If You Care About Privacy, It’s Time to Try a New Web Browser

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

Firefox focus, available only for mobile devices such as iPhones and Android smartphones, is bare-bones. You punch at a web address and when browsing is done, hit the trash icon to erase the session. Quitting the application automatically purges the history. When you load a website, the browser relies on a database of trackers that determines which ones to block.

DuckDuckGo, which is also available only for mobile devices, is like a traditional browser. This means that you can bookmark your favorite sites and open multiple browser tabs.

When you use the search bar, the browser duckduku returns results from the search engine, which the company says is more focused on privacy because its ads do not track people’s online behavior. DuckDuckGo also prevents ad trackers from loading. When browsing is done, you can press down on the flame icon to erase the session.

Bahadur is also like a traditional web browser, with anti-tracking technology and features like bookmarks and tabs. It includes a private mode that has to be turned on if you do not want people to investigate your web history.

Brave is also so aggressive about blocking trackers that in the process, it almost always completely blocks ads. Other private browsers blocked ads less frequently.

For most people, not seeing ads is a benefit. But for those who want to give back to a publisher whose ads are blocked, Bahadur hosts its own ad network that you can choose from. In exchange for seeing ads that don’t track your behavior, you cut revenue in the form of tokens. You can then choose to give tokens to the websites of your choice. (Only web publishers partnering with Bahadur can get tokens.)

I tested all three browsers on my iPhone, setting each as my default browser for a few days.

Everyone has a button to see how many trackers they blocked while loading the website. To check this, I visited The New York Post’s website nypost.com, which loaded 83 trackers without any tracking stops. With DuckDuckGo, there were 15 blocks of nypost.com trackers. With Bahadur, it was 22. And Firefox Focus blocked 47.

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