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Brave 1.0 Released to Improve Web Privacy

MMS Founder
MMS Dylan Schiemann

Article originally posted on InfoQ. Visit InfoQ

The Chromium-based Brave web browser recently announced its 1.0 release. Brave strives to improve performance, security, and privacy by blocking ads and other web trackers. Brave rewards its users when they opt into privacy-respecting ads and share ad revenue with website publishers.

For web developers, supporting Brave is typically the same as supporting Chrome or other Chromium-based browsers. Brave 1.0 leverages Chromium version 78. There are, however, some differences to keep in mind when developing websites, primarily related to some of Brave’s features for security and privacy. In general, Brave should just work unless your site relies on tracking its users across websites.

By default, Brave blocks cross-site trackers, invasive ads, fingerprinting (cross-site tracking without cookies), tracking cookies. Brave also blocks known malware and phishing with Google Safe Browsing plus other privacy protection mechanisms. This blocking generally leads to faster page load times, smaller memory usage, less data usage, and lower power consumption than Chrome and Firefox under similar tests.

Brave automatically upgrades all connections to HTTPS whenever possible to increase security and privacy.

Private browsing in most browsers means a separate browsing history and session. Brave supports secure browsing via Tor, which directs traffic over the Tor anonymity network to hide from sites that get visited as well. On iOS, Brave offers private browsing only mode option, which can get locked with Face ID or Touch ID to prevent snooping.

For end-users, Brave Rewards provides Basic Attention Tokens, which compensate users for viewing ads that Brave deems as non-invasive. Site publishers can also receive rewards for participating in the Brave ad ecosystem.

Brave is available for macOS, Windows, Linux, iOS, and Android. Like all web browsers on iOS, Brave extends the built-in Safari engine on iOS rather than its Chromium-based implementation on other platforms. The Brave web browser is open source software available under the Mozilla Public License 2.0. Contributions are welcome via the Brave GitHub repo and should follow the Brave contribution guidelines.

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