Which Web Browser Is More Secure: IE or Firefox?

Is Internet Explorer or Firefox the Most Secure Web Browser?

The web browser wars continue to go on while the main contenders continue to be Internet Explorer and Firefox with the recent addition of Google Chrome. Apple's Safari browser continues to be a strong component in the Mac world. The question arises as to which browser is more secure or which one is the ultimate choice for when it comes to browsing the web safely?

Internet Explorer has a long history of failed security where it was patched more than the interstate roads in America. With IE's security history came the trustworthy Firefox browser and then it too suffered from a few minor attacks at various times in history. Recently IE has gained some credibility back with version 7 while the race continues mainly between IE and Firefox.

What do the experts say?

When it comes to security some experts have said that it should be based off of which browser companies use the most as too which is the best. Others may agree that it is the other layers of security that influence the ability of a specific browser to ward off attacks such as antivirus programs or certain 3rd party add-ons. Perhaps IE and Firefox are more targeted by hackers vs. the newer Google Chrome due to the fewer number of people that use Chrome. Maybe this can be said about Internet Explorer's vulnerable past when Mozilla Firefox still had that new car smell.

When Firefox was launched by Mozilla in late 2004 many computer users were so happy to discover an alternative to IE whose reputation for security was very questionable after the many security patches and discovered vulnerabilities. In reality this did not diminish the popularity of IE as some users believed it was a good situation where Microsoft would constantly "improve" upon their product and to some that was enough to keep them coming back. Firefox on the other hand was one that played the catch-up game for some time where they implemented new features to compete. Recent versions of Mozilla's Firefox have ability to add on several popular plug-ins that aided in the security level of the Firefox browser. On one hand you could add in a NoScript plug-in that limited the ability for sites to run potentially dangerous scripts and on the other hand you could have a plug-in that controls your cookie permissions. IE mostly relied on the browser application itself instead of any 3rd party "helpers".

Internet Explorer, as some may argue, is the choice when it comes to compatibility especially in the corporate world where businesses may rely on accessing security solutions for Windows-based infrastructures. IE is the definite choice in this matter although many companies are finding it beneficial to utilize both browsers for testing purposes especially in the internet marketing and blogging field. IE has been through the ringer when it comes to being patch from security vulnerabilities and by now we think it should be the safer choice but that is not a fact. From built in features such as a phishing filter to the ability to change your security settings on the fly, IE remains to be on par as being a safer choice as does the newest version of Firefox.

Which one is the winner?

In terms of being vulnerable to attacks, all web browsers are pretty much the same. One day a hacker could exploit a certain feature of one browser then a patch is released to fix the issue. The same can be said for other browsers such as Google Chrome and Safari. When it comes to multilayered security a web browser cannot do the job on its own. Security has to basically be provided either by other security applications, plug-ins or the latest security update supplied by the vendor.

Which browser do you use and why? Do you choose any specific browser over another due to security related reasons or issues?