How To Choose A Free VPN: 5 Must
The couple of years have witnessed the rise of global threats to individual privacy with long maintained rights to anonymity and net neutrality being undermined with a cloak of legitimacy.
While virtual private networks are not the panacea to being safe, secure and private on the internet, it is an essential component of the arsenal for individuals inclined to seek these liberties.
If you dont have one yet, you can grab one for free, without having to pay a single penny for one. Just be careful though as not all free VPN providers are created equal and some might even compromise your security.
Here are five questions you need to ask yourself before you download and install one.
1. What is its business model? Providers are in for the money and running such a business does cost a lot especially if it is a popular one. Some will use their free version, just like Dropbox, as a marketing tool to entice potential customers to move to a paid version once they are happy with the free one. Most however will sell user data or provide a something to a third party that will, again, compromise your privacy.
3. What do I lose by going free? Usually one can expect a free product to have some corners cut and that is indeed the case for all providers. Some offer more free bandwidth than others, major locations and even ad blocking, P2P and firewall with an easy paid for upgrade path that unlocks unlimited bandwidth with more locations and OpenVPN Configs.
What Makes The Best VPN For Dark Web Use
There are certain security and privacy features you should keep an eye out for if youre looking for the best VPN for the dark web. The most obvious one is strong encryption, usually AES 256-bit.
Here are our top five recommendations:
Any credible VPN is going to come with a no-logging policy and DNS leak protection, although a few others come with some nice features, such as malware and ad blockers and accepting payments in cash and Bitcoin.
Our honorable mention option Surfshark can even generate unique account names, thereby bypassing the need for your email address.
How Much Does The Dark Web Cost
Below are some information on what types of browser are needed to access the dark web, an intentionally hidden subset of the deep web that requires a specific type of Firefox. Although not everyone is aware of how big the dark web is, most estimate that it comprises about 5% of all Internet traffic.
Recommended Reading: How To Access Remote Desktop Through VPN
Is Onion Over VPN Safe
The major vulnerabilities in such a network configuration can fall on the separate intermediaries: either the VPN or the Onion network.
In the case of VPNs, not all of them are made equal. You have to be positive that the service is a no-logs VPN service. Don’t take the provider’s word for it. Records of refusal to collaborate with law enforcement, third-party audits can essentially prove whether you can trust a service. If the VPN keeps your logs, their privacy claims are invalidated, and it’s one of the potential threats to your anonymity.
In the case of the Onion network, the biggest downside is that it’s community-based, and everyone can set up a Tor node. It means that there are some rogue nodes managed by hackers that can potentially be spying on you. It isn’t a cookie-cutter to de-anonymize your connection. It would likely require a level of funding only available to national governments. Albeit a very theoretical possibility, it’s a point to consider.
What’s The Difference Between Tor And A VPN
Tor is a secure browser used for accessing every layer of the web, while a VPN is a security-enhancing app. Similar to Tor, VPNs encrypt your traffic to prevent prying eyes from spying on your online activity. However, VPNs offer additional security and privacy features that are not offered by Tor.
For instance, reputable VPNs adhere to a strict no-logs policy while encrypting your traffic from the moment you connect. The no-logs policy ensures your browsing sessions won’t be recorded, while the end-to-end encryption hides your personal data from all of Tor’s nodes. Additionally, VPNs safeguard your entire device and not just your browser traffic plus, they’re much faster than The Onion Router.
Tor offers some privacy by using decentralized nodes to transfer data securely. Although it encrypts your data, browsing Tor without a VPN exposes your IP address to the entry nodes. In addition, the exit node, and its operator, can see your data request.
You May Like: How To Remove VPN From Iphone
Best Free VPNs For Dark Web
What Is Onion Over VPN And How Does It Work
Onion over VPN is a VPN feature that lets you connect to the Tor network without using the Tor browser. Onion Over VPN works by channeling your data traffic through several server layers similar to the Tor network, adding extra security and encryption layers to your data traffic.
Don’t Miss: How To VPN Into My Home Network
What Is The Basic Difference Between VPN And Tor
VPN and Tor are both software that helps you to protect your online anonymity. Virtual Private Network is one of the secure applications compared to the Tor browser. The Onion Router is a free program that can encrypt your request but is slow compared to VPN. Tor does not allow you to access the dark web and can lead to legal trouble. On the other hand, VPN can help you to access all Internet websites and put you in control of your selected location.
Privatevpn Speed Test Data
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
IPVanish is one of the fastest VPNs around but doesnt skimp on privacy or security. You get uncrackable encryption, strong DNS leak protection, and a zero-logs policy with every subscription. The apps are easy to set up and use on any number of devices. IPVanish doesnt accept bitcoin, so if you want to make an anonymous purchase, you may want to look elsewhere. The IPVanish apps include an obfuscation feature that disguises your encrypted tunnel as normal internet traffic, plus the option to periodically change your assigned IP address at certain intervals, bolstering anonymity.
Apps are available for Windows, MacOS, iOS, Fire TV, and Android.
Read Also: How To Check VPN On Firestick
Do Free VPN Providers Keep Log Files
With your privacy at stake, especially when accessing the dark web, its important to check your VPNs user agreement. Some free VPNs will monetize their service by letting malicious third-parties snoop on your activity.
It varies though. Some free VPNs keep private logs for their own personal maintenance. The top free VPNs on this list adhere to a strict no-logs policy to keep your data private. A premium VPN like ExpressVPN comes with a no-logs policy as standard, so your browsing activity on the dark web never becomes public.
Why Should I Use A VPN For Tor
When you use Tor, your traffic is encrypted and routed through several anonymous nodes, run by volunteers. Whenever an info request is made, the route the connection takes is changed, making it nearly impossible to trace the user.
However, Tor entry and exit nodes are well documented, so both your Internet Service Provider and the destination server can easily find out if you’re using Tor.
A VPN encrypts all of your traffic. By using a VPN to access Tor, you prevent anyone from detecting that you are using Tor, as your connection is encrypted from end to end.
Also Check: What Is My Ip VPN
Do You Really Need A VPN For Tor
VPN and Tor both are anonymity applications. You can use these tools for online privacy and security. However, these are two separate programs, but you can use these applications together. This way, it will give assurance that you will completely stay away from all kinds of surveillance and snoops online.
If you use Tor, then there are chances that your identity gets exposed. But when you connect to a VPN before using Tor, Virtual Private Network will provide different IP and make you invisible online using encryption algorithms.
A VPN can be used to secure your entire device and hides all your activities of the Tor network from your ISP. While if you use just The Onion Router, then it will only encrypt traffic that is passed through this browser. Your other websites and applications will pass through a regular Internet connection. So, you should use VPN for Tor to get extra layer of privacy and security.
Should I Use A VPN To Connect To Tor Or Use Tor To Connect To A VPN
Depending on your needs, you should use a VPN to connect to Tor. Using a virtual private network to connect to Tor means connecting to a VPN first before connecting to a Tor network.
Connecting to a virtual private network first masks your internet traffic, preventing your ISP from detecting that youre using the Tor network, and also adds an extra encryption layer to your data traffic.
Using the onion router to connect to a virtual private network gives you access to services not accessible to the Tor network and also encrypts your data traffic at Tors exit node preventing accidental data exposure.
You May Like: Can VPN Work Without Internet
Why Is It Better To Use A VPN With Tor
Although the working principles of Tor and VPN are significantly different, you can use them at the same time for better security. The only thing is to use the best VPN provider and apply the most appropriate configurations.
We will consider two core principles of tying up VPN and Tor later, but now lets see why it is good to combine these technologies.
Of course, to achieve great results you should use highly reliable and trusted services.
What Are The Unique And Strong Sides Of Tor Browser
Tor is a global network of servers dedicated to anonymous communication. Tor was originally created by the US Navy to allow anonymous communication between military organizations. It is now used as a free, open-source software project that allows users to surf the internet anonymously.
Because of its design and working mechanism, Tor was previously known as The Onion Router. Tor is used for browsing just like any other browser such as Mozilla Firefox. However, the Tor Browser offers anonymity to servers and websites, access to blocked websites, automatic data encryption for users, cross-platform availability, and the ability to use the internet without revealing the source IP address.
During decryption, all layers work together simultaneously such that the users IP address and geographic location are never revealed. This eliminates the possibility of someone spying on a users internet connection or online activities. Tor browser is used to ensure that users IP addresses change at each node. This makes it impossible for websites and hackers to track out the origins of users data traffic.
Using a VPN with Tor browser works in a slightly different way. Tor over VPN encrypts data and masks IP addresses by routing traffic through one of its secure servers before connecting to the Tor network. Another advantage of utilizing a VPN over Tor is that the users ISP will not see any Tor-related activity because VPNs hide the activity from the ISP.
Recommended Reading: How VPN Changes Ip Address
What Is Tor Browser Used For
Tor enables its users to surf the Internet, chat and send instant messages anonymously, and it is used by a wide range of people for both licit and illegal objectives. When a VPN is used in conjunction with Tor, users will benefit from double protection and increased surfing security. The VPN encryption ensures that the Tor entry node does not have access to the users IP addresses, ensuring optimum security.
Accessing The Tor Network In Proton VPN
Proton VPN is integrated with the Tor network, and Tor over VPN provides users a simple way to route their Internet traffic through the Tor network with a single click.
In this article, we explain how to connect to the Tor network with Proton VPN using our Tor over VPN feature. We also describe how you can access hidden services, like .onion sites, using your regular web browser. While Proton VPN is afree VPN service, Tor over VPN is a feature reserved for our paying subscribers. For more details on the advantages and features of our paid subscriptions,check out our different VPN plans.
It is a very simple process:
- Connect to a Tor VPN server available in designated countries
- And you are done! Your Internet traffic will now be routed through the Tor network automatically.
You May Like: How To Change Your Country VPN
Purevpn Secure And No Logs VPN For Tor
Well-known for its good speeds and secure connections, PureVPN is our next choice for Tor. It has over 6500 servers across 78+ countries and you can be assured that all your online activities will be fast through its worldwide server network.
It follows a strict no-logs policy and secures connections with 256-bit AES encryption. Other security features it offers include split tunneling, kill switch, DNS leak protection, and IPv6 leak protection. No matter what you do online, your data will remain secure and private with this VPN.
Unblocking blocked content will be a breeze with this VPN. You can effortlessly unblock Netflix US, Hulu, DAZN, BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime Video, Sling TV, HBO GO, and more. You can also use the VPN on Mac, Android, Firefox, and iOS, in addition to Tor.
- 6500+ Secure Servers
Though your connection could slow down while you use the Tor network, this VPN will certainly help speed up your connection to a certain extent. To know more about Pure VPN and to get your questions answered, we recommend reading our detailed Pure VPN review.
How Does Tor Or Onion Over VPN Work
Onion over VPN combines the encryption of the VPN between your device and the server. Plus, it adds several Tor relays between the VPN server and the final network destination. It greatly extends the intermediaries in between the server you’re contacting and your device:
Suppose someone wanted to trace back the connection to the source – that would be almost impossible to do. Especially if you’re using a no-logs VPN service that you paid for anonymously.
Read Also: How To Use VPN On Home Network
Can I Use A Free VPN With Tor
You can, but its not recommended.Its better to use a secure and low-cost premium VPN with a trustworthy money-back guarantee. Paid VPNs usually offer features that free ones don’t, like leak protection and a no-logs policy. This helps prevent your data from being leaked to prying eyes and cybercriminals when you use the Tor browser.
Free VPNs often have slow speeds, too. Since Tor is inherently slow, using a free VPN with it can make it almost impossible to use the browser at all. Plus, free VPNs usually lack important security features and can expose your real IP address at entry nodes, while alerting your ISP of your Tor use. Even worse is if the VPN collects logs, making you vulnerable to third-party interception. It’s not worth the risk when you can get a fast and secure VPN with a reliable money-back guarantee.
Should I Use A VPN With The Tor Browser
Depending on your privacy needs, you should use a VPN with the Tor browser to add an extra security layer to your data traffic before entering the Tor network.
This gives you the advantage of using Tor in countries where the use of Tor is restricted, and it also protects your data traffic should the Tor network be compromised.
To use a VPN with Tor, you should first connect to a VPN server before launching the Tor browser.
Don’t Miss: What Is Always On VPN
Why Do I Need A VPN For Tor
Using a VPN with The Onion Router adds an additional layer of security and privacy. In 2017, researchers found a security flaw in the Tor browser called TorMoil. This was leaking users real IP addresses on Mac and Linux devices. Even though this vulnerability was fixed, its best to use an onion VPN with strong encryption and leak protection just to be safe.
With Tor over VPN, your traffic is encrypted before you enter The Onion Network, so the entry node cannot see your real IP address. It also hides Tor usage from your ISP, which is helpful if your ISP throttles or blocks Tor traffic.