Maybe they can and maybe they can"t
It depends on which browser you are using!
If you are using Netscape or some other browser then, if they want to look at your hard drive they could do it and if the info got out that you could read your site using those browsers that would be no skin off Bill"s nose...here"s why
Right now there is a war on to control the commercial business on the internet. The most important thing in this battle is SECURITY
If you had a business and you new that Microsoft could read your hard drive when you were on the internet you would not be to interested in their software. because if Microsoft could read your hard drive then so could other people.
Would these companies want their hard drives read by hackers:
If you have any questions or you can prove this is not true (not i heard it from a friend of a friend that M.S. is doing this) then please feel free to e-mail me.
There is only one truly safe way to store data on your hard drivePGP and public keys read about it here.