Google yanks IE6 love from web apps

Do as we say, not as we did


Google is pulling IE6 support from Google Apps, its online suite of office applications.

On Friday, with a post to the official Google enterprise blog, the search giant cum world power announced that it will yank IE6 support from both Google Docs and its Google Sites wiki service on March 1.

"The web has evolved in the last ten years, from simple text pages to rich, interactive applications including video and voice," Google said. "Unfortunately, very old browsers cannot run many of these new features effectively. So to help ensure your business can use the latest, most advanced web apps, we encourage you to update your browsers as soon as possible."

The announcement came two weeks after Google told the world that December cyber-attacks originating from China pilfered unspecified intellectual property from the company. Microsoft later admitted that the attacks - which targeted as many as 33 other companies - exploited a then un-patched flaw in Internet Explorer 6.

Yes, this means Google employees were running IE6 - the eight-year-old security-challenged browser that refuses to die. Google now offers its own web browser, Chrome, but it seems even Googlers couldn't shake the habit of using the Microsoft browser that achieved near ubiquity on the back of Redmond's Windows XP operating system.

According to the latest numbers from research outfit Net Applications, Internet Explorer 6 is still used by roughly 20 per cent of all netizens.

With its blog post, Mountain View also said that Google Docs and Sites will soon jettison support for other aging browsers. As of March 1, Docs and Sites will only support Internet Explorer 7 or later, Chrome 4.0 or later, Firefox 3.0 or later, or Safari 3.0 or later. "Many other companies have already stopped supporting older browsers like Internet Explorer 6.0 as well as browsers that are not supported by their own manufacturers," the company wrote.

"We’re also going to begin phasing out our support, starting with Google Docs and Google Sites. As a result you may find that from March 1 key functionality within these products - as well as new Docs and Sites features - won’t work properly in older browsers."

According to security researchers, the December cyber attacks outed by Google exploited Internet Explorer 6 specifically. Researchers have since demonstrated proof-of-concept attacks on IE7 and IE8 that used the same vulnerability, but this sort of thing was not used in the sweeping attacks on Google and 33 other outfits. Microsoft has since fixed the vuln with an emergency IE patch. ®

Similar topics


Other stories you might like

  • Google Pixel 6, 6 Pro Android 12 smartphone launch marred by shopping cart crashes

    Chocolate Factory talks up Tensor mobile SoC, Titan M2 security ... for those who can get them

    Google held a virtual event on Tuesday to introduce its latest Android phones, the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro, which are based on a Google-designed Tensor system-on-a-chip (SoC).

    "We're getting the most out of leading edge hardware and software, and AI," said Rick Osterloh, SVP of devices and services at Google. "The brains of our new Pixel lineup is Google Tensor, a mobile system on a chip that we designed specifically around our ambient computing vision and Google's work in AI."

    This latest Tensor SoC has dual Arm Cortex-X1 CPU cores running at 2.8GHz to handle application threads that need a lot of oomph, two Cortex-A76 cores at 2.25GHz for more modest workloads, and four 1.8GHz workhorse Cortex-A55 cores for lighter, less-energy-intensive tasks.

    Continue reading
  • BlackMatter ransomware gang will target agriculture for its next harvest – Uncle Sam

    What was that about hackable tractors?

    The US CISA cybersecurity agency has warned that the Darkside ransomware gang, aka BlackMatter, has been targeting American food and agriculture businesses – and urges security pros to be on the lookout for indicators of compromise.

    Well known in Western infosec circles for causing the shutdown of the US Colonial Pipeline, Darkside's apparent rebranding as BlackMatter after promising to go away for good in the wake of the pipeline hack hasn't slowed their criminal extortion down at all.

    "Ransomware attacks against critical infrastructure entities could directly affect consumer access to critical infrastructure services; therefore, CISA, the FBI, and NSA urge all organizations, including critical infrastructure organizations, to implement the recommendations listed in the Mitigations section of this joint advisory," said the agencies in an alert published on the CISA website.

    Continue reading
  • It's heeere: Node.js 17 is out – but not for production use, says dev team

    EcmaScript 6 modules will not stop growing use of Node, claims chair of Technical Steering Committee

    Node.js 17 is out, loaded with OpenSSL 3 and other new features, but it is not intended for use in production – and the promotion for Node.js 16 to an LTS release, expected soon, may be more important to most developers.

    The release cycle is based on six-monthly major versions, with only the even numbers becoming LTS (long term support) editions. The rule is that a new even-numbered release becomes LTS six months later. All releases get six months of support. This means that Node.js 17 is primarily for testing and experimentation, but also that Node.js 16 (released in April) is about to become LTS. New features in 16 included version 9.0 of the V8 JavaScript engine and prebuilt Apple silicon binaries.

    "We put together the LTS release process almost five years ago, it works quite well in that we're balancing [the fact] that some people want the latest, others prefer to have things be stable… when we go LTS," Red Hat's Michael Dawson, chair of the Node.js Technical Steering Committee, told The Register.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021