Microsoft is warning users of its Internet Explorer web browser to be aware that their data is vulnerable to attack.
The software giant says a security gap in Internet Explorer could allow an attacker to take complete control of a computer if the user clicks on a link to a malicious website.
In what is called a "use after free" attack, the malicious code will corrupt data on the victim's computer, typically after visiting a fake website set up for just that purpose.
The vulnerability affects versions 6 through 11 of the Web browser.
Microsoft Corp. said Saturday that it was aware of "limited, targeted attacks" that tried to exploit the security gap. The company is working on a safety fix which it will provide in an upcoming software update.
In the meantime, Microsoft encourages customers to enable a firewall, apply all software updates and install anti-malware software.
A division of the Homeland Security Department recommends users download a security toolkit from Microsoft or use another browser such as Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox until an update becomes available.
Users should be wary of any website that you are not familiar with and to keep an eye on Microsoftâ??s security advisories.
You can see a full list of all versions of Internet Explorer that are affected by the vulnerability here.
(The Associated Press contributed to this article.)