In a world in which the need for online and data privacy has been evident for quite some time now, a substantial number of Internet users are looking for resources that help them encrypt their content and protect it from the numerous threats that lurk around the Internet. That is why we search for VPN brands with no log policies so that our digital assets won’t fall on the wrong hands.
After all, we have to deal with hackers, identity thieves, scammers, people committing fraud or phishing attacks, all types of malware (including adware, viruses, Trojan horses, worms, spyware, ransomware, and others,) and even people using our devices to mine cryptocurrencies without permission.
VPN and the importance of no log policies
Virtual Private Networks, or VPNs, are handy resources for online encryption and traffic rerouting. They come in the form of Internet services and are provided by security companies present on the web.
VPN technology implements protocols such as OpenVPN, IKEv2, L2TP/IPSec, or SSTP, to create a “tunnel” at the data sending level. A virtual server is built to manage the client’s information and online identity (including the location data) and keep it all away from the Internet Service Provider (ISP.)
Time and time again, it has been proven that ISPs are the main culprits of your diminished data privacy. They want to make a profit by using your shared information, selling them to e-commerce sites and online stores that want to know, based on your browsing patterns, what you like, love, and hate.
A quality VPN brand will be able to hide your content and location from external agents on the web so that they can provide security, privacy, and anonymous browsing. It is essential to choose wisely: you want a VPN with a no logging policy because you want to stop your ISP from gathering logs of your data.
The VPN industry and data log management
One of the most successful selling points of VPN brands is their so-called “no log” policies. They claim that they won’t store any activity from users, so in the event of a subpoena or another requirement made by a law enforcement agency, there is nothing to show or share. Also, such a privacy statement would keep ISPs off your content, so there would be one less thing to worry about.
The thing about VPN no log policies is that we seldom have the chance to see if they are being honest about not keeping your activity. For most of the companies, it is rather easy to state they won’t collect any registers because they very rarely have to deal with cases of public interest.
Not every VPN brand manages your privacy responsibly. Some of them don’t even encrypt the user’s content, much less decline to cooperate with authorities once they are asked to provide logs of a person’s online habits while being under the VPN encryption. That is why people should also make sure that the company’s jurisdiction or location doesn’t mandate for cooperation in investigations of specific crimes.
Instances where VPNs no-logs policies were put to the test
However, there are a few documented cases in which the VPN’s no logs policies have been tested. Here are some of the most notable examples:
ExpressVPN’s public ordeal
ExpressVPN was recently tested by going through a public ordeal because of its alleged role in “covering” details about the homicide of a high-profile Russian diplomat named Andrey Karlov. News broke that its servers were used to hide information about the case.
Mevlüt Mert Altintaş took Karlov’s life in 2016 when the diplomat was in Ankara, Turkey’s capital city, in an art gallery. Karlov was the Russian Ambassador in Turkey, so naturally, the case made worldwide news.
As it turns out, Mevlüt Mert Altintaş had an accomplice that, in order to log in to his social media accounts and erase all possible evidence against him, used ExpressVPN, tainting its reputation. However, it wasn’t the brand’s fault, as it was only doing what it is supposed to do.
While ExpressVPN declared to Turkish authorities that it knew that its virtual servers were being used, they don’t store activity logs or personal information of its clients. Because of that, there was no way for them to know precisely that it was the accomplice of the murderer doing shady things online.
Private Internet Access’ subpoena
Other companies’ no logging policies have been tested in recent times, so ExpressVPN is not alone. Also in 2016, the Private Internet Access (PIA) online security brand was subpoenaed by the FBI.
VPNs that claim to have no log policies but they keep some registers
- PureVPN: Since it was rumored that PureVPN helped American authorities capture a high-profile cyberstalker, a sizable community lost confidence in the company.
- EarthVPN: Police Corps of the Netherlands seized an EarthVPN server in 2014 because of its connection with a hoax bomb threat call.
- IPVanish: In 2016, it came to prominence that IPVanish handed user logs to American authorities and law enforcement agencies that were investigating a criminal case. Since that moment, though, the company has new owners and claim that was in the past, and that it now keeps no-logs of its customers.
- HideMyAss: The VPN community was disappointed to learn that HMA revealed the identities of a website hacking group called LulzSec in 2011.
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If you want to trust your online privacy to a VPN brand, TorGuard is the wisest choice. It hasn’t been involved in any scandals because there is little to hand to authorities: it doesn’t share logs of its users’ activities online.
TorGuard also has more than 3,000 servers in 55 nations, multiprotocol availability, the allowance of five simultaneous connection, exciting security features, and fantastic customer service – with a live chat, tutorials, videos, manuals, guides, and an FAQ section – and an affordable monthly price of $10.
In conclusion, making sure that your VPN has a no log policy is very important to protect your online privacy. As you can see, there are brands you can trust and others you don’t. TorGuard firmly belongs in the first group.