VPNs are gaining ground, and more than 15% of Internet users in the United States are relying on them for privacy, security and more. Whether you are eager to enjoy the many free movies and music files, or you want to simply have total privacy online, you need to consider a VPN. However, that brings up a major issue: should you go with a free VPN service or a subscription-based option?
Firstly, you need ask yourself whether you are confident enough that a free VPN provider is trustworthy. In the age of Wikileaks, government intervention, and monitoring of all kinds, you need to know the VPN “has your back”, and that usually comes with a price.
Whether you are considering a free or paid VPN service, use the following factors to determine whether or not to use what they offer:
All VPNs are affected by the number of servers they have versus the number of people using that server. This can vary widely at any time, and if a service is free it also likely has heavily trafficked servers that can’t provide optimal speeds. After all, without any income generated by paid accounts, free VPN services don’t have the means of investing in many servers and lots of staff. This limits your access and slows down your Internet experience.
Speed is essential if you want to use your VPN for gaming, streaming and other high-speed activities. So, if you pay for a premium VPN, it is safe to assume they invest in more servers and can handle a lot more traffic, which free VPN services just can’t promise.
If you look at the issue of speed like an equation you see Many Users + Very Few Servers = Slow Internet Access. Though free sounds good, it may not feel so good once you try to use it.
We just mentioned that free VPN services often mean very few staff in addition to fewer servers. This can impair the kind of customer support you can expect. In fact, it could mean almost no viable support when needed. When a VPN works well, it is amazing. When there are problems, it can be a nightmare.
The premium VPN providers typically rate high in customer service and have round the clock staff to help you troubleshoot any issues you encounter. After all, you are paying for the service and should have non-stop customer support.
With thousands of users logged on at any time, a VPN service is quite likely to encounter glitches. The free VPN providers just cannot keep up with a lot of the issues – often having only a handful of staff for ever few thousand users. While this may not be the case for all free VPN services, it is an issue you never encounter with a premium VPN and its dedicated support staff.
Of course, the major reason that so many people use a VPN is to ensure they have total privacy. They do not want anyone monitoring what they do online, no matter where they are. Free VPNs do not have the best reputations where privacy is concerned because they may use Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol (PPTP).
This is an out of date approach that leaves the network open to hacking. Additionally, a lot of the free VPNs keep logs of activity in order to turn around and sell that data to advertisers. This is a main reason that many people actually use a VPN – to dodge all the ads.
Some of the free VPNs also share bandwidth between users, greatly slowing down your computer and opening you up to serious risk. After all, if the activities that the other users are doing are illegal, it steers attention back to you and your account.
As we so often advise – When you do not pay for a product it is probable that you are the produce. So, if you want privacy, just avoid the free VPN accounts.
Using free VPN sounds like a good idea and a great way to enjoy the benefits of VPN services. However, it is far more worthwhile to commit the few dollars per month it requires to assure your privacy, security, customer service and speed that makes a VPN such an advantage. So, we say go with a paid VPN and get the best results possible.