Tor Browser 11.5 is here with HTTPS-Only Mode by default and Automatic censorship circumvention
For anyone concerned about privacy and security online, Tor Browser is an extremely important alternative to mainstream browsers. Designed to help keep users anonymous and to bypass restrictions put in place by governments, version 11.5 has landed complete with even more powerful options.
Over the years, it has become easier and easier to use Tor Browser, with complex configuration options being made available to the average user without the need for special knowledge. With the release of version 11.5 of the software, things have been made even easier thanks to the introduction of automatic censorship detection and circumvention with the new Connection Assist feature.
For users in countries where the internet is restricted or censored, getting access to certain sites can be incredibly difficult -- even using Tor which can itself be blocked. Previously, configuring bridge connection options that allow for circumvention of such restrictions was tricky, and not something that everyone would be comfortable with.
The new Connection Assist automatically downloads the most appropriate settings for wherever you are in the world, taking the hard work out of getting around hurdles that have been placed in your way. The fact that the entire process is entirely automated is a real boon, opening up the world of Tor to a group of users who would previously have considered it too complicated.
The latest Tor Browser release sees a significant upgrade and redesign of Tor Network settings -- starting off with the new name of Connection Settings. The redesign means that your last known connection status is accessible here for easy access. There's also the diagnostic option of testing your connection without Tor.
There are settings for the new Connections Assist to be found here too, and there are also new options relating to bridges. A stack of bridge cards is used to store information about saved bridges, and there are new sharing options as well. On top of this, the process of adding a new bridge has been streamlined and simplified.
In the past, Tor Browser has come bundled with the HTTPS-Everywhere extension, but this is no longer needed. This is because the browser now has HTTPS-Only Mode enabled by default. The team behind the browser say that the decision to make this change was made based on feedback from the developers of Firefox -- which Tor Browser is based on.
Other changes include widening the range of supported fonts, helping to improve the appearance of sites and enhancing the overall browsing experience.
Download the new version here.