Programs that respect your privacy

Privacy Browser 1.9 and 1.9.1

Privacy Browser 1.9 and 1.9.1 have been released. Version 1.9.1 fixes a small problem that caused 1.9 to fail to build on F-Droid.

Privacy Browser 1.9 includes a German translation provided by Aaron Gerlach. Maintaining a translation requires a lot of work and I am grateful to Aaron for his contributions.

Privacy Browser 1.9 also includes a number of new features. Basic SSL handling is included. Tapping on the favorite icon will display SSL certificate information. SSL error messages are also presented to the user, which allows them to access sites that use self-signed SSL certificates or otherwise produce SSL errors. The SSL certificate information provided by Android’s WebView is more limited than I would like. Specifically, it does not expose the serial number or the SHA1 digest of the certificate. One of the planned features is to allow users to pin SSL certificates, which can be done with knowing the serial number or digest, but is not as secure.

Font size control has also been added. WebView has three settings for controlling font size: minimum font size, default font size, and text zoom. Text zoom seemed to be the easiest of the controls to present to the user. It is expressed as a percentage. I decided use a pre-built selection list of percentage options instead of text entry box for the user to type a number because it is easier and faster to use a pre-built list. The list is populated with the following percentages: 50%, 75%, 100%, 125%, 150%, 175%, 200%. In my testing, these options provide all the variation I could imagine a user desiring. If someone would like additional values added to the list, or needs access to the minimum font size and default font size controls, feel free to contact me.

Privacy Browser now handles “mailto:” links on websites. A couple of bugs were also fixed that caused the browser to crash when working with bookmarks with no favorite icon and the navigation drawer to sometimes stop working after viewing a full-screen video. Progress was made regarding the “X-Requested-With” header, which was covered in more detail in a previous post.

The major feature I plan to implement for Privacy Browser 1.10 is proxy integration with Orbot.

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