“You get what you pay for” is an oft-repeated proverb, but that doesn’t mean that it is necessarily true. If you have been looking for a VPN, you may have encountered caveats about free VPNs. Some people believe that, since the companies are not charging for their service, they are inevitably taking your data and selling it to marketers. But in the vast majority of cases, this isn’t true.
Free VPNs also invite skepticism about their effectiveness of unblocking sites and hiding your IP address. They are often assumed to operate at lower internet speeds, have low data limits, and second-rate security features.
There are some unscrupulous VPN vendors that cash in on consumer data by offering them a low-quality VPN, but there are also many free VPNs that are virtually indistinguishable from premium quality paid VPNs. It is a question of doing your due diligence, researching options, and finding the best free VPNs.
The following are some common myths about free VPNs that beg to be debunked
1. The Only Good VPNs Cost Money
Although there unfortunately are some free VPNs that are low-quality and even dodgy, not all free VPNs are created equal. To stay on the safe side, many people prefer to just pay up for a premium service to provide a sense of security, but the truth is, they may do just as well with a free VPN.
In fact, many free VPNs are simply freemium versions of paid services. Many features are the same as premium, but the latter will have unlimited rather than limited data or a broader choice of servers and regions. Using a freemium VPN version means that the company you are downloading your VPN service is reliable and legitimate.
The company wants to provide the consumer with a positive experience of their product to upgrade to premium. Therefore, they are unlikely to misuse your data, make your IP address vulnerable to hackers, or compromise security.
However, you can find great free VPNs that are not simply free versions of premium items. There are many companies, such as Urban, that offer free VPNs that bypass geo-restrictions, protect data with encryption, and will not slow down your internet.
2. All Free VPNs Have Limited Bandwidth
The notion that free VPNs limit bandwidth is ironic since many people install VPNs to keep their Internet Service Providers from tracking their IPs and reducing their bandwidth. Unfortunately, there have been some scam VPNs that were caught selling bandwidth, but this is not a common practice.
When a user connects to a VPN server, they are given a certain amount of bandwidth. The amount depends on the service, but the VPN service can choose how much bandwidth to provide. However, some VPNs also provide unlimited bandwidth.
When selecting a free VPN, the bandwidth limits should not be a surprise. Research different free services, and if unlimited bandwidth is important to you, choose one with generous limits or unlimited bandwidth. Urban VPN, for instance, has unlimited bandwidth as well as a large network of fast servers.
3. All Free VPNs Offer a Limited Number of Countries
When you use a VPN to bypass geo-restrictions, the VPN users servers located in a variety of countries from around the world to convince the website that the request is coming from a country that is allowed to access the content. Although premium paid VPNs often offer more locations, free VPNs usually provide enough options of locations and servers to allow users to access the most blocked content. Urban VPN offers a connection to 21 countries with unlimited server and location switches.
4. All Free VPNs Slow Down Your Connection
The notion that a free VPN can slow down your connection is not limited to free services. There is a general worry about the impact of VPNs, even paid ones and internet speeds. The issue of speed can depend on routing from your device or computer to the server. When you are connecting to a server that is hundreds or thousands of miles away, some paths will be more effective than others.
A free VPN service may provide fewer servers than a paid plan, and the result might be slower internet if you are connecting to a server that is far away. The key to preventing this is to select a free VPN that offers a wide variety of locations. Urban VPN offers over 20 locations worldwide. In addition, there is no limit to the number of times you can switch to another server, so if service with one server is slow, you can simply choose another one.
A Free VPN Can Be a Great VPN
Despite a few myths, a free VPN can provide many of the same services as paid VPNs. Choosing a free VPN like Urban will give you a significant selection of locations, unlimited bandwidth, and encryption and DNS/IPv6 leak protection. These VPNs are free to download, easy to install, and can help you expand your internet access.