Microsoft Edge browser has the best malware and phishing protection, Firefox and Chrome come second and Opera fails miserably – NSS Labs Q2 2020 comparative test report
With so many malware and phishing attacks happening around you, have you ever wondered which browser offers you the best protection against such malware and phishing attacks? While Google’s Chrome and Firefox may be popular among users for a variety of reasons, it is Microsoft’s Edge browser which offers you the best protection against malware and phishing attacks. And the Opera browser totally flunks in both tests doing worst in malware protection.
NSS Labs released the results of its web browser security test after testing Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, Mozilla Firefox, and Opera, for phishing protection and malware protection. Here are the results:
- Comparative Phishing protection test Q2 2020 (PDF Format)
- Comparative Malware protection test Q2 2020 (PDF Format)
The NSS Lab researchers used the following browsers for testing:
- Google Chrome: Version 81.0.4044.113 – 81.0.4044.138
- Microsoft Edge: Version 83.0.478.10 – 84.0.516.1
- Mozilla Firefox: Version 75.0 – 76.0.1
- Opera: Version: 67.0.3575.137 – 68.0.3618.125
The researchers conducted 129,068 discrete tests of malware protection (32,267 per web browser) over a period of 34 days, and 189,096 discrete tests of phishing protection (47,274 per web browser) over 18 days. They tested the above browsers for protection against fresh new attacks, consistency of protection over time, and overall protection.
In both the tests, Microsoft Edge topped the charts. In phishing protection, it came first by blocking 95.5% phishing URLs, while Chrome was able to block 86.9.6% phishing URLs. Firefox came in third by blocking 85.9% of the URLs and Opera ended last by blocking 79.2% phishing URLs.
In malware protection, again Microsoft Edge came first blocking 98.5% malware while Firefox came in second blocking 86.1% malware. Chrome followed a little behind by blocking 86.0% malware. And Opera really crept out of the race by blocking just 5.6% of malware. Edge uses Microsoft Defender SmartScreen for malware protection while Chrome and Firefox use the Google Safe Browsing API and Opera uses the Yandex malware protection engine.
To protect against malware and phishing attacks, all the above browsers use cloud-based reputation systems to block malicious websites. “As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, employees have been forced to work from home and now have unprecedented remote access to corporate resources. Threat actors are shifting tactics to target these remote employees who may not benefit from corporate protection. This makes the protection offered by web browsers more important than ever,” said Vikram Phatak, founder of NSS Labs.