TunnelBear, a Toronto company building apps to make online privacy and an open Internet accessible to everyone, is squaring off with data brokers, advertisers and social media companies that track everything consumers do online. While it’s as simple as an on/off button to the user, in the background the new TunnelBear app is protecting user privacy by hiding both the users’ IP address and zapping many of the ads, scripts, cookies, social buttons and beacons that these companies are using to track consumers online.
Social media buttons have become widespread and with that so has the amount of personal information people unintentionally handover. In addition to the data willingly posted to services like Facebook, Google+ and Twitter, social sharing buttons also report back to social media companies all the different sites you visit even if you don’t interact with them. With the new TunnelBear features, social buttons can’t collect information about your visit unless you directly use them.
In the last few years advertisers, data brokers and social media companies have teamed up against consumers to build increasingly complete records of everything you do both online and offline. “Remember when browsing the web, couldn’t possibly impact your credit score? When using social media didn’t mean consenting to a record of your entire web history? And when shopping for a pair of shoes didn’t mean targeted ads for the next month? TunnelBear does, and we think the Internet is a better a place when websites and services can’t track everything you do online,” said Ryan Dochuk, co-founder of TunnelBear. “It’s only fair consumers have a TunnelBear fighting in their corner.”
Five new ways TunnelBear protects your privacy:
- Mauls trackers: Actively mauls website trackers you commonly find online like analytics, beacons, ads, scripts and cookies.
- Gives users control of social buttons: Simply enable or disable social buttons for Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to stop data from being sent to these companies for every website you visit.
- Vigilant connection: If your secure connection is disrupted by a computer starting/sleeping or a weak WiFi connection, the vigilant feature prevents unsecured traffic from being transmitted until the connection is restored.
- Always On Privacy: Reengineered apps are designed for 24/7 always-on privacy, connecting 35 percent faster than before.
- Provides privacy notifications: Simple notifications confirm you are connected and browsing privately.
With three tiers of pricing, PC and Mac customers can find a plan that is “just right” for them. TunnelBear is free with limited data, unlimited data versions of TunnelBear are $4.99 per month (Giant TunnelBear) or $49.99 for a year (Grizzly TunnelBear).