Jump to content

If You Care About Privacy, It’s Time to Try a New Web Browser


Recommended Posts

I used Netscape in the 90s, then a bunch of versions of Internet Explorer, then Firefox. then on and off, Duck Duck go, and now Brave.

I find Brave to be everything they say and Duck Duck go good as well.


"A new crop of internet browsers from Brave, DuckDuckGo and others offer stronger privacy protections than what you might be used to.

Most of us use web browsers out of habit.

If you surf the web with Microsoft Edge, that may be because you use Windows. If you use Safari, that’s probably because you are an Apple customer. If you are a Chrome user, that could be because you have a Google phone or laptop, or you downloaded the Google browser on your personal device after using it on computers at school or work.

In other words, we turn to the browsers that are readily available and familiar. It’s easy to fall into browser inertia because these apps are all fast, capable and serve the same purpose: visiting a website.

So if the differences are minimal, why bother looking for something else?

By the end of this column, I hope to persuade you to at least try something else: a new type of internet navigator called a private browser. This kind of browser, from less-known brands like DuckDuckGo and Brave, have emerged over the last three years. What stands out is that they minimize the data gathered about us by blocking the technologies used to track us.

That’s generally better than what most mainstream browsers, especially Chrome, do. While some browsers like Safari and Firefox also include tracking prevention, the smaller brands have been focused on even more privacy protections.

“We’re at a fork in the road,” said Gennie Gebhart, a director at the digital rights nonprofit Electronic Frontier Foundation, who follows privacy issues. “Companies that keep the lights on by advertising to users, Google included, are scrambling to see what’s the next play. It’s also a time for users to be informed and make a choice.”

Unlike mainstream web browsers, private browsers come in many forms that serve different purposes. For about a week, I tested three of the most popular options — DuckDuckGo, Brave and Firefox Focus. Even I was surprised that I eventually switched to Brave as the default browser on my iPhone. Here’s how it happened.

What is a private browser?

It’s important to know what private browsers do, and what they don’t. So let’s look under the hood.

Private browsers generally incorporate web technologies that have been around for years:

  • They rely on something called private mode, also known as incognito mode, which is a browsing session that does not record a history of the websites you have visited. This is useful if you don’t want people with physical access to your device to snoop on you.

  • Private browsers also use tracker blockers, which can often be downloaded as an add-on for a browser. The blockers depend on a list of known trackers that grab information about your identity. Whenever you load a website, the software then detects those trackers and restricts them from following you from site to site. The big downside of this approach is that blocking them can sometimes break parts of websites, like shopping carts and videos.

  • Privacy-focused browsers typically turn private mode on by default, or automatically purge browsing history when you quit the browser. The browsers also have tracking prevention baked in, which lets them aggressively block trackers using approaches that minimize website breakage.

    But private browsers do not prevent your internet provider from seeing what websites you visit. So if you are on vacation and using a hotel’s Wi-Fi connection, a private browser will not keep your browsing information private from the hotel’s internet provider. For that type of protection, you still need to connect to a virtual private network, a technology that creates a virtual tunnel that shields your browsing information."

  Much more with related link to other security/Privacy topics here:  Full Article


Read Brave's website carefully, it pretty much has it all.


Edited by RV_
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I did not like Brave a few years back after using it for a few days as a test drive. It has become much easier to configure now with my VPN when I enabled my split tunnel on the VPN I use Nord. MY wife uses Edge, I tried it but it was messed up on my system at first, but now being Chrome based it is taking over a lot of Chrome's market share. I still use Firefox daily but I am liking the new Chrome based Edge too.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

I also tried Brave some time back and found it not to my liking.  I am trying it again and have found that it is much improved.   I only have it on one machine at the moment.  The rest still use Chrome or Firefox.  Who knows, maybe I'll switch them over also.

Safe Travels...

Edited by k4rs
Darn Typos!
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Roger I hear you. I did not like it my first try. I have it on all my machines now and use it occasionally as I learn its controls. I won't commit to it 100% yet but as time permits I may.

Today, given a choice with Windows, I rate them

Firefox #1 because they too have come a long way too.

Microsoft Edge #2 because it is faster and much less resource intensive, and faster than Chrome.

I am rating Brave #3 now for their much improved interface.

My wife has used Edge since it came out. She is not interested in anything new and missed that since she started using it with no extensions and all the hiccups as I do mods and updates to her system I realize it has become fast and clean. I think Firefox is really #2 but I am too lazy to do a complete changeover to Edge and Brave as my second browser right now.

If you haven't tried Edge lately you're in for a surprise.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Roger, I know and you are way beyond my level of expertise in Linux.

I am moving away from Google again too. There is an Edge developer's edition like we did for Windows developer editions of Windows 8 in late 2010-October 2012. https://www.tecmint.com/install-microsoft-edge-browser-in-linux/#:~:text=In their efforts to make a strong footprint,followed by Mac OS%2C X Box%2C and Andoird.

Edited by RV_
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...