Saturday, November 26, 2022

How Secure Is Pia VPN

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What Reddit Thinks About Pia

How to use an PIA (Private Internet Access) VPN on Android

Is PIA any good? Well, considering the Trustpilot ratings and my personal review, the VPN is certainly one of the best in the market. Still, it pays to see what other users on Reddit have to say about the service.

Most comments on Reddit speak favorably of PIA VPN, which is a good sign:

Naturally, there are some negative comments about the service too.

And then there are some comments that are critical of some aspects of the VPN:

Private Internet Access Pros And Cons

PROS
$3.33 Per Month $2.69 Per Month

Something to quickly note here. If you select the two-year subscription plan, youre also going to get a one-year license for Boxcryptor, a service that will encrypt the files you keep in cloud storage like Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive, and others. If that sounds interesting, check out my guide to Private Internet Access costs to learn more.

One thing that I always like to see is the ability to pay for your VPN using cryptocurrencies. While this doesnt make things totally anonymous, it does add a layer of ambiguity between the VPN provider and your wallet. If you think about it, it does seem a little weird to hand over your credit card information to a service youre paying to keep you anonymous, right?

FYI: Cryptocurrencys reputation for being completely anonymous is a bit of an urban legend. If anything, theyre pseudonymous, like an author writing under a pen name.1

Luckily Private Internet Access allows you to do just that. Not only do they accept the most popular crypto Bitcoin theyll also take some of its lesser-known cousins, specifically Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, and Litecoin .

Private Internet Access cryptocurrency payment options

Once youve selected your payment option, youre going to be given the opportunity to add on a dedicated IP address for $5 extra per month. Whats a dedicated IP address? Glad you asked

Now, why would you want a dedicated IP address?

So lets dig a little deeper.

Troubling History Of The Parent Company

I have an article dedicated to the issue of Kape purchasing PIA VPN. Here are the main highlights:

  • Kape purchased Private Internet Access in November 2019.
  • Kape was formerly named Crossrider and produced high-risk malware and adware that infected peoples computers.
  • Crossrider changed its name to Kape due to controversial past activities.
  • In 2017, Crossrider purchased CyberGhost VPN, and then later Zenmate.
  • Key figures behind Crossrider have ties to various intelligence organizations.

As we have noted before, trust is a major factor when choosing Privacy Tools. After all, a VPN has the potential to record everything you do online when you decide to use it to encrypt traffic. Given the history of Kape, which now owns PIA, its clear that trust may be lacking due to controversial past activities.

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Private Internet Access Vs Surfshark

Surfshark is a pretty new VPN service founded in 2018, and it is not as popular as Private Internet Access. Both services have similar features, but each offers its unique characteristics.;

PIA VPN is a renowned and established provider offering an impressive number of servers. Surfshark, on the other hand, might be new and not that popular, but because of that low profile, it can get away with unblocking geo-restricted streams and bypassing the Great Firewall of China.

Concerning privacy, both VPNs have strict no-logging policies and robust security features. PIA VPN comes with extras like port forwarding and SOCKS5 proxies, making it a competitive VPN for torrenting and P2P file sharing.;

Does Private Internet Access Support My Device

[TA Deals] Private Internet Access VPN, 2

PIA has apps for the following platforms:

  • Windows
  • Android
  • iOS

Theres no Private Internet Access router app at the moment. However, you can still run PIA VPN on most router devices, including DD-WRT, pfSense, and Tomato, if you follow the instructions on their site. There are also guidelines for manual Amazon Fire Stick setup, although its not officially supported.

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Private Internet Access Plans & Pricing

PIA offers really affordable payment plans.

It has a 1-month, 1-year, and 3-year plan .

PIA accepts 4 different credit cards, PayPal, Amazon Pay, and cryptocurrencies .

All PIA plans come with the same features and are backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Overall, PIA has attractive pricing, accepts multiple payment options, and has a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Private Internet Access Customer Support

There are few things more frustrating than having to call customer support for a technical issue. It takes all the calming yogic breaths I have in me not to have a full-on temper tantrum. So when looking at VPNs, I want to make sure the customer support is there before I download anything on my computer.

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Safety How Secure Is Pia

PIA puts safety and privacy first, and therefore certainly excels at these aspects:

  • PIA works with various strong protocols, including OpenVPN and the new, innovative protocol WireGuard. It also has a SOCKS5-proxy. Recently PIA has ensured that all of its VPN servers now support the new Wireguard protocol.
  • PIA has a strict no-log policy.
  • PIA has a built-in kill switch and PIA MACE for blocking ads, trackers, and malware.
  • The only information you need to give them to create an account is an email address and your payment information, but both can be done anonymously.

Hands On With Private Internet Access VPN For Macos

How to set up PIA VPN on a Synology NAS!

We downloaded Private Internet Access VPN client for macOS from the vendors website and installed it on a MacBook Air running Big Sur 11.2.2. The macOS app starts in dark mode, with a ho-hum black background and green accents. Its a small window attached the top of the screen with a large connection button in the center. Clicking the arrow on the bottom of the dashboard reveals the customization tiles you can add. Notable options include server locations, performance, connection type, and the VPN snooze function, which allows you to shut off the VPN for a set time.

You can only choose the city and specific VPN server for some regions, such as Canada, the UK, and the US. The Privacy tab of the Settings menu has controls for the kill switch and PIA MACE, which blocks domains used for ads, trackers, and malware. The Network tab is where you will find split tunneling and the Connection tab is where you can change the default VPN protocol. You can also create Automation rules for your connections and enter a dedicated IP address.

To test a Bahamas-based VPN servers security, we went to DNSLeakTest.com and ran an extended test. The real IP address and location remained hidden during testing and DNS information was not leaking.

To test the speed and reliability of the VPN connection, we loaded a few YouTube videos while still connected to the server in Nassau, Bahamas. They each loaded instantly and played without stutters or buffering.

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Pia VPN Review : Before You Buy Is It Worth It

Wizcase may earn an affiliate commission when a purchase is made using our links. However, this has no influence on the content of the reviews we publish or on the products/services reviewed. Our content may include direct links to buy products that are part of affiliate programs.

All reviews published on Wizcase meet our strict reviewing standards, in order to ensure that each review is based on the reviewer’s independent, honest, and professional examination of the product/service. Such standards require the reviewer to consider the technical qualities and characteristics of the product alongside its commercial value for users, which may affect the product’s ranking on the website.

Strong Security Encryption And Open

Security & Features

  • SOCKS
  • Split Tunneling
  • PIA supports OpenVPN, WireGuard,;IKEv2, and L2TP/IPSec protocols with the option to choose between UDP and TCP connections.

    The default setting protects your connection with AES 128-bit encryption, but we recommend you select the AES-256 cipher in the settings interface.

    There is built-in protection against IPv4 and IPv6 leaks, DNS leak protection, and a VPN kill switch on all platforms.

    Our tests detected no IP, DNS, or WebRTC leaks in any application.

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    Streaming Does Pia Work With Netflix

    With popular streaming sites like Netflix constantly cracking down on VPN use, theres no guarantee that most VPNs will be able to access geoblocked streaming content.

    We had mixed results with PIA. The good news is that all of the US servers that we tested were able to access US Netflix content without being blocked by the dreaded proxy error.

    We were also able to access UK Netflix on both servers that we tested, as well as Netflix content in Canada, Denmark, and Australia.

    The downside is that we were unable to access Netflix in other server locations that we tested, including Germany, Mexico, and Japan.

    If youre looking to unblock Netflix and other streaming sites from across the globe, ExpressVPN;is a reliable choice. Its fast, secure, and unlimited.

    Private Internet Access Coupon September 2021

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    How Secure Is Your Internet Connection A Review Of Pia VPN

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    If you frequently connect to public Wi-Fi hotspots, it is possible for anyone with the right tools to eavesdrop on your online activity. Perhaps you wish to browse the web without revealing your IP addresswhich exposes your identity to the world. Theres a solution to all of these potential problems called a virtual private network . A VPN creates an encrypted tunnel between your connection and a trusted VPN server, so that way when you access the internet, it looks like youre connecting from a different IP Address. Furthermore, your connection becomes more secure and cannot be easily tracked by malicious hackers. There are several VPN providers out there. One popular VPN service is called PIA VPN. The best thing about PIA VPN is that it is entirely cross-platform. This means that you have the ability to run it on any operating system you use. PIA also gives you the freedom to connect from several regions, so you dont have to stick to one particular location. Would you find aVPN useful? Do you use a different one? Let us know what you think!

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    Is Private Internet Access VPN Right For You Or Your Business

    Private Internet Access is targeted toward individual users who want to maintain their privacy, browse safely and bypass geo-blocking restrictions. All of the above features we mentioned show that VPN service is able to meet those needs no problem.

    We also think that Private Internet Access may be suited for small businesses operations that dont require more than 10 simultaneous connections. Plus, small businesses looking for a competitively-priced optioneven with the dedicated IP add-onwill that this company packs in a lot of value.

    Public Internet Access Advanced Settings And Features

    Private Internet Access Expanded Dashboard

    Ill just say it right off the bat: Private Internet Access VPN is one of the most highly customizable, highly technical VPNs Ive ever worked with. But that doesnt mean that its inaccessible to the layperson. I dont think PIA is as easy of a service as I found when I reviewed Surfshark, but the UI is really simple to figure out sleek, even and all of the operations are pretty intuitive. Lets start by expanding the dashboard to see what were working with.

    Lets just work our way down the column. First, by clicking the arrow to the right of the world map, youll pull up your server list. This is really extensive. At the time I wrote this, PIA was running about 3,000 servers across 76 countries one of the larger VPN networks available.

    For comparison, our top-rated VPN NordVPN operates 5,200 servers across the globe.

    Something to note here, though. See that globe next to Malta, Andorra Algeria, and the like?

    Private Internet Access server list

    That indicates those servers are geo-located. This means the physical server isnt located in that country, but the IP address will be registered there. This helps VP services operate in countries where service might be unavailable due to government restrictions or lack of secure hosts.2

    Private Internet Access performance monitor

    Private Internet Access quick settings

    You know whats next. Lets go through these one by one.

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    Pia Price: How Much Is It And Is There An Pia Free Trial

    PIA has a monthly, yearly, and two-year plan. The monthly plan is a fairly pricey $9.95/month, although even this is better value than much of the competition. The yearly plan costs the equivalent of $3.33/month, and the two-year plan is the;equivalent of just $2.69/month. The two-year plan also includes a license for Boxcryptor, a service that you can use to encrypt cloud files on Google Drive, Dropbox, OneDrive, and more.

    The two-year plan positions PIA as an incredibly;cheap VPN, and very nearly matches the price of;Surfsharks cheapest two-year plan. Its worth noting, though, that PIAs renewal price is the same as the initial term . Compare that to Surfshark, and in the long term youll be saving a good chunk of cash.

    If youre looking for a dedicated IP address, you can rent one for $5 a month theres no discount for committing for longer. Thats a little cheaper than NordVPN, but CyberGhost is far cheaper at just $2.25.

    Theres no VPN free trial, but there is a 30-day money-back guarantee. PIA supports a massive list of payment methods, from credit cards and gift cards to cryptocurrencies and bank transfers, so if youre looking for a secure way to bag a bargain, PIA could be a great choice.

    Browser Extensions A Surprisingly Strong Offering

    Private Internet Access (PIA) VPN Review 2021 ð» Is This VPN Good Enoughâ?

    With PIAs browser extensions you can connect to a VPN server from within your Chrome, Firefox, or Opera browser without applying the connection to your whole device. This will ensure that your browsers traffic is encrypted and anonymized, which can be useful in situations when you cant install the VPN to a particular device but still want to be protected while browsing.

    PIA currently support the following browsers:

    • Chrome v48 or newer
    • Opera v52 or newer

    There are an impressive number of features here for a browser extension, which in my experience are generally very limited in comparison to their desktop and mobile cousins. You can block third-party cookies and trackers, as well as access to your camera, microphone, and location data. Im also a fan of the options to block WebRTC IP detection and forcing the use of HTTPS across websites to keep your data encrypted. Overall, these extensions are a solid addition to PIAs app library.

    If you prefer a fully free and non-browser based VPN, you can check out the best free VPNs and see if theyre the right choice for your needs.

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    Pia VPN Security And Protocols

    A VPNs data protection depends mainly on their protocols. Protocols are different routes data takes to be transmitted over a network. Since speed and safety vary across protocols, PIA uses a combination to ensure performance while keeping your connection secure.

    The default protocol PIAs apps use is OpenVPN, which is excellent at bypassing firewalls. You can choose between TCP and UDP connections. PIAs iOS version uses IPSec, which is slightly less advanced than OpenVPN but highly secure nonetheless.;

    The Private Internet Access security features allow the user to choose between the default AES 128-bit encryption or the more secure 256-bit AES encryption. Customers can find the best protection setting for their devices at the PIA support portal.

    PIAs desktop and mobile apps are also available as open-source, allowing anyone to go through the source code to check if the VPN is fulfilling its security-related promises.;

    Pia Proxies Socks5 Shadowsocks Browser Add

    Browser extension
    Smart DNS

    Aside from PIAs VPN service, youll also get access to several of its proxies. These are less secure but nevertheless alternative ways to change your online location.

    The Shadowsocks proxy is actually built in to PIAs desktop client, and you can run it alongside the VPN. It supports just a handful of locations , but shows you which one has the least latency.

    Similarly, you can run the SOCKS5 proxy directly from within the VPN client, but you will need to enter the server address and port manually. Check here for more details on how to set it up.

    Chrome & Firefox extensions

    Now, PIAs browser extension is something Ive really been looking forward to telling you about.

    Let me just start by saying it isnt a free tool and does require you to log in using your Private Internet Access account details. But its absolutely more than just another proxy add-on for Chrome and Firefox.

    Dont get me wrong, the proxy works very well by switching your IPv4 address to another server with ~30 odd locations to choose from. Awesome.

    But the real beauty of this extension is in the settings, where youll find a vast array of privacy, security and anti-tracking features for your browser. The screenshot you see above shows only a sample of them.

    You can block Adobe Flash, WebRTC IP detection and force HTTPS connections on all websites.

    Lastly, PIA MACE is likewise included in the extension, in case youre not already going to use it in the VPN client.

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    Hands On With Private Internet Access VPN For Android

    To test the Private Internet Access Android VPN client, we used our Samsung A71 running Android 11. The Private Internet Access VPN apps default interface has a linen white background with bright green accents. There is a large connection button in the top center of the screen and below that you can choose the servers country and in some cases city of origin or choose a streaming optimized server. The dashboard features are like those found in the iOS version, but Android app includes a VPN snooze feature, which disconnects the VPN and reconnects after a specified amount of time.

    The Android app also includes a Kill Switch, but you have to go to the Settings menu, scroll down to Privacy, and then toggle on the Always On VPN setting for your device. Other features include setting up a connection via a proxy, using a dedicated IP, and switching to a Dark theme . You can enable split tunneling Per App Settings.

    Whenever you use a new VPN, its a good idea to make sure its working. We navigated to DNSLeakTest.com and ran an extended test while connected to a server based in Argentina. In testing, the VPN hid our real IP address and did not leak DNS information.

    While still connected to the server in Argentina, we tested the servers speed and reliability by going to twitch.tv and watching a few streams. Each stream loaded quickly and played with highest video quality.

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