So, read on to ensure you are equipped to optimize your Tor browser settings for maximum security and privacy!
Tor, an open-source software maintained by The Tor Project, promotes anonymity by passing users’ internet traffic through a series of nodes to obfuscate their source.
Tor Browser is built on top of the Mozilla Firefox browser with added security features to protect your privacy.
When you use Tor for online anonymity, your internet traffic passes through a series of encrypted relays, forming an onion router. This helps conceal your true IP address and location from third parties and also grants you access to the deep web.
These methods include:
- Changing the Security Level
- Editing the browser configuration
- Using the NoScript Extension
Let’s take a look at these in more detail.
1. Changing the Security Level
Let’s look at how you can achieve this.
- Launch the Tor browser on your PC.
- Click on the three lines at the top right of your screen to open the Applications Menu.
- Once the menu opens, click on Settings. This will open the settings page.
- Under settings, navigate to the Privacy and Security tab.
- On the tab, scroll down till you get to the Security section.
- Under there, select the Safest option
This option will disable JS and stop it from loading in your Tor browser.
Also, audio and video won’t autoplay again, you’ll have to click them for them to load.
We’ll talk more about these different security levels in the next section.
2. Editing the Browser Configuration
To do this, follow the steps below:
- Launch the Tor Browser on your device.
- In the Tor browser URL bar, type about:config and press Enter.
- You’ll see a warning message, click on the blue button to proceed.
- Make sure the box saying Show only modified preferences is not ticked.
3. Using the NoScript Extension
- Open your Tor Browser.
- Use the Ctrl+Shift+A shortcut or the Application menu to open the Addons and Themes tab.
- Once the tab opens, click on the three dots on top of the NoScript extension and select Options.
- A new window will open with several options.
- Once you’re done, close this window.
Most users prefer this method because it offers additional flexibility.
You can also find this extension in browsers like Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge.
What are the Security Levels in Tor?
The Tor browser offers three main security levels in its Privacy and Security tab. They are Standard, Safer and Safest mode.
Standard Security Level
At the Standard Security Level, all Tor Browser and website features are enabled. This level provides a balance between user experience and security, allowing you to browse the internet seamlessly while still benefiting from the enhanced privacy and anonymity offered by the Tor network.
Keep in mind, however, that while this level provides a good foundation for secure browsing, it doesn’t offer the highest level of protection against potential threats.
Safer Security Level
By making these adjustments, this level provides a more secure browsing experience, but it may also cause some websites to lose functionality. This level is recommended when navigating potentially dangerous sites or when you want to enhance your security without significant trade-offs in usability.
Safest Security Level
Additionally, all audio and video (HTML5 media) elements are click-to-play. As a result, many websites may lose much of their functionality, but your browsing experience will be as secure as possible.
This level is recommended for users who prioritize security and anonymity above all else, even if it leads to limited website functionality.
Additional Security Measures for Tor Users
Update Your Tor Browser
To verify and update your Tor browser, follow the steps below:
- Open the Tor browser on your computer.
- Click on the three horizontal lines in the top-right corner to open the Application Menu.
- Select “Help” from the dropdown menu.
- Click on “About Tor Browser“.
- You’ll see a prompt that will display a Checking for Update message.
- This will check for updates and if any update is available, it will provide a prompt telling you to install it.
Set Up a Firewall
Setting up a firewall is a good idea to protect your computer and network.
A firewall acts as a barrier between your device and the internet, monitoring incoming and outgoing connections. It can block potentially malicious traffic and help prevent unauthorized access to your system.
Use a VPN
Using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) can add an extra layer of protection to your browsing experience.
A VPN encrypts your internet connection, which guarantees that all web traffic goes through a secure tunnel.
This step can help prevent your internet service provider or other parties from tracking your online activities.
Install Anti-Malware Software
Anti-Malware Measures (AMM) are vital to safeguard your device. Installing anti-malware software will protect you against various types of malicious content you might encounter while browsing the Tor network.
Regularly updating this software will ensure it remains effective against the latest threats.
In conclusion, by implementing these additional measures, such as using a firewall, VPN, AMM, and updating your Tor Browser Bundle regularly, you can significantly enhance your privacy and security while using the Tor network.
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Frequently Asked Questions
To do this, follow these steps:
- Go to the Options tab in the NoScript extension.
- Under General, click on the Trusted tab. Make sure the script box is ticked.
- Next, go to the Per Site permissions tab and type in the name of the website you want to whitelist. After typing, press the + button to add it to the list.
- After typing in your website, click on its left and make sure it is in the Trusted category.