Censorships, content restrictions, privacy and anonymity alongside other functionalities have made VPNs to be a necessity in the day to day internet activities. There are a lot of VPNs out there, and that’s the dilemma new users face when it comes to choosing the right VPN for their needs, essentially, every VPN seems to be good and doing what it’s supposed to do until you realize it’s not.
By the time you realize this, you might have gone through hassles of testing their performance, speed, connectivity and maybe everything a specific VPN has to offer, and that process is time and resource wasting.
Besides the guide to know what a good VPN should constitute, let’s filter a lot of processes and tackle the issue in another way. This article will show you how to identify bad VPNs. After this article, you will have eliminated rogue VPNs and remained with good ones. If you want to sort the remaining VPNs further, check out our guide on a good VPN.
Usually, a lousy VPN has nothing to offer hence nothing to boast about. When looking for a VPN, the first thing you should do is head over to their official website. You will notice different sections with what the VPN offers. If after reading through all their sections and you realize there are no technical details, platforms supported, number of server locations and even a well pricing section, those are early signs of a bad VPN. The most common approach rogue VPNs use to deceive users is by focusing on VPN benefits, encryption benefits and how you can use their VPN to access blocked content.
Also, if their features are not well explained, i.e., what protocols they use, additional features such as kill switch and so on are not mentioned, skip that particular VPN.
Too good to be true
While on their website, check whether the VPN offers specific and realistic claims. You can discern this by reading the descriptions of what the VPN does. Although most VPN services tend to oversell themselves, check whether they are exaggerating and being vague about it. For instance, a VPN may claim to be the fastest VPN in the world. A good VPN will specify in which areas it is fast such in gaming or streaming. The ‘not so good’ VPN won’t have these specifics, and their website will say its fast in most areas.
In matters regarding security, a poor VPN will state that it safeguards against all malware or all online threats or it unblocks all content. This is the place you should be careful, most poor VPNs will use logos of the sites they claim to unblock without much explanations. Another lie substandard VPNs use is that they will increase your speed. VPNs don’t increase speed unless your ISP is throttling it and in most cases, VPNs should lower your speed by some percentage due to the encryption involved. If a VPN claims it will increase your internet speed without saying how; be wary.
Good VPN services regularly do updates that better the service and they have a blog section on their website that explains what’s going on. Usually, a good VPN service website will always have content with later dates or with dates that point the period at which the content was updated. You may get a news page and even a social media page in which they keep users up to date. A poor VPN doesn’t care about this, and you may find their website hasn’t changed since the last one year.
The other way to notice a bad VPN is heading over to the various app stores if they are offering iOS or Android clients. Once you are there, check user reviews if the VPN service replied to some queries and when was that. Also, check the last release date. Although frequent updates don’t guarantee if a VPN is a great one, no updates mean that a particular VPN is not good given the current internet situation.
Lack of identifiers and policies
Poor VPNs always lack proper information about themselves on their websites. You might find they have no contact information, location and even they don’t have an about us page. These identifiers are crucial when determining what type of VPN you need. For instance, a great VPN will be located in areas where the law doesn’t require them to retain data.
Another thing to check and carefully read is their policies. Necessary policies include privacy and logging. A poor VPN might not mention anything concerning logging and what data do they collect or how long they retain collected data.
After poor policies, the next thing that you won’t miss is their support system. Bad VPNs claim to have a 24/7 chat support system, and that’s what you should check first. With today’s threats, chatbots have no place being in the support system, and most poor VPNs use them. Usually, ask them a question and then infer regarding the given answer. Other systems may ask you to refer to this or that section, and that’s a bad VPN.
Check also the FAQ section and see whether questions ae answered correctly or if they make any sense. If they keep referring to their benefits, that’s automatically a bad VPN. Check also if the FAQ section covers all the platforms they support. Additionally, check how updated the FAQ is, for instance, if it only covers up to Windows 8 and nothing on 8.1 or 10, that’s a lousy VPN.