What is Tor?


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Initially released in 2002, Tor offers you a free browser that you can use to conduct anonymous surfing on the Internet. The name was originally derived from the project, The Onion Router. It is the first line of action for most users on the web when it comes to online anonymity.

How Does Tor Work?

When you use a Tor browser and open a website, your request goes through a network of several relays (computers on the network). While passing through different relays, your traffic is encrypted and re-encrypted continuously until your request is sent to the public Internet where it is decrypted. As a result, your real IP is kept hidden throughout the time you surf the Internet.

Pros

  • Users become untraceable
  • Impossible to attack or shut down since it is a distributed network, after all.
  • As mentioned earlier, it is completely free of cost.

Cons

  • Taking into account how internet traffic is forwarded through different nodes, using Tor can be a frustrating due to its speed.
  • An unsuitable tool for P2P file sharing, largely because it is slow and affects the network as a whole thus affecting other users on the network.
  • Ineffective at location spoofing, once again because of slow connection speeds.
  • A relay or node might be operated by a hacker or government agency, thus failing its purpose.

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