2.7.4 IE Security Features

By Val Bakh 2.7.4 Internet Explorer security features. The Internet has become an integral part our lives. The Internet allows us to access e-mails, instant messaging, telephones, television, banking, shopping and research. It is so ingrained in almost everything that we do that we don’t even consider it an external entity, or something we need to connect to to make use of it. Unless, of course, something goes wrong. The Internet is more than a convenience. It can also be a danger.
You are aware of the fact that many people around you are strangers when you are in a crowded place like a shopping mall or busy street. You wouldn’t shout your name, address or date of birth to everyone. You won’t openly fumble with your wallet. If you do find a bank machine and decide to do some banking there, you will make sure that no one is watching you as you enter your PIN. You’ll also ensure that you never forget to take out your card when you are finished. Also, you won’t leave behind any receipts the machine printed for your. You can surf the Internet from your home without the hustle and bustle of a crowd. However, that doesn’t mean there aren’t people watching you or that you can trust everyone on the internet. To ensure your safety, you should take certain precautions.
Windows 7 comes with Internet Explorer 8 (IE8) browser. You can also upgrade to IE9. IE can collect information about your browsing habits, your text, your choices when you are asked for your age, gender and country. It is important to be careful about who you give your information to. Even if you’re careful, there are still dangers that may not be obvious.
A stranger approaching you on the street to inform you that your bank has somehow messed with your accounts and that you need to go with him or her immediately to fix it, you would immediately see a red flag. It all feels and looks a little different when you get an e-mail claiming to be from your bank. The message basically says the same thing as the stranger. The e-mail message contains a link to your bank’s login page. You are lulled into a false sense security and enter your account number. The confirmation that everything is now fixed and that your account access has been restored allows you to relax. It is unlikely that your money will be available the next time you log into your account. This is also known as “phishing.” A Web site may ask you to provide personal information for a legitimate purpose. The recipient can then use that information to impersonate your identity to open credit accounts and take out loans under your name.
IE has a security feature that protects you from such scams. It was called Phishing Filter in IE7; it has been renamed SmartScreen Filter in IE8 and later versions. It now includes protection against malware. When the filter is enabled, IE sends Microsoft every URL you are about to navigate to. Microsoft then compares the URL against a list of known malicious sites. IE will warn you if the site has been removed from the blacklist. SmartScreen Filter can be used to heuristically examine the site for signs of malicious behavior if it is not on the list. The filter blocks all attempts to download files known to be malicious.