Are All Free VPNs a Privacy Illusion
Photo by Stefan Coders:

When searching around for the best VPN, or virtual private network, there is one piece of advice that gets repeated over and over – “Don’t use a free service.” Sure, there are issues with using free VPN services.

Some free services cut costs by selling their users’ data to third-party vendors. We know this seems super counterproductive, but it is a fairly common practice. Additionally, it is pretty typical of free VPNs to only provide some of the features of paid VPNs and a lot of their security measures are lacking.

This means that you may be protected in one regard, but if you are not protected from all types of digital attacks or privacy infringement a VPN is not doing its job – free or otherwise.

But when it comes down to it some people simply can’t afford to pay for a VPN service or don’t want to pay before they understand the benefits of using a VPN. So, let’s look at a list of the best free VPN services to help learn how to better navigate the free VPN market.


ProtonVPN is one of the most popular free VPN options, in fact, we would go as far as to say it is the best free VPN option. If we take a look at a ProtonVPN review it is easy to see why.

ProtonVPN already offers paid VPN service you can trust, so when it comes to the free version there is less worry about the reputation of the company. This VPN service has an impressive list of features available on the free side of things, but also allows users to try a free trial of their paid services.

Here are just a few things you will get with ProtonVPN’s free service:

  • User friendly interface
  • Top notch security credentials
  • Live chat support
  • Apps for Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android
  • Won’t sell your information to fund their service

With ProtonVPN the free edition has a lot to offer to help convince free users to stick around for the benefits of the paid service. This means that you can feel comfortable in your choice to try out their free services.


Another good free VPN option is TunnelBear. Similar to ProtonVPN, TunnelBear’s free version is meant as a teaser for the paid service, which means they don’t skimp on the protection they are willing to offer users.

TunnelBear’s free service offers quite a few great features:

  • Double encryption
  • Kill Switch
  • Intuitive client
  • Decent speeds

For a free option, there really isn’t much to complain about. However, the one thing there is to complain about is the 500 MB monthly bandwidth cap making it glaringly obvious that the free version is intended to be used similar to a trial for the full version.

This type of pushy limitations on the free service is what keeps it from being our pick for the best free VPN.

Windscribe VPN

The last free VPN we are looking at is Windscribe. Windscribe VPN provides quite a few features for a free service. Some of those features are:

  • 10 GB of data per month
  • Ability to earn more free data
  • Decent speeds
  • Intuitive client
  • Ad Blocker, STunnel, Time zone Spoofing, and other privacy features

This makes Windscribe a pretty decent choice for free VPN. Some of the issues with this service are the lack of servers, the hit and miss ability to access the US and UK Netflix, and the fact that the service is based in Canada, which has mandatory data retention laws.

Overall Windscribe is not a bad choice, but it still doesn’t beat out Proton VPN for our personal top free pick.


The people who say that paid services are best are not inherently wrong. Even these free VPNs offer paid versions with better amenities.

However, to discredit all free VPNs would be foolish. If you look for services that are reputable, offer decent free benefits, and have good ratings you are likely to get by just fine on a free VPN.

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Steve Ballmer
With over 7 years of experience in the IT industry, I have experience in IT support, helpdesk, sysadmin, network admin, and cloud computing. Certified in Microsoft Technologies (MCTS and MCSA) and also Cisco Certified Professional in Routing and Switching.