Jurisdiction: Switzerland | Advanced Privacy Features: Secure Core and Kill Switch | Number of Servers and Countries: 809 servers in 50 countries | Streaming and P2P: Yes
ProtonVPN is a VPN service provider with a strong emphasis on privacy and security. The founders originally created ProtonMail, a secure email service for journalists and activities before launching a VPN service.
Our ProtonVPN review will help you determine if this VPN is a good match for your needs since ProtonVPN prioritizes different benefits compared to other providers.
What Is ProtonVPN?
Proton VPN provides you with a user-friendly app you can use to establish an encrypted connection to one of their servers. This secure connection allows you to browse the web while keeping your activities private from your ISP, marketers, and any third party.
This VPN service provider protects your anonymity by not keeping any logs of your activities. It’s easy to use thanks to the intuitive interface, quick connect feature, and support available.
Proton VPN Secure Core works a little differently compared to standard VPN connection because your traffic will first go through a core network of servers located in privacy-friendly jurisdictions of Switzerland, Iceland, and Sweden. This step adds a layer of security since your data no longer includes your IP address once your traffic request reaches a VPN server.
ProtonVPN is a Swiss-based company. Switzerland has strict privacy laws that protect online users and forbid the collection and use of their data without their explicit permission.
Iceland and Sweden have similar privacy laws. ProtonVPN has a no-log policy, even if you use their free VPN service.
The core servers are also physically difficult to access since ProtonVPN uses own underground data centers.
Is ProtonVPN Transparent?
You can find open-source code for all their apps, and Mozilla assessed their apps and services in the context of a partnership. Mozilla didn’t find any issues, and the partnership with this well-known tech company that values privacy gives ProtonVPN more legitimacy.
Security firm SEC Consult has performed additional audits and didn’t find any issues with ProtonVPN. The VPN provider has plans to conduct independent audits regularly in the future, which is reassuring.
You can use Proton VPN on up to 10 devices with the Visionary plan. You can get a secure connection for one device with the free option, and connect with two or five devices with the Basic and Plus tiers.
There is a Proton VPN app for Windows, MacOS, Android, and Linux. However, you won’t find browser extensions or an app to install ProtonVPN on your router.
ProtonVPN Advanced Features
Proton VPN includes the following advanced features:
- Perfect Forward Secrecy. ProtonVPN uses standard AES-256 encryption to protect your data. However, the VPN service creates a new encryption key for each session. If a third party somehow gains access to an encryption key, they won’t be able to use it to monitor future sessions.
- Protocols. You can choose from different protocols, including IKEv2/IPSec and OpenVPN.
- DNS leak protection. ProtonVPN doesn’t process traffic requests through third-party DNS servers and encrypts DNS requests.
- Kill switch. The kill switch feature will interrupt your connection and prevent leaks if the ProtonVPN app detects that your connection isn’t safe.
- Always-on VPN. This feature connects you to a secure server automatically.
- Tor over VPN. You can choose to route your traffic through the Onion network to make your activities harder to track and preserve anonymity.
Is ProtonVPN Fast?
Proton VPN describes speed as medium or high with the Free and Basic plans. Speed is highest with the Plus and Visionary plans.
Tests from users show that speed is fine for the most part. There are lagging issues when streaming video content, and overall speed isn’t as fast as with another leading VPN providers like NordVPN.
Servers and Locations
Proton VPN has a core network with servers in Switzerland, Sweden, and Iceland. Once your traffic goes through this layer, you can access one of the 898 VPN servers in 50 different countries.
Is ProtonVPN Good for Unlocking Streaming Libraries?
You can unlock different Netflix libraries and stream content from Prime Video, Hulu, and other services. There are no major issues with blacklisted servers, and speed should be just fine.
Can You Use ProtonVPN for Torrenting and P2P?
Proton VPN offers a free plan with limited features. You can access three VPN servers for free and will get a slower speed.
It’s a good option if you want to preserve your anonymity in a pinch, but keep in mind that the free option doesn’t represent the ProtonVPN experience.
You can subscribe to a Plus plan and protect up to five devices at once for $6.63 a month if you subscribe for two years. A Visionary plan can protect up to 10 devices and includes management features to let you add users to your plan, as well as ProtonMail. This subscription costs around $27 a month.
There are a few drawbacks to consider. ProtonVPN is more expensive than other options, speed doesn’t compare to VPN providers like NordVPN, and there are only 50 different locations. You won’t be able to install ProtonVPN on your router to encrypt all the data going out of your home, which can leave Smart TVs and connected appliances vulnerable.
ProtonVPN is still worth considering because of this VPN provider’s commitment to security and privacy. The partnership with Mozilla is a sign of quality, and ongoing security audits are an additional reason to pick ProtonVPN if you value security. Advanced features like DNS leak protection, Tor over VPN, or routing your traffic through a core network first can make a difference if you want to stay safe.
While other VPN providers offer lower prices, better speed, or more server locations, ProtonVPN prioritizes security. If you mostly want a VPN to protect your data and don’t mind spending a little more, ProtonVPN is an excellent option.