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IE6 Finally Disappearing From The Web, Study Says

After nine-year run, vulnerable browser is finally being replaced, according to Zscaler

The Internet Explorer 6 browser, which has been the bane of many security professionals for years, is finally on its way out, according to a new report.

According to Zscaler's "State of the Web -- Q4 2010" report, which was issued last week, the buggy IE6 is finally on its last legs.

"After a nine-year run, we're finally witnessing the death of IE6 in the enterprise," the report says. "IE6 usage has dropped consistently in favor of the more secure, recent versions. While this trend has also been occurring in the enterprise, it has been delayed due to the many legacy Web applications that enterprises continue to maintain.

"This has been a concerning security risk, given the lack of many modern security features in IE6," the report continues. "Fortunately, 2010 saw a dramatic drop in IE6 usage. IE7 and 8 both surpassed IE6 in Q3 and Q4 of 2010, and IE8 is now the most dominant browser in the enterprise."

The way employees use their browsers is also changing, Zscaler says. "Facebook accounted for 47.65 percent of all Q4 Web 2.0 transactions serviced for our enterprise users," the report says. "This is a rather remarkable percentage when considering that we're dealing with corporate, as opposed to personal Web traffic."

Gmail was the next-most widely used Web 2.0 application, accounting for 9.1 percent of traffic, according to the report.

Many companies are also dealing with a wider variety of traffic types, Zscaler says. "Many assume that Web traffic is dominated by HTML content," the report states. "While that may have been true a decade ago, the media-rich, dynamic Web applications available today are filled with images ... and active content. For the fourth quarter, JPEG (13.08 percent) and GIF (12.1 percent) images alone accounted for a quarter of total Web transactions."

Have a comment on this story? Please click "Comment" below. If you'd like to contact Dark Reading's editors directly, send us a message. Tim Wilson is Editor in Chief and co-founder of Dark Reading.com, UBM Tech's online community for information security professionals. He is responsible for managing the site, assigning and editing content, and writing breaking news stories. Wilson has been recognized as one ... View Full Bio

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