A good way to shield your online activity is to use Safari’s built-in private browsing option, but have you ever thought you needed more advanced protection? If so, this is where VPN services come into play, regardless of your preferred browser. However, the majority of Mac users prefer Safari because it is more lightweight and, unlike Chrome, isn’t such a resource hog. VPN services act like a tunnel that creates a secure connection between your computer and the VPN server to hide your online activity from the prying eyes of your ISP or the government, as well as to gain access to platforms and services otherwise blocked in your country of residence. After connecting to the selected secure server, just launch Safari and start browsing the web privately.
Safari VPN Extensions
You may wonder why you need to download a VPN client when the visual component of the connection is the web browser and is used for accessing content across the internet. And you are absolutely right, but unfortunately – or not – VPN service providers didn’t rush to develop VPN add-ons for Safari as they had for other popular browsers such as Firefox, Chrome and Opera. The good part in this equation is that by having VPN software up and running all your internet traffic coming in and out of your Mac is protected.
This means that it doesn’t matter whether you are using Safari, Chrome or any other browser, your traffic is encrypted and goes through a ‘tunnel’ that hackers can’t access. Setting up a high-quality VPN client is quick and easy, and you can enjoy a secure connection in just a few clicks. Or you can manually set up your VPN, perhaps by using an open source client, which requires more time but provides the same security and privacy features.
Best VPN Apps for Use With Safari
With the plethora of VPN services available, there are a number of options to suit your needs in terms of price, speed and server locations. Don’t jump on the first paid offer, since many VPN services offer you the chance of starting out with a free account, one of which is Windscribe. There are three particularly good VPN providers to choose from, and so we’ve detailed each of them so you can pick the right one.
Surfing anonymously – or with a hidden IP address – is easy and even free when using Windscribe. While there are paid plans available, it’s possible to get started and trial the benefits of a VPN by signing up for a free account. Certain limitations will be applied while using the free services, but of course you’ll save some money, which is always an important aspect. The free account gives VPN access to one device and a selection of eight server locations with a bandwidth limited to 10GB per month. Unlike the Pro (paid) plan, the free option doesn’t support OpenVPN configurations but it does come with a firewall and Adblock protection, and support for P2P services like torrents.
Getting around censorship filters is a piece of cake when using the VPN service IPVanish offers. Although it doesn’t have either a free account or free trial options, your IPVanish purchase is protected by the company’s seven-day money back guarantee. Also, you don’t have to immediately jump into the most popular one-year plan ($77.99 when billed annually) if you are uncertain. Just pick any of the following pricing plans: one month for $10 or three months for $26.99. The advantage of this VPN service is that it owns more than 850 servers spread worldwide in more than 60 countries. As such, IPVanish is capable of offering more than 40,000 IP addresses to hide your real IP address.
If you are on a limited budget, ZenMate’s annual plan – which costs only $59.88 and is billed yearly – could be one of the best options you have. The monthly plan is more pricey than IPVanish’s, costing $12.99, but if you want protection for only the next six months then the $59.94 option is the one to choose so long as you’re willing to accept that it costs more than getting the same service for a full year. ZenMate has apps for every major platform, including macOS and iOS, and browser extensions for Chrome, Firefox and Opera. Safari has been left off the list.
Best VPN Services for Mac of 2020
|Editor's Choice 2020|
Tweaking Safari Security and Privacy Settings
Mac users can use several security measures to erase traces of their online activity using the features offered by Safari. The privacy tab under Safari Preferences gives several options to protect your privacy, such as selectively clearing cookies, denying websites the use of location services, and asking websites not to track you. You should remove cookies regularly, but if you don't want the hassle then simply use private browsing. Opening a page in Private Browsing will prevent websites from tracking your activity in other tabs – for example, Facebook won’t know if you have another Facebook tab open. Additionally, using this mode means the sites you visit won’t remember your computer and recent searches won’t appear in the results when using the Smart Search field.
But there is more: if you don’t like the idea of private browsing, simply use Mac optimization apps to clear browsing history and cookies, and combine that with the use of VPN services to encrypt traffic between your computer and the secure server you connect to in order to ensure private browsing. That way, you can finally regain anonymity on the internet when using Apple’s Safari browser.
Best Mac Optimization Software of 2020
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