Tor Browser is a web browser that anonymizes your web traffic using the Tor network, making it easy to protect your identity online. With the latest 11.5 updates, Tor Browser made some major improvements to secure the experience for users.
Automatic Censorship Detection and Circumvention
Initially, circumventing censorship of the Tor Network requires users to dive into the Tor network settings, and users themselves understand how to apply a bridge to unblock Tor.
Also, the process remains manual and not clear. Censorship of Tor isn’t consistent and certain pluggable transport or bridge configuration may work in one country, but that doesn’t mean it’ll work elsewhere.
Tor Browser 11.5 introduces “Connection Assist“, which lets you automatically set a location for the bridge to connect to Tor, resolving any error.
According to the official blog post, “the Connection Assist works by looking up and downloading an up-to-date list of country-specific options to try using your location (with your consent). It manages to do so without needing to connect to the Tor Network first by utilizing moat – the same domain-fronting tool that Tor Browser uses to request a bridge from torproject.org.”
Redesigned Tor Network Settings
Users who choose to customize their connection can find some improvements in the settings that include:
- Connection settings, a new name intended to clarity
- The last known connection status can be found at the top of the tab.
- Ability to test your Internet connection without Tor for troubleshooting.
- Connection Assist.
- New bridge cards for the ease of sharing bridges, with a QR code readable by Tor Browser for Android.
HTTPs- Only Mode
In Tor Browser 11.5, HTTPS-Only Mode is enabled by default for desktop, and HTTPS-Everywhere will no longer be bundled with Tor Browser.
The blog post reads: “Starting in Tor Browser 11.5, HTTPS-Only Mode is enabled by default for desktop, and HTTPS-Everywhere will no longer be bundled with Tor Browser”.
“This change will help protect our users from SSL stripping attacks by malicious exit relays, and strongly reduces the incentive to spin up exit relays for man-in-the-middle attacks in the first place.”
Every Tor Browser update is crucial for users who rely on it for privacy and security. Thus obviously, there are various bug fixes and subtle changes along with this update that include:
- Improved font support.
- Use connection settings in offline mode.
- Manual bundled with the browser for offline viewing.
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