Internet Explorer Exploits Reach New High in 2014

We are more than half way through 2014, and Microsoft’s browser has already managed to hit a new high in the amount of reported vulnerabilities. If we look at other browsers such as Chrome and Firefox, IE is reporting more than twice the amount of security vulnerabilities, and security is the number one reason people are choosing to go with alternative browser choices.

Looking at Bromium’s report from the National Virus Database, IE’s known software flaws have almost doubled for the year. For the first half of the year, it has already gone up to 133, when last year for the entire year they only recorded 130.

Chrome and Firefox on the other hand have drastically improved their security since last year. Both of the browsers have only recorded 50 vulnerabilities for this year, when last year it was 200 for Firefox and 150 for Chrome, respectively.

There have also been three zero day flaws for IE in 2014, which is the same for Firefox but popular browser Chrome has 0 for the entire year.

Some other notable software mentioned in Bromium’s report, were Adobe Flash Player, Microsoft office, and the always flawed Java. Flash Player and Microsoft both reported low numbers for security vulnerabilities in 2014. However, Java has already recorded 50 flaws for the first half of this year. Surprisingly, it has yet to report a single zero-day flaw this year, and Bromium attributes this to all the work that was done patching security flaws in 2013 and security counter-measures, such as disabling java completely.

There doesn’t seem to be an explanation as to why IE has had this rise in vulnerabilities for the year. Although many think with the release of the version 11 of IE, also came many new exploits.

“Web browsers have always been a favorite avenue of attack, but we are now seeing that hackers are not only getting better at attacking Internet Explorer, they are doing it more frequently.” said Bromium’s researchers.

At the very least, Microsoft has shown with this new IE release that they are improving on their response time when it comes to patching new browser versions. It took them less than 5 days with IE11, when in the past it has taken 13 days for IE10, and an unbelievable 80+ days for IE versions 7 through 9.

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