding the potential severity an attack can have on a computing platform.
“An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could gain the same user rights as the current user,” Microsoft told its customers.
Vulnerability Detection Software can help mitigate potential risks associated with endpoint weakness
The thought of an easy intrusion through Internet Explorer is doubtless an unsettling one to companies that use the service, but fortunately there are measures enterprises can take to prevent against getting breached. One key strategy is to enact strong endpoint protection software. Businesses that choose to go this route can rest easy knowing that their platforms are safe from attack. It does not take much for an employee to accidentally click a link that could threaten an entire company’s security. But with proper malware prevention, that link may never land in an employee’s inbox.