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I have a "Kaspersky Filter" VPN on my M1 Macbook running Big Sur. This seems not to be an actual VPN, as I don't see any network devices created by it, but rather just seems to be a HTTPS proxy that it forces all Browser connections to go through (any sites blocked by it can be accessed on the Terminal through curl). However, any browser outside Safari and Chrome (and by my experience, Firefox) bypasses this and you can access the sites unrestricted (just an aside, for some reason, it does not like self-signed certificates, and get a misleading Internet Disconnected message in Chrome). How does it do this and why?

Observation: When I set Kaspersky's CA X.509 setting to "Never Trust", it no longer uses that certificate. However, any site that it would normally block, just returns an "Internet Disconnected". On the bright side though, sites with my self-signed certificate works fine though.

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  • VPN is a broad term, and while I generally agree with you, TLS and SSH based tunnels, are often marketed as a type of VPN (and conceptually they are not really wrong). My guess is those are the only two browsers that it has plugins for. when dealing with "upper layer" VPNs the client/server software has to choose to create and use the tunnel, and for browsers, they are usually customized using native plugins. also your certificate issue may have more to do with Kaspersky's web protection modules which do use certificate substitution in order to scan traffic in HTTPS connections. Dec 31, 2021 at 1:30
  • @FrankThomas So what kind of system does Kaspersky use? Does the port 8021 open only on localhost have anything to do with it?
    – StarDust
    Dec 31, 2021 at 3:17
  • It seems that Chrome (and only Chrome, Ungoogled Chromium does not exhibit this) is unique in that it respects System proxy settings. All other Chromium-based browsers seem to ignore it.
    – StarDust
    Dec 31, 2021 at 3:36

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Apparently, SSL VPNs, which is what Kaspersky is, is not a OS-level VPN, like Wireguard, and only works with browsers. So, whether a browser supports Kaspersky highly depends on what the browser is. How to disable Chrome support/enable support on other browsers is still a mystery.

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