The German government has issued an official statement advising people not to use Firefox pending the release of a patch to defend against a critical unpatched vulnerability.
BürgerCERT, a division of the German federal government’s security, warned that the Firefox vulnerability, confirmed by Firefox makers, could allow hackers to run malicious programs on users’ computers.
A version of Firefox to be released at the end of the month will fix the bug. A beta of that release, Firefox 3.6.2, is already available but has not yet been fully tested.
The German government, which previously urged surfers to stay off IE in January for similar unpatched security bug reasons, has now taken a stand against Firefox.
Essentially, this requires switching browser to an alternative, Chrome I suppose, but as Sophos notes “switching your web browser willy-nilly as each new unpatched security hole is revealed could cause more problems than it’s worth. For instance, imagine how much training some users will require to switch from one browser to another.” Nothing for the geeks in us, but for your average non-techie, it’s a headache.
On a separate but related note, I’ve been actively using the alpha version of Firefox 3.7 and while I cannot speak for it’s level of security, its speed and performance (on a Mac at least) has been second to none.