"That is not a necessity unless using Windows XP."
I thought only 8.1 had the latest version of IE. here on windows 8 i still have IE 10 (though never open it) when IE 11 is the latest version. I don't think windows 7 or vista can get IE11 either.
Google chrome and firefox both contain there own anti-phishing measures and have some blacklists of known malware sites that they will give you "are you sure you want to continue" prompts upon trying to reach.
"application reputation" seems to be closely linked with UAC prompts, this happens when you open an exe file regardless of how you downloaded it (or copied it from a removable device). Although those 3 things might suggest internet explorer is safer than I had assumed it to be they don't suggest it to be safer than the alternative browsers. UAC is obviously very helpful and smartscreen appears (from my experience) to be the same thing but it occurs whichever browser you use. It happens when you open the exe file from within file explorer, so how it got( which browser downloaded it) into a folder originally doesn't matter.
The key reason to choose chrome or firefox over IE is that they do have some security features that IE does not have, chrome runs in a kind of sandbox that it sets up (IE does not), firefox has options for installing security related extensions (i don't think IE has equivalents), and it is easier to disable plugns in either of them than it is in IE (although i think IE can disable plugins, or make them click-to-play thesedays where older versions couldn't, but it's harder to do than in FF or chrome) both of them provide a browser which isn't too closely built into the OS where IE is deeply linked in so if it gets compromised the whole system will surely follow, where with chrome and firefox if they get compromised there are still a few more barriers beween an attacker and full access to the operating system.
Edited by rp88, 25 December 2014 - 07:41 PM.
Back on this site, for a while anyway, been so busy the last year.
My systems:2 laptops, intel i3 processors, windows 8.1 installed on the hard-drive and linux mint 17.3 MATE installed to USB