CERN And MIT Scientists Release Free VPN Service

Encrypted email service ProtonMail announced today it was launching a free VPN service called ProtonVPN.

VPNs have been popular tools in the online world for years, helping internet users cloak their true location so they can access services usually restricted to other regions, while also enhancing their privacy. The great thing about it is that it has a free tier that's free forever. If you like the service, you can upgrade or downgrade at any time. And we really mean everyone, because consistent with our mission to make privacy and security accessible to every single person in the world, we're also releasing ProtonVPN as a free VPN service.

As with the ProtonMail email service, there is a free version of ProtonVPN though it does come with some limitations, for example you can only access servers in three countries and you can only register a single device. Protonmail servers are located in Switzerland and all user data is protected by strict Swiss privacy laws. It does this by first passing user traffic through the Secure Core network in certain countries, including Switzerland and Iceland, where there is strong legal protection for privacy. The Plus tier has been priced at Euro 8 per month (EUR 96 annual fee), and offers features like high bandwidth, connection to up to five devices, access to Secure Core, and Tor servers.

The ProtonMail team has also taken a swipe at Google and Facebook, claiming the firms "abuse user privacy to sell advertisements", and claims ProtonMail "is committed to building and operating ProtonVPN with the same level of transparency that has come to characterize ProtonMail".

VPNs are used to route traffic through encrypted tunnels, making it more hard for governments or businesses to track what someone is doing online. The service touts DNS leak prevention, a built-in Kill Switch feature which will block all network connections in the event that the connection with the VPN server is lost, one click built-in Tor support, peer-to-peer support, and native apps for Windows, macOS, Linux, Android and iOS. Even better, particularly for those who are unable to pay, is that ProtonVPN is free.

  • Arturo Norris