Internet Explorer contains many security and privacy settings to help users when surfing the Internet. With the explosion of Internet based worms and viruses, it is a great idea to understand the security settings on your own computer so you can protect yourself. This combined with a firewall and antivirus software will help protect you from the wild out there.
Internet Explorer supports many security ?zones?, or areas you will be using Internet Explorer, and supports different security settings for each zone. You can customize the security in IE to support many different configurations or requirements.
Open Internet Explorer. Go to the Tools menu and select Internet Options. Click on the Security tab.
At the top, you see each zone in which security can be customized. The Internet zone affects sites on the Internet which you haven't placed in the Trusted or Restricted zones. At the bottom, you see the ?Security level for this zone?, that is the security level which the Internet is currently configured at, Medium.
There are five security levels you should be aware of: Low, Medium-low, Medium, High, and Custom.
Low is designed with the minimum safeguards and prompts. Most content is run or downloaded without any prompts. Active content, such as scripting, runs without prompting you. This setting should probably never be used, it should only be used on sites which are completely trusted.
Medium-low is the same as Medium but with less frequent prompts. It is appropriate for your local intranet sites or sites you completely trust.
Medium is the default security level for the Internet. It is the most functional while preventing things like ?unsigned ActiveX controls? from being downloaded.
High is the security level for Restricted sites by default. It prevents most potentially harmful items from being downloaded and provides the least functionality.
Custom is the security level when you have changed specific security settings in one of the prepackaged security levels.Click on the Custom Level button to change specific settings within the framework of the current security level.
Browse through the list of the settings and peruse the functionality you can enable or disable through the security settings. You should be familiar with this list and the items you can customize in the security options.
Click on the Privacy tab of Internet Options. This section allows you to customize the handling of personally-identifiable information ? such as website cookies. Years ago, cookies got a bad rap from websites which track their users, however, from a website perspective they are very easy to use to allow for a better experience for users. There are six different levels you can set your cookie handling from Block All Cookies to Accept All Cookies. In addition, you can change options manually in with the Advanced button and also Edit individual sites to manual tweak the cookie handling on your machine.
Security is a very important part of any operating system and understanding the security functions of Internet Explorer is essential to securing your machine.