Which browser offers the best security? IE, Firefox, Opera or Chrome?

Just downloaded Opera because I was bought by their site. Had been using firefox 3 with many additional security plugins and was very happy with it until I made the swich from XP to Vista x64. And now I’m giving Opera a chance to prove its worth. I don’t think I’m going to give chrome a try since the German FBI equivalent has released a stern warning that Chrome actually gathers data on the user internet activity and stores them for a very long time. Basically they say that chrome is spying on its user.

I know about the upcoming IE 8.0 which is now still in beta or already in beta and wondering which browser offers the best overall security for my OS?

what do you think?

Of course the more a browser is used, the more it will be targetted by malware makers.

Anyway a browser is not a security program. There are more important considerations than security when choosing your favourite browser.

You shouldn’t suft with admin rights, if you don’t you won’t get infected even if you surf with IE 5.0.

I use Opera. ;D Opera optimus navigator est.

I can’t tell any facts, just that I’ve never (as far as I can remember) read any comment about Opera being bad at security. Rather the opposite. Many people also say that it’s less vulnerable because so few people use it. I use Opera since half a year and I simply love it. With today’s range of browsers I would never switch to anything else. :-TU

Read this:

Opera's unfortunate lack of support for DEP and ASLR makes the Opera process the weakest protected of any of the browsers I've tested (including Google Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Internet Explorer) and potentially puts it at higher risk of buffer overflows. This weakness is exacerbated by the 45 announced vulnerabilities in Opera 9.x over the last two years, one-third of which would have allowed complete system compromise. Opera Software should immediately recode Opera to use ASLR and DEP, to remove this major blemish on an otherwise fine product.

I uninstalled Opera 15 minutes after trying because it messed with my TCP/IP setting and inhibited my download to a halt even though I use Opera to download.

Thx for the info, though I’m not concerned about buffer overflows thanks to Comodo.

Thanks for the article link. It was an interesting reading.

I’m curious about such claims made against Opera support of DEP (implemented on XP upward) and ASLR (implemented on Vista) as those are two OS features available for all applications.

Using Process Explorer on XP it was possible to confirm that DEP is active for Opera and using Dependency Walker it would be possible to confirm if Opera DLLs support ASLR after a reboot.

I’m not sure how the guy that wrote that article ever confirmed his claims but maybe there was more to what he wrote he didn’t care to clarify. :-\

Opera, by far, is the most secure. I’ve been using it for years.

Browsers browse, security products secure!

I understand that some browsers might be more secure that others at that point in time, but these products are not designed to secure! They are not security products. Their core function is to help you browse. Of course best practices from security point of view should be followed by them, but we should not expect security from browsers in a way that a security product could offer. No door is safe without a lock!


I guess they need a patent pending feature: “Safe Browsing” :wink: This is however more or less what Comodo aims to offer (with great success), not just in the browser (SS) though but outside the browser (CIS). :-TU

I think it’s version dependant and thus varies from time to time. To instal a x.0 version of a newly released browser is probably not as safe as installing a brand new x.75 version from another developer.

An even more important factor is how you have configured the browser security settings (ability to configure it properly). And a third factor would perhaps be how many/what addons you have and wether they are official, 3rd party or hijackers.

Despite the premise outlines the importance of updates

In the end, we concluded that sensible user behavior and a commitment to install the latest patches had a vastly greater impact on security than which browser you choose.

If fails to point out that due to Internet Explorer support of 3rd party ActiveX some updates are to be released by 3rd party developers.

Explorer's popularity makes it the primary target of hackers. Its unique support of ActiveX (another way malicious exploits get into a computer) poses an additional security threat that other browsers don't have.

Regardless some part of the article focus on DEP and ALSR there is no mention that these features are builtin in the respective OS and are available for all applications.

Although some exceptions may apply.

An issue related to old MS compilers and DEP recently affected many 3rd paty activex including Sun Java VM and forced many users to disable DEP in Internet Explorer.

What MS asked to many developer affected by that issue was to update their Compiler (and likely rewrite these apps to be compatible with these new compilers).

It is not unlikely that an eventual incompatibility with ALSR involves some compiler support.

As for Opera itself if DEP is enabled it will support it like Internet explorer is supposed to do.

Firefox + Noscript