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New Tor Browser 7.0 implements multiprocess mode, content sandbox, and Unix domain sockets

The Tor Project Team has announced the release of Tor Browser 7.0, it comes with multiprocess mode, content sandbox, and Unix domain sockets.

The Tor Project has released the stable release of Tor Browser 7.0 that includes many security features and according to the development team, it also improved performance.

The Tor network implements an anonymous communication system that leverages on more than 7,000 relays set up by volunteers worldwide. The project aims to protect user’s anonymity online by concealing the users’ location and implementing algorithms to avoid dragnet surveillance or traffic eavesdropping.

“The Tor Browser Team is proud to announce the first stable release in the 7.0 series. This release is available from the Tor Browser Project page and also from our distribution directory.” reads the official announcement.

Tor Browser 7.0

The Tor Browser is built on top of Mozilla’s Firefox Extended Support Release (ESR), a version designed for groups who deploy and maintain the desktop environment in large organizations such as universities and other schools, county or city governments, and businesses.

The Tor Browser 7.0 is based on Firefox 52 ESR and implements two major features:

The Development team enabled both features by default on macOS and Linux, unfortunately, it is still working on the sandboxing for Windows systems.

Mac and Linux users can improve the security of their Tor Browser by using only Unix domain sockets for communication through the Tor network.

“Most notably we hope having Mozilla’s multiprocess mode (e10s) and content sandbox enabled will be one of the major new features in the Tor Browser 7.0 series, both security- and performance-wise.” states the announcement.

“While we are still working on the sandboxing part for Windows (the e10s part is ready), both Linux and macOS have e10s and content sandboxing enabled by default in Tor Browser 7.0. In addition to that, Linux and macOS users have the option to further harden their Tor Browser setup by using only Unix Domain sockets for communication with tor.”

The switch to ESR 52 introduces new system requirements for Windows and macOS users: On Windows Tor Browser 7.0 won’t run on non-SSE2 capable machines anymore. On Apple systems, the minimum system requirement is OS X 10.9.

The Tor Browser 7.0 also improves the resilience to tracking and fingerprinting attacks.

“cookies, view-source requests and the Permissions API are isolated to the first party URL bar domain now to enhance our tracking related defenses. On the fingerprinting side we disabled and/or patched several new features, among them WebGL2, the WebAudio, Social, SpeechSynthesis, and Touch APIs, and the MediaError.message property.” states the announcement.

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