I think IE has some code to randomly send users to their default search page. Why? Because I can be going to a site that I know exists (and I know the URL is correct, because I’ve pulled it out of the browser’s own memory, and still, I get sent to the search page. And on that search page? A listing of ‘similar sites’, in which, almost invariably, is the site I was trying to go to.
I’m not sure what purpose it serves, but I’m telling you, there’s a c-o-n-spiwacy (for all you In Living Color fans) afoot.