Internet Explorer is the most popular browser today, and Microsoft would like to keep it that way. Last week the company released a report that compares the security performance of Internet Explorer with their chief competitor: Firefox.
The report begins by highlighting the quantity of vulnerabilities addressed by the IE and Firefox teams since the end of 2004 and draws the conclusion that “the chart shows results in stark contrast to early predictions that Firefox would have many fewer vulnerabilities than Internet Explorer, and more than anything, highlights that security quality should be a concern for all vendors across the industry.” Visit Jeff Jones’ blog, a Security Strategy Director at Microsoft, to see the report.
Unwilling to take Microsoft’s lashes quietly, Mozilla turned up the heat. On its Security Blog the organization replied “Microsoft is worried that if it ever says it has fixed X security issues, the world will focus on that it had X vulnerabilities in the first place, not that they are now fixed and no longer a risk for users.”
According to Daily Tech, Mike Shaver from Mozilla wrote “just because dentists fix more teeth in America doesn’t mean our teeth are worse than in Africa".
Mozilla also contends that many of their bugs are discovered internally before ever reaching the public and that Microsoft hoards patches for Windows updates.
Internet Explorer’s integration with the Windows operating system encourages universal use, and it’s possible that without Firefox, the browser wars would end and innovation would decline.
In the end it may be users who determine how secure they are on the web by frequenting sites that treat customers with respect.