Little Snitch (Software Firewall)

Realized it was not mentioned yet here. They just launched a new version

This is really a no brainer when it comes to privacy and security on macos. It features blocklist feature and secure dns as well as easy monitoring what the apps on your device want and have connected to.

If you don’t like to pay (shame on you), there is a LuLu

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Sure but it’s far less featured. Bit of topic for this thread too

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Sure, but is there a way to pay privately for Snitch? I would be totally willing to pay if so, I just can’t shake the fear of paying with my real info, which is then tied to a unique key, with all of my network traffic attached. This might make it tough for PG to recommend as well.

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You can use business paypal + vpn or some card masking service like mysudo, apple pay, privacy com, ironvest etc.

I don’t think they have crypto, they prob should add that.

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ProxyStore is selling user licenses for Little Snitch 6. They offer XMR and cash payment.

ProxyStore was mentioned/discussed at PG before [1, 2, 3, 4]. They are legit and official reseller of Tuta [5].

All network traffic attached? No. That’s just not how it works.

Little Snitch runs locally. Nothing will be attached to your license.

I personally think, LuLu should be considered a more privacy-oriented firewall for macOS compared to Little Snitch, despite being less polished and feature-rich. It is fully open-source and does not require registration. LuLu performs basic firewall functions as effectively as Little Snitch. However, Little Snitch should be recommended for users requiring more advanced functionalities, as it offers additional benefits. It is important to mention both options to provide a comprehensive recommendation.

The topic of application firewalls receives limited attention in PG. Currently, firewalls are briefly mentioned in the Router Firmware [1] and macOS [2] sections, as well as in some blog posts [3]. To adequately recommend software like Little Snitch, PG might benefit from a dedicated category in the recommendation section. This category should not solely focus on macOS but also include other OS.

It should be discussed whether firewall software is a recommended privacy tool, especially highlighting its benefits and disadvantages compared to DNS-based firewalls [4], such as NextDNS [5].

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Couldn’t disagree more. Lulu is far less featured, doesn’t have good user control, no option to add multiple blocklists, no option to do secure DNS, to name something.

Being open source isn’t better for privacy, this has been discussed extensively in the past and the community has already concluded on that before. We prefer it when possible but it in no way justifies settling for less privacy features.

Anyway for my part both can be recommended but your comment and this one are completely off topic. You can open a different topic about the differences and one about adding Lulu.

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The question of software firewalls is a very important one in my opinion.

I created a prolific thread here with some great responses: