A group of Italian hacktivists during the Pirate Party festival started what have evolved into AirVPN. This VPN provider has features like Tor over VPN that is offered by only few other VPN providers. Furthermore, AirVPN provides highly detailed information about their service.
AirVPN offers their plans the way we like – everything is included in a single package. It makes it very easy to choose your plan since the only factor is the length of the subscription. It removes a burden of knowledge from anyone who is looking for a VPN provider and does not know everything about VPN. Just like most VPN providers AirVPN has 4 different plans: 1, 3, 6 and 12 months. The price varies from €7 Euros for a single month to €54 (€4.50 per month) for an annual plan. What is really unique is that they offer a 3 day plan for €1. This is obviously a plan for anyone who wants to test their service prior to purchase. However, you can receive a free 3 day trial if you contact them via e-mail.
AirVPN offers a selection of 61 server in 14 different countries. Most of the servers are located in Europe and US, while only 2 out of these servers (Singapore and Hong Kong) are located in other regions. Variety in regions is somewhat lacking as there are no options in Africa and highly populated region like Asia has only two options. Furthermore, these servers attract clients from Australia since they have no other alternative nearby.
What we liked is a detailed information about server status you can find in their server status page.
AirVPN supports OpenVPN protocol that is encrypted using AES-256-CBC Data Channel and a massive 4096 bit RSA key. Furthermore, all servers support OpenVPN over SSL and OpenVPN over SSH to improve your security even more. Their dedication to our privacy truly reflects their background as hacktivists.
We have no complaints about the payment options to chose from since it include PayPal, Credit Cards, eWallets and Bitcoin. Therefore, it should suit everybody’s preferences and needs.
Being still a small VPN provider AirVPN is able to provide support via email only. To receive an answer may take a couple of hours, however the answer are highly informative and will help you if you have any issues or questions. Besides email you may look at their active forum and find some insightful information.
AirVPN clients use an open source client called Eddie. At first sight it may look like a very simple software. However, once you start looking at all the features it provides you get overwhelmed by all the details it contain. First of all this is the first open source client we have seen that supports OpenVPN over Tor. Second of all it even allows OpenVPN over SSL and SSH. It also has all the basic but crucial features like DNS leak protection.
Even though AirVPN is based in European Union it does not force them to keep any logs. They claim that their VPN servers does not store any databases and the database with all the accounts information is kept in a backend servers. The location of these servers is known only to AirVPN founders.
It is very interesting to see a VPN provider that is so transparent and explain how they are able to avoid some of the regulations in countries that require you to maintain specific data for a minimum period of time.
Having such a great service regarding privacy we were wondering how it will affect our internet speed. We have been pleased when we have not noticed changes in our download and upload speeds exceeding 10%.
AirVPN seems to have a clear idea of their perfect VPN provider by having one of the best security solutions of all the VPN providers. Nevertheless, we feel like the lack of servers in their network may be undesired for quite a large group of VPN users who would much rather choose NordVPN that has a more evenly distributed server network.
Zero day as a matter of fact refers to two things – a zero-day exploit or a zero-day vulnerability.
Zero-day exploit refers to code that is used by the attackers to utilize a zero-day vulnerability. The exploit code is used to get through the flaw in the software and plant a Trojan horse, a virus or some sort of malware to your computer. To explain this in other words it can be thought as a thief trying to get into your house through a faulty or unlocked window.
Zero-day vulnerability refers to a security bug in the software, it can be operating system software or browser software, or any other kind of software that is currently unknown to the software developer or antivirus manufacturers. Hackers might already be exploiting the vulnerability, however it is not yet publicly known. Since the zero day vulnerabilities are still unknown by the software manufacturers and antivirus vendors, there is no fix or update available to patch the hole and also now antivirus signatures to discover the exploit.
Actually, zero-day term refers to a number of days that the software maker has known about the bug. Them seemingly came into light during the digital bulletin board days, when it referred to the number of days gone since the release of a new software program. An unreleased software was then called the zero day software and was desired by hackers who wanted be the first to get it.
An especially high value zero day vulnerabilities are taken advantage by not only the culprit hackers but also by government spies, like for example the ones working for NSA and the US Cyber Command.
Zero day vulnerabilities were highly uncommon. Security firms were discovering only one or two zero day exploits out of one million malware they would process each month. Nonetheless, more and more zero days are being detected nowadays. It is likely to be the reason of a large market for zero day exploits and vulnerabilities, that is run mostly by demand from government agencies.
There are three types of a zero-day market. The first type would be the black underground market that is being used by criminal hackers who want to trade exploit code and info about a vulnerability to steal valuable private information or break into a system. The second type is the white market, this is where bug bounty programs are available for hackers to reveal vulnerabilities to manufacturers for a fee, therefore the holes can be fixed without being exploited. The white marked is also used by the security firms that buy zero-day exploits to run tests on various products to determine if the software is vulnerable. Moreover, there is a so called gray market, where security firms or researchers sell the zero day vulnerabilities to intelligence agencies, military and law enforcement for surveillance purposes.
The price range of a zero day vulnerabilities can vary greatly starting from a couple thousand dollars to a several hundred thousand dollars depending on various different factors. If a zero day exists in a number of Windows operating system version it of course will more a lot more valuable then the one that exists only on a single version. A vulnerability discovered on the Apple iOS, which is harder to find, would be even more valuable. Exploit that could bypass a built-in security measures would also be more expensive.
Dispute over US government’s use of zero day vulnerabilities has been rising since the Edward Snowden revelations on the government’s hacking activities. One way of increasing your privacy online is using a VPN service, which provides a high level of security for you. As one of a viable options we could refer to NordVPN as they offer a sophisticated encryption of your Internet traffic and do not log any of your activity.
Today we take a look at TorGuard. This VPN provider offers many features besides VPN like private e-mail, anonymous proxy or VPN routers. In this review we will be concentrating on the quality of their VPN service mainly as we are interested in comparing TorGurad to other VPN providers.
There are four different plans to choose from: anonymous proxy, VPN service, private e-mail and smart DNS. Each package is then divided into plans that vary in subscription time: monthly, quarterly, semi-annual (not available for private e-mail) and annual. The VPN service package’s cost ranges from $9.99/month to $59.99/year.
Unfortunately, TorGuard does not offer a free trial to test their VPN. However, they will refund your money if you request for it within 7 days after purchasing the service and if you have not downloaded/sent 10 GB of data.
TorGuard VPN network consists of over 50 servers located in 41 different countries. Therefore, VPN network should cause no problems accessing geo-restricted sites as well as provide a server that is close to you wherever you may be. It is a crucial factor choosing a VPN provider as one of the reasons we use VPN is to access data that is available to people from certain region only.
Just like many other VPN providers TorGuard offers PPTP, L2TP and OpenVPN protocols for your VPN. These three protocols suits everyone’s needs depending on what they are looking for: better security or better speeds. However, it is not all, TorGuard VPN also supports SSTP, SSH and their exclusive Stealth VPN tunnels. According to their website Stealth VPN bypasses the Deep Package Inspection to guarantee that you are able to use VPN even in countries like China.
All data is secured using from 126 bit up to 1024 bit encryption to prevent hackers from sniffing your internet traffic. While 126 bit encryption is relatively weak, it still provide basic protection. In the mean time 1024 bit encryption should be enough for anybody’s needs.
TorGuard offers so many payment options that we think if you are unable to find an option that suits your needs, you may not find such an online payment option at all. There are over 80 payment options to choose from including Credit Card, PayPal, Subway, Google Wallet and most importantly Bitcoin.
What we did not like is the fact that some information is really hard to find on their website. Thus you may need to contact customer support to find out needed information. If you have some questions regarding their service or have issues with your VPN you may contact TorGuard support via live chat or by leaving a message with your e-mail address. You should receive a response from them promptly after messaging them.
TorGuard VPN client works on all main OSes: Windows, Ubuntu, Mac OSX, iOS and Android. The software provides easy set up and simple usage. The software has basic features like protocol (UDP and TCP) and server selection. If you are not using any of these OSes TorGuard has tutorials that will help you set up the VPN on other devices like routers.
TorGuard in their website clearly states that they do not keep any logs at all. The only information that they need to keep is the billing name and address for PCI compliance and billing purposes. No log policy probably is the most important factor if you are looking for a VPN for security purposes.
Connecting to various servers in the TorGuard VPN network had no notable influence on ping, download and upload speeds leaving us satisfied that we do not have to suffer bandwidth losses in order to use VPN.
TorGuard is a solid choice for anyone looking for a VPN service. However, the lack of clarity in their website and 126 bit encryption usage for some of their servers make us lean towards NordVPN with which we have not encountered similar problems.
Mozilla normally does not announce gradual Firefox browser updates, except if there is a pressing bug or security fix, however there is an exception with the Firefox 33.1 browser version that was released on November 10. That may be due to the fact that Firefox 33.1 might be called a special release because it closely coincides with the 10th anniversary of the Firefox 1.0 debut on November 9, 2004.
With Firefox 33.1, Mozilla is seeking to improve user privacy adding a new Forget Button. Users will now have the ability to delete recent history and cookies with a simple click of a button on the main browser interface. The next major Firefox update is planned to be released this week that will be version 34.
Mozilla has not really added new functionality with the Forget Button, instead they are exposing an existing feature and making it easy to use. Previous versions of Firefox also allowed users to delete history and cookies, however the option was not so easy to find in the browsers menu. A Private Window mode is also available since the Firefox 3.1 release in 2008. After you are done browsing in a Private Mode and close the browser all of your history and cookies of that sessions are automatically deleted.
DuckDuckGo search engine has been also added as an option for the Firefox search dialogue box. The new option to use DuckDuckGo might provide more privacy in contrast of using other search options, like Google. Nonetheless, Mozilla has not made it the default search option, DuckDuckGo is now offered as a choice for you to pick.
With Firefox 33.1 the Enhanced Tiles feature was presented as well, which provides Mozilla partner messages by leveraging user’s browsing history. When this feature to provide message in tiles was first announced in February, Mozilla received a lot of criticism and questions about its privacy policies. The Enhanced Tiles feature displays Mozilla partner messages on a new Firefox tab page.
According to Mozilla’s Enhanced Tiles feature Web page, data collection is limited to accumulate a count of impressions, clicks and Tile placement only.
A new privacy effort named as the Polaris Initiative has also been launched by Mozilla now. The main goal of Polaris is to help improve the condition of privacy online.
Regarding to Polaris Initiative, Mozilla has named two major objectives it will be aiming at. The first is that Mozilla is going to host Tor relays soon with the intention of improving the stability of the Tor network. When connected to a Tor network it helps users hide their true location and other private information routing it through multiple-relay routers.
If you wish to test Tor network securely, we suggest to take a look at NordVPN. They are offering a unique Tor over VPN solution, were you would first connect to their VPN server and then to one of the Tor network nodes. We have not seen such a solution offered by any other VPN provider yet.
Moreover, Polaris will be equipped with a new Tracking protection feature that at the moment is in the Firefox Nightly branch of development. The leading edge of Mozilla’s development efforts are represented by the Firefox Nightly branch.
When Tracking protection is enabled, Firefox does not load certain included resources, preventing identifying and tracking users with such tools as cookies for example. However, a Do Not Track signal is not respected widely.
IPVanish is one of the VPN providers that has over decade of experience. The company has been offering VPN services since 1998 and since then earned a well known and respected name in among VPN users.
IPVanish offers 3 main VPN packages depending on the length of your subscription. The cheapest package is 1 month plan for $10. If 1 month is too little for you, you may look at the 3 month plan that costs $26.99 or their best value 1 year plan costing $77.99 a year. Additionally among these three plans we would like to see a half a year plan for those looking for a middle ground between short term and long term subscription plans available now.
What we like and highly appreciate is that the provider does not differentiate the users by their subscription packages and their packages include the same features making the subscription length the only difference.
IPVanish does not provide a free trial to test their services, though they do have a 7 Day Money Back Guarantee.
There are 141 servers to choose from providing access to most geo-restricted content as well as servers close to you regardless of where you are located. The biggest concentration of servers just like with others VPN providers are Europe (69) and the USA (41).
The server variety should be more than enough to find the server suitable for anybody’s needs whether you are interested in bypassing restrictions or having a fast connection with a minimally effected latency.
IPVanish supports 3 main protocols used by VPN providers: PPTP, L2TP and OpenVPN. Even though there are no unique protocols supported, these 3 options have proved to be enough for most of the VPN users as they offer reliable IP change and security.
You can chose from 4 different options to pay for IPVanish VPN service: Credit Card, PayPal, Worldpay and Bitcoin. While Credit Card and PayPal options payment options are offered by most of the online services, we consider Bitcoin to be the most important payment method since it reflects the privacy idea of VPN. Therefore, we are happy with the payment options we can choose from.
You may contact IPVanish customer and tech support 24/7/365. However, to our surprise, they do not offer a live support. Even though most of us find live chat to be more engaging than e-mails and provide faster service, we were not too disappointed as we received e-mail response with answers to our questions within 10 minutes. Of course, having followup questions may add to even bigger time differences compared to live support and thus we are looking forward to seeing live support implemented by IPVanish in the future.
The IPVanish client has features that allows you to select servers filtering the list by server speed, location or even using a map view. Moreover, there is a support tab implemented in the client to allow quick contact with IPVanish support team.
The software Works on Windows, iOS, Mac and Android operating systems making it accessible for most users.
Using the IPVanish VPN we have not noticed any significant changes in speed and overall are happy with stability of the connection.
Some of you may remember IPVanish as a log keeping VPN provider. However, times change and so did IPVanish. The provider understood people’s needs of a VPN like NordVPN that keeps no logs at all and became very attractive VPN provider for anyone.