HideMyAss Full Review: Everything You Need to Know
HMA VPN (HideMyAss): Your Online Presence Is Secure
Some people could take it easy when it comes to their privacy issues, thinking that they are not targeted or do not have something to attract intruders. Surprisingly, you have something valuable; it is your private information. We chose HideMyAss VPN, the former name for the HideMyAss subsidiary, to review its services, plans, prices, features, and more.
Briefly, HideMyAss is packed with many features, including DDoS protection, kill-switch, military-grade encryption, a no-log policy, and many more. Ready to dig deeper? Let's get right to it.
More about HideMyAss VPN
HMA VPN (HideMyAss) is a virtual private network provider based in the United Kingdom and has been owned by Avast since 2016. It has been offering many services since 2005, and now it has more than 1060 servers in 290 locations around the globe. HideMyAss VPN's team thinks that using a VPN should not be rocket science. That's why they provide a user-friendly interface with easy-to-use tools.
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HideMyAss VPN Speed
HideMyAss VPN data centers have servers with 20 Gbps. Servers in other locations are capable of 10 Gbps, allowing users to enjoy a zero-buffering internet connection.
Additionally, HideMyAss VPN provides a new speed test to evaluate your network speed yourself and pick the location that works the best for you. The speed test is also great to find a specific P2P or streaming optimized server.
1. HideMyAss VPN in speed tests
HideMyAss VPN showed promising results in speed tests considering a large number of servers and their wise contribution around the globe. Performance while using VPNs wasn't as satisfying, though.
2. Number of servers and geographic distribution
Short explanation: HideMyAss VPN has more than 1060 servers in 290 locations around the globe.
Long explanation: The best VPN services always offer many server locations. The high number of servers (especially when they are quality servers) can relieve internet traffic congestion. When a server has too many users, the speed will drop.
3. Fastest available protocol
Short Explanation: HideMyAss VPN provides IKEv2 as the fastest VPN. (recommended to use).
Long Explanation: In the VPN world, many protocols exist, with differences between protocols making the difference in how secure a VPN is, how fast, and whether it can bypass geo-censorship. The trade-off is between speed and security, with the PPTP protocol typically being the fastest but the least secure.
HideMyAss VPN uses both OpenVPN and IKEv2 protocols. Compare them using the below table:
|Platform||All platforms (default for macOS and iOS)||All platforms|
|Security||IPsec encryption||AES encryption (most secure)|
|Firewall||UDP ports 500 and 4500, and ESP IP Protocol 50||Uses 443 port (hard to block)|
|Speed||Generally fast (faster than OpenVPN)||Slowest of the three (around 400,000 lines of code)|
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HideMyAss VPN Security and Privacy
The type of encryption and available protocols can make a huge difference in how secure and private your connection to the internet is. That's why we're going to introduce you to the encryption level and types of protocols available by HideMyAss VPN, with some tips on how to decide.
Other features regarding privacy vary from one VPN service to another, but we suggest choosing a VPN packed with these features to ensure a high security and privacy level. These features include DDoS protection, kill-switch, no-log policy, and more will be listed out in detail.
1. Encryption and protocols
You may have heard about military-grade encryption, or in other words (AES 256-bit encryption), it is the highest encryption standard used recently and up to the moment. HideMyAss VPN uses AES 256-bit encryption on Windows and Android; it is implemented using the OpenVPN protocol. On Mac and iOS, it is implemented using IKEv2/IPsec.
2. HideMyAss VPN logs policy
Short explanation: HideMyAss VPN has a no-activity log policy.
Long explanation: A no-log policy is such a relief, knowing that HideMyAss services are continuously audited and tested by an independent cyber-risk consultant firm VerSprite.
3. HideMyAss VPN kill switch
Short explanation: HideMyAss VPN has a fully functioning kill switch feature.
Long explanation: When your connection to a VPN server drops, a kill switch can save the day. With a VPN that includes a kill switch, you will never have to worry about any possible leaks resulting from a VPN disconnection. You can customize the kill-switch feature to all applications on windows or choose which applications you want to apply it for.
4. HideMyAss VPN RAM-based servers
Short explanation: HideMyAss VPN doesn’t have RAM-based servers.
Long explanation: A RAM-based server means that the data is saved on RAM, instead of being saved to SSD drives. This is advantageous to security because RAM is wiped clean every time the servers reboot.
5. Based country
Short explanation: HideMyAss VPN is based in the United Kingdom.
Long explanation: HideMyAss VPN is based in the United Kingdom, which is inside the 5/9/14 Eyes Alliance. VPN companies based inside the 5/9/14 Eyes Alliance are considered a possible security threat as these countries are known to spy on their citizens and share information internally.
6. Warrant canary
Short explanation: HideMyAss VPN has a warrant canary system.
Long explanation: A Warrant Canary is an indirect method to warn customers of governmental attempts to subpoena. The warrant's presence on the company’s official website means the local government hasn’t tried anything yet. If the Warrant Canary is removed from the company’s page, it means they were asked.
HideMyAss VPN in Practice
In terms of the application of VPNs in the real world, we dive further into how HideMyAss fares against the rest in the following categories:
HideMyAss VPN is what you need to stream fast with few or no lags. Pick your streaming platform out of BBC iPlayer, the US and UK Netflix, Amazon Prime, HBO Go, and Disney+.
Let's get started with Netflix's libraries; many users find that HideMyAss VPN works differently in different locations, but all test results show that it can unblock the US and UK Netflix without any errors.
What about its compatibility with other streaming services, like BBC iPlayer? HideMyAss VPN servers can unblock BBC iPlayer live shows, old shows, BBC radio, news channels, BBC ALBA, and more. If it does not work abroad, which means outside the UK, the problem can be solved with the customer support team's assistance or by connecting to a different server.
Watching dark comedies, satirical series, and movies is possible with HideMyAss VPN. There are dozens of Amazon originals on Amazon Prime that you can enjoy. However, you might have error messages when trying to use Disney+ using HMA VPN. Therefore, we recommend using CyberGhost or Private Internet Access to ensure that you won't be stopped by an error message or slow internet connection.
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Short explanation: HideMyAss VPN allows torrenting. Furthermore, HMA VPN has a specialized torrenting server.
Long explanation: When you want to share files with a decent speed, P2P technologies are the right option. With HideMyAss P2P customized servers, you can enjoy uploading and downloading files with minimal impact on your device.
Short explanation: HMA is a good VPN for gaming.
Long explanation: HMA is a good VPN for gaming since you can directly deploy it on the router, which allows all family members to connect automatically to the VPN through the WI-Fi network. Protection to all your family member allows a great gaming experience, especially when you're playing in a multiplayer mode.
You can cross all regional limitations using HideMyAss and enjoy playing with players from other geographical places, no matter where your location is.
Gamers could do the impossible to win. That's a reason why you need DDoS protection. DDoS attacks overwhelm your device with heavy traffic on your bandwidth, preventing websites from functioning well or holding back your internet speed. HideMyAss servers shield your device against cybercriminals and make sure of your online presence security.
4. Tor over VPN
Short explanation: HideMyAss VPN doesn't support Tor over VPN.
Long explanation: Torrent onion router (Tor) is a P2P program used to enter the dark web. Using a VPN adds an extra layer of anonymity, especially at the entry node, with data encryption.
5. HideMyAss VPN dedicated IP
Short explanation: HMA VPN doesn’t have a dedicated IP.
Long explanation: Mostly, when using a VPN, you want a dynamic IP (an IP that changes whenever you reconnect to a server). In certain situations, this is not the case. A dedicated server is recommended in the following situations:
- Business security
- Secure online payment
- Avoid getting blacklisted
- Avoid CAPTCHAs
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6. Geo-censorship bypass (obfuscation)
Short explanation: HMA VPN bypasses geo-restricted content.
Long explanation: With more than 1060 and 290 locations attentively distributed over 190 countries, HMA VPN ensures comprehensive coverage and a wider range of options for people worldwide. Also, it serves the best for people who want to enjoy an unlimited online experience while traveling or existing in any spot around the globe.
HMA VPN can bypass geo-restricted content from different locations around the globe, but not unlimitedly and fully. So if you aim to have a wholesome online experience without any lags or errors, we recommend using one of our tops, like CyberGhost or Private Internet Access.
7. Split tunneling
Short explanation: HMA VPN has the split tunneling feature.
Long explanation: HMA provides this feature for Android only. If you have never heard about this feature, let's explain it a little bit more for you, It is a feature that enables you to select which data pass through the VPN encryption tunnel and leaves the rest without encryption. Why would you need to select?
Extensions and Compatibility
HMA VPN is compatible with:
HMA VPN is available as an extension on:
- Google Chrome
- Microsoft Edge
HideMyAss User Experience
When it comes to the technical issues and assistance needed by customers, HMA VPN supports you all along the way via multiple options.
1. Supported languages
HMA VPN supports the following languages:
2. Customer support
HMA VPN supports you via the following options:
- Live chat
- Knowledge base
- Articles and guides
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The collected data is needed to troubleshoot for support and to use when planning for new improvements.
To answer that question, we want to talk about one of the hacking groups, LulzSec, which was behind the break into the Sony Pictures website and the compromisation of thousands of people's names, passwords, home addresses, and e-mail addresses, and date-of-birth.
It did not stop at that point, LulzSec started targeting government websites. They were behind taking websites for some big names offline, like the CIA and the UK's Serious Organized Crime Agency (SOCA).
In 2011, a court order was sent to HMA asking for an account involved in the above hacking cases, as it appeared later that one of the hackers was using HMA VPN to hide his real IP address. Unsurprisingly, handing in personal information to the FBI disturbed many HMA customers and even customers of other VPN providers.
On their website, HMA replied frankly to all the concerns and claims, explaining that it is mere naivety to think any VPN provider won’t comply with law enforcement to uncover any criminal acts that threaten both the government's and people's security.
Is that All?
One more controversial issue has been overwhelming HMA customers; it is about the fact that HMA is a subsidiary of the Czech cybersecurity company Avast. Not before 2020 when an investigation by Motherboard and PCMag showed that Avast used users' confidential data and sold them to third parties, thereby overriding all privacy policies and putting both its reputation and people’s safety at considerable risk.
In the face of the storm, Avast came out to the world with an explanation. The CEO, Ondrej Vlcek, wrote in a blog post about the reason behind acquiring Jumpshot; he explained that it attempted to elevate the data analytics capabilities and take security beyond what is expected.
In more detailed justification, Avast asked its users to put their fears away, emphasizing that users’ data were extracted out before handing them in a process called “De-identification.”
Avast’s scandal shocked many of Avast’s antivirus users, especially those who use the free version.
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Plans and Pricing
HMA VPN offers three different plans in terms of duration and the number of connected devices. All plans have servers for streaming and P2P connections, split-tunneling, kill switch, and unlimited bandwidth.
All plans are available with a 7-day trial and a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Prices for five connections
|Plans||1 Month Plan||12 Month Plan||36 Month Plan|
|Pricing||$11.99 per month||$4.99 per month
$59.88 billed every year
|$2.99 per month
$107.64 billed every 36 months
|Discount||No discount||58% off||75% off|
Prices for ten connections
|Plans||12 Month Plan||24 Month Plan||36 Month Plan|
|Pricing||$7.99 per month
$95.88 billed every year
|$6.99 per month
$167.76 billed every two years
|$5.99 per month
$215.64 billed every three years
|Discount||38% off||46% off||54% off|
Available payment methods include:
- American Express
We listed all features, plans, prices, and more about the company and its services to make your choice easier. It is essential to know your purpose and pick what looks suitable for your ultimate goal and interest.
If you are aiming for a VPN with a highly trusted policy and great features that you can rely on, we recommend reading our full reviews on CyberGhost or Private Internet Access.
Yes, it unblocks Netflix US and UK libraries.
Yes, it offers a 7-day free trial with all plans.
It protects up to 10 devices.
Unfortunately, it does not work in China, nor does it bypass its online restrictions.
All tests resulted that HideMyAss VPN can unblock the US and UK Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney+, and BBC iPlayer.