The Risks of Using Outdated Web Browsers

What you don’t know about using outdated web browsers could prove extremely risky for the sake of your business. A recentKaspersky Lab report found that: “23 percent of users are running old or outdated web browsers, creating huge gaps in online security.” When you consider the sheer number of Internet users on a global scale, that’s millions of people operating at a considerable risk by not updating their browsers.


What’s the Big Deal about Updating?


Updating browsers can be a bit of a pain for many computer users—especially those who primarily use their computers for work-related matters. One reason is that it does take time and reboots are a necessary part of the process. This means that people who are “on the clock” and often facing things like deadlines and productivity quotas must invest a little bit of time, on a regular basis, to the task of shutting everything down, installing the update and rebooting the computer—at least that’s the traditional way of doing things.


Many popular browsers (Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Internet Explorer etc.) today are going out of their way to make updating easier so that you don’t have to reboot the entire computer unless there’s a major update. Most of the time, you’ll only need to restart your browser. The other side of that coin is that the amount of downtime you’ll experience with frequent browser updates is minimal compared to the downtime you’ll experience if a cyber-attack or Trojan horse virus infection hits your system.


What Types of Risks do Businesses Face by Using Outdated Browsers?


The major risks come in the form of risks of cyber-attacks and Trojan horse viruses—particular in conjunction with visiting sites that are infested with malware. These programs are no laughing matter however. They can wreak havoc on your computers, destroy productivity, and compromise the integrity of private information about your customers.


One thing businesses may not realize is that it’s not enough to simply use an updated version of your browser for your Internet work.  According to ItProPortal: “Even if someone is using an up to date version of Google Chrome, having an older version of Internet Explorer lingering on the desktop can leave security holes open.” This means that you need to remove any browsers that aren’t being regularly updated from your computer.


How Can You Protect Your Business from Outdated Web Browsers?


Prevention is the first step in the right direction. Change company policies to require employees to get rid of outdated and unused browsers and to compel them to regularly update their browsers whenever it is recommended. You might even consider building a little extra time in weekly work schedules to accommodate the occasional ten-minute reboot process for browser updates. Another step you’ll want to take, without question, is investing in cyber liability insurance. This will protect your business in the event that a cyber-attack of any origin (not simply a browser-based security issue) compromises your business computers.


Cyber security is becoming a matter of great importance for businesses today. No matter what line of work your business is in, it’s in the best interest of your business and your customers to take the threats of cyber-attacks seriously.