Proof you should avoid it like the plague: MS Internet Explorer
A blog I have been following lately drew my attention to this study (use link, yafoo! ;)) from back in august.
"MSIE was 98% unsafe. There were only 7 days in 2004 without an unpatched publicly disclosed security hole." --Bruce Schneier
Seems Firefox/Mozilla are about the best thing rolling according to the study, and while they are not 100% safe, what is?
My biggest concern is about MSIE, is, and always has been, the sheer level of itigration is has with the Operating system itself. This is MS's curse when it comes to their OS developement. Just about everything can be done from MSIE/explorer. Don't beleive me? Open Windows Explorer and type in a URL. They're practically the same program, and both equally reach into the nethers of your files. I won't deny that it's true that one can browse system files with Firefox as well, but one cannot launch programs from there, and that is a big difference when it comes to access within a machine and to other machines.
Honestly, I don't know if file browsing should be able to be done from a web-browser. Others would argue that there really is little difference between surfing the web and serfing a local machine. And on some level I guess they are right. Still, avoid the MSIE, and the study just confirms what I've known for some time: namely you'll encounter less problem running a browser other than IE as your primary web browser.
In closing, I will state in Microsoft's defense that Mozilla, Opera and the like see less use in general, and that M$ is the big target because they, frankly, are Microsoft. No points off for effort M$, just afraid you're the biggest target on the radar. Hackers love to hate you. Though, as a result avoidance of Microsoft Internet Explorer is a good move for most casual or not so casual PC users.