Virtual private network services naturally lend themselves to private browsing. Users stop their Internet activity from getting tracked by Internet Service Providers, law enforcement, government agencies, workplace IT, advertising services and other entities that try to look at someone’s browsing. A VPN works by taking the user’s connection and running it through their own servers.
They may have locations spread across the globe to make it easier to access country-specific online resources, such as region-locked content. While all VPNs have some level of privacy built into them, some of them have added features that improve the safety and security of the person using it. Here are five options to consider when using a VPN with Android-based smartphones and tablets.
IP Vanish supports many platforms, including Android, Windows, iOS, Mac OS and Amazon Firestick. This service has a policy that never logs any of the activity that takes place on its servers. The user’s IP address is protected and even if the company got supeoned for data, it would not have anything to offer the investigator. IPVanish handles all aspects of the app development, support, and maintenance in-house.
No third-parties are involved with any part of the service, which prevents a third-party vendor from accessing information that they shouldn’t be looking at. The 256-bit AES encryption stops hackers from being able to look at the activities of a user, and more than 1,200 servers across 60 countries help keep everyone anonymous.
Torrenting is also done anonymously, and this service supports unlimited P2P traffic. People can choose the VPN protocols they prefer, with IKEv2, L2TP/IPsec, and OpenVPN available. Support for 10 devices at once is available.
Surfshark is a VPN committed to an open Internet. It has many privacy-centric features that allow its users to relax and enjoy their Internet browsing experience without worrying about who is looking over their shoulder. The CleanWeb feature prevents advertising, invasive trackers, malicious software and fraudulent phishing attempts from ruining their online time.
It supports a wide range of devices, including Android, Amazon Firestick, Windows, Linux, Mac OS, iOS, Chrome and Firefox. One of the best features of Surfshark is its support for unlimited devices. Everyone in the house can use the same VPN account.
Whitelister sets up some websites on a whitelist that bypasses the VPN. Users that have to go directly to a website to access it, such as a banking service, can use this feature to have fine-tuned control over the activity that is publicly available. Surfshark does not keep any logs of a user’s connections or activity. A kill switch is in place to prevent the user from browsing unprotected if they lose a connection to the VPN server.
The company has private DNS for all of its servers, as well as leak protection. MultiHop is another way to improve privacy. The user can go through multiple servers in different countries to mask their original location. The IKEv2/IPsec and OpenVPN protocols are supported, and AES-256-GCM encryption is in place.
ExpressVPN combines privacy measures and speed in an easy to use service. It has broad multi-platform support, which includes Android and configuring the VPN at a router level. Users have access to more countries than most VPNs, with 94 supported. VPN split tunneling is an interesting feature that divides Internet usage between the VPN-protected connection and the normal Internet connection.
This is one way that people can trick their ISP into thinking that they’re browisng the Internet normally while they’re actually using a VPN to protect most of their activity. Some websites actively block VPN traffic due to fraud concerns or other reasons.
ExpressVPN uses 256-bit AES encryption, keeps no logs that could possibly lead to identifying the user, allows IP address masking, supports five VPN protocols, provides a .onion site, supports Bitcoin payments and uses its own private DNS. It only supports three devices per account, which means that many people may need to have more than one account for their household.
CyberGhost VPN not only supports Android devices, it also supports Android TV, which is much harder to find. The privacy features start when the user connects to the VPN service. The IP address is masked by one that’s shared among many users, which prevents anyone from identifying a person based on the activity at that address. It supports IKEv2 and OpenVPN protocols. All of the user’s activity is encrypted with 256-bit encryption. The company doesn’t keep any logs, allowing it to protect its users from data requests and supeonas.
CyberGhost has 3,700 VPNs that are spread throughout 60 countries. It’s simple to move from server to server on an as-needed basis. It also automatically blocks ads, which also limits the potential for a company trying to track the user. Malware blocking features also stop malicious software from getting downloaded. An automatic kill switch stops people from exposing their browisng if they don’t realize that they lost connection to the VPN. It also has DNS and IP leak protection, connections for 7 devices at a time, and support for VPN configuration on a router level.
Privacy is paramount in a VPN service, and these options go above and beyond when keeping their users safe and anonymous.
[Written by External Partner]