Security in motion

Tuesday, 20 January 2004, 4:22 AM EST

Principles are always taxed. To save the environment, you'll pay a seven-grand premium for a hybrid car. To keep your driving habits private, your time is taxed while you wait at turnpike tolls rather than speed through the Fast Pass lane. And if you want to be secure online by using an alternative browser, you are denied access to many IE-only Web pages, like Buymusic.com and the site for the U.S. Court for the Eastern District of Michigan. And you won't get the Web's latest features like, ESPN Motion.

ESPN Motion is a feature that slickly sticks full-frame video and sound right into the sports empire's homepage. It downloads content over a broadband connection in the background while you're doing other stuff. I wanted to try it out one day (at home, boss, I swear). But after ESPN.com tapped on my system, it said I couldn't use ESPN Motion unless I switched to Internet Explorer.

I use Mozilla Firebird. Firebird is adware-, spyware- and mallware-free. It blocks ads and pop-ups if I want it to. And, in the DIY browser security tests I ran, fewer vulnerabilities turned up on Firebird than on Internet Explorer, suggesting it has more secure code. It's definitely more secure culturally. The fact that IE is such a fat target for hackers makes avoiding it good risk management.

By Scott Berinato at CIO.

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