Privacy Badger is a great software for those internet users who want to stay hidden from marketers and scammers. In essence, this program is an anti-tracking tool that will prevent people from tracking your browser. The key difference putting it aside from competitors is the ease of use. Other options like uMatrix are quite technical and may confuse an inexperienced internet user.
On the other hand, the program is absolutely free and can be used by anyone. If you are interested in protecting your online privacy, having this tool is a must.
The inner workings
The application is available for Firefox, Chrome, and Opera. You can also download an extension for Chrome mobile. The program will block trackers after being installed and integrated into the browser. The Badger hunts down any third-party media files and scripts that can be hiding in the cookies make it easier for other people to track your online activities.
One of the greatest features of the app is that it will not only monitor tracking attempts from websites that you are visiting but also prevent link tracking that is usually leading to social media platforms. These links are used by marketing companies to tailor their ads according to your online habits and behaviors.
The Badger also improves the security of your VPN service by preventing so-called ping tracking. If you are a user of a VPN and feel that your service is vulnerable to WebRTC leaks, it is a good idea to install the Privacy Badger.
Is it hard to use?
The simplicity of the app is one of its key advantages. It works wonderfully using its default settings, but you can definitely make things a little bit more strict if you need to. For example, you could also install uBlock Origin to prevent even more threats from ever landing on your device. It is usually done to mitigate one of the weaknesses the Badger has — domains that don’t look like tracking.
You can adjust the settings and rules that control the Badger by checking the list of trackers blocked by the Badger when you visit a new website. In the list, you can set your preferences in regards to specific trackers. The badger usually knows what to remove and what to leave alone. However, you can make your own decisions if you know what you are doing.
If you want to move your data or create a backup, the Badger will help you. In order to use the feature, you will need to go to the settings of the app and find the tab labeled “Manage Data”. There are two buttons that you need to pay attention to “Import” and “Export”. You will be able to move the information easily.
Additionally, you can use the Private Browsing feature to ensure that you are not being tracked which can be done in the settings menu of the browser. The modes are called Incognito and Private Browsing in Chrome and Firefox respectively. The app can also “learn” when you are browsing in such modes. It will allow the app to successfully recognize trackers that it encounters while surfing the web under the guise of an unknown entity.
You can also whitelist some of the websites if you need to. Basically, check the tab with disabled sites and pick which URLs should be considered safe by the Badger.
The main takeaway
While Privacy Badger is certainly a great app to have on your phone, you should never rely on a single tool to guarantee your safety. We highly recommend you to install uBlock Origin alongside the Badger to ensure that your anti-tracking measures are actually working.