Achieving complete online security these days is just like climbing a mountain. With the increase in internet traffic, chances are more to lose personal data. Hackers are spying on you from the back of your device’s browser. You might be thinking about how it can be possible?
I know you are getting interested, go ahead with the table of content, and read the full blog about the WebRTC Leak.
- What is WebRTC?
- How does WebRTC Leak Occurs?
- So What is STUN and STUN Server?
- How to Test WebRTC Leak?
- Types of WebRTC Leak Severity
- How to Fix WebRTC Leak?
- How to Fix WebRTC using VPN
- How to Fix WebRTC Leak With Web Extension?
- How to Fix WebRTC Leak with Browser Setting?
- Firefox Browser
- Microsoft Edge
- Safari Browser
- Android Chrome Browser
- Brave Browser
- Verify the WebRTC Leak Fixes
- WebRTC Leaks and Browser Vulnerabilities
What is WebRTC?
People use Web browsers to connect to the online world particularly for web chat applications like Web Whatsapp, Web Skype, and Hangouts. These web browsers use WebRTC (Real-time communication for the web) to create real-time connections to send data like voice and video over the web. Browsers like Chrome, Firefox, Edge, Safari, and mobile browsers come with this feature by default and doesn’t require any plugins.
How does WebRTC Leak Occurs?
Don’t be happy if you are using a poor VPN. The best VPN protects you by replacing your public IP address with its own IP address. So if this replaced IP address is leaking, you don’t have to worry.
So What is STUN and STUN Server?
STUN (Session Traversal Utilities for NAT) is a set of instructions. A protocol like WebRTC uses it to know the IP address of devices across the internet. So STUN’s primary job is to answer the question “what is my IP address?” and to do so it uses the STUN server.
How to Test WebRTC Leak?
I performed the WebRTC leak test using browserleaks.com in my Chrome browser without the use of any VPN and plugin. The result was very disappointing as it was exposing my IP address. The leak problem occurs due to only public IP addresses. Do does not worry about the local IP address, it will not hurt you.
With your eagle eye, you may have noticed Local and Public addresses. The story is simple, both serve the same purpose. The public IP address helps to locate devices across the internet universe while the local IP address is used inside a private network to locate devices.
Types of WebRTC Leak Severity
Based on the above leak test, I have observed that not all leaks are equal. It can be categorized into two levels of severity:
1. Leaks when permissions granted
2. Leaks when permissions not granted
Less Severe occurs when your public IP is hidden, but the website you are visiting is asking for mic or camera permission. In this case, the person who is spying on you can record your voice after permission is granted.
If your public IP address is leaking even after a VPN connection, then before the third person asks for mic or camera permission from you, you will find yourself under attack. This is the most severe leak and is known as “Persistent Vanilla Leak”.
How to Fix WebRTC Leak?
Some options are available to prevent WebRTC Leak.
1. WebRTC Leak Fix using VPN (like NordVPN, ExpressVPN, and CyberGhost)
2. Disable WebRTC in the browser (Firefox)
3. Use of extensions in browsers
Note that not all VPN will protect you from WebRTC Leak, so we have suggested the best ones only.
How to Fix WebRTC using VPN
When the WebRTC Leak was found in browsers, many VPN (Virtual Private Network) providers scared. As it was leaking information while VPN was connected. Some VPN providers worked hard to battle this issue and finally, they won. We have reviewed various premium VPN and tested thoroughly. However, some failed in their promise, and some become king.
Each of the above-listed VPN will provide you complete security and you don’t have to fear while surfing the web. Go through the link to read a full review of each VPN.
WebRTC Leak Fix using ExpressVPN
ExpressVPN is a market leader in the VPN industry. To provide the best value support ExpressVPN offers various privacy and security related features like DNS leak fix and WebRTC leak fix. To fix the WebRTC leak, the ExpreesVPN browser extension comes in handy, but the extension is available only for Chrome and Firefox browsers. The ExpressVPN browser extension fixes the leak by disabling WebRTC from the settings menu itself, or you can also manually do this, and thus ensure safety.
Also, read ExpressVPN’s full review.
WebRTC Leak Fix using NordVPN
If you really ask me how to fix the WebRTC leak in browsers, my recommended suggestion will be NordVPN. With the tight secure servers and geo-unblocking capability, NordVPN stands first in my test. When fixing the leak, NordVPN doesn’t care if you are using a browser extension or any VPNs. It just replaces your original IP address with its server’s IP address, so even if it leaks you are protected.
Also, read NordVPN’s full review.
WebRTC Leak Fix using CactusVPN
CactusVPN also has a solution for the WebRTC Leak. Subscribe for a free 3-day trial and check how it protects you. Get WebRTC leak fix as soon as you connect to their server. Apart from this get features like high-end encryption, no-log policy, DNS leak protection, and access to six VPN protocols: OpenVPN, SoftEther, SSTP, IKEv2/IPSec, L2TP/IPSec, PPTP for your perfect browsing experience.
How to Fix WebRTC Leak With Web Extension?
Desktop Chrome Browser
WebRTC organization offers a free and trustable extension for Chrome browsers. WebRTC Network Limiter gives you the option to route the internet traffic through your VPN’s IP address.
Remember that add-ons extensions are not a 100% solution to prevent the WebRTC Leak. Your IP address may still leak in some circumstances. So be careful while surfing the web in the chrome browser.
In spite of having ad blockers and free VPN in Opera, it still leaks our IP address. The best way to stop the WebRTC Leak is the use of the “WebRTC Leak Prevent” extension. Head towards Advanced Options and click on “Disable non-proxied UDP”.
How to Fix WebRTC Leak with Browser Setting?
Firefox has its own rule to enable or disable features. Disabling WebRTC is very simple in Firefox and doesn’t require any extensions, unlike Chrome.
1. Head towards your Firefox tab and type “about: config” followed by an enter press. Then, agree to the warning message and click the continue button.
2. In the search box type “media.peerconnection.enabled“ and double click on the preference button to make it false.
3. Hurrah! You are safe now.
Microsoft does not allow you to hide public IP addresses in the Edge browser. However, it does offer to hide local IP address using browser settings. Follow the steps to disable it.
1. Head towards your Edge browser and type “about: flags” in the new tab. Hit the enter.
2. Look over or simply hit the search button by typing “Anonymize local IPs exposed by WebRTC“.
3. Now enable it to feel safe.
Safari Browsers are the soul of Apple devices. WebRTC leak has nothing to do with Safari. However, due to the recent integration of WebRTC with it, we should disable the WebRTC API for our privacy and security. Follow the steps to disable it.
1. No Extension is required. Just click on “Setting” in the top right corner.
2. Then click “Preferences“
3. Go to the “Advanced” tab, then at the bottom enable the box for “Show Develop menu in menu bar”.
4. Click on “Develop” in the menu bar.
5. Under the “WebRTC” option disable “Enable Legacy WebRTC API”.
Android Chrome Browser
You can disable WebRTC on your android device manually. It’s just a simple process like eating a cake. You can type in or copy-paste the URL in your chrome tab.
Now hit enter and look for “WebRTC Stun Origin Header”, disable it. You can also disable other flags like “WebRTC Hardware Video Encoding”, though it not necessary and you don’t want to do experiments with your security.
Brave browser does protect us from ads and website (HTTP) trackers but doesn’t guarantee to prevent WebRTC leak. Its behavior is the same as Chrome because both are based on Chromium. However, it does give the option to disable WebRTC in the browser setting itself. Follow both methods to disable it.
Fingerprinting Protection – Method 1
1. Head towards “Settings” and click on “Shields“.
2. Look for “Fingerprinting” on the right side.
3. Select “Block all fingerprinting” in the drop-down menu.
WebRTC IP Handling Policy – Method 2
The above instructions worked for my system. The alternate method is also available if it doesn’t work for you.
1. Head towards “Settings” and click on “Additional Settings“.
2. Click on “Privacy & Security“
3. On the right side click to “WebRTC IP Handling Policy“
4. From the drop-down menu select “Disable non-proxied UDP“
Verify the WebRTC Leak Fixes
After all, we fixed the WebRTC Leak. Now it’s time to verify the fixes. I am suggesting you again, don’t be upset if you see the local IP address, It’s not the leak and it causes no harm to your privacy till you don’t use a private network. Finally, I ran the test in the Firefox browser with its internal settings and it is working well. You can see in the image, it hides both local and public IP addresses.
WebRTC Leaks and Browser Vulnerabilities
I know most of you are very concerned about your privacy in the internet universe and you may be using many privacy tools including VPN too. Hiding your public IP address does not indicate that you are completely secure. Many other vulnerabilities exist within browsers and websites we visit. Fingerprinting is another threat to your digital life, but the good thing is that solution is available. Browsers like Opera and Brave are made only for securing your fingerprinting across the internet.
Final Words – Stay Safe!