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Tor is a network of virtual tunnels that allows people and groups to improve their privacy and security on the Internet. It also enables software developers to create new communication tools with built-in privacy features. Tor provides the foundation for a range of applications that allow organizations and individuals to share information over public networks without compromising their privacy.
Note: You can also download the latest final version, Tor Browser 8.5.4 here.
Individuals use Tor to keep websites from tracking them and their family members, or to connect to news sites, instant messaging services, or the like when these are blocked by their local Internet providers. Tor's hidden services let users publish web sites and other services without needing to reveal the location of the site. Individuals also use Tor for socially sensitive communication: chat rooms and web forums for rape and abuse survivors, or people with illnesses.
Journalists use Tor to communicate more safely with whistleblowers and dissidents. Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) use Tor to allow their workers to connect to their home website while they're in a foreign country, without notifying everybody nearby that they're working with that organization.
Groups such as Indymedia recommend Tor for safeguarding their members' online privacy and security. Activist groups like the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) recommend Tor as a mechanism for maintaining civil liberties online. Corporations use Tor as a safe way to conduct competitive analysis, and to protect sensitive procurement patterns from eavesdroppers. They also use it to replace traditional VPNs, which reveal the exact amount and timing of communication. Which locations have employees working late? Which locations have employees consulting job-hunting websites? Which research divisions are communicating with the company's patent lawyers?
A branch of the U.S. Navy uses Tor for open source intelligence gathering, and one of its teams used Tor while deployed in the Middle East recently. Law enforcement uses Tor for visiting or surveilling web sites without leaving government IP addresses in their web logs, and for security during sting operations.
Our old screen had way too much information for the users, leading many of them to spend great time confused about what to do. Some users at the paper experiment spent up to 40min confused about what they needed to be doing here. Besides simplifying the screen and the message, to make it easier for the user to know if they need to configure anything or not, we also did a 'brand refresh' bringing our logo to the launcher.
Censorship circumvention configuration
This is one of the most important steps for a user who is trying to connect to Tor while their network is censoring Tor. We also worked really hard to make sure the UI text would make it easy for the user to understand what a bridge is for and how to configure to use one. Another update was a little tip we added at the drop-down menu (as you can see below) for which bridge to use in countries that have very sophisticated censorship methods.
Proxy help information
The proxy settings at our Tor Launcher configuration wizard is an important feature for users who are under a network that demands such configuration. But it can also lead to a lot of confusion if the user has no idea what a proxy is. Since it is a very important feature for users, we decided to keep it in the main configuration screen and introduced a help prompt with an explanation of when someone would need such configuration.
As part of our work with the UX team, we will also be coordinating user testing of this new UI to continue iterating and make sure we are always improving our users' experience. We are also planning a series of improvements not only for the Tor Launcher flow but for the whole browser experience (once you are connected to Tor) including a new user onboarding flow. And last but not least we are streamlining both our mobile and desktop experience: Tor Browser 7.5 adapted the security slider design we did for mobile bringing the improved user experience to the desktop as well.
Note: this is an alpha release, an experimental version for users who want to help us test new features. For everyone else, we recommend downloading the latest stable release instead. Tor Browser 9.0 has been updated to the Alpha 3 version.
This release is fixing regressions and providing small improvements similarly to our 8.5.1 release. Additionally, we update Tor to 0.4.1.2-alpha, OpenSSL to 1.1.1c, we disable the WebGL readPixel() fingerprinting vector, add the rolocale, and start updating our toolchains in prevision to the planned migration to Firefox 68 ESR.
The full changelog since Tor Browser 9.0a1 is:
- Update Torbutton to 2.2
- Bug 30565: Sync nocertdb with privatebrowsing.autostart at startup
- Bug 30469: Add ro translation
- Translations update
- Update NoScript to 10.6.2
- Bug 29969: Remove workaround for Mozilla's bug 1532530
- Update HTTPS Everywhere to 2019.5.13
- Bug 30541: Disable WebGL readPixel() for web content
- Bug 30712: Backport fix for Mozilla's bug 1552993
- Bug 30469: Add locale ro
Windows + OS X + Linux
- Update Tor to 0.4.1.2-alpha
- Update OpenSSL to 1.1.1c
- Update Tor Launcher to 0.2.19.1
- Bug 30469: Add locale ro
- Translations update
- Bug 30639: Revert IPv6 support test
- Bug 30560: Better match actual toolbar in onboarding toolbar graphic
- Bug 30571: Correct more information URL for security settings
- Bug 30451: Compile go-webrtc with a non executable stack
- Bug 24920: Only create Private tabs in permanent Private Browsing Mode
- Bug 30635: Sync mobile default bridges list with desktop one
- All platforms
- Bug 30480: Check that signed tag contains expected tag name
- Bug 30536: Update Go to 1.12.5
- OS X
- Bug 30491: Move our macOS builds to Debian Stretch
- Bug 25930: Update GCC to 8.3.0 for our Linux builds
Recent Tor Browser news
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Protect your privacy. Defend yourself against network surveillance and traffic analysis. Tor is free software and an open network that helps you defend against surveillance that threatens personal freedom and privacy.
Chrome combines a minimal design with sophisticated technology to make the web faster, safer, and easier.
PirateBrowser is a bundle package of the Tor client (Vidalia), FireFox Portable browser (with foxyproxy addon) and custom configs that allows you to circumvent censorship.