The safest browser: comparison between Chrome, Firefox and others

The browser, or the program for opening websites, is the computer application most exposed to the outside.
The web browser can be seen as a window to be used to look and go out into the world and look outwards, which, however, can also be used by thieves and criminals to enter our home.
For this reason, the browser must be a very strong security program to prevent unauthorized intrusions from the outside.
You just need to land on the wrong site or click on a hijacked link to end up infected with some malware, which can steal personal data or spy on everything we do.
Therefore, even before any antivirus, the browser itself must have its own internal protection against the most widespread threats and prevent downloads of infected files or the execution of scripts remotely (from the sites visited) that can hijack browsing.
Taking the most used browsers in the most recent security tests, especially those of the competition between hackers Pwn2Own (where those who find the most unknown vulnerabilities still wins) and those of the BrowserScope site, we can make a comparison on the security between Chrome, Firefox, Edge, Opera, Safari and Internet Explorer
BrowserScope is also an online benchmarking tool that checks the security of the browser by trying some parameters and forcing the most common attacks on the internet.
Another test to check the security of the browser is Qualys' browser check, which however uses a plugin to install.
Cute test to check if the browser configuration is unique to Panopticlick : the more unique it is, the more difficult it is to track.
Wanting to make a brief summary of the various test results, with reference to the most used browsers, we can today conclude that the safest browser in 2017 is Chrome .
Google Chrome seems to be the best choice for security today, thanks to its rendering engine and, above all, to the speed with which Google releases patches to correct new discovered vulnerabilities.
Firefox seems far behind from this point of view and remains hackable in different ways, at least according to the sources reported, but Mozilla still remains quick to correct the vulnerabilities.
Opera is fine, also because it is based on the same engine as Chrome, just like Apple Safari is also safe, much improved from a security point of view.
Microsoft Edge seems to have some security problems due perhaps to the youth of this browser.
To forget, however, Internet Explorer, which now seems too old to support a comparison of this kind.
Going deeper into finding out which browser is more secure, let's find out a few more details about the comparison between Chrome, Firefox and others.
1) Google Chrome remains the browser with the best reputation from a security point of view, especially thanks to its powerful sandbox function, i.e. the ability to keep the browser in an environment isolated from the system.
Furthermore, Chrome has almost total blocking of plugins, avoiding the dangers deriving from the vulnerabilities of external plugins such as Flash, which is the only one left, but which is integrated into Chrome.
Chrome Safe Browsing blocks dangerous sites in various ways
As mentioned above, Google is the company that responds faster when security problems are found, immediately releasing patches.
The only weak point can be the applications of the Chrome Web Store and third-party extensions, which could always be maliciously designed.
If Chrome can still be considered a safe browser, the problem is in managing privacy, which is a different thing than security.
Needless to say, Chrome is an important means for Google to collect information, albeit anonymously.
In another article we specifically talked about the Privacy settings in Chrome.
2) Mozilla Firefox has lost some reputation in recent years in terms of security, so much so that in the 2017 Pwn2Own competition it was put out of the competition because it was considered too easy to hack.
In essence, Mozilla has not recently made adequate improvements to the security of its browser.
One of Firefox's biggest flaws is that it doesn't use a sandbox to keep the Internet separate from the system (it only has a sandbox for plugins).
For Firefox it would seem that the time has come for a turning point if it does not want to completely lose its future, even if for now it is still considered reliable.
Firefox's strong point is its privacy, with Mozilla collecting only a few data on user browsing and not selling it for advertising purposes.
Firefox is also completely open source, which is always a welcome and unique feature among the most popular browsers, and means that anyone can open their source code and make sure that there is no problem inside.
In another article, Firefox's security and privacy options.
3) Opera has been revolutionized in recent years with respect to its origins, becoming a browser based on Chrome, which guarantees full architectural security.
In addition, Opera is updated at the same rate as Chrome, without ever falling behind in fixing the vulnerabilities.
Opera is also very safe because it is used by a few people, thus remaining in the shadows from the activity of hackers who prefer to concentrate their efforts on the most popular programs.
All in all, thanks to the introduction of tools such as Opera's VPN and support for Chrome extensions, it is a browser to recommend for those who care not only for browser security, but also for the privacy of browsing data.
4) Microsoft Edge, available only on Windows 10 where it has replaced Internet Explorer as the default browser, is a completely new browser and different from the others, very fast even if a little limited in its functions.
Edge uses a sandbox to isolate the Internet from the operating system and makes intrusion attempts more difficult.
In the last Pwn2Own competition of 2017 it went very badly, perhaps because it is still young and because, being based on Internet Explorer, it suffers from some of the same vulnerabilities.
As for privacy, Edge has the same problem that exists with Internet Explorer, namely the fact that it is completely closed source and built by Microsoft which certainly collects browsing data.
5) Safari, the Mac browser (Safari on Windows has not existed for years), works well and is well protected against attacks.
The problem for Safari is not the fact that it is the only popular browser to use the WebKit engine that was abandoned a few years ago on Chrome, but the fact that it is also closed source and belongs to a company that must maximize the profits.
Like Microsoft Edge and Chrome, it cannot be excluded that Apple will use their collected data for its market research.
6) Internet Explorer would no longer be used because it was almost abandoned by Microsoft, even if the latest version, 11, is still updated with security patches.
Finally, to strengthen the security of each browser, there are several extensions that can be installed and we have seen two important lists in other articles with the security extensions for Chrome and the extensions to make Firefox safer.
Last but not least, 64-bit browsers are always more secure than 32-bit ones.
READ ALSO: Which browser is the best in protecting online privacy

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