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Orfox, a Tor Browser for Android

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Orfox is a web browser for Android that is based on the same source code as the Tor Browser but with some privacy modifications added to it. Basically, if you want to run Tor on Android, Orfox is probably your best bet when it comes to that as it is an official product by the Tor Project.


Setup is not overly complicated, but it requires more than just installing the Orfox application. You need to install the Orbot application for Android as well as Orfox requires it. Without it, you cannot use the web browser as all as it is configured to use the Tor network; Orbot connects to the Tor network, and that is why you cannot use the web browser without it.


Orfox prompts you to install Orbot on first run; if you have not installed the secondary application already, use the prompt to install it. From there it is always necessary to start a Tor connection using the Orbot app first. Orfox is based on Firefox (as is the Tor browser), and it shows. The Orfox browser ships with the NoScript and Tor Browser Settings add-ons. NoScript is a highly rated script blocker that supports other security protections on top of the core functionality. You may access the Security Slider with a tap on menu and the selection of Orfox Settings. It is set to standard after installation and replicates the security slider of the desktop Tor browser (where the default level is named low).


Basically, what you can do is improve security by limit functionality that websites may use. If you switch to safer, the following restrictions are enabled:

  • JavaScript is disabled on non-HTTP websites.
  • Audio and video media won't autoplay anymore. You need to tap on the media to start playback.
  • Some fonts and math symbols are disabled.


Orfox shares many features with Firefox, but there are also differences:

  • Orfox does not require Contacts, Camera, Microphone, Location or NFC permissions of Android.
  • Orfox removes features such as WebRTC or support for interacting with casting devices. The reason given is that these are not compatible with "proxying communication through a TCP-based network like Tor).
  • Proxying of all Java network HTTP communication through the local Orbot HTTP proxy.


Install now from Google Play or F-Droid.


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