Friday, December 16th 2011

NSS Labs Accuses Google of Undertaking Campaign to Knock Firefox Off The Market

Google Chrome is a fast and functional web browser. Let's get that out of the way first. But one of the main reasons a largely successful corporation put resources into developing a web-browser into a market that isn't very profitable, is cost-cutting. Since it's inception, the search bar Mozilla Firefox came with, has Google as its default search provider. Every time people search using that search bar in Firefox, Mozilla Foundation makes money. It is estimated that these Google searches amount to a majority of Mozilla's revenue, as Google pays it as much as 50 million dollars an year. Google Chrome, despite its genuine merits, is a cost-cutting operation. The more people use it over Firefox, the less Google has to pay Mozilla.

Web security researchers have historically rated Google Chrome has having the worst security and privacy compared to Firefox, and Internet Explorer (read this, and here), but the most recent research by Denver-based security consultancy Accuvant claimed that Google Chrome has the best security and privacy features, while Mozilla Firefox has the worst. Want to hear the kicker? That research by Accuvant was funded by Google. Want to hear another one? A similar research firm that has historically done vendor-funded research, NSS Labs, voiced strong objections to Accuvant's research, calling it an all-out attempt to malign Mozilla Firefox.

NSS Labs has, in the past, done similar security "research" paid for by Microsoft, to certify Internet Explorer 8 as the safest browser for online transactions. Vikram Phatak, the chief technology officer of NSS Labs, in an interview, said this about Accuvant's research: "This is a vendor-funded paper, and in these cases, the vendor is going to drive the methodology [of the testing], which appears to be the case here." He goes on to call the research, hence, "skewed toward Chrome," alleging that the research overlooked many of Firefox's own security features. Pathak says that Google is going all-out to knock Mozilla Firefox out of the market. "Google paid for this report, and it's part of a marketing campaign that's probably aimed at Firefox to cut off Firefox's revenues, cut if off from the Safe Browsing service, and then put out a report that says Firefox is less secure than Chrome," he said.Source: ComputerWorld
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26 Comments on NSS Labs Accuses Google of Undertaking Campaign to Knock Firefox Off The Market

newtekie1 said:
Firefox 8 = 1 Advisory with 1 Vulnerability Unpatched
Chrome 16 = 0 Advisories with 0 Vulnerabilities Reported
Firefox 7 = 4 Advisories with 17 Vulnerabilities All Unpatched
Chrome 15 = 4 Advisories with 36 Vulnerabilities 75% of them Patched

Notice the only one that reached higher than 1 bar on the security scale was Firefox. Also notice how they didn't even bother to fix any security issues with Firefox 7 while Google fixed several with Chrome. Firefox 8 and Chrome 16 are too new to really use as a gauge, so using the older versions gives a better picture, and I would say Chrome is more secure.

I also find it ironic that anyone that would have the balls to actually say IE8 was the safest(AKA Most Secure) browser would have the balls to talk about anyone else's finding as being fud...

NSS has to have the biggest pair of solid brass balls on the planet to say IE8 is the safest browser, then try to say a competitor's finds are BS!:laugh:

This is just a classic case of the Pot calling the Kettle black...
This is basically all that needs to be said. That and every time security experts get together for events like Pwn2Own, Chrome takes a day or two to crack and FF\IE\Safari take several SECONDS.
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