Everyone likes the idea of free stuff. VPNs are no exception to this, especially that many people find top VPN providers to be expensive. While a free VPN server might seem attractive, as you’ll see in the latter part, they don’t offer all of the benefits of paid VPNs. The security that free versions provide will not be as robust, and it would not be much better than VPN free Internet.
The Dangers of Free VPN Servers
Virtual Private Networks come at a price for a reason: VPN services require a significant deal of hardware, software, and technical expertise to run. The servers also have to be housed, and they need to be powered 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Additionally, support teams always have to be at the ready to address any problems. Running a VPN service is tough work, but it enables the level of security that their users enjoy versus VPN free Internet access.
Therefore, the best VPN providers just cannot afford to give away their apps for free. Maintaining everything that goes into a VPN requires a good deal of money. Thus, a ‘just free’ VPN presents a lot of risks to the users.
Ever heard the saying ‘The best things in life are free’? Well, not with VPN.
Is VPN free? No. There’s no completely free VPN service. But if you come across the best free VPN app, there must be a catch. More often than not, there are several catches. You may not notice them, especially if you’re not the type who reads the fine print in those license agreements and privacy policies – and this describes most of us!
As mentioned above, VPN services require huge overheads to ensure all of their users are safe. Free VPN providers, then, must have alternative methods of earning money from their users. A lot of those methods are things that should concern any user.
Just take a look at five potential risks with VPN free Internet offerings.
1. Free VPNs Collect and Sell Your Data to Third Parties
Several of these so-called free VPN servers log your activity and collect information about you. So, say, you use a VPN to get free internet access, that activity could be exposed to outsiders. In fact, any activity that is logged puts you at risk right away.
As if collecting information isn’t bad enough, a free VPN server also sell your information to the highest bidder. Corporations, governments, hackers, and other dodgy people then have unfettered access to your precious data. Who knows what purposes they have for your information?
2. Even the Best Free VPN App Likely has Annoying Advertising
The best way for any software company to earn from users is through advertisements. You see this all the time with free games, free apps, and other forms of software that have free versions. They often inundate the app with ads, making the user experience extremely frustrating.
Worse still, a free VPN account can even force you to watch the ads to completion. This is a complete waste of not just time, but even bandwidth. Ads use data, too, after all.
3. Free VPNs have Small Data Caps
Watching HD videos all day is not possible with those providers you find in free VPN lists. The same is true for the best free VPN download features. Most of them have very limited data allowances, which means they are only good for browsing and light online activity. Gaming would equally be disappointing with a data limit in place.
In fact, even with light browsing, you could run down that data allowance in a hurry. Most web pages these days have very rich content, full of high-quality graphics, videos, and other stuff that use up data. That doesn’t even include the ads that many free VPN addresses constantly push. All of these combined will consume those data allowances even before the sun goes down.
4. Free VPNs Offer Very Limited Servers
A strength of any good VPN is its variety of servers and locations. But with the best free VPN apps, that just is not the case. They usually offer just one server in one location. Moreover, the free VPN server is usually not very fast and not too secure.
As that free VPN server is allocated for non-paid subscription users, there is no incentive at all for it to be prioritized. It defeats the main purposes of a VPN, which are to provide you with both security and speed.
5. Some Shady Free VPNs Steal Your Bandwidth
This is where it gets really serious. What if the price you pay for a free VPN server address is having some of your own bandwidth diverted to the VPN provider’s computers? The worse part is this can happen in the background without your express permission.
This spells disaster if you’re using a free VPN on mobile and you’re on a data plan. Without your knowledge, your data is being leeched. Later on, you’d be surprised to see that you’ve gone over your data limit far too soon.
6. Other Dodgy Apps in Free VPN Lists Use Your Real IP Address for Other Users
This is the really scary bit. A free VPN server has this very nefarious practice of diverting your real IP address to their paying users. So if they log your activity too, you are in twice the danger. If your real IP address got leaked – and this does sometimes happen – part of your online identity is revealed without you even knowing it.
Add to that the fact that free VPN apps collect your data and sell it to third parties. It’s as if you are completely naked in cyberspace for all the world to see. That’s even worse than VPN free Internet access.
A Trick to Getting Free VPN Access with ExpressVPN
You could actually benefit from a top-tier VPN, without committing to a hefty fee. Actually, this trick can give you the best free VPN app available (even if it isn’t technically free).
Let’s look at ExpressVPN, one of the top VPN providers we have recommended on this site. They offer a 30-day money-back guarantee, and it is very easy to get your money back, whatever your reason may be.
The trick is to go on this link to order. You’re then free to use ExpressVPN to its fullest functionality for 30 days. To get your money back, either call their support number or use the live chat to request a full refund. You don’t even have to make up an elaborate reason.
After that, you will get your full refund within 5 days. This really works: we’ve done this several times, and so have a good number of our readers! Try it yourself too.
Try ExpressVPN Now
Free 30 days
Look at Really Cheap VPNs
If you’re sold on why you should not bother with the best free VPN apps, but you still hesitate to pay a lot for one, there are alternatives. A good VPN service does not have to be expensive.
Here are some of those budget-friendly VPN providers that give you good security and speed.
Note that these prices are for the longest-term plans, which last anywhere between 1 year and 3 years. These plans usually offer the lowest per-month costs.
Best Free VPN Apps List
Despite all of the risks and disadvantages of a free VPN server, maybe you are still wondering if they’re all bad. Well, there are actually legitimate VPN providers that offer free versions, but do not expect the full functionality of the paid counterparts.
Let’s have a look at this free VPN server list.
Free VPNs vary in features and capabilities. The good thing is there are some of them that also have strict no-logging policies. However, nearly all of them impose limits on both speeds and data.
Some free VPNs have daily data caps, while most have monthly caps. Newer ones distinguish themselves by having no data caps at all, but they do throttle your browsing speed. This is the case as well with many other free versions of VPNs. The servers that cater to free users do not provide the full capabilities of the VPN provider.
As for servers, most free VPNs allow you to choose from only five server locations or fewer. This may be insufficient to fulfill your privacy needs. Also, you may not be able to stream Netflix appropriately if those servers are not designed for region unblocking. P2P access may also not be permitted, hence torrenting would be out of the question.
Another huge downside of free VPNs is that they inundate you with lots of ads that persuade you to get the paid versions. This can be quite annoying, ruining your Internet experience.
Why Use a Free VPN Server
Using one of the services in the free VPN list above is only for the most casual users who go online only for very basic applications. It’s budget-friendly and still better than VPN free Internet usage.
However, it is not recommended for Internet users with more demands, as you cannot get the full benefits of a proper VPN service. A solid protection of your online privacy comes at a price, so it is always best to invest in more formidable VPNs.
While there are many free VPN lists out there, the disadvantages outweigh the few benefits they can provide. Online security should not be something you should buy on a bargain. If you really value your safety and security online, go for a paid, top-rated VPN service like ExpressVPN. It is the best way to be secured.
If you really are pressed for budget, use the ExpressVPN trick outlined above. It’s better than going online with VPN free internet access.