VPN Shield
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VPN Defend

Our Verdict

An underpowered VPN with minimal options and poorly designed Home windows apps. If there is a purpose to put in VPN Defend, we’re struggling to see it.

For

  • Low month-to-month value
  • One-day free trial
  • Straightforward-to-use Android app
  • Respectable efficiency

In opposition to

  • Small community
  • Some session logging
  • Barely any options
  • Poor Home windows purchasers

VPN Shield is a Polish VPN service which gives a primary set of options for what seems like a great value.

The corporate gives solely 11 areas, however they’re fairly effectively unfold throughout Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Netherlands, Singapore, Sweden, UK and USA. (There aren’t any city-level areas, you possibly can select by nation solely.)

VPN Defend has its personal apps for Home windows, Mac, iOS, Android, even Amazon Kindle, making it simple to arrange, and you’ll join as much as 5 of those gadgets concurrently.

Whereas this sounds sort-of regular, the underlying tech is weak. The Home windows apps do not assist OpenVPN, as an illustration. The desktop app can not less than use L2TP and IKEv2, however the Home windows 10 app solely helps PPTP, so outdated and insecure that many VPNs dropped it way back. There aren’t any different attention-grabbing options on provide.

VPN Defend is not less than low-cost, with costs beginning at $2.99 for a week, $5.99 billed monthly, $3.33 on the annual plan or simply $2.78 in the event you pay for three years up-front (that is a complete of $99.99.)

Funds are accepted through card and PayPal, and there is a 1-day free trial for every part however the Home windows 7/eight desktop software (Home windows 10 customers can set up an app from the Home windows 10 Retailer, as an alternative), extending to 3-days in the event you ‘like’ VPN Defend’s web page on Fb.

Website

VPN Defend claims to not accumulate knowledge on its customers’ shopping exercise on-line however there’s plenty of session logging although (Picture credit score: Defendemus)

Privateness

VPN Defend’s privacy policy offers you the excellent news first, explaining how the corporate ‘is dedicated to your privateness and it doesn’t accumulate or log visitors knowledge or shopping exercise from customers related to the VPN Defend Service.’

The coverage goes on to checklist plenty of session logging, although: ‘connection occasions to the VPN Defend Service, system kind, alternative of server location, technical particulars of the connection (connection consequence, protocol, ports, and so forth.), the whole quantity of information transferred per day, and the acquisition historical past.’

‘Technical particulars of the connection’ is a really broad time period, and will simply embrace incoming and outgoing IP addresses.

There’s extra vagueness on this clause: ‘The VPN Defend Service could ship diagnostic knowledge to a third-party analytics supplier for the aim of figuring out connection errors and doable bugs within the software.’ What ‘diagnostic knowledge’, what would possibly that embrace? VPN Defend would not need to say.

This caught our eye, too: ‘Defendemus doesn’t as a matter of abnormal follow actively monitor person periods for inappropriate habits, nor does it keep direct logs of consumers’ Web actions. Nevertheless, Defendemus reserves the best to analyze issues it considers to be violations of those Phrases.’ 

VPN Defend would not ‘matter of abnormal follow’ monitor customers, but it surely’s hinting that it may; it would not ‘keep direct logs of consumers’ Web actions’, however possibly there are some oblique ones.

Reassured but? No, we’re not, both.

Apps

VPN Defend is one in all only a few suppliers to supply a local Home windows 10 app, so we have been eager to strive it out. Set up was hassle-free, we shortly created an account from the app, and a countdown confirmed our 24-hour trial had begun.

Home windows apps typically attempt to be just a little extra visually polished than their old-style cousins, however VPN Defend’s providing might be worse. There is not any easy join display, no colourful checklist of flags, no world map, no intelligent graphical touches in any respect, only a sidebar, some standing info and some textual content panels of choices.

Windows 10 App

That is the person interface of VPN Defend’s Home windows 10 app (Picture credit score: Defendemus)

The app has little or no performance. The situation picker is a plain textual content checklist of nations, with no ping time, server load figures, Favorites system, ‘Latest Connections’ checklist or anything. The app solely helps the outdated and insecure PPTP protocol. And the Settings dialog is especially sparse, with solely an ‘Autostart VPN on insecure wifi networks’ checkbox and a panel explaining the way to manually arrange a connection on different PCs.

Connection occasions have been gradual at as much as 10 seconds; we would count on extra like 2-Four for PPTP.

The sidebar has areas to show your new location and IP, and a ‘progress’ indicator recommended the app is attempting to do that, but it surely by no means labored, our location particulars have been by no means displayed.

The app would not use notifications to inform you when it connects and disconnects. That is necessary, as a result of it will not inform you if the VPN connection drops, both. Once we forcibly closed our connection, the app continued to indicate its standing as ‘Linked.’ If the app home windows have been minimized when you labored on one thing else, you’d haven’t any clear means of figuring out the VPN had died and your visitors was now not protected.

Possibly VPN Defend will repair a few of this, sooner or later? Do not put your cash on it; the Microsoft Retailer web page dates this launch at 22nd January 2017. VPN Defend hasn’t even been sustaining the app, not to mention bettering it.

The common Home windows 7/eight desktop app has a good worse interface, forcing you to pick international locations by proper clicking the system tray icon.

Protocols

You possibly can change protocols by going to VPN Defend’s superior settings tab (Picture credit score: Defendemus)

It does not less than have higher protocol assist, together with IKEv2 and L2TP in addition to PPTP.

A ‘reconnect robotically if connection is dropped’ sounds prefer it ought to assist if the VPN goes down, however our assessments confirmed in any other case. Once we forcibly closed our connection, the app tried to reconnect, however all the time failed. It up to date its system tray icon to indicate this, but when the icon is not seen, as soon as once more you’d haven’t any option to know that your visitors was unprotected.

Because the app can also be dated 2017, just like the Home windows 10 version, it would not seem like these points shall be mounted in a rush.

Mobile Apps

VPN Defend has cellular apps for Android and iOS (Picture credit score: Defendemus)

There’s higher information with the Android app; the final launch was ‘solely’ 10 months outdated at evaluate time, positively recent.

The interface seems and feels similar to the Home windows 10 app; select one of many 11 areas from the checklist, faucet a swap to attach, faucet once more to disconnect.

You do not less than get a alternative of protocol, although: OpenVPN or Cisco. Cisco? It may very well be this implies some variation of Cisco’s OpenConnect, however the app would not say, and there is not any info on the assist web site. Nonetheless, we do not thoughts; it has OpenVPN, and that is a serious enchancment on PPTP.

A handful of settings allows connecting the VPN robotically while you entry insecure, secured and/ or cellular networks, and reconnecting robotically if the VPN drops.

That is nonetheless comparatively restricted, offered in probably the most primary means, and never even near the standard of most high VPN apps. However hey, it is nonetheless vastly higher than VPN Defend’s Home windows providing, and for that, we now have to be grateful.

New Speedtest Image

We use a number of totally different velocity assessments to find out the efficiency of every VPN we evaluate (Picture credit score: Ookla)

Efficiency

VPN Defend’s points thus far did not depart us with a lot hope for our unblocking assessments, and certain sufficient, the service could not get us into BBC iPlayer, US Netflix or Disney+. 

There was one welcome success, although, once we managed to stream Amazon Prime Video content material, and we discovered it labored with US YouTube and the much less effectively defended websites, too.

The constructive observe continued with our velocity assessments. No matter else we’d say about VPN Defend, it proved a good performer, hitting 66-67Mbps on our 75Mbps UK line, a really comparable 60Mbps when connecting from the UK to close European areas, and a nonetheless affordable 30Mbps on UK-US connections.

Sadly, the issues returned in our ultimate privateness assessments, with a number of websites displaying a DNS leak with the Home windows apps.

Ultimate verdict

VPN Defend’s Home windows apps are horribly restricted, with just about no options, and even the few primary capabilities you get do not work fairly as they need to. We would not advocate the service, even when it have been free – go for one thing higher like ExpressVPN

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