Imagine you own a business that is running on a tight budget. Would you consider paying for a VPN subscription? Since your budget is tight, you might think that paid VPN services will be another unnecessary expense for your operations. "Is it worth it when there are many free options out there?" you might ask.
This dilemma is about a company, but it also applies to you. The objective of a company owner or a normal user is to protect their data. This article will go through the ups and downs of a paid and free VPN. Nevertheless, please remember that nothing comes free of charge; there's always a price to pay.
What is a free VPN?
Free VPNs are exactly what their name implies—free VPN services that you can use. You do not have to pay for anything, or at the very least, you are not required to spend any money to use them.
They are widely available online and frequently take the shape of browser extensions you can quickly add. Few do not require registering for a free account, but most do. They provide protection, just as premium VPNs, although that protection is nowhere near the same level as the one offered by premiums.
They also have a network of servers, but they hardly ever use their own. The network's size may be variable, but it is never very big. However, there are numerous situations where the free VPN will fulfill your needs.
While there are advantages to using a free VPN, we highly recommend steering clear of them. Here is our option of a Free VPN.
Advantages of using a free VPN
Anonymity: When you connect to a free VPN server, your real IP address will be replaced with a VPN service-owned one. This enables you to conceal your physical location from websites and online services, giving the impression that you are somewhere else.
Secure: Free VPNs are no different from paid VPNs using security features like encryption and security protocols.
Bypass censorship: You can use a free VPN to bypass any censorship that prevails within a country, government, or institution (like schools and workplaces).
Bypassing geo-restrictions: Geo-restrictions are location-based, where some materials on the internet are not accessible to people living in that specific location (China, for example). With a free VPN, you can avoid these restrictions up to some extent.
Disadvantages of using a free VPN
Log and selling your data: Free VPNs often end up logging your data, such as location, browsing history, and alike — and selling it to advertisers.
Ruin the VPN experience with Ads: Free VPNs make money by showing adverts to their users directly.
Uses third-party servers: Free VPNs often use third-party-owned servers.
There is no assurance that they will protect VPN clients' privacy, and you never know who else might be monitoring the information on the server.
Data is given to governments: Internet user data is gathered and shared by the 14 Eyes alliance. Requests for data, whether for premium or free VPN services, frequently come within the Jurisdiction of the countries. The difference is that most premium VPNs do not record any data, but the same cannot be said to free VPNs.
Slow Speeds: VPNs slow down your internet. Both free and paid services share this truth. Free services will severely degrade your speed.
Bad security: Although we indicated that certain services provide respectable security, this is not necessarily the case for all of them. Some employ poor encryption that has previously been cracked.
What is a paid VPN?
Any business or individual can greatly improve their internet security and privacy by using a virtual private network (VPN). Your online activities are concealed from potential cybercriminals and even your internet service provider (ISP) by using a VPN to establish an encrypted connection to the internet and filter all of your traffic through a network server.
A paid VPN is a service that provides you with the whole package. You get all the advantages of a free VPN without the drawbacks. Let’s examine the pros and cons of using a paid VPN. Check our price for a VPN Now!
What advantages of using a paid VPN?
All of your online activity and traffic is instantly secured using AES-256 encryption when you use a premium VPN service, protecting you from nefarious peeping Toms who want to steal your data.
When using a VPN, you always have a virtual mask of invisibility. Your activity won't be connected to your IP address, so your favorite websites will still get traffic, but you'll just be anonymous.
Geo-blocked content access:
VPN services typically have servers across the globe, enabling you to get around any geo-blocks. By connecting to a server in the region of your choice via a VPN, your traffic will appear to be coming from that location.
More server locations:
Premium VPNs usually provide more server locations to their users than free VPN locations.
No ISP bandwidth throttling:
Your ISP restricting your internet speed is known as bandwidth throttling. Any reason, including peak times, hitting a data cap, or utilizing high-bandwidth programs like streaming video, can cause an ISP to reduce your speed.
Lower support costs:
By taking care of all its maintenance and mitigating many typical security issues, a VPN lightens the load on your IT team and lowers the number of events your employees may need to handle.
Disadvantages of using a paid VPN?
Blacklisting of shared IPs:
A shared-IP VPN gives users IP addresses as they connect to the VPN server. While a shared-IP VPN can undoubtedly provide you with a secure internet connection and shield you from online threats, the large number of shared IP addresses can overwhelm a domain name system (DNS), causing your IP address to be banned.
Slower internet speeds:
Your internet connection speed will inevitably go down by 5 to 10%, which is one of the greatest cons of any VPN. However, this difference is barely noticeable.
Head to Head comparison: free VPN vs paid VPN
No logs are kept
Detailed logs are kept
Access to geo-blocked content
Access to geo-blocked content
Ability to bypass censorships.
Ability to bypass censorships
More server locations
Limited server locations
Different types of VPN protocols to choose from
Usually provides one type of VPN protocol
Slow connection speed
Generally, free VPN services can only provide first-level protection for you. You will have to check if the service provider will guarantee high-level security that will prevent your data from being stolen.
Unfortunately, some providers’ security features are easier to crack than others, leading to data leakage, defeating the purpose of a VPN. However, when it comes to a paid VPN subscription, the provider will guarantee foolproof security and encryption of your data through their VPN servers.
Because it’s free, you will usually have a few servers which are always crowded, which can cause unstable and slow connection. Imagine hundreds or thousands of people using the same server simultaneously!
A few dollars per month can change this with a paid VPN. Investing in higher bandwidth and servers can ensure that the connection is fast and reliable so that you can access it anywhere in the world without any noticeable delay.
Being true to the mission of providing unrestricted access to all websites and services, paid VPNs normally don’t put caps on the bandwidth, so you can enjoy unlimited internet whenever, wherever. This may be limited, though, for free VPN services.
4. Multi-Platform Support
A paid VPN can be set up on almost any internet-enabled device that you can think of. It's not enough to cover the internet browsing, but also the apps you use and all your other devices like tablets and phones.
VPN Surf supports all the major operating systems with custom software for each of them. Unfortunately, a free VPN is almost never compatible with all different devices.
Which VPN is better for you? No matter the use, opting for a paid VPN is always recommended. Even for VPNs, the saying holds 'you get what you paid for’. Although not all paid VPNs are 100% reliable and secure, you need to do your homework and check their authenticity to maximize your browsing experience.
It all depends on the provider you choose. Going free is okay, provided that you are aware of its downsides. Remember, free is always nice but taking your security a notch higher by spending a few more bucks is a much better investment.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Is a paid VPN more secure than a free VPN?
You will never receive the most up-to-date cybersecurity features with a free VPN as you would with a commercial VPN.
2. How can I get paid VPN for free?
You cannot get a paid VPN for free, but you can get a free VPN with similar qualities to a paid VPN. We recommend VPN Surf, Proton VPN, and IP vanish VPN providers.
3. Is a free VPN better than a no VPN?
Yes and no. In addition to security issues, free VPNs frequently perform poorly. However, if you pay a subscription fee, you may anticipate faster speeds, additional features, reliable encryption, and round-the-clock support.
4. Should you use a free VPN?
Free VPNs might be quite risky. Why? Because to maintain the hardware and expertise needed for large networks and secure users, VPN services have expensive bills to pay. As a VPN user, you may pay with money for a premium VPN service or with data for free services.
5. What is the best free VPN?
We would recommend VPN Surf, Proton VPN, and IP Vanish.
Check out now this blogs to learn more about VPNs:
- What is SSTP VPN and How Does it Work?
- What is a VPN Kill Switch and Why Should You Use It?
Do you value your privacy online?
Use VPN Surf and surf safely and securely in the open waters of the internet.