It’s painful to remember the days when Internet Explorer was the leading internet browser. Even with the speedy broadband connections of the time, using the internet was slow and clunky. Then Firefox and Chrome came along and revolutionized the way everyone browses the web. More than anything, they made it so much faster.
Nonetheless, both Firefox and Chrome have some serious privacy issues. In this article, you can read about a few of the most concerning ones. And it will give you a few suggestions for what you can do to get more privacy online.
Chrome is the King of Privacy Violations
Chrome is the undisputed king of web clients, with about 60% of the market share. It’s so good that other browsers, including Opera, Microsoft Edge, and Amazon Silk, all use the Chromium source code.
But underneath the easy-to-use interface, is a host of disturbing facts about Chrome. Google makes no secret that it uses almost all your data to personalize ads third-parties pay it for.
In a week of browsing, you can pick up thousands of trackers. Companies use them to follow your online activities, interests, and contracts to build profiles on you.
Even if you review your privacy settings (which you absolutely should), using anything in the Google ecosystem jeopardizes your privacy.
Firefox is Better But Still Has Issues
A lot of people say that if you don’t like Chrome, you should switch to Firefox. Firefox is a step up from Google. They’ve generally been on the side of protecting user data. Firefox is also a product of the non-profit Mozilla Foundation, so there’s less to worry about them selling your data for whatever reason.
But don’t let your guard down just yet. The browser isn’t as private as it seems—particularly on mobile. Mozilla stores your telemetry data. Telemetry data is information about your connection. It can include Firefox browsing data, approximate locations, IP addresses, and other vital data. It can be tied to an individual browsing session, making you vulnerable.
Firefox allows you to turn off telemetry data. But most users don’t know about it. And then everyone assumes Firefox has an excellent reputation for privacy. Many users let their guard down and aren’t as vigilant as they would be with another browser.
Is It Time To Uninstall Firefox and Chrome?
If you use Chrome, absolutely yes. Both Firefox and Chrome have privacy issues. But Chrome is way worse. There are ways to tune up your Chrome settings, but it’s much more comfortable and safer to switch browsers.
Firefox is better and seems to be heading in the right direction. But again, why take any chances? A variety of different browsers come with privacy protection baked-in. Instead of making severe changes to your habits, why not use one of the options instead.
The two best options to look into are Brave and Epic Browser. The Mozilla Foundation created Brave as an open-source web browser built on Chromium. It blocks website trackers and ads by default and supports a host of different security features.
Epic Browser also uses the Chromium source code. It’s like having incognito mode always enabled. It neither stores nor shares any data. And, each time you exit Epic, it deletes it all. Plus, it uses proxies to anonymize your online activities.
Both the Epic Browser and Brave are excellent options. And since they are Chromium-based, they should be compatible with many of your favorite browser extensions.
Whatever You Do, Start Using a VPN Now
Whether you decide to stick with Chrome or Firefox and take steps to increase privacy or move to Epic or Brave, you should always use a VPN. Your internet browser isn’t the only place where cookies and data leakage can harm you. Your apps have similar issues.
With a VPN, you encrypt your entire internet connection and everything else you do online. They are also compatible with all devices, from routers and IoT devices to smartphones and more. VPNs give you the tools you need to browse the web safely. Start using one now.