Microsoft is issuing an update to Internet Explorer today that patches a very serious security issue in its browser. This issue came to light over the weekend and what made it especially problematic was that it involved every version from IE 6 forward.
Windows XP users, however, can’t update their browser beyond version 8 and Microsoft isn’t patching XP anymore at this point in its life cycle. For this bug, however, Microsoft has made an exception and it is patching IE on Windows XP as well.
“The security of our products is something we take incredibly seriously. When we saw the first reports about this vulnerability we decided to fix it, fix it fast, and fix it for all our customers. The update that does this goes live today at 10 a.m. PST,” said Adrienne Hall, General Manager, Microsoft Trustworthy Computing in a statement today.
The update will take place automatically and users will not need to take any action themselves to get this patch.
The security issue allows hackers to execute code on an affected machine remotely if users visited a malicious site. IE 10 and 11 users were relatively safe thanks to the enhanced Protected Mode these browsers offer. Older versions of IE, which are still widely used, don’t offer this feature.