PrivateVPN review: a private internet experience
Private VPN is a Sweden-based fast-growing secure VPN provider. It has more than 150 servers spread over 60 countries around the world. PrivateVPN is fast and secure with an AES-256-bit Encryption and an automatic kill switch feature. It provides a stealth mode feature to bypass geo-censorship. In this review, we will further discuss the features that make PrivateVPN one of the top 10 VPNs out there, in our opinion.
Server Network and Speeds
While the server network of 150 servers spread over 60 countries is no small feat, it does however seem small in comparison to other VPN providers like NordVPN with more than 5000 servers. That being said, PrivateVPN servers are still able to maintain good speed, comparable to other competitors with thousands of servers. However, PrivateVPN does suffer when trying to connect to far servers.
PrivateVPN and Streaming
PrivateVPN allows for streaming on many mainstream streaming platforms, including Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Video, BBC iPlayer, and ABC. They have a server labeling feature showing what server can unblock which geographic restriction for specific streaming sites. This relieves you from going through a trial and error process to find out which server unblocks your preferred streaming platform, rendering it highly user-friendly.
PrivateVPN and Torrenting
PrivateVPN supports unlimited P2P sharing, and it does so without restricting the bandwidth. Hence the speed won't be affected. In terms of privacy, the no activity logs feature means you won't have any legal issues. Another exciting feature PrivateVPN provides is the Port forwarding feature, though it's not available on all servers.
Security – Is PrivateVPN Safe?
PrivateVPN is considered a secure VPN. It offers many features to ensure no information is leaked. The three main points to discuss are the encryption level and protocols used, the Log policy, and the Kill switch feature.
Private VPN uses AES 256-bit encryption, meaning when someone is trying to break the encryption, they would have to go through (2 to the power 256) probabilities to decipher the encryption. Governments and the military implement this encryption level to secure their data.
Secure protocols wise, PrivateVPN has a few options that vary in functionality, speed, compatibility, and protection uses OpenVPN with UDP/TCP, L2TP, IPsec, PPTP, and IKEv2. The default is OpenVPN with UDP/TCP; this protocol provides security and speed. The L2TP (Layer 2 tunneling protocol) is used mainly for geographic censorship to using a VPN, such as in China's case. In terms of security, it's relatively less secure than other protocols. That is why it's often combined with the IPsec (L2TP/IPsec) protocol to produce the desired effect while keeping the safety feature. However, It is relatively slower than its other counterparts.
|Platform||All Platforms||Windows, iOS||All Platforms||mac OS, iOS, Android, and Linux||All Platforms|
|Security and protection||Basic encryption (weakest), supports encryption keys up to 128-bits, and it uses MPPE (Microsoft Point-to-Point Encryption)||IPSec encryption||Doesn't provide encryption on its own, unless combined with IPSec.||IPSec encryption||OpenVPN AES 256-bit protocol|
|Firewall||TCP port 1723, and IP port 47. (easiest to block||UDP ports 500 and 4500 and ESP IP Protocol 50||Uses UDP port 1701.||Uses UDP port 500 (easy to block)||uses 443 port (hard to block) (masks deep packet inspection)|
|Speed||Possibly the fastest due to low encryption (fewer data to transfer)||Generally fast (faster than OpenVPN)||Relatively slow||fast||Generally fast|
PrivateVPN No-Logs policy
PrivateVPN doesn't keep activity logs; that being said, some logs are kept. To clarify this, PrivateVPN keeps information logs on who uses their services. This includes the E-mail and IP address. But what is done while the VPN is active is not maintained and hence even if requested by some government within the 14 Eyes Alliance, the lack of logs means they cannot provide any information.
PrivateVPN Kill switch feature (Connection guard)
Connection guard is a failsafe mechanism where in the event your VPN connection is compromised; it automatically closes down select applications. After the VPN is reconnected, all previous activities are resumed. Sadly, this kill switch feature is only available for the Windows version
PrivateVPN bypassing the Great Firewall of China (stealth mode)
Chinas restrictions on VPN services cause many users from China or living in China to search for a VPN to bypass this. PrivateVPN is one such example. The company doesn't clarify the exact process, so it doesn't get countered. To use PrivateVPN in China, activate the stealth mode and use L2TP or (L2TP/IPsec) protocol, and you should be set to go.
Pricing and payment Options
In terms of plans and pricing, Private VPN has only one plan with no variation in features. The difference in how much you pay is dependent on how long you subscribe. The prices are $8.10 for one month, $5.03 per month for three months, and $2.07 per month for 24 months.
PrivateVPN provides multiple payment method options, including Credit cards, PayPal, and Bitcoins.
Try It for Free
PrivateVPN is compatible with Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, Android, and routers. Give it a try, they offer a 7-day free trial period. During this trial period, you'll get to experience their service quality, capacity, and functional capabilities. According to their support forums, the free trial is accessible by requesting a gift code by e-mailing email@example.com.
Private VPN provides a 30-day money-back guarantee period. However, this applies only if you are a new customer. Able to give a reason why they should refund you, and it only applies if you've used less than 100GB of traffic. I found these criteria to be a little too strict.
Private VPN provides customer support through live chat, e-mail, and TeamViewer. They are granted a password supplied by you, remote desktop access to your PC to help troubleshoot your problem and provide configuration.
Do I use PrivateVPN? Well, PrivateVPN is relatively fast, provides robust AES-256-bit Encryption security, has a kill switch feature, and is cost-efficient. What's not to like? The only serious issue I could think of is with the kill switch limit to Windows. But if you are a Windows user or a user from a country with a geo-censorship, then a Private VPN might be for you.