Join Scott Simpson for an in-depth discussion in this video Browsing with Tor, part of Browsing the Web Securely.
I'll go through the installation process. When I open Tor Browser, I'm asked if I have a clear connection to the internet, or whether there needs to be some settings added to get access. My connection's clear, so I'll click Connect. Then the browser starts up. Clicking on the Tor button up here gives me options to create a new identity, or to create a now Tor Circuit for this site. I can also change security settings. Here's a slider with a few different levels, and a description of what each level entails.
I'll leave the setting on Low for now. And, I'll browse to a website. I'll visit google.com. Now if I click the Tor button again I can see the route that my traffic is taking. For me it's going through Denmark, then Russia, then Sweden, and from there out to the internet. I could choose New Tor Circuit for this Site to generate a new route, and now I'm seeing Google in French. That's because Google has tried to detect what language to show me based on what country it thinks I'm in. That's one of the perils of using Tor all the time.
You won't be able to take for granted the localizations that a lot of sites provide for us based on our actual location. You also won't be able to get the full speed of your internet connection because your traffic is being routed around across many networks, many of which may not have the same bandwidth as your home internet connection. You can see this by visiting Netflix's fast.com in the Tor Browser and in a regular browser. This doesn't mean anything is wrong with Tor, it's just an effect of the traffic going through networks that may not be as big and fast as commercial internet service providers.
Your connection is only as fast as the slowest link in the chain. Tor Browser is a great, easy easy to browse the web securely because it not only includes access to the Tor network, but also some convenient features, like HTTPS Everywhere and NoScript, but it can be a little bit irritating to have to change localizations and restrict your internet speed, so decide whether Tor Browser is right for you. Even if it's not something you use all the time, I'd recommend keeping it installed just in case you decide you need it.
- Selecting a VPN provider
- Installing a VPN
- Setting up your own personal VPN
- Browsing the internet with Tor