Most network administrators want to secure their organisations from ‘rogue' web browsers, according to IT firm Sophos.


The company says that seven out of 10 administrators want tighter control. SophosLabs identifies one newly infected webpage every five seconds, which points the finger to the internet being the primary source of malware. Unpatched or out of date browsers are thought to be especially vulnerable.


Hackers can breach legitimate websites by redirecting browsers to sites hosting malware. Sometimes, fake sites that closely resemble the real thing are set up and used for criminal activity, typically to gain personal and financial information that is used for nefarious purposes.


Nick C Beagin, administrator at Alleyn's School, London, is using the newly extended Sophos Endpoint Security and Control that gives organisations the option to block unauthorised web browsers. Firefox versions 1-3, Internet Explorer versions 5-7, Safari, Opera, Netscape and Flock are among the browsers that can be blocked.


He said: “For me, it was a constant battle to keep Firefox and Opera off my network, but I have one less worry now. Messenger and other chat application blocking is also a bonus.”


John Stringer, product manager at Sophos, said: “The 30 per cent of administrators who don't consider browser control to be important might want to revisit the issue. [By] setting down a policy which controls which web browser and version type employees can use, administrators are simplifying the job of keeping the web secure, particularly important in light of the increased malware activity on the web.”