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Microsoft Makes IE Security Push Through Passport

Microsoft Corp. ushered in the new year with a proactive effort to get users to secure their Internet Explorer browsers, which were recently shown to have several newly discovered security vulnerabilities.

On Tuesday, Jan. 1, Microsoft sent e-mail to users of its .NET Passport services, pointing users to a Web page with a tool assessing the vulnerability of their browsers.

The tool encouraged users to move to IE 5.5 or IE 6.0, as older versions of Internet Explorer are no longer supported.

Once browsers were upgraded, the tool pointed users to its 58th security bulletin of 2001, which contains the latest IE roll-up patch.

The patch guards against a critical new vulnerability that allows an attacker to configure a Web page or e-mail that can cause the attacker's code to be executed on a user's machine.

The decision to send the Passport blast represents one of the wider nets Microsoft could cast. The company claimed 165 million Passport accounts as of September.

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.

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