All major browsers have some form of âDo Not Trackâ privacy mode or another. Some users, however, may not trust companies with a vested interest in following users for one reason or another. For some, even Mozilla’s Firefox falls into this category. Few web browsers achieve this degree of fame and infamy as a Tor web browser. And now it’s finally arrived on Android, albeit in an unfinished alpha version.
Tor, which originally stood for “The Onion Browser,” achieved its popularity (and notoriety with some governments) through its use of a large volunteer overlay network consisting of thousands of relays. Hence the association with an onion. This has made it virtually extremely difficult, if not impossible, to track the path that network traffic takes in the network. In other words, it can completely hide your origin or destination and prevent fingerprinting and tracking.
This is great if you are only browsing the web on your desktop or laptop. Nowadays, however, most people are browsing on their smartphones and are therefore not protected from prying eyes. Whether it is criminals or even governments. With his brand new browser for android, Tor promises the following privacy benefits that your average web browser cannot:
The Tor browser isolates every website you visit so that third-party trackers and advertisements cannot follow you. All cookies are automatically deleted when you have finished browsing.
DEFEND AGAINST SURVEILLANCE
Prevent someone who is monitoring your connection from knowing which websites you are visiting. Anyone who monitors your browsing habits can see that you are using Tor.
Tor aims to make all users look the same, so Tor Browser for Android makes it difficult to take fingerprints based on your browser and device information.
When you use the Tor browser for Android, your traffic is relayed and encrypted three times as it passes over the Tor network. The network is made up of thousands of servers run by volunteers, called Tor relays. Watch this animation to learn more about how it works.
With Tor Browser for Android, you are free to access sites that your local internet service provider may have blocked.
You can download Tor Browser from Google play store but if you are worried about it, you can also download the APK directly from the Tor project, the usual disclaimers apply. The app is still in beta and in order to use it you will need to download a Orbot proxy application. The developers hope that the final version will no longer require the separate app.