22 March 2009
…both speed and security are seriously better in IE8…The most significant effort involves expanding IE’s detection efforts past its current ability to identify phishing sites. The browser can now also flag suspected or known malware sites, or sites attempting to infect visitors with malware. The need for SmartScreen is great; during development, Barzdukas says, Microsoft found that infectious sites outnumbered phishing sites by a charming 10:1.
And, for this reviewer at least, IE8 passes the very important mom test:
In our tests, the detection was effective, correctly jumping on sites we knew to be infected with various bits of feral code. The warning we received, designed to support that second goal of protecting users from themselves, was perhaps even more effective than a harried tester would have liked — if the browser sees that you’re headed for a site already known to be problematic, it throws up a bright-red page warning you to turn back to your home page or inviting you to get more information. What you can’t do is easily go anywhere else; there’s no “OK” button to click. That design choice may have been a bit unnerving for a reviewer, but I’m personally planning to install the browser on my mother’s machine for that feature alone.
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