User personas are a key component of our human-centered design process. They help foster empathy by encouraging our developers to better understand the motivations, pain points and goals of our users.

The first generation of Tor personas were created following a series of field studies in the Global South from 2018 to 2019, where we were fortunate to meet many different kinds of Tor users – including activists, journalists and other human rights defenders.

However as of 2023, some of the information presented in them (e.g. the social/political context and state of censorship in some countries) may be out of date. As such, these personas are due to be replaced in the near future.

Second generation

In 2020, as part of a wider project on censorship circumvention, we created two additional personas set in the context of contemporary internet censorship events in West Africa:

Third generation

Following a series of digital security workshops and usability testing sessions in Brazil, Ecuador & Mexico from 2021–2023, we consolidated much of what we learned into a further two personas: