We tend to joke that you have all the freedom in the world as long as you don’t exercise any. Similarly, we have the right to privacy as long as you don’t expect it. Privacy like freedom is your right except it is difficult to exercise both.
The biggest companies that we have come to put our blind faith in have all failed us with their cunning tactics to track, tag and target us for profits. We are nothing more than a ‘data set’ but this data is what defines who we are.
For these companies, ad revenues far outweigh the moral dilemma of ‘respect for others privacy.’
Obviously, you cannot take any legal action because they have mentioned all of their ‘intentions’ in the ‘user agreement’. So, they are not doing anything illegal, however, is it ethical?
How did a song forwarded on WhatsApp land on YouTube’s recommendation list only 2 minutes later? Did I agree for Siri to use my ‘conversations’ to target me on any platform that I use? To be sure, to rule out the coincidences, this song is from the 80’s and I have never heard it before until today.
Such is the intrusiveness of these mega players. No one can do anything to them, at least not directly.
However, we can all take control of our own privacy using the means available.
Privacy browsers are a good place to start to stop the trackers and to remove the ad target on our backs.
Here are the top 5 privacy browsers we personally like, in no particular order:
This one is one of the most colorful and vibrant browsers on this list. It has a ton of custom options to make your browser uniquely ‘you’. You can block unwanted ads while taking notes while browsing. You can also add your favorite website to the sidebar.
You can even create your own shortcuts so you can pretty much do anything from the keyboard without touching the mouse.
Vivaldi is a darling with the technically savvy crowds but it is fairly easy to use without much technical prowess.
Chrome extensions work on Vivaldi seamlessly so you don’t have to worry about Chrome extensions.
With all the amazing customizable options, Vivaldi takes privacy quite seriously. It blocks the ad trackers and provides you with more safe space to browse. Vivaldi itself doesn’t track your activities.
Vivaldi is a colorful option for those who care for privacy with personalized web browsing experience.
Aptly named, this browser is really epic when it comes to protecting users’ privacy. “Epic is a private, secure web browser that blocks ads, trackers, fingerprinting, cryptomining, ultrasound signaling and more. Stop 600+ tracking attempts in an average browsing session.”
Epic can save you money, literally. The searches performed on Epic browser yield better rates on flights (since the flight search engines do not have access to other estimates you received, they tend to give you the best price).
Epic protects you from your own ISP, Government, Data collectors etc., from using your private browsing data.
It also lets you access the blocked sites like Pandora and lets you download audio/video.
Epic’s default privacy settings are more powerful than the deliberate incognito mode on any browser.
Personally, Epic is a bit hard to get used to but totally worth it.
The browser that made privacy without complexity possible, in our opinion. There were many options at the time that assured privacy but they required a specific skill set, like Liam Neeson in Taken.
Check out the official Taken (2008) Trailer starring Liam Neeson! Let us know what you think in the comments below. ► Watch on FandangoNOW: https://www.fanda…
Thankfully, Firefox doesn’t need you to be Liam to browse with privacy.
Firefox also has a ton of features that make it an amazing browser including:
- Password management with Lockwise
- Customization options
- Default to ‘forget your recent history’
Mozilla Foundation that is behind Firefox works on the mission of privacy and free access to the internet. This is a foundation that we can all get behind to protect the unhindered access to the internet.
Firefox is to this date one of our favorite browsers.
Brave is built by Brendan Eich, the creator of Java and Firefox. In our view, Brave is a hybrid of Firefox and cool Chrome extensions. Brave allows you to port your Chrome extensions (because it is built on Chromium) while providing you all the awesome privacy that you expect from Firefox.
What separates Brave from all the browsers listed on this page is its feature to ‘opt-in’ to view ads. If the user opts in to view the ads, 80% of the revenue generated from the ads are then distributed back to the users and publishers of content.
In a way, Brave is revolutionizing the digital ad space which was swarming with bots until now.
Brave is lightweight and makes browsing fast. It blocks unwanted trackers and saves you time and data. It gives you a live stats of how many trackers have been blocked and time saved.
You can also tip your favorite publishers and content creators with Basic Attention Token. You can read more about Brave Browser and Basic Attention token.
If you want to go totally gangsta with the privacy aspect of your browsing then Tor is for you. This is how Tor describes itself “We believe everyone should be able to explore the internet with privacy. We advance human rights and defend your privacy online through free software and open networks.” And they are not kidding.
As long as you are not using Tor for illegal activities, it is one of the safest browsers out there. Obviously, if you get involved in nefarious activities, authorities will find a way to get you, specifically NSA.
Think about reporting the truth from a country like China or some dictatorship regime? Tor really shines in places where you are using it to protect your constitutional rights without compromising your privacy.
Tor is the deep web’s browser of choice, but how does it work exactly and should you use it? Hey, Mashable Explains is nominated for a Webby Award and we nee…
Interesting fact: Edward Snowden used Tor who called it “critical technology, not just in terms of privacy protection, but in defense of our publication right — our ability to route around censorship and ensure that when people speak their voices can be heard.”
Privacy is your right and you have to take steps to protect it. Start with your favorite privacy browser to keep greedy ad trackers at bay.
Thank you for reading and sharing this article. Stay safe and healthy!
Everything in this article is an opinion, not an advice of any kind. This material has been prepared for general informational purposes only and it is not intended to be relied upon as accounting, tax, investment, legal or other professional advice. Please consult with a professional for specific advice.
We do not endorse or guarantee the accuracy of the information and claims made.
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