Published on August 25th, 2020
Everybody loves free trials. But just how important are they when picking a VPN? Do they make it easier to trust the provider?
We believe that they do, yes. We’ll show you why in this quick article, and we’ll also discuss other things to look for to make sure a VPN is 100% trustworthy.
So Are Free Trial VPNs Easier To Trust?
That’s completely up to you to decide. However, it’s pretty easy to see how a free trial makes it easier to trust the provider – at least compared to no-trial options or money-back guarantees.
First of all, you don’t need to pay any upfront fees to test the service. You just feel like you’re buying with no risk, so the whole experience is less stressful.
Furthermore, unlike money-back guarantees, there’s no annoying thought in the back of your mind that keeps going “don’t forget to cancel the subscription before the refund period expires.” Without that extra hassle, you can fully concentrate on testing the VPN to see if it meets all your needs.
And if the VPN doesn’t work out for you, you just cancel the trial, uninstall the app, and look for a different service. No more having to talk with support reps to ask for refunds and wait around for days on end until the money shows up in your account.
Also, with refunds, you often have to meet requirements to be eligible for them. So you’re constantly checking your VPN usage to make sure you don’t go overboard. With a free trial, you might deal with some limitations (low speed and server variety), but at least you can’t make some random, small mistake that will cost you your money.
Need Help Finding Free Trial VPNs?
There are so many providers around, and only a few of them actually offer free trials. So finding decent free trial VPNs is pretty tough.
Don’t worry, though – we’ll make it very simple for you. Just click here to find out more about the best free trial VPNs on the market right now.
Aren’t Free VPNs Just As Trustworthy?
They seem just as convenient since they’re also free. But they’re free for as long as you use them, not just a short period, so they’re even better, right? Not by a longshot.
Here’s a quick list of reasons why you shouldn’t trust a free VPN:
- There’s a chance they might expose you to malware – especially on Android, where a study showed that 38% out of 283 free VPNs were malicious.
- If the VPN works on a peer-to-peer model, the provider could sell your bandwidth to third parties, essentially adding your device to a botnet.
- Free VPNs might also use tracking libraries, and you might not even be aware of them because you don’t
- understand the complicated lawyer talk in their ToS pages and Privacy Policies.
- When you use free VPNs, you automatically have to put up with limitations – overcrowded servers, bandwidth caps, and little to no customer support.
- Free VPNs might have poorly configured encryption or servers. If that’s the case, your VPN connection will likely leak, exposing your data.
Ultimately, a VPN provider needs money to maintain its service and offer quality support. How would they be able to pay for their large network of servers and their staff if customers don’t pay for their service?
So yeah, free VPNs are nowhere near as transparent and trustworthy as free trial VPNs.
How Else Can You Tell A VPN Is Trustworthy?
Okay, so the VPN has a free trial. Now what? What do you need to look for to make sure it’s a solid pick?
Well, here is how we know that a VPN can take good care of our privacy:
They Don’t Keep Logs
By logs, we mean both usage logs and connection logs. Usage logs contain information about how you use the VPN – what sites you browse, what you download, and what your IP address is. Connection logs mostly contain technical data, but they can also record your IP address.
None of them are good for your privacy. The only way a VPN can actually protect it is if it has a no-log policy. Without it, hackers could put your data at risk if they compromise the providers’ servers, and the authorities can put it in danger by forcing providers to hand over their logs.
They’ve Undergone Audits
A provider saying they don’t have logs in their marketing copy is a good start, but can they also provide it? Independent third-party audits are an excellent way to check if a VPN can be trusted or not. If they’re not available, any types of legal documents are a great alternative – like court documents proving the provider doesn’t keep logs, for example.
If a VPN leaks your data, it can’t keep you safe online. And neither can it protect you from ISP and government surveillance. So test it to make sure there are no leaks. Use the ipleak.net tool to do that. Just run a test without the VPN and take a screenshot of the results.
Next, connect to the VPN, and use the tool again. Now, compare the results. If you see your IP address or DNS addresses, the VPN is leaking them. If you don’t, great! But also make sure the provider has security measures in place – like DNS, WebRTC, and IPv6 leak protection.
They Open-Sourced Their Software
Open-source software means anyone can inspect it to make sure the VPN provider isn’t lying about what data they log. It also makes it easy for any security researcher to check if the service has any vulnerabilities. Not many VPNs do this, though, so we’re not saying a VPN has to be 100% open-source for you to trust it.
But for some of you, this might be what makes or breaks the deal.If you’re looking for an example, check out ProtonVPN. Besides being 100% open-source, they also offer a free unlimited trial.
How Do You Decide A VPN Is Trustworthy?
What do you look for, specifically? Please let us know in the comments. Also, if you know other reasons a free trial is better than a refund period or free VPN, we’d be happy to hear them.