Since you don't use IE that much it might be easier to Reset IE back to it's default.
It is possible that a bad add-on or toolbar is causing this. You can search through the add-ons, (IE > Tools > Manage Add-ons), and do an elimination test, or you can quickly reset IE. Tools > Internet Options, Advanced tab, then the Reset button. This may delete all Favorites, cookies, history, and any saved web site logins in IE.
I'm using Windows XP-SP3 I use AOL as my default browser, but I occasionally go to Internet Explorer. And therein lies the problem!
I have my default address bar in IE set to "about:blank" When I try to enter a URL it goes to "slirsredirect.search.aol.com" and I get a pop-up box saying "Internet Explorer could not display the search page". When I click on the OK box I get a full display saying the same thing. And - I can't go any further in IE. I can still use AOL.
I have Microsoft Security Essentials installed and running, and I've run a full scan with Malwarebytes Anti Malware. Neither helped.
Can someone help?