The pandemic made people more cautious of their security and privacy online. Browsing privately means having a virtual private network (VPN) that encrypts and hides your real location. VPN allows you to visit sites without the concern of being tracked by your internet service provider (ISP), third party organizations, or the government.
VPNs, however, don’t come cheap. Some browsers, however, offer features that allow you to roam around the Internet securely and privately, nearly what VPNs provide to some degree.
Here are our top recommendations:
Opera Browser (Windows, Linux, macOS, iOS, Android)
Opera is a Chromium-based browser that offers a user experience for tech-savvy users. It allows you to browse through all sites without some third-party apps or ads bugging you as it comes with ad-blocking functionalities that you can toggle at will and for free.
Although Opera provides an extra layer of security, especially when you’re accessing public Wi-Fi, it only uses a competitive HTTPS proxy which is not technically a real VPN to go for.
Epic Browser (Windows, MacOS, Android, iOS)
Epic Browser comes with a full service free of charge, and only gathers bare essential data on bandwidth and DDoS prevention measures to further improve their service.
The browser is based on Google Chrome’s Chromium designed for user’s privacy. Google Chrome users would find the browser familiar and easy to use.
Unless you’re using the browser on the iOS platform, it doesn’t come with a true VPN you would expect on a premium subscription. While it is a highly secure browser, it does slow your internet speed.
Tenta Browser (Android)
Another privacy-oriented browser that integrates dedicated VPN protocol using an AES-256 bit encryption is the Tenta Browser. It provides free services, with users being given an option to upgrade for full device coverage at a reasonable cost.
What’s the best thing about this is that it encrypts not only your Internet traffic but also your bookmarks, downloaded files, and separate tabs in one setting. For now, however, Tenta Browser is currently available for Android users.
Tor Browser (Windows, Linux, macOS)
Tor Browser gets the cake for allowing users to get into the hardcore stuff of private browsing without technically utilizing a VPN.
The browser uses a different method to let you surf privately. It utilizes an anonymous network of computers to connect you to the Internet, making you annoyingly hard to find. Mozilla Firefox users would be much more at ease in switching to Tor.
Tor, alongside its “dark web,” has become infamous for being a dubious and creepy browser due to being associated with illegal activity and the Silk Road marketplace. Tor and its dark web feature, however, are both legal to use.