Tech

If you’re concerned about privacy, try a new web browser.

Firefox Focus, DuckDuckGo, and Brave are all similar, but with some important differences.

Firefox Focus, available only on mobile devices such as iPhones and Android smartphones, is the bare minimum. Enter the web address and when browsing is complete, press the trash can icon to clear the session. When you quit the app, the history will be deleted automatically. When you load a website, the browser relies on the tracker’s database to determine what to block.

DuckDuckGo is also available only on mobile devices and is similar to traditional browsers. This means you can bookmark your favorite sites and open multiple browser tabs.

When you use the search bar, the browser returns results from the DuckDuckGo search engine. The company says it focuses on privacy because ads don’t track people’s online behavior. DuckDuckGo also prevents the loading of ad trackers. When you’re done browsing, you can clear the session by pressing the flame icon at the bottom.

Brave is also similar to traditional web browsers, with anti-tracking technology and features such as bookmarks and tabs. Includes private mode. This mode should be turned on if other users do not want to scrutinize their web history.

Brave is also aggressive in blocking trackers, so in most cases it will completely block ads in the process. Other private browsers block ads less often.

For most people, not seeing ads is an advantage. But for those who want to give back to publishers whose ads are blocked, Brave hosts its own ad network where you can opt in. In exchange for seeing ads that don’t track your behavior, you earn income savings in the form of tokens. Then you can choose to give the token to your favorite website. (Only web publishers affiliated with Brave can receive tokens.)

I tested all three browsers on my iPhone and set each as the default browser for a few days.

All have a button to see how many trackers were blocked when the website was loaded. To test it, I visited the New York Post website, nypost.com. This website was loaded with 83 trackers without interfering with tracking. With DuckDuckGo, 15 nypost.com trackers were blocked. It was 22 in Brave. And Firefox Focus blocked 47.

If you’re concerned about privacy, try a new web browser.

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