How to find a Fast and Secure Free VPN | Complete Guide
How to choose a Free VPN
The Internet has made it possible to send and receive emails instantly, shop online anywhere through an e-commerce platform of our choice, make payment through leading payment gateways, and earn online through freelance work among others. However, you have to guard your sensitive data against cyber criminals as well as stay anonymous to avoid prying eyes. That’s where a VPN service comes in.
A VPN service encrypts and secures a user’s data on private and public networks keeping the user’s activity and identity private. A VPN comes in handy in unblocking content, spoofing location, and helping users stay anonymous to evade government surveillance in countries with stringent censorship laws like China and Turkey.
The use of VPN service comes at a cost which makes many users opt for free VPN service.
Here are some excellent tips to look out for when choosing a free VPN service.
• Compatibility and Concurrent Connections
The best free VPN should have an easy to use software and be compatible with a broad range of devices ranging from Windows, Mac, Linux, OSX, IOS, Android and Routers. The number of simultaneous connections a VPN allows is important for users who intend to use the service on several devices in a home or office.
• Number of servers and their location
Some server locations are known to have high speeds compared to others. A VPN with servers in different locations provides you with the flexibility of testing speeds and connecting to servers that work for you.
Locations are of utmost importance where you want to unblock content like Netflix. If your region is restricted, you can spoof your location and seem as if you are accessing the website or TV station from the country it is based.
More servers’ means fewer people waiting to use them which translates to less wait time. Uptime is another factor that needs consideration. It beats all logic to have a VPN that is always down.
· Available protocols
A good VPN service should offer a variety of protocols for its clients to choose depending on their needs. Some of the leading protocols are PPTP, L2TP, and OpenVPN. It is wise to consider which protocols your device supports, establish whether your network blocks any of the available protocols, and also weigh between security and speed.
If you are looking for security, OpenVPN would be the ideal protocol. PPTP isn’t as secure as OpenVPN but has some high speeds for those users that are only interested in watching geo -blocked videos and websites from other countries. L2TP provides a balance between speed and security. Though slower than PPTP, L2TP proves to be more secure.
A kill switch functionality is a feature that a VPN should have to help in the protection of a user’s anonymity. The kill switch ‘kills’ or blocks the user’s internet connection whenever the VPN disconnects thus ensuring that the actual IP address of the user is never exposed online.
· Does the VPN bypass ISP Bandwidth throttling?
ISP’s are notorious at monitoring users’ online activity to identify when a user consumes a lot of network speed. A competent VPN should have the capacity to bypass ISP Bandwidth throttling techniques. Some of the available methods include routing all a user’s traffic through a VPN, replacing a user’s IP address with another one from its servers, use of tunneling protocols to make user activity anonymous, and use of encryption algorithms to secure user traffic.
The best free VPN service should not limit bandwidth, restrict services or throttle connections. If a VPN limits a user to some GB of data, it becomes impossible for the user to stream content. Make a point of checking out the fine print to ensure the VPN provides unlimited bandwidth or a reasonable number of TB’s of Data.
Do they keep logs?
The logging policy of a VPN service is important because a VPN can be requested by the strength of a court order to provide all the stored records of a user’s online activity at a particular time. If the VPN doesn’t keep logs, there won’t be any to provide. Not logging is also advantageous to the VPN because of the disk space that is required to store the records. In order to download torrents or use Popcorn Time a no log VPN is needed.
• Excellent support
Leading VPN service providers like ExpressVPN acknowledge that a great customer support is a key to survival in the cut-throat competitive VPN market. The same applies for any essential free VPN service. Support through telephone, email, message services, a knowledgeable FAQ, and real time live chat are among the factors to carefully consider when choosing a free VPN service.