When it comes to functionality and appearance, all browsers are similar to each other. That said, Tor is a one-of-kind browser that truly stands out. It does give you access to the deep/dark web, but there’s more to it than just that. Let’s check out what makes Tor different and how you can use it on Linux.
What is the Tor Browser?
A service run by volunteers, Tor offers online anonymity and enhances your privacy by masking your identity and hiding what you connect to. What’s more, you are protected from the Tor network as well. It’s ensured that you remain anonymous to others using Tor. Tor is, therefore, the perfect tool for those who might seek occasional anonymity and privacy when they visit certain websites.
Working like any other web browser used to access websites, like Chrome, Firefox, or Safari, there’s an essential factor that makes Tor stand apart. This browser ensures your online anonymity by sending your communications through its networks, making it more difficult for people to monitor your online activities. Likewise, it’s also tricky for those keeping an eye on the sites to locate where you have connected from.
Onion routing ensures anonymity
Tor has onion in its logo. What on earth can a vegetable possibly have to do with a browser? The onion is symbolic of the various layers in the Tor network. Just as an onion has multiple layers, Tor operates with private computers, forming a nested web called nodes that route your online traffic after making sure it’s encrypted.
The nodes are meant for entry, relay, or exit. Your device connects to the Tor network through the entry node, the first node. It is the only node that gets to know your actual IP address. Your connection then passes through a web of relay nodes, forming layers as in an onion before finally making it to the exit node.
It’s the exit node that secures your connection to the website you seek access to. It ensures that even though it’s you who’s accessing the website, the website’s server receives the request to connect from the IP address of the exit node, not yours. As a result, this is the technique used by onion routing to help you stay anonymous online.
How you should install the Tor browser on Linux
The answer to the question ‘can you use Tor on Linux’ is yes. Well, it’s an easy process involving a few simple steps and a lot like installing other software. You’ve simply got to visit the official page for downloads on their website, and for the latest version, click on the ‘download for Linux’ icon. Tor can be downloaded on other operating systems as well, like Windows and OS X. You can also download it on your Android mobile.
After downloading the TAR package, the next step is to extract it with an archive tool you choose. Once the extraction process is done, the ‘start-tor-browser.desktop’ file appears along with the ‘browser’ folder.
You’ll now only have to open the ‘start-tor-browser.desktop’ to start the browser. You are then greeted by the system to a screen that asks you to connect to Tor’s network. You’ll then have to only click on the ‘connect’ button, which opens the browser after a successful connection with the network. That’s it! Tor is now installed on your Linux machine. It’s simple, isn’t it?
Impressed with the advantages Tor offers, users are now looking for alternatives as well. We have listed what we feel is the top one.
Not ready for Tor?
If it’s enhanced privacy and anonymity you’re looking for; we suggest that you download a VPN. A VPN ensures complete anonymity by concealing your IP address. It does so by setting up an encrypted connection between the internet and your device. With your IP address obscured, your activities become more anonymous. After all, no one will be able to trace certain activities back to your location.
In other words, you stay more anonymous. As you remain anonymous on the internet, your privacy is enhanced as well since tracking you becomes much more challenging. While you should protect your Linux device, do not forget the other gadgets you use. For instance, your smartphone likely accompanies you everywhere, so consider protecting it as well.
Big businesses are willing to pay top dollars to find access to your sensitive data to design targeted ads. What’s scary is that there are criminals also prowling in the shadows for this information. You must protect yourself. Installing browsers like Tor that ensure online anonymity greatly boost your privacy and security. Downloading a VPN offers greater privacy hiding your identity on the internet. Keep the nosy snoopers away with Tor.