Privacy Study: Brave Browser Smacks Down Chrome, Firefox & Safari

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A study conducted by a privacy expert concluded that Brave browser does a much better job of protecting user privacy than Chrome, Firefox or Safari.

A privacy expert who compared some of the most popular browsers on the market reached an unambiguous conclusion: Brave trumps competition. Trinity College Dublin’s chair of computer systems, Dr. Douglas Leigth, authored a study comparing Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Microsoft Edge and Yandex in terms of how much personal data they share with backend servers. Brave’s default configuration was by far the best of the bunch.

The study reads:

“Used ‘out of the box’ with its default settings Brave is by far the most private of the browsers studied. We did not find any use of identifiers allowing tracking of IP address over time, and no sharing of the details of web pages visited with backend servers.”

From best to worst

Furthermore, the study places the six browsers into three distinct groups ‒ from most private to the least. Brave is the only one in the first group — browsers that don’t share personally identifiable information.

Brave was followed by runners-up Chrome, Firefox, and Safari, which all have “identifiers linked to the browser instance.” These types of identifiers, the study states, persist across browser restarts. Crucially, however, those identifiers are removed after a fresh browser install.

Edge and Yandex came in dead last, as both browsers have persistent hardware identifiers that cannot be revoked, even by reinstalling the browser. The verdict for this third group is even more worrisome:

“Both send identifiers that are linked to the device hardware and so persist across fresh browser installs <>. Edge sends the hardware UUID of the device to Microsoft <>. Similarly, Yandex transmits a hash of the hardware serial number and MAC address to back end servers. As far as we can tell this behaviour cannot be disabled by users.”

Brave is a bold privacy defender

As Cointelegraph reported previously, Brave is putting pressure on the U.K. authorities to finally crack down on tech giants such as Google for egregiously violating the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation. Privacy advocates will be happy to know that Brave puts its money where its mouth is.

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