Brave Browser vs Tor: Which Is More Secure and Private

Brave Browser vs Tor: Which Is More Secure and Private

Search engines and websites collect user data to improve the user experience. However, this data can sometimes be abused. To safeguard privacy and online activities, an increasing number of people are now opting for privacy-focused browsers.

Tor is a renowned browser for anonymous browsing, while Brave aims to capture a share of this market.

Initially developed by the US Navy, Tor, or the Onion Router, is now a non-profit organization committed to offering private access to an uncensored web through onion routing. This technique encrypts and sends Internet data across multiple volunteer-run servers worldwide.

Brave browser is a free and open source browser that blocks ads and trackers. It also offers a future browser with a ‘pay to surf’ business model rooted in blockchain and cryptocurrency. You can enable ads and trackers, and if you share your data and view ads, you get paid in BAT, Brave’s native cryptocurrency. They recently released a new feature called New private window with TOR, leaving users confused about which browser is more secure and how they differ.

So, which browser should you use for a more private browsing experience? Let’s find out.

1. Open Source Base

The Tor browser incorporates modified Mozilla’s Firefox browser, a Tor proxy, a script blocking extension, and the HTTPS Everywhere Firefox extension. In essence, it is built using open source technologies.

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In contrast, the Brave browser is based on the Chromium web browser, an open source project by Google. Chrome and Microsoft’s Edge browser are also based on Chromium.

Brave Browser vs Tor: Which Is More Secure and Private

While users debate over which is better for blocking ads, scripts, and devtools, the consensus is that Firefox is more private and gives you more control over allowed scripts.

2. Security & Privacy

The debate centers on the security and privacy of the Brave browser in comparison to Tor since its integration. Tor employs onion routing, its proprietary technology, where Internet data is encrypted and sent through a network of relays run by volunteers. Tor uses multi-layer encryption, encrypting data before it is relayed to the next server. Just like onions have multiple layers, hence the name.

Brave Browser vs Tor: Which Is More Secure and Private

Tor blocks ads, scripts, and advises against browser plugins. It also includes NoScript and HTTPS Everywhere by default.

NoScript prevents the loading and execution of javascript code snippets, protecting users from prying eyes and malware hidden in ads. HTTPS Everywhere ensures websites use a more secure HTTPS connection, and it was developed in collaboration with Tor.

Brave Browser vs Tor: Which Is More Secure and Private

Brave browser blocks ads, requests, and third-party cookies by default. It also includes NoScript and HTTPS Everywhere. However, there was controversy when Brave whitelisted certain domains, including Facebook ad tracking URLs. Although they released a statement following a Twitter uproar, the update was not reversed. In fact, they even added a Twitter URL to the whitelist. Unfortunately, users are unable to edit the whitelist as it is hard coded.

Brave Browser vs Tor: Which Is More Secure and Private

Firefox offers better privacy and security options to users, giving them more control. Unlike other browsers, Firefox uses its own certificate trust chain and allows users to configure proxy settings. Brave Browser could have implemented a similar approach. Additionally, Brave Browser disables Google account and sync services, providing protection against tracking.

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Brave Browser introduced a ‘New private window with Tor’ feature for privacy and security. However, this feature is currently only available for desktop browsers. When asked about the difference between Tor Browser and Brave Browser’s Tor integration, the company admitted that Tor is more secure, while Brave is better for hiding from ISPs, workplaces, and schools. Additionally, Brave’s Tor mode uses DuckDuckGo as the default search engine. It’s important to note that Brave with Tor does not offer the same level of privacy as the Tor browser. While Tor effectively hides your fingerprint, Brave Browser has a slightly more unique fingerprint.

4. Revenue Model and Platforms

The organization that develops Tor browser relies on donations for research and development. Tor is available on Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS.

Brave Browser vs Tor: Which Is More Secure and Private

The Brave browser operates using Brave Rewards, a system that displays targeted ads to chosen users. These users can earn BAT tokens, which they can then distribute to their preferred content creators on platforms like YouTube and Twitch. Alternatively, users can opt to trade these tokens on a cryptocurrency exchange, such as Binance.

Brave Browser vs Tor: Which Is More Secure and Private

The goal is to establish a win-win situation where the browser rewards users for allowing ads and sharing data willingly. Although voluntary, this raises data concerns. Brave is available on popular desktop and mobile OS, but Tor integration is currently limited to Windows and macOS, with plans for Android and iOS.

The Brave browser is safe, secure, and rewarding for voluntarily viewing ads. Brave aims to do the right thing by incorporating Tor, which enhances its privacy compared to Chrome’s Incognito Mode.

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However, when it comes to staying anonymous, protecting your identity and data from prying eyes, Tor remains the go-to browser. As the Brave Browser team states, if your life depends on it, use Tor.

Next up: Do you use Google Chrome? Can’t fully replace it? Here are 7 tips for maintaining privacy and security in Chrome.

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