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Firefox’s anti-tracking feature adds per-account VPN for more privacy

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It’s also bringing its multi-hop feature to Mozilla VPN on iOS and Android

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

Mozilla is combining its Multi-Account Containers add-on with its VPN service, which lets you keep your online personas — such as your work and personal browsing histories — separate.

Multi-Account Containers has been available as a Firefox add-on since 2017. It works to “contain” your different online lives into separate tabs that you can label with colors, icons, or names. The containers just don’t hold your browsing histories — they also store cookies and tracking information, which means you can sign into different accounts on the same site just by clicking over to another container.

But using the add-on with Mozilla VPN comes with a distinct advantage (well, at least in my option): the ability to hide your location across containers. As Mozilla’s blog post explains, you can connect each of your online personas with a different server — for example, if you’re traveling abroad but want to check your online bank account back home, you can use the add-on to browse for local shops in one tab and then manage your personal finances from a server near your hometown in another.

When combined with the Multi-Account Containers add-on, using Mozilla’s VPN can help mask your web activity even more, as it makes it harder for servers to track you based on where you’re accessing a site from. That makes it a cool way to see what’s trending on YouTube in two different countries at once and a crucial privacy tool for avoiding prying eyes trying to find a connection between your different online personas.

While Mozilla VPN only came out in 2020, it would’ve been nice if the add-on was supported directly from the very start, considering just how useful it is, but now it’s here.

As for Mozilla’s multi-hop feature — which was first released for the desktop VPN back in September — it lets you route your online activity through two different servers, further covering up your tracks online. Today, the organization announced it’s adding support for the multi-hop feature on the Mozilla VPN Android and iOS app.

Mozilla offers instructions on how to add Multi-Account Containers to Mozilla VPN, as well as how to turn on the multi-hop feature on mobile. Although Mozilla VPN is still a fairly new service, unique features, like its Multi-Account Containers, might make the feature easily accessible to users with more serious privacy concerns.