Anonabox Pro Tor And VPN Router Review: Protect Your Privacy
The one question that may still be on your mind is whether or not the Anonabox truly anonymizes your connection. This device doesn't inherently offer anything that isn't available elsewhere or through other means; it just routes all your traffic through the Tor network. This is advantageous for several reasons. The first is that the best way to actually use the Tor network is to use the Tor browser, which is a locked-down browser that's not the fastest nor the easiest to use. When you connect to Tor via the Tor browser it actually gives you a reading on all the connections that were made, and here's what it looks like:
The Tor browser shows you the path it took to connect you.
With the Anonabox, you can use Chrome or Firefox (or Safari, we guess) as all your traffic goes through Tor, so that's a major bonus as the Tor browser isn't for everyone. It's safe though, at least compared to our default Chrome installation. Here are security tests we ran connected to Tor for both our normal Chrome install and the Tor browser.
Tor Browser Results
Chrome Browser Results
We're not security experts, but again, this device is designed to get you and anyone in your home onto Tor in the easiest way possible, and it achieves that goal. You just flip a switch in the Admin console, it connects you to Tor, and you can open any browser you want to and access the Internet in a fashion that mostly covers your tracks. That's all it's designed to do, along with encrypting file-sharing via the USB 2.0 port.
Overall it was a mostly trouble-free experience using the Anonabox, and we experienced zero issues aside from some initial setup hiccups. Speaking of which, we emailed Anonabox's support email with several questions regarding our issues and they wrote back in 30 minutes or so. We kept emailing them general questions throughout the writing of this review and they consistently answered quickly with intelligent, easy-to-understand directions and information. The support emails were clearly written by a real person, and it was one of the best support experiences we've had with a tech company.
For an example of the support we received, we emailed them asking, "What's the benefit to using the Anonabox over just using the Tor browser on a mobile device?" They wrote back, "The Anonabox puts Tor at the network level meaning it pushes all your network traffic over Tor. This means you're not restricted to the Tor browser (you can use Chrome for instance). It also makes for a flexible connection point for all your devices just as any wireless access point would. This means you don't need to download anything onto your devices and new devices that come into proximity, say friends and family, could also have access to this network and have the benefits of Tor."
Overall the Anonabox was easy-to-use, delivered on its promise of easily connecting us to Tor, and with its built-in WiFi we were able to use it on every device in our home. We didn't experience any issues with Tor or the device, as it worked exactly as expected. It seems like all the initial concerns with the device as well as the infusion of money from its new owner allowed the Anonabox's manufacturer to refine the device, as it's a very polished piece of hardware with excellent support. It seems a bit expensive at about $100 - $120, but it certainly feels like a quality product through-and-through. We're giving it our recommended award as it delivered on its promise of allowing for easy connections to Tor from any device. It worked exactly as it should, and we can envision a day when this kind of functionality is built into mainstream routers right off the shelf.