IE7 Feature Goes Buggy

If your IE7 browser starts scarfing CPU when you hit Ajax-laden sites, you may need to disable your anti-phishing filter

The new and much-anticipated anti-phishing filter in Microsoft's Internet Explorer 7 browser may slow your PC's performance when you visit some Ajax-heavy sites, according to a Microsoft developer.

The workaround for the problem is to add the affected sites to "trusted sites" and then disable IE7's anti-phishing feature in the trusted sites zone as well if necessary, Microsoft developer Junfeng Zhang said in his Microsoft Software Developers Network (MSDN) blog. Ajax-heavy sites include Windows Live Mail Beta, Yahoo Mail Beta, Google Reader, and Microsoft Outlook Web Access, he says.

Microsoft's IE7 team is looking into the possible performance problem, according to a Microsoft spokesperson. "As a policy, Microsoft does not recommend turning off the phishing filter's protection, but if customers want to customize performance on certain sites they can add sites to the trusted sites zone and turn off the phishing filter in the trusted sites zone," the spokesperson says.

What do you mean, disable anti-phishing in IE7?

Anti-phishing is one of the hot new features Microsoft added to its browser, and it's already considered a must-have in today's phishy Web climate. Randy Abrams, director of technical education for Eset, who has been implementing IE7 himself recently, says you shouldn't disable the anti-phishing filter unless you experience any problems with these sites.

"If disabling the anti-phishing filter does not solve the problem, then re-enable it immediately," he says. "Set up a reminder to re-enable the filter so that if a patch is issued that fixes the problem, you will remember to re-enable the filter."

Given that the complex Ajax technology is still fairly new on Websites, Abrams says, it's not surprising to be finding such glitches with it.

One MSDN blog participant had already suggested that rather than disable the anti-phishing filter, you could add the Ajax-heavy sites as "trusted sites." That would preclude the filter from getting bogged down on the sites.

Disabling the IE7 anti-phishing filter requires restarting the browser as well, according to Zhang's blog.

— Kelly Jackson Higgins, Senior Editor, Dark Reading

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