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Active X controls

Question : My Web browser often gives me a message that says "Your current security settings prohibit running ActiveX controls on this page." What is ActiveX?

Answer : ActiveX controls are little programs that work within a Web browser to provide things like interactivity and animation to Web pages. They can be helpful tools that let you do calculations in a browser window or upload pictures to a photo-sharing site. But there are also rogue ActiveX controls that secretly install software on your computer or do other malicious deeds.

Internet Explorer has security settings that can prevent pages from using ActiveX controls, which may be causing the browser messages. You can see and adjust those settings by going to the Tools menu, then to Internet Options, and clicking on the Security tab.

Browsers set to Medium security block downloading of unknown ActiveX controls. The High security setting blocks even more potential threats, but it can limit the functions of some Web pages. You can tinker with the settings yourself by clicking on the Custom Level button and adjusting the browser handling of ActiveX controls.

Internet security software and anti-spyware programs can also block ActiveX controls from running on a Web page. You can usually adjust your security settings within these programs as well, but loosening the default restrictions can make your computer more vulnerable.


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