The overwhelming growth of digital technologies has now made it possible for consumers to get almost everything done online. There is no denying the fact that the internet is now broader than ever before, and that there is no shortage of any type of information.
However, with that being said, the evolution of the sophistication level of internet-based technologies has put the online privacy of users at risk. So much so that law enforcement bodies around the world have come up with rules and regulations such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
But even with substantial rules and regulations in place, users are always at the risk of having their online privacy sabotaged as user data is undoubtedly one of the most valuable resources to mine online. Fortunately, there are a couple of ways how users can protect their online privacy, and one of the best ones is to use an encrypted browser such as the Tor browser.
If you’re new to discovering the Tor browser, below are some of the most interesting facts about it that are worth knowing:
1. Tor browser is one of the safest browsers for users
It is safe to say that the Tor browser is one of the safest commercial browsers of them all. Although the company that developed the browser doesn’t claim this, it is true when compared to other commercial browsers.
Unlike other commercial browsers, the Tor browser is a multi-tool of a browser. In other words, the browser protects users from different types of protocols that can compromise the online privacy of the users, such as user data access/leak, unauthorized spyware or malware installation on user devices, and password, facial/fingerprint encryption hacking.
2. Tor browser wasn’t always commercially available
The earliest versions of the Tor encryption technology were designed exclusively for spy communications and word available for commercial use. Later on, the successful track record of the encryption technology meant more safety and reliability. Eventually, the framework of the technology was rehashed into a web browser that was meant to be commercially available.
Although a high-level, professional-grade encryption technology, Tor is available to everybody with its exclusive web browser and is made to be free of charge. The anonymous browser has been revamped to be more user-friendly over the years.
3. Tor browser works in an unconventional way than commercial browsers
Many commercial web browser companies claim to protect users from online privacy threats. But they technically don’t as they approach servers in a direct path. However, this is not the case with the Tor browser as it accesses encrypted servers in random patterns. Think of this approach as similar to the way VPNs work.
By using randomized, encrypted passwords and accessing encrypted servers, the Tor browser is able to effectively mitigate third-party trackers, and keep unauthorized surveillance at bay. According to the Tor project developers, the Tor browser encrypts and relays user traffic not just one but three times to offer online privacy that is, in no way, hackable.
4. Tor encryption technology is also available for iOS devices
The Tor encryption technology is not just resolved for Linux, Windows, and Android users as it is made available for iOS and macOS users as well. A popular tour browser that is dedicatedly designed for iOS users is the onion browser.
The developers of the Tor encryption technology have discreetly designed the onion browser to be compatible with all iOS devices. Similar to the desktop Tor web browser, the onion browser is free to download for all iOS devices. The best part about the iOS browser is it is designed to be open source. This essentially means that almost everybody can inspect or audit the code of the mobile web browser.
5. Despite being encrypted, the onion browser is fast
There is no denying the fact that the encryption technology of the onion browser powered by Tor is uncompromised. However, it is not just the high level of encryption that makes this browser one of the best iOS browsers. This is because the onion browser is also designed to deliver superfast browsing speeds.
From a technical standpoint, prioritizing superfast browsing speeds in encrypted web browsers is a high-level challenge. This is because the approach to relaying user traffic, encrypting them in a multi-layered way, and accessing encrypted servers usually slows down the browsing speeds. However, the seamless encryption process of the Tor technology makes it all possible to combine high-level encryption with superfast browsing speeds.
6. Tor browser makes it possible to access the dark web
Although the Tor browser isn’t exclusively designed to access the dark web, users technically can explore the deeper parts of the web without compromising their online security. This largely has got to do with the fact that the Tor browser is one of the best in terms of ensuring a high level of encryption that mitigates online safety threats.
The anonymous browser helps users stay anonymous when exploring the dark web. This essentially means that users who are interested in exploring the dark web can get their hands-on investigation/hacker-level and classified information.
7. It is completely legal to use the Tor browser for exploring the dark web
There are a lot of misconceptions when it comes to determining whether or not exploring the dark web is illegal. It goes without saying that there is no such official rule that prohibits the use of the dark web. This is true for the Tor web browser as well.
Using the anonymous browser is completely free and using it to explore the dark web isn’t illegal. The high level of encryption of the Tor browser does not fail to maintain user anonymity and make their traffic path untraceable.
However, if you are from a technical background and have plans to explore the dark web at an advanced level for a particular project, it’s best to reach out to the Tor developers and have a discussion with them as to whether or not it will be the right step for you to use Tor browser as your exploration tool.