New Tor Browser 4.5 out with funky new features

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When you need true anonymity while browsing, the Tor anonymity network remains easily the best option (although accessing the web via Tor connected to a VPN service can provide a valuable additional level of security).

The Tor Project has now updated its Tor Browser to version 4.5 (from 4.0.8), introducing a number of improvements, including a refreshed User Interface (UI) to bring it into line with the latest stable version of Firefox (on which the browser is based), a privacy slider, and a Windows shortcut.


The default search provider has been changed to Disconnect


Windows installation now puts icons on the Desktop for easy access, but Tor is keen to note that these are just shortcuts, and that the browser remains self-contained. Linux users ‘now start Tor Browser through a new wrapper that enables launching from the File Manager, the Desktop, or the Applications menu. The same wrapper can also be used from the command line’

Tor circuit

The Tor menu (onion icon) has been cleaned up, and it is now easy to see the Tor Circuit for the page you are on. Unlike in previous versions, websites do not automatically periodically change Circuit when loaded (which can cause sudden language changes, require to re-signing-in to a page, and other nuisances), but users can now request a change of Circuit manually at any time

security settings

Users can easily sect the security level they desire using a simple slider

security settings 2

Tor has rewritten its obfs2, obfs3, and ScrambleSuit obfuscation transports, and introduced the new obfs4 transport (these help evade censorship by hiding the fact that Tor is being used). Obs4 should work in China today

The new browser also improves first party isolation to help prevent tracking by third party advertisers (the dreaded Facebook ‘Like’ and Google ‘+1’ buttons!)

A full changelog is available here.

Douglas Crawford I am a freelance writer, technology enthusiast, and lover of life who enjoys spinning words and sharing knowledge for a living. Find me on Google+

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