Anonabox Review

Anonabox is a company that sells a lineup of plug-n-play VPN routers that have Tor built-in from the ground-up. The company famously made $600,000 on Kickstarter in 5 days. Here’s our review.

What is Anonabox?

Anonabox is a router manufacturer that recently released a lineup of several different routers. The routers all have built-in Tor functionality to encrypt your online communications from end-to-end.

Anonabox famously made $600,000 in 5 days on Kickstarter, smashing through its funding targets and showing that people around the world do care about online privacy.

Today, Anonabox offers a range of routers for sale, including The Original, The PRO, The Fawkes, and The Tunneler, all of which are available for less than $120.

You can use Anonabox routers to easily access the deep web or just browse the internet anonymously.

How Does Anonabox Work?

Anonabox works by using Tor, which is an encryption tool that uses a group of volunteer-operated servers. When you connect to the internet through Tor, you’re connecting through a series of virtual tunnels instead of making a direct connection.

Tor has been used for years to allow people to access the deep web or dark web – many websites on this part of the internet require the use of Tor before you can even see the website.

Tor also has more innocent purposes: journalists use Tor to communicate more safely with whistleblowers, for example. Or, people in foreign counties may use Tor to interact with blocked websites and the outside world.

In a world where government censorship and monitoring is suspected to be widespread, Tor is helping internet users fight back. Anonabox promises to help you take advantage of Tor without needing to install any Tor software or plugins on your computer. With a Tor router, all internet traffic that goes in and out of that router will be passed through Tor servers, enhancing your privacy for whatever you’re doing on the internet.

Anonabox was the first company to sell a commercially-available Tor-enabled router.

Advantages of Anonabox

Why would you want to use a Tor-enabled router? Some people have the misconception that Tor and other encryption services are just used for criminal purposes on the deep web. In reality, Tor-enabled routers like the Anonabox lineup have a number of different uses.

You can use Anonabox for all of the following:

-Access the Deep Web: Most of the internet isn’t found on search engines. You can access most of these websites without Tor. However, some websites (like .Onion domains) require you to use Tor before connecting to the server.

-Anonymous Public Wi-Fi: Public Wi-Fi networks are notoriously unsecure. Tor protects you from prying eyes.

-Avoid Remarketing Ads: Today’s ads follow you around the internet. Tor helps you stop seeing remarketed ads by averting malicious tracking cookies. Ads don’t follow you around the internet because they can’t follow you around the internet.

-Boost Wi-Fi Range: This isn’t a Tor benefit, but it is an Anonabox benefit. Anonabox claims the integral Wi-Fi antenna in their routers can help boost your network signal up to 300 feet (the Original model doesn’t have Wi-Fi, but the other routers do).

-Deter Hackers: Tor and Anonabox routers put a layer of anonymity between you and the internet, making it difficult for hackers or anyone else to see your true identity, location, or IP address online.

-Avoid Censorship: Government censorship is a major issue in some countries around the world. Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and other websites may be blocked by your country, your school, your workplace, or other organizations.

Ultimately, Anonabox and Tor will help you keep your location secret, keep your online browsing activities private, while also letting you easily connect to (and host) .Onion websites.

Downsides of Anonabox

Anonabox is open and honest about the downsides of using its routers. Tor isn’t a perfect service, and you may decide the restrictions aren’t worth it for you. Some of the downsides of Anonabox include:

-Slower Internet Speeds: All Tor users face reduced internet speeds, which is normal on the Tor network. Remember – your internet connection has to pass through multiple servers before data is sent or received, so it’s naturally going to take a little longer. Expect to lose about half of your normal bandwidth with Tor.

-Fingerprinting: Anonabox and Tor anonymize your connection, but they don’t prevent you from divulging personal information. If you log into email, log into social media, or “fingerprint” your connection in other ways, then that connection is no longer anonymous (for that session).

To enhance privacy even further, Anonabox recommends using the Tor browser in conjunction with your Anonabox router.

How to Use the Anonabox Router

Using any Anonabox router is as easy as connecting the router to your home router (via Ethernet cable). Then, you connect your computer to your Anonabox router via wireless connection or through Ethernet cable).

Basically, you use the Anonabox as a middle man between your standard router (which connects to the rest of the internet) and your computer.

You can choose to use the Anonabox routers all the time – or you can disconnect it when you don’t want enhanced privacy and slower internet speeds.

Anonabox Routers

Anonabox currently sells four different routers, all priced between $80 and $120. Here’s how pricing and features break down.

Original ($79.99)

  • -Built-in Tor client
  • -No wireless (only Ethernet)

Fawkes ($89.99)

  • -Build-in Tor client
  • -Tor bridge, relay, and exit
  • -Wi-Fi uplink and range extender

Tunneler ($99.99)

  • -Does not include Tor client
  • -HMA! Pro VPN interface and third party VPN interface support
  • -Wi-Fi uplink and range extender

PRO ($119.99)

  • -Built-in Tor client
  • -HMA! Pro VPN interface and third party VPN interface support
  • -Tor bridge, relay, and exit

If you get confused between the above router options, then Anonabox has a helpful buyers guide here. That buyer’s guide will ask you why you want Tor, and then ask you where you plan to use Tor before recommending a router for you.

All routers are available to purchase through the official Anonabox website.

About Anonabox

Anonabox is an American company based in California. The company launched its routers on Kickstarter in 2014, famously making $600,000 in 5 days before Kickstarter pulled the project. Then, the company took its business to IndieGoGo.

You can get in touch with the company by emailing [email protected] or by calling (774) 768-HIDE. The company’s mailing address is:

3259 Esplanade Suite #103
Chico, CA 95973

The Anonabox router project was led by August Germar, an IT security professional with “over a decade of enterprise level security experience as CTO of 2interactive”, according to the IndieGoGo page.

Anonabox doesn’t just use Tor as a trendy sales pitch: the company actually supports the project. A portion ($1) of each Anonabox sold is donated to the continuing development of the Tor Project and supporting the open, anonymous internet.

In 2015, Anonabox was acquired by Sochule, Inc. All of the company’s routers are assembled in Chico, CA.

You can learn more about Anonabox here:

Should You Use Anonabox to Protect your Privacy?

Some people protect their privacy online using the Tor browser. But the Tor browser only protects internet connections made through your browser.

Routers like Anonabox can protect all internet connections going in and out of your home or business.

Some people use Anonabox to facilitate communication between journalists and whistleblowers. Other people use it to access the deep web or dark web. And some people just use it because they don’t want third parties – like advertisers – to know their location or identity online.

For whatever reason you may need it, Anonabox is a reasonably-priced router that automatically anonymizes internet connections across multiple devices in your home or business.