Privacy-focused browser Brave has announced the integration of Tor into a new private tab feature.
The latest release of the software, while still in beta, showed great strides in enhancing internet privacy by unveiling a “Private Tab with Tor” feature which, when activated, routes your computer’s traffic via the Tor network, making your IP address untraceable.
This new feature will allow users to open Tor webpages alongside regular web pages within the same browser window.
Building a Privacy-Centric Product
Since its inception in 2016 by the ex-CEO of Mozilla, Brendan Eich, Brave’s privacy-first approach to accessing the internet has propelled the browser to popularity among privacy-conscious web users.
Rising to recognition as a top-notch ad-blocker that has worked just as well on tracking and protecting against Bitcoin mining scripts too, Brave has endured an extended period in beta despite being in constant development.
Even so, it has emerged as an effective privacy-focused browser chiefly due to its different approach to guarding the data of internet users.
How Brave Is Working to Stand Out
Previously, private browsing modes were mostly focused on getting rid of your browsing data to prevent other users from viewing your online activities.
They did nothing to deter internet service providers (ISPs), governments and malicious hackers from intercepting your traffic and probing through your activities on the internet.
Brave v0.23 beta took on a different approach instead, ensuring that your data is safe from online threats first.
They achieved this by adopting DuckDuckGo—a privacy search engine that doesn’t track its users—then added private tabs that didn’t save cookies or browsing history.
Even before the integration of Tor into one of its private browsing modes, the browser was quite robust.
A Timely Release
Brave’s move to enhance internet security has come in an era of mistrust between advertisers and web users.
Amidst rising concerns over the mishandling of sensitive data and user tracking by ad companies, Brave has stepped forward to create a sturdier barrier between users’ data and the companies that profit off of it without their consent.
Activists, journalists, whistleblowers and regular internet users who rely on Tor can now keep their online activities hidden from ISPs, governments and employers in a more convenient way.
Brave is confident their latest rollout will improve internet privacy to some degree, but they also acknowledge that it will require some compromise.
Using the Tor private tab feature could result in slower connections since they have to be bounced off several relays.
Furthermore, websites treat anonymous visitors differently, and while some only ask for some form of human verification, others restrict entry entirely.
Caveats of Privacy Mode Features
Due to its experimental nature, Brave’s implementation of privacy browsing modes has been known to spawn leaks, though this is expected to be fixed before the browser’s first stable version is rolled out.
Users are also encouraged to remember that no privacy mode is entirely safe. Even Tor has some significant loopholes that can be abused if a user is careless enough.
Everyone might know that it’s not wise to share personal information over Tor, but not everyone is aware that operating user accounts in and out of Tor is a way of revealing your identity.
Brave’s Mission and Future
Brave’s newest feature fits right into their M.O. and understandably, users are excited to try out this new blend of internet security.
Integrating with the much stronger privacy infrastructure of the Tor network makes the browser more adept at hiding IP addresses from ISPs. In return for Tor’s collaboration, Brave will help keep the Tor network up and running by managing a couple of their relays.
Even before hitting the 1.0 version release, Brave has made significant strides to secure the browsing activities of internet users.
Brave’s integration with Tor certainly takes it a step further. Even without a stable version out yet, the browser is looking set to become the latest line of defense against uncouth advertising agencies, malicious hackers, and spying governmental or corporate agencies.
Brave v0.23 beta is now available for download at the company’s website.
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