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  • Firefox recommended as most secure browser

    Home Forums AskWoody support Questions: Browsers and desktop software Firefox recommended as most secure browser

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      • #1984411

        Germany’s cyber-security agency recommends Firefox as most secure browser
        Germany’s BSI tested Firefox, Chrome, IE, and Edge. Firefox was only browser to pass all minimum requirements for mandatory security features.

        By Catalin Cimpanu | October 17, 2019

        Firefox is the only browser that received top marks in a recent audit carried out by Germany’s cyber-security agency — the German Federal Office for Information Security (or the Bundesamt für Sicherheit in der Informationstechnik — BSI).

        The BSI tested Mozilla Firefox 68 (ESR), Google Chrome 76, Microsoft Internet Explorer 11, and Microsoft Edge 44. The tests did not include other browsers like Safari, Brave, Opera, or Vivaldi.

        The audit was carried out using rules detailed in a guideline for “modern secure browsers” that the BSI published last month, in September 2019.

        Read the full article here

        8 users thanked author for this post.
      • #2023073
        AskWoody Plus

        I’m just now seeing this, 2 months after it was posted, but thank you.  I’m about to start arguing with a state agency that recommends using IE or Chrome because they have conflicts with Firefox (in other words, their page isn’t coded to standards), and I don’t like either of those browsers.  This is more ammunition for my argument!

        3 users thanked author for this post.
        • #2037150
          AskWoody MVP

          I’m about to start arguing with a state agency that recommends using IE or Chrome because they have conflicts with Firefox (in other words, their page isn’t coded to standards), and I don’t like either of those browsers.

          Recommending one is not as bad as blocking the other ones… they’re not doing that, are they?  The practice of useragent sniffing (where the web site detects the browser it thinks the visitor is using) and blocking hit a peak around the turn of the millennium, but that was when the notoriously quirky, non-standards-compliant IE6 had ~90% of the browser market.  With the growth of standards-compliant browsers (Chrome and Firefox) in market share, the practice happily fell into the obscurity it deserves, but it’s been making a comeback recently, even though standards-compliant browsers now command nearly 100% of the market.  Twenty years ago, it was a flawed response to the dominance of a flawed browser, but now… at best, it’s sheer ignorance on the part of the site developers.

          For the most part, browsers that are blocked can get in and function just fine by spoofing the useragent to claim that some other browser is in use.  It shouldn’t be necessary, but sometimes it is, and so there are addons for both Chrome and Firefox (and their derivatives) that allow the user to quickly and easily change the useragent string.  It has intermittently been necessary to do this with Chase Bank, and it is also necessary to make Waterfox or some Chrome derivatives work with Netflix (those that use their own useragent string and do not claim to be Chrome).

          It’s advisable to only change the useragent when it is absolutely necessary, as it’s good to allow alternative browsers to be counted as such by analytics scripts.

          Group "L" (KDE Neon Linux 5.22.1 User Edition)

          1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2037062
        AskWoody Plus

        no big surprise there with a limited survey.


        Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.
      • #2037199
        AskWoody Plus

        I’m glad I found this thread too.  I also do a lot of government work and interact with sites in local, state and federal government.  On occasion, it’s frustrating when you fill out online forms, or try to log into dealer or vendor portals and get an error message that says “Your browser is not supported.”  And when I call the help desk, they suggest using I.E (shows how much they know) or Chrome.  When I try to explain that those are not viable options, and why, I can only get the cursory “I’m sorry.”  I refuse to install Chrome, so I have no choice but to launch I.E to finish my work and then get out of it as fast as I can.

        After these ‘help desk’ calls, I will usually drop a note to the webmaster and try to plead my case about Firefox, but rarely do I get a response.  And when I do get a response, it’s usually pretty lame.  Nobody has yet to tell me why they have no plans to include FF as a supported browser.  Pfft!

        "Censorship is thought control" ----- Ronald Reagan

      • #2037249
        AskWoody Plus

        It looks like the Germans only tested FF, not it’s forks Waterfox and Pale Moon (are there others?) I would be inclined to think that these might be ranked the same as FF if they were tested. My favorite is Waterfox and I have it as my default browser both in my Mac and my Windows 7 PC. I have never seen or heard a complaint about this browser concerning security and also I find less self-centered and more me-centered than FF.

        My bank, BofA, while it objects to Waterfox with a clearly worded warning in red on a pink background every time I access it, because it is not in their list of OK browsers (once more here, those are IE11 and Chrome, go figure), nevertheless lets me go ahead and use it anyways.

        Windows 7 Professional, SP1, x64 Group W (ex B) & macOS Mojave + Linux (Mint)

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