Which browser is the safest and most private?
If you’re considering switching to a safe and private browser, you’ve probably come across Brave and Vivaldi. Both of these browsers have become very popular in recent years, especially among people who are proactive about privacy and security and are not comfortable with Big Tech collecting their data.
How do Brave and Vivaldi compare? Let’s find out.
Brave: secure, feature rich, private
Brave has become a popular alternative to Chrome and similar browsers because it’s fast and looks like a conventional browser, but packs a punch due to a number of pretty unique security features.
Brave offers strong out-of-the-box protection, primarily through Brave Shields, which blocks ads, scripts, trackers, cross-site cookies, phishing, and fingerprinting. However, the user can tweak shields to their liking, customize privacy settings, enable or disable social media blocking, and further enhance Brave’s security by enabling aggressive ad and tracker blocking.
Brave automatically desamples every web page, preventing Google from redirecting your traffic through its own servers and thus preventing it from collecting data. More importantly, the browser also automatically upgrades all connections from HTTP to HTTPS – the latter is a much more secure protocol as it uses strong encryption.
What Brave has, and other browsers don’t, is built-in Tor (The Onion Router) connectivity, which is definitely a plus for those who want to keep their privacy but prefer not to use Brave’s official browser. Tor in addition to Brave.
And since Brave is Chromium-based, it’s possible to add just about any extension available for Chrome, including security-focused extensions like uBlock Origin and FlowCrypt.
But that’s about all you can do to personalize your Brave experience; it’s not exactly a highly customizable browser.
Vivaldi: safe, customizable, versatile
Launched in 2016, Vivaldi was developed by the former CEO of Opera. However, Vivaldi is also based on the Chromium engine, which for starters means it’s compatible with most extensions from the Chrome Web Store.
Unlike Brave, Vivaldi is highly customizable. In fact, that’s exactly where it shines. Customization features are not just about looks and functionality, but also about security and privacy.
Vivaldi uses Google services to protect users against phishing, malware, and other threats. It does this by checking the page you are visiting against a list of known malicious sites.
Vivaldi has a built-in ad blocker, which will block the vast majority of ads, so you probably won’t feel the need to install an ad blocker extension. The browser has three levels of protection and can also block trackers and third-party cookies.
Like most browsers these days, Vivaldi has a private window feature, where the user can easily browse the web using DuckDuckGo or a similar privacy-focused search engine.
As soon as you launch Vivaldi, you realize that it’s not your usual browser. If you use Chrome or Firefox, it will definitely take you some time to get used to Vivaldi.
Vivaldi vs. Brave: What to Keep in Mind
Both Brave and Vivaldi are good, safe browsers. Most people would probably feel more comfortable with Brave because it’s very intuitive and visually similar to Chrome. Vivaldi, on the other hand, can be customized to an incredible extent, making it a great option for power users.
Security and privacy wise, it’s hard to see Vivaldi beat Brave out of the box, but with a few tweaks it can be a very powerful and secure browser, and deliver a rather unique and personalized experience with its myriad features and customization options.
That said, if you don’t like any of these browsers but still want to ditch Chrome, there are always more options to consider.