Tag Archive | "firefox"

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Review of The Most Secure Browser for 2014

Posted on 04 November 2014 by MegaLexame

The security differences between five of the most popular browsers – Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Opera and Apple’s Safari – could be insignificant only in case you practice safe browsing routine. By “safe browsing routine”, we mean watching out the websites you are visiting and the software you are downloading.

Although the browsers’ vulnerabilities have increased by 47% in the last five years, according to Secunia.com, they are usually all quickly fixed, which makes it nearly impossible to determine which one the most secure web browser is.

Here are some security specifics of each of the browsers that might help you choose the right one according to your browsing habits:

Google Chrome

Google Chrome has grown in popularity in recent years due to its customizability, storage space, security features and quick fixes of vulnerabilities. In a 2011 study funded by Google, Chrome was considered the most secure web browser although a lot has changed since then. The reason behind is the excellent security model Chrome has created and still follows. For example, Chrome separates the browser kernel (the main browser program) from the rendering processes. It is capable of keeping as many as 20 separate processes running at the same time, and attempts to prevent low-integrity browser processes from reading high-integrity resources that is a unique feature among the other browsers. In addition, Chrome uses Windows Vista’s mandatory integrity controls even more securely than Microsoft itself.

Some of the standard security features Chrome has included are Incognito (browser-session privacy mode), Google Chrome’s Safe Browsing (anti-phishing capability), one-button setting resets, forced saving of files before launching, moniker handling and MIME content-type sniffing.

Mozilla Firefox

Firefox has been considered the second most secure browser after Chrome, although, as mentioned above, it is nearly impossible to classify the browsers by level of security.

What’s specific and advantageous of Mozilla is that it handles SSL certificate revocation best. And, according to Mozilla Firefox itself, the company is considered the “most trusted Internet company for privacy.”

The browser also presents you with the option to avoid software bundling in case you don’t want it. This is a huge advantage as far as security is concerned as the fewer features run with the browser, the more protected you are from cyber criminals.

In addition, the source code is available which is convenient for anyone concerned with their privacy as unwanted software cannot be hidden inside the code.


Roger Grimes, a columnist at www.infoworld.com, says, “Opera Software’s underrated browser is rich in both features and granular security controls, but misses important Windows protections.”

Opera’s unfortunate lack of support for Data Execution Prevention (DEP) and Address Space Layout Randomization (ASLR) makes the Opera process the least protected among the other four browsers. It thus puts your search at risk of buffer overflows.

Regarding content-blocking, Opera allows you to block any website or object globally or individually –for the particular website or object. The browser can block Java, JavaScript, pop-ups, cookies, images, redirects, sound files, file extensions and web protocols.

As far as frauds, Opera has a fraud protection by default capable of detecting any phishing site. Malware blacklists collected by Haute Secure are also included in the fraud protection, but unfortunately they do not include anti-malware warnings.

An Opera’s advantage is that it has a digital certificate support. It has initial cipher offering being the second best after Firefox. However, Opera does not support Elliptical Curve Cryptography (ECC), which is considered the strongest asymmetric cipher standard in use today.

Despite that, the Online Certificate Status Protocol (OCSP) is supported, and the least SSL version can be determined, which still makes the browser one of the reliable ones.

Apple’s Safari

Safari includes all of the common security features such pop-up blocking, private session browsing, and an anti-phishing filter. According to Roger Grimes, the pop-up blocking of this browser is among the best, while the anti-phishing filter is considered the most accurate among the five browsers. Safari always automatically asks for approval before downloading files that prevents some high-risk files from being executed before downloading.

Safari also has a reliable default cookie control, which is an excellent privacy bonus. However, the browser is last at remote password handling although its passwords are protected by Apple’s Keychain password management system.

In addition, Safari on Windows is not supported any more. The latest available version is 5.1.7 from 2012, and as it is no longer getting security updates, it’s insecure to use it on Windows. Safari’s strong anti-phishing filters are, however, a plus. Nonetheless, security is not Safari’s strong point. There is not much security granularity to Safari. Security-conscious users need to decide if Safari’s lack of security zones, poor cipher support, and shortage of enterprise features for mass control and deployment can be overcome by its esthetic advantages.

Internet Explorer

Microsoft has made plenty of improvements on its browser over the years. Yet, the Internet Explorer is considered weak as far as security is concerned. However, the newest versions – 10 and 11 – are well improved, and most of the security issues are taken care of.

In fact, Internet Explorer has the highest rate of detecting malware, meaning it is quite good at protecting the user from getting infected while browsing. Even so, the programming of the browser has loads of severe vulnerabilities that harm its popularity. It’s important to note that Internet Explorer’s source code is closed, which is just the opposite to Mozilla where the source is open to be seen by anyone.

In addition, via Internet Explorer it is possible to manually fake the EV certification. And, it’s quite difficult to disable the Java plugin in case you don’t want it.

In short, Chrome and Mozilla may appear to be best at security and privacy but again, all browsers face vulnerabilities that have even increased with the years. And although the browser companies fix these vulnerabilities quickly, what will best protect you when entering the Web is being alert what pages you open and what programs you download.

Popularity: 17%

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Opera 10.5 Beta Beats Chrome as the Fastest Browser Ever

Posted on 15 February 2010 by GranTorinoGuy

Opera's 10.5 browser has soared to new heights, leaving competitors like Internet Explorer far behind.

Opera's 10.5 browser has soared to new heights, leaving competitors like Internet Explorer far behind.

Opera Software has produced the world’s fastest browser.

The software company put all its rivals to shame with Opera 10.5, according to recent software tests.

Opera 10.5 – which is powered by a new JavaScript engine – was released late last week. The tests revealed that Opera 10.5 is nearly 15% faster than Safari for Windows and almost 20% faster than Google’s Chrome. Previously, Safari and Chrome held the No. 1 and No. 2 spots as the fastest browsers.

Opera’s preview was more than twice as fast as Mozilla’s Firefox 3.6, over eight times faster than Opera 10.10, and 10 times faster than Microsoft’s Internet Explorer 8 (IE8), placing it miles ahead of competitors.

Opera has been also ran in JavaScript speed tests for almost two years, ever since developers working on WebKit, the open-source browser engine that powers Apple’s Safari, began bragging about massive JavaScript performance increases. Since then Mozilla built a new JavaScript engine for Firefox, and Google upped the ante with Chrome. The only browser Opera regularly beat in JavaScript races was the sluggish IE8.

Opera 10.5 features a new JavaScript rendering engine called Carakan which has a new vector graphics library called Vega that handles all graphics in the browser. Opera claims that Vega produces graphics three times faster than the library used by Opera 10.10, the company’s current browser.

Other additions include a new interface which reduces the space for menus, support for Windows 7′s Aero Peek and Jump List features, an address bar that brings the history and bookmark search of Firefox’s Awesomebar to Opera, and the ability to mark any tab as private so there’s no record of sites visited.

Opera 10.5′s beta is available for Windows, but alpha builds of the Mac and Linux versions can be downloaded from the Opera Desktop Team blog.

The Norwegian browser maker has not set a date for 10.5 to be shipped, but has revealed that versions for Windows will hit the shelves shortly. Opera says when final code for Windows is released, betas for Mac and Linux betas will be ready.

Have you downloaded the new Opera version? How does compare to the other web browsers that you use?

Popularity: 22%

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Firefox to Set Web Ablaze with New Version

Posted on 19 January 2010 by GranTorinoGuy

Firefox New Version Check out this release candidate of the new version of Firefox, 3.6. The new beta Firefox version will give you a taste of what’s to come in this version, which includes some exciting changes.

Firefox 3.6 produces faster speed, stability, quicker startup and load times, as well as improved Javascript performance. The most interesting new feature one is Personas, which lets users change the appearance of the browser with one click.

The new Firefox can also alert you when your plugins are out of date, and, finally, it’s optimized for small device operating systems, for example Windows CE and Maemo.

Let us know what your experience with Firefox 3.6 was like by posting a comment to this article.

Popularity: 11%

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