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PrivadoVPN Review: Is It Fast, Secure, and Private to Use In 2022?

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privadovpn
Provides strong encryption
Offers a free version.
Access Netflix, BBC, Hulu
Promises unrestricted internet.
Allows anonymous payments
Uses secure tunneling protocols

30 Days Refund Policy

PrivadoVPN is a small yet mighty VPN provider that offers free and premium plans. The paid version provides incredibly fast speeds and robust security and performance that piles it up with the best VPN providers. 

With the price tag of $4.99/m, it offers you sufficient privacy, security-boosting sites, and a small server network. However, people have always criticized it for being overly priced. Moreover, users on Reddit have significant complaints about its apps. The best way is to review the PrivadoVPN in detail to test if all these claims are valid and whether PrivadoVPN is a compatible VPN.

Before going into much detail, here is a bird’s eye view of what the VPN provider has to offer:

Security and Privacy:

Encryption
  • AES-256 bit encryption 
Jurisdiction
  • Switzerland
Log Policy

Follows a no-log policy but does keep a minimum amount of information

Security Features

Streaming and Torrenting

List of Compatible Streaming Platforms 
  • Netflix
  • BBC iPlayer
  • Hulu
List of Torrenting Features
  • Split tunneling
  • Torrent IP leak protection
  • SOCKS5 proxy

User-friendliness 

No. of Servers 
  • Hundreds of servers in 47 countries
Pricing
  • $4.99/m on 1-year plan
  • $7.99/m on a one-month plan
Customer Support 
  • Email ticket
  • Live chat support
  • Online resources
Compatible Devices 
  • Android
  • iOS
  • MacOS
  • Windows
  • Android TV
  • Firestick TV

While the table above does list down the basic features, it isn’t enough to provide more insight into PrivadoVPN. Hence, it’s crucial to start exploring it in detail. 

Security and Privacy

According to VPN statistics, more than half of the netizens use a VPN to protect their privacy on wi-fi, while 44% use it for anonymous browsing. To provide maximum anonymity and privacy on the web, a VPN should utilize strong encryption ciphers, protocols, and security-boosting features like a kill switch and VPN leak protection.

Moreover, it’s also vital that a VPN has its headquarters in a safe jurisdiction and keep itself away from logging and sharing users’ browsing data. 

What Encryption Does PrivadoVPN Use?

PrivadoVPN works well in providing basic security to all its users. It uses the industry’s highest standard AES-256 bit encryption to safeguard your incoming and outgoing traffic from snooping eyes. This encryption standard is uncrackable and guarantees that no one can intercept your online communication and digital privacy. 

Where Is PrivadoVPN Located?

It is PrivadoVPN’s claim that it was founded to fulfill the growing demands of internet freedom for all. The jurisdiction of its choice seems to be a proof of that too. The VPN provider has its headquarters in Switzerland, which is also the headquarters of  the renowned ProtonVPN. The  country by many netizens is considered secure since it is not a member of the five eyes, nine eyes, and 14 eyes alliance. Thus, it has no role in sharing users’ data with international intelligence agencies. 

Moreover, Switzerland is widely considered as a safe haven for VPN providers to operate from since it doesn’t force VPN providers to retain user information. VPNs are not considered the major telecom operators in Switzerland and are exempted from the Swiss surveillance laws. Therefore, you can trust PrivadoVPN and consider using it without worrying about your data being shared. 

Does PrivadoVPN Keeps Data Logs?

PrivadoVPN is a relatively new VPN provider in the market, but it vows to keep the users’ activities private and ensure an anonymous browsing experience. For this purpose, the VPN provider follows a zero-logging policy. According to the privacy policy, PrivadoVPN doesn’t log your IP address, browsing data, or any other information that can reveal your true identity. 

The VPN keeps a minimal amount of information about you, and they have also accepted this in their privacy policy.

Besides this, the VPN provider also records the bandwidth utilized, but they do it to provide better service to the users. However, there’s no proof of the transparency of PrivadoVPN. The company hasn’t ever performed security, app, log, or infrastructure audits. 

Which Encryption Protocols Does PrivadoVPN Use?

PrivadoVPN uses the industry’s designed secure and reliable tunneling protocols, including

  • OpenVPN
  • IKEv2
  • WireGuard

Each encryption protocol PrivadoVPN utilizes uses strong algorithms that offer the perfect balance between speed and security. 

The OpenVPN provides excellent security benefits and is the most popular among the other protocols PrivadoVPN uses.

Apart from that, the WireGuard protocol is relatively new that PrivadoVPN uses, but it gives an incredible performance. You can use it to enjoy super-fast speeds faster than OpenVPN and IKEv2. Also, it uses AES-256 bit encryption and various robust ciphers for enhanced security. Additionally, Privado VPN also offers the IKEv2 protocol. The protocol grants users fast speed on mobile phones but in contrast to OpenVPN and WireGuard, IKEv2 does not offer robust security.  

The VPN provider claims that all the protocols are compatible with all supported devices. There is no issue in changing the protocols, and you can easily do it with a click by navigating the settings. However, users on Reddit have complained about the MacOS app not providing the service they demand. 

Bypassing Censorship

PrivadoVPN, like other top-tier VPN providers, claims to bypass internet censorship and helps users access the deep free internet world. Though the VPN provider lacks anti-censorship protocol and obfuscation technology, the VPN provider somehow manages to circumvent tough censorships. 

It uses a Socks5 proxy that changes your location and IP address and allows you to access the censored content and social media sites. Moreover, by tweaking your protocol settings and using the OpenVPN (TCP) port, you can access the blocked websites and services by using PrivadoVPN. 

Besides this, PrivadoVPN also offers servers in Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Japan meaning it can work in China. But the VPN provider has no servers in Russia, Turkey, or UAE, so you won’t be successful in using PrivadoVPN to bypass censorship in these restrictive countries. 

While the VPN provider is fairly decent in circumventing censorship, it does need to invest in expanding its reach. There are various ways that its servers can be blocked or can come across tougher cencroships that might be hard to circumvent with the current technology the VPN is relying upon. Therefore, it needs to think of introducing obfuscation or the stealth VPN feature used by Surfshark VPN and ExpressVPN

Past History of the VPN Provider

PrivadoVPN is a Switzerland-based VPN provider that started its services in 2019. The VPN, since its launch, has been working to improve its service for the users. It began its services as an enterprise solution and, after a few months, introduced commercial services to provide a free VPN service to everyone. 

The VPN provider works to provide open and secure internet access to everyone. They are going well in their mission. The company hasn’t been deemed to exploit users’ sensitive data and privacy, and this is something users demand from a high-quality VPN provider. 

Extra Privacy and Security Features

PrivadoVPN isn’t the VPN you’d prefer to use for extra features. Like NordVPN, PrivadoVPN doesn’t come with a range of additional privacy and security-focused features. It provides basic security and privacy and comprises the following features:

Kill Switch

With PrivadoVPN, you can keep your internet activities and identity secure with the kill switch feature. While using the VPN, if your internet connection drops, it can reveal your actual IP address and allow the prying eyes, including hackers, to spoof your activities. 

The VPN kill switch monitors your connection. When the VPN connection drops, it disconnects you from the internet and blocks the incoming and outgoing traffic to and from your device until the connection restarts. You must manually turn on the kill switch feature before connecting with the VPN server. To do so, Go to Preferences > General > and Tap on the kill switch feature. 

PrivadoVPN kill switch feature is available on all supported devices and platforms. However, some users have complained that they don’t have the kill switch feature in the premium plan. 

Split Tunneling

Split tunneling is a helpful feature that allows you to control your data, like which of your data will be encrypted while browsing the web. PrivadoVPN also offers a split tunneling feature that enables you to select apps you want to protect by the VPN. The apps you haven’t chosen route the data via a regular internet connection. You can experience faster internet speed and greater security by excluding certain apps. 

Furthermore, you can use this feature to download torrents, unblock apps or services, and access the blocked foreign content. 

The VPN provider offers this advanced networking feature in the premium version and is compatible only with Android and Amazon devices. The feature is not enabled by default, and hence you have to turn it on manually. 

The VPN is still working on expanding the feature on its other supported devices, which would surely be an excellent initiative. 

SOCKS5 Proxy

PrivadoVPN is among the few rare VPN providers with the free SOCKS5 proxy feature. The SOCKS5 proxy is a great security tool for bypassing censorship. By connecting to the SOCKS5 proxy, your traffic comes from another location instead of your own. Hence, it’s the preferred choice while torrenting or unblocking foreign content. Also, it transfers your data and files via proxy servers, improving connection security. 

To benefit from this feature, you need to upgrade to the premium version because it doesn’t work while using the free version of PrivadoVPN. Always use the free proxy in conjunction with a VPN to enjoy better security and data encryption ability. 

Apart from the features mentioned above, PrivadoVPN doesn’t offer any other feature, its biggest drawback. Considering the demand for enhanced security and privacy, it surely needs to work on introducing various features like double VPN, dedicated IP address, or ad-blocker. 

Streaming and Torrenting

It would be best to always use a compatible VPN during streaming and torrenting. It maintains your security by concealing your IP address and encrypting the data traffic. Besides this, a VPN offers advanced features like split tunneling, IP leak protection, smart DNS play, and dedicated servers for P2P file-sharing and streaming, ensuring a hassle-free user experience. 

Compatible Streaming Devices

PrivadoVPN is a good option for streaming geographically restricted content. With PrivadoVPN, you can unblock your favorite content from the following streaming platforms:

  • Netflix
  • BBC iPlayer
  • Hulu
  • HBO Max

The VPN provider has multiple servers in various US cities like Dallas, Chicago, and New York, which means you can easily get the US IP address and access the US Netflix library. Similarly, you can find servers in Canada and the UK and watch TV shows and movies. 

Besides this, you can also watch the streaming content on other channels like BBC iPlayer and Hulu. However, if you’re connecting from a long-distance server, you might wait a long time for the connection to get established. Also, you will experience frequent buffering and connection lags while streaming foreign content. 

PrivadoVPN also works on various sports streaming platforms like ESPN and allows you to watch your favorite sports played in any corner of the world. 

However, the only concern is that PrivadoVPN, lacks dedicated streaming servers. Hence, it does cause connectivity issues. Moreover, the VPN also lacks the Smart Play DNS feature; therefore, you can’t connect the VPN to streaming devices and gaming consoles. 

Is PrivadoVPN Good For Torrenting?

PrivadoVPN also claims to be a reliable and secure VPN for downloading torrents, and one can’t deny this fact. Since the VPN offers an advanced kill switch and split tunneling features and even follows a zero-logging policy that clearly states that the VPN doesn’t log and share data, it becomes a good choice for downloading torrents from anywhere. 

Moreover, PrivadoVPN also offers a free SOCKS5 proxy option that improves speed and ensures a fast torrent downloading experience. However, users have accused the VPN of being involved in IP leaks, so this is something that new users who’re looking for a torrent VPN won’t like. Also, while using any PrivadoVPN app for torrenting, you can face issues setting up the torrent client. Thus, make sure first to watch the setup guides and then proceed. 

The VPN provider also offers a free version with 10GB of monthly data that works well with torrents, but fast speeds are not guaranteed in this situation. 

Follow this link if you’re still looking for the best VPN for torrenting. 

How Fast Is Privado VPN?

Another noticeable claim that PrivadoVPN makes is offering the fastest connection speeds across all servers. The free version provides a 10GB monthly data limit and allows you to access ten servers in various locations. As the server locations are not revealed, you might experience slow speeds while torrenting, streaming, or browsing. 

The premium version of PrivadoVPN has an unlimited bandwidth limit meaning it won’t restrict any of your activities. But, the server network is expanded to 59 cities which is pretty low compared to other fastest VPNs. You experience reliable speeds on local servers, while the connection time and speeds are unreliable when connected to long-distance servers. 

Unfortunately, the VPN lacks any advanced features that might help in improving the connection speeds. Still, you can somehow manage a stable connection to WireGuard or OpenVPN protocols. 

 You can also face a failed connection when the auto-connect feature is enabled or when you try to reconnect to a server, and it fails. If you encounter any such issue, you can restart the app and connect to the original server to fix the problem. 

In a nutshell, PrivadoVPN doesn’t compete with the fastest VPN, and if speeds are your prime concern, then you should opt for other VPN providers. 

User-Friendliness

PrivadoVPN started with the launch of Android and Windows apps, but they developed apps for other platforms as they progressed. In 2020, the VPN introduced apps for iOS and MacOS platforms, and in the following year, they introduced dedicated apps for Android TV and Firestick TV. 

The Number of Servers PrivadoVPN Has?

PrivadoVPN claims to offer a global server network that comprises hundreds of servers spread in 47 countries. You can find PrivadoVPN servers in Asia, Europe, and America, but adding more servers in the Middle East will be better. The VPN provider server network is pretty small, which increases the server load and makes them often congested, significantly impacting the speeds. 

You can use the auto-connect feature that allows you to select your favorite server location and automatically connects you to a secure location when you start the VPN app. Furthermore, you can also use the Recommended server location option that connects you with the fastest server available.  

However, if you’re using the free version, you’d only be allowed to access servers in 12 cities while the exact numbers and server locations are not revealed. 

How Good Is PrivadoVPN Customer Support?

While using PrivadoVPN, you can contact its customer support team if you experience a problem or want to inquire about something. You can contact PrivadoVPN’s customer support team via the 24/7 live chat feature or by generating an email ticket. Both options are pretty reliable and won’t disappoint the users. 

Like the live chat feature, you can also expect to receive a quick reply via email

The chat agents you talk live with are people in-real. They do possess knowledge and guide you on the correct path. 

The reply to the above email was received in almost 20 minutes; that’s pretty quick. In addition, if you’re seeking more help or guidance, you have website resources like FAQS, setup guides, and blogs. Also, you can change the website language into three languages other than English and even follow them on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Reddit and resolve your issues.

Which Devices Are Compatible With PrivadoVPN? 

PrivadoVPN offers great compatibility features like many other VPN providers. It offers dedicated apps that you can easily download and install from the respective app stores. The VPN provider is compatible with the following devices:

  • Android
  • iOS
  • MacOS
  • Windows

Besides this, you can also use the VPN on Android TV and Firestick TV. You can find the setup guides on the website’s support page, making the entire installation process hassle-free. The mobile and desktop apps of PrivadoVPN are pretty similar. However, the MacOS devices don’t receive good reviews from the users as they often have bugs that impact the app’s overall performance. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to use PrivadoVPN on Linux devices and routers.

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FAQs

How many simultaneous device connections do PrivadoVPN allow?

PrivadoVPN offers multiple device connection features, but the number of connections depends on your plan. Using the free version, you can connect to only a single device. But if you’ve subscribed to the premium plan, you can connect up to ten simultaneous devices with a single PrivadoVPN subscription account. 

Does PrivadoVPN offer a free trial?

PrivadoVPN has a free version that doesn’t offer any free trial period to the users. If you’re willing to test out the VPN’s features or how it performs during the streaming or torrenting, you can use the free version instead. Or, if you want to use the upgraded version, you can opt for the monthly or yearly plan. However, the premium plans are backed with a 30-day money-back guarantee offer, so don’t worry if you’re not satisfied with the VPN’s performance after buying the premium version. 

What are the benefits of using the free version of PrivadoVPN?

PrivadoVPN ranks among those VPN providers that offer a free and premium version. The free version of PrivadoVPN has limited features. Still, if you’re a beginner who’s just testing various VPNs without making any investment, you can consider using the free version of PrivadoVPN. Here are the features that the free version of PrivadoVPN offers the users:

– It allocates a monthly data limit of 10GB to every user. It promises to deliver a stable connection speed.

– You have access to multiple servers in 12 different locations.

– The VPN follows a zero-logging policy and prevents gathering any information that might reveal your true identity. 

– It utilizes the industry’s highest encryption and secure tunneling protection to secure your data traffic from all prying eyes.
 
– The VPN allows you to unblock the streaming content from Netflix.

– You can download and install the VPN on all supported devices and platforms. 

No matter how many benefits a free VPN provider might offer you, there are always some limitations and security risks around them that make you reconsider your decision. The free VPN providers can infect your device with malware and spyware and display several pop-up ads. Hence, if you want to avoid all these issues, then it’s better to use the premium VPN.

How much does PrivadoVPN cost?

VPN prices also matter significantly. No one wants to spend more money on a service that’s not worth using. PrivadoVPN doesn’t always get good reviews from the users regarding pricing. It costs you almost $5/m, which is close to the price of NordVPN and ExpressVPN and certainly feels heavy on your pockets. Here’s an insight into the pricing plan of PrivadoVPN:

$4.99/m on a 12-month plan
$7.99/m on a one-month plan

Unlike other VPN providers, PrivadoVPN doesn’t offer extended subscription plans for two or three years and sounds pretty expensive.

What payment methods does PrivadoVPN accept?

If you want to buy the premium plan offered by PrivadoVPN, you can make payments via debit/credit card, PayPal, Discover, AMES, SEPA, and Coinbase. However, if you want to keep your identity anonymous while making the purchase, it’s not possible because PrivadoVPN doesn’t accept payment via bitcoins. 

Final Verdict

PrivadoVPN is relatively a new VPN provider in the market, and it certainly has a lot of room for improvement. The VPN provider offers great security and privacy by using AES-256 bit encryption, belonging from a safe jurisdiction, and not logging any sensitive data. However, PrivadoVPN hasn’t undergone any third-party audit process to prove its claims. Also, an immense lack of security and privacy-boosting features makes it less than other competitive VPNs. 

Besides this, PrivadoVPN should also improve its apps and expand its server network, further enhancing its ability to stream the blocked content quickly.

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Rebecca James is an IT consultant with forward thinking approach toward developing IT infrastructures of SMEs. She writes to engage with individuals and raise awareness of digital security, privacy, and better IT infrastructure.

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