Viper Squad Ten

[ Monday, June 28, 2004 ]

A Firefox zealot speaks out
Starbuck [18:58] Comments: 0 []
Good to see that the latest Internet Explorer vulnerability is getting plentiful publicity. A nasty but not unexpected trend.

The good news is that there is a simple fix that all Windows users can apply straight away to ensure a safer existence on the web: Stop using Internet Explorer. A short download of a rival browser should futureproof you somewhat in terms of security, and you'll probably find that its faster and more flexible than Microsoft's shanty-browser. Personally I find Firefox is a pretty fantastic replacement (and the IE View extension adds an option to the right-click menu allowing you to open a link in IE, should you stumble across a poorly-written incompatible page. Such as this one.) Should you decide against anything Mozilla because of its stupid name (you might, for example, have an aversion to Morrissey), you could always try Opera.

I'm serious. Do it now. Choose choice. Having myself been the victim of malious code on an innocent website, I know how nasty it tastes to get unexpectedly hit like this. Its like being mugged - it feels even worse if you weren't foolishly waving your wallet in the air. And I was lucky - I was safely sitting behind my Zonealarm firewall, my security patches were obsessively up-to-date, and my brave antivirus-monitor kicked in to trap the wee beastie that was trying to squeeze through the kicked-in cat-flap. Or something. It still "hurt my feelings", however. Thank frack it didn't just sit in the background, watching my every keystroke, as I planned World Domination. Mwah hah hah haaagh!

I was less lucky at work the other day, when Backdoor.Rbot.gen crept stealthily onto my unpatched machine. It scared the living bejesus out of me; not the worm itself, but Kaspersky AV's response to it - SCREECHING like a hunger-crazed banshee in order to alert me to its discovery! It made me jump halfway across the room, quite liderally.

In fact, don't just ditch IE. I say, ditch computers full-stop. They're evil. Choose the abbacus.

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