Tor VS VPN: what's the difference?

Tor VS VPN: what’s the difference?

by Bryn Fest


Many people would like to get their hands on our personal information, from our spouses and marketing teams all the way up to crooks and state-sponsored spies.

Increasingly concerned about their online safety, people are turning to various software options like proxy sites, alternative browsers, or private networks. If you’re having trouble making a decision, this guide will help you consider one of the two most popular options: Tor and a Virtual private network (VPN).

Let’s jump into it!

What exactly is Tor?

Tor is an acronym for “The Onion Router,” a non-profit organization dedicated to researching and developing online privacy tools. Tor is a free browser that is available for Linux, Mac, Windows, and mobile devices.

The Tor browser is mainly intended to safeguard your online identity. When you use it, everything you do is routed through their network and classified, ensuring the privacy of your online activity.

How does Tor work?

When you use Tor, your communication is routed to the Internet via a “Circuit,” which comprises three machines, or Tor “nodes,” that are rotated every 10 minutes. Multiple levels of encryption safeguard your data. This prohibits anyone, including the majority of the Tor network, from spying on your traffic. Each computer in a Circuit removes one layer of encryption, revealing information that is visible only to it. They operate as follows:

  • The Entry Guard is the entry point for your traffic into the Circuit. It has access to both your IP address and that of the middle node.
  • The middle node has access to the Entry Guard and Exit Node’s IP addresses.
  • The Exit Node is the point at which the Circuit’s traffic leaves. It could see the IP address of the intermediary node and the target of your traffic. Because the Exit Node operates similarly to a VPN, any service you use on the Internet will identify your traffic as coming from the Exit Node’s IP address.

Pros and Cons


  • User-Friendly
  • It’s Free
  • Safeguard Your Privacy


  • Slow Speed
  • Web Services Blocked
  • Legal Trouble

What is VPN?

A VPN, which stands for Virtual Private Network, is software that helps you to hide your actual IP address and protect the data you send and receive over the Internet. When VPNs were first introduced, large organizations primarily employed them, allowing their staff to access sensitive information privately. But now, it is also used to protect an individual’s online behavior from hackers and government censorship. So start using a VPN to get free trials, fast speed, protect unlimited devices, and more.

How a VPN Works

A virtual private network (VPN) comprises a global network of servers. Whenever you request the Internet, it first goes through one of the VPN servers. As a result of using this different server, your IP address will be modified. Your device will appear to be at a different location, allowing you to access the network’s resources while protecting your identity remotely.

Pros and Cons


  • Speed
  • All Internet Content Is Accessible
  • Control of IP Address
  • All Traffic is Encrypted


  • Software Failures
  • Costs Money
  • VPN Provider Can See Your Activity

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