Browsers like Google’s Chrome have a feature called Incognito Mode which is meant to help keep your browsing sessions private. However, sometimes that doesn’t always work as intended ^(https://www.appmarsh.com/link/https://www.appmarsh.com/2019/02/chrome-incognito-mode-harder-to-detect/) and that there is still some work to be done to ensure a truly private browsing session ^(https://www.appmarsh.com/link/https://www.appmarsh.com/2019/05/microsoft-protect-privacy-incognito-mode/). However, if you don’t mind using an alternative browser, then you might be interested to learn that the Tor Browser has officially launched for Android.
The Tor Browser for Android has been in the works for a while with its alpha released back in September last year ^(https://www.appmarsh.com/link/https://www.appmarsh.com/2018/09/tor-mobile-browser-for-android/). However, the Tor Project has announced that the first stable release is now available on Android and for those who are interested, they can go ahead and take the browser for a spin
For those who aren’t so technically inclined, the Tor network has remained something of a mystery ^(https://www.appmarsh.com/link/https://www.appmarsh.com/articles/tor/) due to the complicated steps needed in order to connect to it. However, the Tor Browser will help do away with some of those complications and make it a more straightforward process, thus bringing it to the mainstream.
Since the browser is based on Mozilla’s Firefox, there will be certain features and conveniences that you might recognize. Interestingly enough, Mozilla had previously announced that they would be exploring the possibility of integrating Tor connectivity into Firefox ^(https://www.appmarsh.com/link/https://www.appmarsh.com/2019/05/mozilla-super-private-browsing-firefox/) for a “super private” browsing mode. If you’re interested in checking out the Tor Browser for Android, head on over to the Play Store for the download.
At the moment, pretty much most mainstream browsers out there already offer users a private browsing mode, where their identities will be better protected and where the history from your private sessions won’t be carried over to your regular browsing sessions. However, are these private modes private enough?
Apparently not, so much so that Mozilla is now exploring the possibility of introducing a “super private browsing” mode in future versions of Firefox. How this works is by embedding Tor connectivity in Firefox, in which all your internet traffic will be re-routed and encrypted across Tor servers.
According to Mozilla, regular private mode still sends your traffic through your ISP’s servers, or the servers of the company you’re working at, meaning that it isn’t truly as private as you would think. It will also not protect users from malware like keyloggers or spyware, which they think they can guard against by introducing Tor connectivity to Firefox.
The downside to this is that routing traffic through Tor can result in a hit in performance, such as page loading times. This is why Mozilla is exploring the idea to see if this can be done without too much of a hit on performance. Whether or not it will be successful remains to be seen, but it does sound like it holds quite a bit of potential.