Following the recent disclosure of a zero day vulnerability in Internet Explorer, the German Federal Office for Information Security, or BSI, has warned German citizens not to use the browser.

"[The BSI] said it was aware of targeted attacks and that all that was needed was to lure Web surfers to a website where hackers had planted malicious software that exploited the bug," write Reuters' Harro Ten Wolde and Jim Finkle. "'A fast spreading of the code has to be feared,' the German government said in its statement."

"[The BSI] said, 'A security update of the manufacturer is currently unavailable. Therefore, the BSI recommends all users of Internet Explorer [use] an alternative browser for Internet use, until the manufacturer has released a security update,'" writes The Inquirer's Dave Neal.

"The BSI routinely issues warnings for currently active exploits," notes ZDNet's Moritz Jaeger. "In the past, warnings have been issued against zero-day flaws in Java and several other issues in Internet Explorer. The agency is already in contact with Microsoft and is pushing for a fix for the vulnerability, according to the advisory."

"It's unusual for a government to flatly urge its citizenry to stop using a popular tech product, such as Microsoft Explorer," writes CNET News' Charles Cooper. "The security hole could compromise computers IE users use when they surf to a malicious Web site. Microsoft said that it is aware of attacks that have tried to take advantage of this weakness."