We want you to trust that we’re delivering on this promise. So we’re about to get technical. If you have a question that we didn’t answer, ask us here and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.
Winston automatically blocks connections to sites known as security threats, and is equipped with a managed blacklist — 90,000+ tracking and malware sites are blocked by default. This list is completely customizable, so you can add your own sites to the blacklist and/or choose from well-known third-party blocklists and filters, including EasyList.
Winston's AI automatically analyzes and modifies or blocks suspicious tracker cookies, protecting your browser history from prying eyes.
Winston automatically detects and blocks sophisticated browser fingerprinting techniques, which exploit manufacturing differences between otherwise identical hardware devices to determine who you are, even if you’re blocking cookies, browsing in incognito mode, or using a VPN.
Internet Service Providers (ISPs) use DNS lookups to spy on you and generate metadata profiles. For instance, if you install a connected glucose meter in your home, your ISP will be able to see this and deduce that a diabetic is in the family. They can and do sell that information to third parties. Winston automatically encrypts the DNS lookups of all the devices on your network, preventing your ISP from tracking your browsing activity, and protecting your devices from pervasive DNS Rebinding attacks.
Winston's network level privacy protection starts working in 60 seconds. Upgrade individual browsers to an even higher level with the Winston browser extension, found on the Firefox and Chrome Add On stores.
Winston’s proprietary Privacy Mesh automatically routes your traffic through numerous other Winston devices, selecting new peers every 10 minutes. Your traffic is mixed anonymously with that of other users, making it impossible for trackers to connect individual users with their IP addresses.
Yes. Winston anonymizes your location by randomly routing every requested domain to a new exit point every 10 minutes. This ensures complete privacy and prohibits third parties from tracking your location.
Winston Privacy does not log any internet activity which goes over our network. In fact, we designed our technology specifically so that we cannot ever see or decrypt your internet activity (similar to Telegram and Signal). Your personal internet activity is retained on your local Winston device for up to seven days so that you can see what sites attempted to track you. This information is stored only on your device and is never exposed to Winston Privacy or the internet. After 7 days, your data is automatically permanently deleted from your local Winston device. You can disable local storage of your personal internet activity on your Winston in the "Advanced Settings" section of your local Winston website (http://winston.conf). Please note that if you do so, you will not be able to view any activity occurring on your local network.
One. Your traffic is mixed with the other users on the Winston Privacy Mesh, selecting new peer devices every 10 minutes.
Here are the questions we get asked the most. Contact us if there's something else on your mind.Contact Support
Yes. Winston’s machine learning algorithm dynamically classifies, modifies, and blocks suspicious cookies, while letting through the first-party cookies that enable websites to function. Winston can even identify and block trackers that are embedded in first-party cookies, giving you a layer of protection that no browser can offer.
Technically yes, but it will feel a lot faster. Most sites load faster when using Winston due to the elimination of resource-intensive tracking scripts and reduced load on your browser. Winston routes your traffic through other devices to mask your IP address, incurring a barely perceptible increase in latency of about 40-50 milliseconds. However, your internet will tend to feel much faster because Winston blocks so many of the trackers that bog down your Internet connection. This reduces the amount of bandwidth consumed by browsers and other devices by 45% on average. A benchmark crawl of the Quantcast Top 500 US sites using our version 1.0.6 firmware resulted in an average reduction in page load time of 44% and a reduction in data utilization by 66%. Slow sites with lots of third-party tracking ran up to 95% faster. Fast, well-optimized sites which make use of little or no tracking run slightly slower (a few seconds) though these sites make up a small percentage of the internet.
In most cases, yes, because most VPNs aren't effective privacy tools. Both VPNs and Winston provide encryption from your computer to a different end point, but with Winston, your end points are also constantly being scrambled. That means your physical location will appear to change from minute to minute, making it much more difficult to track you. Winston also encrypts your DNS, blocks thousand of third-party trackers, intelligently blocks cookies, and stops aggressive browser fingerprinting techniques which can identify you even in incognito mode...and most VPNs don't do any of that. In addition, Winston Privacy doesn't collect your data, but many VPNs also actually harvest the same user data that trackers do, selling it back to the very advertisers and other corporate interests they claim to protect you from.
There are times, though, when you may need to continue using a VPN, such as in order to access a corporate network. In that case, your VPN will bypass Winston when in use.