Mullvad VPN is known for its no-logs policy and open-source clients (also available for Linux).
And now, they have launched an open-source privacy-focused browser.
The 'Mullvad Browser' has been made together with the Tor Project. Sounds exciting! Let us take a look at what it is all about!
Mullvad Browser: What is it?
Developed by the Tor Project's engineers, the Mullvad Browser is basically like the Tor Browser but without the Tor bits in it.
Instead, it gives the users a choice between using the inbuilt Mullvad VPN support or going solo without a VPN but with all the privacy-focused features.
The CEO of Mullvad VPN, Jan Jonsson mentions:
We want to free the internet from mass surveillance and a VPN alone is not enough to achieve privacy.
From our perspective there has been a gap in the market for those who want to run a privacy-focused browser as good as the Tor Project’s but with a VPN instead of the Tor Network.
You must be wondering, what are the privacy-focused features of the Mullvad Browser?
Will it be one of the best web browsers for Ubuntu and Linux? Who knows!
Well, for starters, the browser has been designed to minimize the threat of tracking and fingerprinting by big tech.
Mullvad Browser does not save any browsing history or cookies, unless you set it to save those for you. By default, it will only save the created bookmarks, extension settings and the browser's cache (for internal UI purposes).
It also ships with three valuable extensions:
uBlock Origin for blocking ads and trackers, NoScript to prevent XSS attacks, and Mullvad's Browser extension for their VPN integration.
Furthermore, for protection against fingerprinting, Mullvad Browser employs a combination of tactics, some of which include:
- A user's Timezone is reported as UTC, irrespective of their location.
- The system memory and CPU cores are hidden.
- The browser window is set to be smaller than the user's display resolution.
- Keyboard Layout and Language are masked.
Of course, you can use some simple privacy tools coupled with the browser to enhance your digital privacy.
I am not sure what went wrong or if it will be fixed/improved in the coming updates to it, but Tor Browser and Brave manage to provide a randomized fingerprint.
Maybe, the Mullvad browser reduces the data available to fingerprinters for now.
Why now?: The folks over at Mullvad felt there was a gap to fill, as there hasn't been a good privacy-focused browser except for the Tor browser for a long-time now.
That is why the Mullvad Browser is aimed at those who prefer to use a VPN instead of the Tor Network, but with all the privacy-focused features found on the Tor browser.
You can check its official announcement or GitHub repo to learn more about the intricacies of this browser.
Want to try it out?
Mullvad Browser is available for many platforms, including Linux, Windows, and macOS.
You can head to the official site to download it, or click on the button below to get it.
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