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Internet Explorer has supported many of the old versions of their browser for years on end with plenty of people unaware of how outdated their browsers are. The current version available is IE 11 but the one with the most market share is IE 8, which came out 5 years ago. All of the other browsers like Mozilla and Chrome regularly phase out old versions as soon as the new one is released.

Internet Explorer Catching Up

Finally, IE decided to phase out older versions of their browser. However, this will not happen until January 12, 2016. Why IE decided to give themselves a year and a half to do this is not immediately clear but possibly they need to figure out departmental changes. With so many old versions available, lots of developers have dedicated their time to patching up bugs, something many people using old IE may not realize. Often, the old browsers are the same ones that people’s PCs came loaded with and never got updated. The same problem exists with Mac users and Safari.

Why You Shouldn’t Use Old Browsers

New browsers exist because they contain fixes for problems that arose in previous versions. Many times it is to create a stronger defense against vulnerabilities and viruses. If you are using an old browser, you may have experienced the browser crashing, viruses, security issues, and slow load times.

Many new websites use HTML5 and CSS to stylize the look of their site. Old browsers aren’t able to translate this information well and it isn’t surprising that one website looks completely different on Chrome than IE. Plugins, images, and videos also will not show up because they are not compatible.

As technology quickly changes and improves, using an old browser to surf the web where internet hackers are much craftier is like using an old flip phone from the early 2000s. Anyone could open it up and get your vital contact information and you miss the text messages and pictures that people send you.

Find Out What Version You Have

If you aren’t sure which browser version you have, you can easily find out.

  • For IE & Mozilla: In the top menu, click “Help”. Then click “About Internet Explorer” or “About Mozilla Firefox.”
  • For Chrome: Click the menu icon on the top right that looks like three bars stacked on each other. Then click “About Google Chrome.”
  • For Safari: Click the menu then click the “Help” tab. Then click “About Google Chrome.”

This is where you can find your version and if there is an update available, it will notify you of it. The best thing you can do for yourself, your browser, and your computer is to regularly check this for new browser versions and allow the update to happen so you don’t have to worry about errors, crashes, and security threats.

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