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What is an ActiveX Control?

An ActiveX control is a program that can run inside your Internet Explorer web browser. Other browsers, such as Safari, Firefox and Chrome do not support ActiveX controls.

ActiveX controls can consist of safe programs that help, say upload files, or show a video chat, but they can also contain highly dangerous viruses. Because ActiveX controls have the ability to do anything an installed program can do, they can potentially trash a computer, install lots of spyware, viruses, trojans or rootkits, steal personal data, etc.

As a user on the Internet one should be very careful about which ActiveX controls, if any, one chooses to install. Once installed, an ActiveX control has the full ability to do more or less anything it wants.

Another option is to use a browser that is not Internet Explorer so as to avoid ActiveX controls entirely.

by Margaret Walker on Thu, 05/27/2010 - 00:04

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