A web browser is your gateway to the internet. It retrieves, presents, and traverses information resources on the internet. As such, it deals with a lot of sensitive data. Sadly, not all browsers are built equally, because some might gather your data, track you, and expose you to malware. Therefore, for safe internet adventures, you’ll need the most secure browser.
The best browser will encrypt your data to some degree so that malicious actors and snoopers can’t intercept your information. Additionally, a reliable application should have anti-tracking and anti-phishing tools to prevent privacy breaches. Not to mention, the most secure web browsers have add-ons that let you customize and further enhance your overall safety.
But which web browser is the best? In this article, we’ll overview the most secure browsers currently available on the market. Additionally, we’ll have a look at the features they offer and how they can keep you safe and private. Lastly, we’ll look at some other tools, such as VPNs, that can make your browsing more secure.
No matter how safe your browser is, you need some extra help from a reliable VPN such as NordVPN. It will boost your safety by encrypting your data, hiding your IP address, and spoofing your whereabouts. It will help you avoid malware with the Threat Protection feature. Plus, it offers an excellent browser extension.
Why is a secure browser important?
First and foremost, a secure browser is essential because it will make web surfing much safer. With the right settings, you’ll be able to avoid malicious sites and downloads. Moreover, hackers and snoops will have a hard time getting to your data due to solid encryption and various add-ons, such as reliable VPNs.
Furthermore, you won’t have to deal with privacy breaches as often with the best web browser. Unlike the most popular counterparts, secure browsers won’t collect your data or track you around. Plus, you’ll get features such as ad blocks, anti-malware software, and built-in VPNs to boost your confidentiality online.
Lastly, a secure browser can make your browsing experience much faster. Overflow of annoying ads, excessive flash content, and other unnecessary clutter can drastically reduce web page loading rates. But, by having a customized browser, you can prevent these elements from slowing you down. Thus, you’ll notice that various pages will load a lot quicker.
Top most secure browsers: overview
Up next, you’ll find detailed descriptions of the most secure browsers in 2024. All of them offer the finest safety features on the market. Additionally, they won’t invade your privacy and prevent others from doing that. Plus, some of them provide heaps of useful add-ons that will further enhance your web browsing experience.
1. Tor Browser – the most private and secure web browser
|✔️ Phenomenal for security & privacy
✔️ Access to dark web
✔️ Can utilize some extensions
❌ Slower than the others
Choose Tor if you’re looking for the most secure and private browser. It’s often hailed as the undisputed king of private browsers, as it comes with a plethora of security features that protect against browser fingerprinting. On top of that, it’s regularly updated to deal with all of the new security issues.
One of the most important aspects of Tor is the way it works. Your traffic is passed through the Tor network, which consists of thousands of volunteer-run servers, also known as Tor relays. That way, the browser hides your IP address and boosts your anonymity.
By default, Tor blocks all scripts and runs in the private browsing mode. When you close your browser window, nothing is saved. This includes cookies, history, and passwords. The HTTPS integration ensures that your data is encrypted whenever you connect to a website.
There are a few downsides, however. It’s quite slow due to multiple layers to hide your traffic. Additionally, it blocks scripts that may result in websites loading erratically. Other than that, it’s the best and the most secure browser for Windows, Mac, and Linux devices.
For a deeper investigation of Tor Browser, read our Tor Browser.
2. Brave Browser – the fastest web browser
|✔️ Automatically blocks trackers
✔️ Includes Tor technology
✔️ Supports all major platforms
❌ Problems regarding ads
Brave is lightweight, secure, and made specifically with privacy in mind. It’s super easy to use and provides PC and mobile device applications. Plus, it’s the fastest browser on the market, as it blocks out all unnecessary things.
Out of the box, Brave blocks browser fingerprinting, scripts, and cookies by default. It also has a solid ad-blocker and provides HTTPS upgrading, as well as relatively frequent security updates. Furthermore, Brave doesn’t collect any personal data, so you can stay assured that it won’t leak all over the place.
As for other goodies, this secure browser offers a reliable password manager. And as it’s a chromium-based browser, you’ll find heaps of useful extensions that you can install. Plus, Brave provides a built-in VPN which is not as good as premium services, but it will surely keep you secure and private.
The only thing that could irk some users is the ad policy. Brave makes money out of native ads that are approved by the company. While there won’t be any unsolicited ads, banners might still appear. However, you can block them out entirely with an extension.
For a deeper investigation of Brave Browser, read our Brave Browser review.
3. Mozilla Firefox – secure browser with the most add-ons
|✔️ Highly customizable
✔️ Great security & privacy features
❌ Requires a lot of system memory
While other safe browsers are more battle-ready, Firefox has such massive plug-in support that you can configure it to compete for the top spot. Like other top-tier browsers, it’s open-source, user-friendly, and won’t leak your browsing history to third parties. Firefox has made giant strides throughout the years, so let’s see what it has to offer.
One of the most important privacy features Firefox has is Enhanced Tracking Protection. It flawlessly blocks Social media trackers, cross-site tracking cookies, fingerprints, and crypto miners. Moreover, Firefox doesn’t keep your information more than they need to, and they destroy it after some time.
In terms of additional features, the Memory Management Tool will help you avoid slow speeds and other inconveniences. Plus, there’s the Private Browsing mode which leaves no trace of your activity. And then there’s a bunch of cool add-ons that will amplify your safety. For instance, you can get a Firefox VPN extension for streaming and security needs.
However, the company does extract “telemetry” data from browsers for analysis. More so, as it doesn’t have a built-in ad block, you’ll get bombarded with intrusive ads. Luckily, these issues are easily fixable by tweaking the Settings and downloading a plug-in.
For a deeper investigation of Firefox, read our Firefox review.
4. DuckDuckGo Browser – excellent secure browser for Android and iPhone
|✔️ Blocks ads & trackers
✔️ Clears all browsing data
✔️ Strong encryption
❌ Doesn’t have a PC application
If you didn’t know, apart from having a great search engine, DuckDuckGo also offers a sublime secure browser. DDG is a great choice for users who care about their safety while using mobile devices. Not to mention, it offers loads of built-in features as well as excellent security and privacy.
For starters, unlike Chrome or Safari, DuckDuckGo is highly focused on privacy and doesn’t store your data. So, you won’t have to worry that this browser will share your info with third parties. More so, strong encryption will protect you and prevent cyberthreats to some degree.
What’s more, you’ll find a built-in anti-phishing tool, which will warn you about potentially malicious websites and downloads. Also, intrusive ads will be a thing of the past. However, you might see a few native ones, as DDG gets its money by showing them.
The only downside is obvious – there are no DDG applications for Windows, Mac, and Linux devices yet. Nevertheless, you can use the search engine and a VPN to make your browsing sessions more secure and private.
For a deeper investigation of DuckDuckGo, read our DuckDuckGo review.
5. Ungoogled Chromium – web browser with no Google privacy concerns
|✔️ Plenty of extensions
✔️ Strong privacy & security
❌ Manual updates only
This browser has enhanced security features such as blocking third-party cookies, disabling webRTC and webGL to prevent fingerprinting, and disabling other potentially risky features. Moreover, as it is a privacy-focused browser, Ungoogled Chromium has disabled data collection by default and won’t track your activity.
Furthermore, you won’t see any targeted ads. If you get a reliable ad block extension. Moreover, you can get a VPN plug-in to further boost your digital safety.
Users should be aware that most settings require manual activation, making it not that friendly to those less familiar with cybersecurity. Moreover, you won’t find it on any app store, as you have to get it from GitHub or other reliable sources.
Best browsers: comparison
Still on the fence about which browser you should choose? Maybe this comparison table will help you decide?
|Built-in ad blocker
|Blocks cookies & cache
|Can add VPN browser extensions
|Windows, Linux, macOS
|Windows, Linux, macOS, Android, iOS
|No, extensions only
|No, extensions only
|Windows, Linux, macOS, Android, iOS
|No, extensions only
|Windows, macOS, Linux, Android
Each secure browser has its pros and cons. Therefore, we highly recommend trying all of them before making your decision. And remember, no matter how safe they claim to be, you should pair your browser with a secure VPN. That way, you’ll be less vulnerable to cyberattacks and data leaks. More so, by changing your IP address, encrypting your data, and spoofing your whereabouts, you’ll be virtually untraceable online.
How we tested these secure browsers
Choosing a secure browser by yourself might be a bit of a challenge. Therefore, to save some of your time, we picked and tested the best web browsers according to these factors:
- Privacy policies. Only the most confidentiality-friendly browsers ended up on the list. We checked multiple times if these applications will protect your data instead of selling it to third parties.
- Security features. We made sure that these browsers offer built-in safety features such as anti-phishing tools, ad-blockers, and anti-tracking features. Plus, some of the best browsers can even prevent malware from wreaking havoc.
- Speed. While safety is the biggest priority, a reliable browser shouldn’t take ages to load your wanted search results. Therefore, we picked applications that block unnecessary things that slow you down.
- Extensions. A good browser will allow you to add plug-ins that will further boost your online safety. These might include ad blocks, VPN extensions, antivirus add-ons, and so on.
- Reputation. We made sure that the companies that own the Top browsers have a good rep and have been privacy-friendly since day one. Plus, we looked at people’s comments to find out about the overall user experience.
- Updates. We chose browsers that receive regular security updates to stay protected from new threats and vulnerabilities.
- Compatibility & ease-of-use. Ideally, you should be able to use your secure browser on all of your devices. Plus, you shouldn’t be a rocket scientist to operate the browser.
How to get the most secure browser on your device?
Unfortunately, not all safe browsers are available on every operating system or device. Plus, some of them might work better on a specific OS.
Therefore, below, you’ll find which secure browser works best for each gadget.
Get the most secure browser for Widows
The best browser for Windows is Tor. That is if you want to stay super private and don’t mind slower speeds. Otherwise, for basic browsing, we would recommend getting Brave Browser. It’s swift, reliable, and provides useful features like cookie control and ad blocking. Moreover, it offers browser extensions, so you can easily pair it with the most secure VPN – NordVPN.
Get the most secure browser for Mac
The best Mac browser for privacy is Brave Browser. It will automatically prevent snooping and tracking. Additionally, it has fast and responsive performance, unlike other competitors such as Firefox or Tor. And as Brave is a privacy and security-focused browser, it allows VPN browser extensions that will further boost your online safety.
Get the most secure browser for Linux
We’re recommending the Tor browser for Linux users simply because most of them won’t feel daunted by the number of available options. If you’re not new to online security and privacy tools, then there’s no reason to look for another browser. And if you’re not doing anything that requires extra protection, Mozilla’s Firefox or Ungoogled Chromium might just do the trick.
Get the most secure browser for Android
There are plenty of safe browser options for Android devices, but none of them compare to Firefox or DuckDuckGo. You’ll get plenty of privacy add-ons, customization options, and great speeds. You can also use Firefox Focus which blocks ad trackers and has a built-in ad blocker.
Get the most secure browser for iPhone
While Safari is your default browser, we suggest ditching it and picking something more secure, for example, Brave or DuckDuckGo. Both work perfectly on iOS devices and protect you against various threats. Not to mention, they will successfully block pop-ups, trackers & ads. And there shouldn’t be any issues if you use them with an iPhone VPN.
Do you need a VPN for a secure browser?
A secure browser’s features won’t be enough to protect you against various digital calamities. For that reason, a VPN is a must-have, as it’s the first line of defense against privacy breaches and cyberattacks. A virtual private network encrypts your data, making it impossible for malicious actors to intercept it. Moreover, as it hides your information, you won’t have to worry about the government or your ISP spying on you.
Moreover, with a VPN, you’ll be able to bypass geographical restrictions, and access censored websites. Plus, you’ll unlock extensive content libraries on various streaming services, such as Netflix, Crunchyroll, or Disney+.
So, as you can see, a VPN will not only boost your safety, but it will unlock loads of new possibilities on the most secure browser.
Most secure and private browser according to Reddit
You’ve probably checked Reddit to see which browser is the best for privacy and security. But if you haven’t, we’ve gathered the info, ranked Reddit-beloved secure browsers, and put their opinions in one place.
|Most secure browser
|Why you should use it
|The best for secure daily browsing
|Great for mobile devices
|User-friendly & fast
|Same as Chrome, but a lot safer
|The most private & secure
There were a few other fan-favorite secure browsers that didn’t make it into the list. For example, Waterfox, Iridium, Bromite, and LibreWolf. They are all quite secure, and you can easily test them all out on your preferred device.
Popular browsers you should avoid
We discussed the best browsers to keep you safe and private online. However, you should also know about browsers that are notorious for bad deeds. Chances are you are using one of them right now. So, here are popular browsers that you should probably avoid:
- Google Chrome. While it is the most popular browser in the world, it has one of the worst privacy policies. Chrome collects every bit of your information and your browsing habits. Then they bombard you with targeted ads. Not to mention, this browser uses profiling and fingerprinting, which raise a lot of privacy red flags.
- Microsoft Edge. Same as Chrome, Edge collects way too much information about you, and if there’s ever a leak, you’ll be in huge danger. There are also targeted ads and hard to change privacy settings. Moreover, it uses annoying and intrusive pop-ups if you use any other browser.
- Safari. While it’s a tad better than Edge or Chrome, Safari has its own share of problems. Apple is known for hoarding users’ data and using it for various purposes. Not to mention, Apple is partnered with the PRISM surveillance program, which is a big no-no for privacy-cautious users.
However, if after reading all of this you still insist on using these browsers, there is a way to make them more secure and private. You can get a reliable no-logs VPN for Chrome, Edge, or Safari. That way, you’ll prevent them from knowing your actual IP address and location. Plus, your ISP won’t know about your online activities.
If you care about confidentiality and safety online, a secure web browser is a must-have. A well-equipped browser will have anti-phishing and anti-tracking features that will prevent privacy breaches. Plus, ad blocks will work wonders and prevent advertisements from popping up and slowing you down. And, of course, with top-tier security measures, you’ll be able to browse securely.
And which one should you choose? Well, we recommend using Tor for dark web browsing and super secretive searches. As for casual web surfing, Brave hardly has any competition. But remember, a secure browser alone won’t keep you out of harm’s way, so using a reliable VPN, such as NordVPN, is highly recommended. That way, you’ll surely avoid tracking, data leaks, and other online calamities.
What browser do you use? Do you pair it with a VPN? Let us know in the comments!
What is the most secure browser to use?
The most secure web browser is Tor. It’s much safer compared to other browsers due to onion routing and multi-layer encryption. That way, you’ll anonymize your IP address and location, making you basically untraceable. Plus, you’ll be able to access the dark web via Tor.
Is Firefox a secure browser?
Firefox is pretty safe compared to other popular web browsers. It is mostly based on customization and is perfect for those who want a completely personalized browsing experience. You can use a virtual private network extension, such as NordVPN, to amplify your security and privacy online.
What is the most commonly used browser?
According to research, the most used browser globally is Google Chrome. However, it’s not the most secure or privacy-friendly application due to tracking. But you can make it a lot safer if you use a secure Chrome extension VPN.
Is there a browser VPN?
Yes, NordVPN, Surfshark VPN, Proton VPN, and a few other services could be considered browser VPNs. That’s because they offer extensions that work on the most popular browsers. So, you can use them to protect your internet traffic.