Tor is a network of servers that are designed to improve Internet privacy and security. The software essentially functions as a secure browser which enables connection to the Internet through a series of encrypted tunnels.
- Works with most ISPs
- Software is easy to download and install
- Maximum browsing protection
- Anonymous web browsing via a network of encrypted tunnels
- Access to websites hosted on the Dark Web
- IP address and location concealment to help prevent geographic restrictions
- Slight reduction in browsing speed
- Can drop connection without alerting the user
Tor is the name commonly given to The Onion Router, a method of secure web browsing which has been used by the United States Navy for gathering intelligence. It has also served the purpose of helping reporters deliver sensitive information. What it is most known for, however, is allowing individuals to access the Dark Web. The Dark Web is a collection of websites that are only accessible with Tor. It became famous as the location of the infamous Silk Road. Controversy aside, Tor is a useful application for individuals who have concerns about their Internet privacy. As its name suggests, the software approaches browsing security like peeling back an onion. It establishes encrypted layers which serve to protect the user. These secure nodes or servers are provided by volunteers. A user's IP address becomes obscured as the connection is continuously relayed between the various servers. Downloading the Tor software is not complicated and takes only a few minutes. The installation is intuitive and requires only a few clicks. Once Tor is installed its use is straightforward. All one needs to do is establish their regular connection to the Internet. The next step is to open and start the Tor browser. This establishes the encrypted browsing tunnel that gives anonymity to the user. Once the browser is open the individual may use it just like Chrome, Firefox, or any other browser. There are even Tor extensions available for some popular browsers. The user can type addresses into the address bar and navigate securely to any website they wish to visit.