If you are looking for a detailed review of SaferVPN then you’ve come to the right place.
SaferVPN is a rather small VPN company based in the United States that claims to be able to provide secure access to the internet as well as true privacy online.
However, if you have read around, you’ll realize that there are a lot of people who are sceptical about this VPN.
While for some people it is a VPN that works great, some avoid it like a plague.
So I set out to establish what this VPN really has to offer.
In this SaferVPN review in 2020, we are going to look at the pros and cons of this VPN in order to establish if it is any good for your needs as an internet user.
We’ll look at their connection speeds, ability to unblock geo-restricted content on platforms like Netflix as well as whether they are any good for securely and privately downloading torrent files from the internet.
I hope that by the end of this SaferVPN review you’ll be able to decide if SaferVPN is a good VPN for your needs or if you should consider other options instead.
So let’s get down to it.
SaferVPN, like I already said, is a VPN company located in the United States that enables you to access the internet securely using tamper proof encryption technologies.
Using this VPN you’ll also be able to stream content on Netflix using their servers that are based in the US.
Initially, they were based in Israel.
In fact, most SaferVPN reviews online still mention that they are based in Israel… even though this has since changed since they were recently acquired.
How many servers does SaferVPN have in total?
By looking at the total server count for a VPN, you can tell about their size and competence in the VPN industry.
Even though a large server doesn’t always equate to great services, many would expect that if a VPN company has many servers then they really have a skin in the game.
Apart from that, it also means that you get a ton of options to choose from when selecting a server to connect to. It increases the chances that you’ll find a server that is closer to your geographical location or any other location that you’d like to connect to.
At the time of writing this review of SaferVPN in 2020, they have a collection of 1,300 servers that are spread out in 50 different countries.
Even though not a huge number as compared to the big players like NordVPN, it is definitely not a number to scoff at.
I mostly use VPNs for streaming Netflix content for the US audience because they have the largest collection of tv series.
Why would I purchase a Netflix subscription and only watch handful of tv shows based on the country that I am in…? Considering I travel a lot.
They only way to make the most of your subscription is to get a VPN that will spoof your IP address and make you look like you are based in the particular country whose content library you want to access.
So it goes without saying that I would like to know whether a VPN can unblock Netflix, at least for the most popular countries, before I commit to a plan.
In order to establish this, I tested the SaferVPN servers in order to establish if I can actually stream Netflix.
Luckily, I was able to stream Netflix tvs shows that are destined for the US and UK audience.
Since their streaming servers are not labelled, you just have to connect to any server that is located in any of these countries, UK or USA, to stream Netflix.
Trying to streaming Netflix using servers based in other countries, led to proxy server errors.
What about other streaming platforms?
In addition to Netflix, I was also able to stream Hulu and Amazon Prime Video using SaferVPN servers that are located in the United States. And that’s because these services are only available to the US audience at the moment.
Interestingly, SaferVPN has dedicated servers for streaming content in the UK.
In order to stream video content on BBC iPlayer, you just need to connect to their “UK Streaming” servers.
Just scroll down to the UK servers section and you’ll see an option for connecting to special streaming servers for the United Kingdom. Once connected to these servers I was able to stream BBC iPlayer.
So as you can see, SaferVPN is actually a great vpn for streaming video on popular platforms like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon and iPlayer.
Even though their Netflix streaming is limited to the USA and UK, it is also important to note that these regions also have the largest collections of tv shows that most people would be interested in watching.
However, if you are looking for a VPN that unblocks Netflix for many other regions then check out my review of the best VPNs for Netflix.
Just after the ability to unblock Netflix is the need to know whether the VPN is fast enough.
All this streaming would not be fun if you constantly have to wait for seconds for video to buffer before you can watch… it leads to a very bad user experience.
You don’t want to believe a VPN that says that they are the fastest VPN in the industry.
You can’t set your own exam, sit and mark it yourself and then declare yourself the winner… a third party has to be the one to evaluate your abilities.
So I set out to test the actual speeds of SaferVPN to see if it is any good.
In order to test out their speeds, I connected to three of their servers that are located in three different countries… i.e. USA, UK and Hong Kong.
I then used the website speedtest.net to measure the download and upload speeds and ping time for before and after connecting to their servers.
Here is what I established.
Before connecting to SaferVPN servers, I had a download speed of 19.49Mbps.
After connecting to their server located in the United States my speeds dropped to 16.75Mbps, which is 86% of my original speeds… quite impressive.
However, when I connected to their server that is based in the United Kingdom, my speeds dropped much further to 9.48Mbps.
Now that’s quite disappointing as that is actually 49% of my original speeds.
Not impressive at all.
But things began to look up when I connected to their server that is located in Hong Kong.
On the HK based server, I had a download speed of 17.47Mbps, which is 90% of my initial speeds before connecting to their servers.
Now this is great.
It seems that their HK servers are really optimized for speeds.
On average, this gives an average download speed of 75% of my initial speeds.
I think SaferVPN would have come out as a very fast vpn if not for their very slow UK servers that cut my speeds into half.
This means that I would give SaferVPN a speed rating of 3.8 stars out of 5.
Now that pretty low.
In my opinion, if a VPN cannot give me anything more than 80% of my initial speeds on average then I don’t consider it a fast enough VPN.
It is for this reason that SaferVPN does not make it to the list of the fastest VPNs in 2020.
What about torrenting?
Does SaferVPN allow downloading torrent files on their servers?
To begin with, never start downloading any torrent file from the internet without first hiding your real IP address using some kind of proxy server or a VPN.
This will ensure that your torrenting is completely private and anonymous.
You don’t want the government coming after you with a lawsuit after you download some supposedly copyrighted material. And let’s be honest, that’s what most people do on these torrenting sites.
When it comes to torrenting and SaferVPN, they don’t see eye to eye.
SaferVPN strongly discourages any kind of torrenting activities on their servers.
This is in addition to the fact that there are no special or dedicated P2P server on SaferVPN that you can connect to if you want to download torrent files.
What all this means is that this VPN does not want you to bring along your excitement for downloads to their servers. It might either lead to your connection being throttled or blocked completely.
To make it even worse…
It is not clear whether these guys keep your IP address or not.
And just as we’ll discover below, they keep a ton of logs that a torrent enthusiast should be worried about a VPN having.
SaferVPN does not support torrenting activities and even if they did, I wouldn’t torrent with them even at gunpoint… thank’s to their fishy user logs policy.
I already hinted about this earlier…
Considering that this is a VPN that most people are very sceptical about, I did this for the right reasons… just to be sure I know what I am getting myself into.
To begin with, SaferVPN is based in the United States which is a founding member of the 14 eyes surveillance alliance of countries. The countries in this alliance constantly spy on their citizens and then share their personal information amongst each other.
And even though the US does not have mandatory data retention laws that obligate VPN companies to keep logs, VPN companies are required to comply in case the government comes asking for logs through a court order.
Excuse me but it seems like this VPN is too log happy.
What do you need all of that for?
I began to wonder what is so safer about SaferVPN that NordVPN doesn’t already do even better.
If you are an internet privacy freak then I don’t recommend that you go anywhere near SaferVPN. It is great for other purposes like streaming but not for privacy.
Encryption and Data Protection
In order to protect your personal information, your data needs to be encrypted before it is transmitted over the network.
By using a tamper-proof encryption protocol, a VPN ensures that your data is safe even if it lands in the wrong hands… like a malicious hacker grabbing your packets through packet sniffing tools like Wireshark.
So, what kind of encryption does SaferVPN use?
At the time of writing this SaferVPN review in 2020, I established that SaferVPN uses AES 256-bit encryption to encrypt your personal information. This a military-grade encryption technology used by government agencies to encrypt sensitive information.
It is impossible to crack and your data is secure.
But that is pretty much the standard in this VPN industry… so that is not something that I would loud SaferVPN about.
In fact, I would really be concerned if they tried to do anything less.
When it comes to the VPN connection protocols, let’s look at what options you have with SaferVPN.
Currently, SaferVPN supports VPN connection protocols that include OpenVPN, L2TP/IPSec, PPTP and IKEv2 protocols.
Even though they still support it, protocols like PPTP has been proved to be vulnerable to security breaches and I don’t recommend you use it unless you know what you’re doing.
That being said, it is quite impressive how many protocols SaferVPN supports.
Though in my case, I have never used anything less that OpenVPN and IKEv2… these are the most secure. In fact other popular VPNs like NordVPN and CyberGhost only default to supporting the two protocols.
Have you realized something lately from the internet…
You check out, say, a PluralSight course.
Then you visit another website, see an ad about PluralSight courses, ( and no I am not picking up on PluralSight, they are cool guys), then every website you visit after that has PluralSight plastered all over your face?
How do they do that? How comes every website now know that you checked out PluralSight a few days ago and everyone now wants you to go back there?
Thanks to ad trackers that these ad networks install in your browser, they are able to build a profile about you and the follow you around the internet.
If this is a scenario that you don’t like then what you’re looking for is a VPN ad blocker.
With an ad blocker you’ll be able to block these ads from displaying, including their tracking scripts altogether.
Does SaferVPN have an ad blocker?
SaferVPN does not have an ad blocker at all, at the time I was writing this SaferVPN review. So if you are really in need of this functionality then you should check out my other article of the best VPN ad blockers.
If you connect to a VPN the usual way, you’ll often than not be assigned a random, shared IP address.
This is for good a reason.
A shared IP address means that there could be multiple people using the same IP at the same time as you.
This makes it hard for the VPN company to trace back activities on this particular server to any one individual account as there could have been hundreds of people who used this same IP at that very time.
However, there are times when you need to access certain security-sensitive applications, like your home security camera feed.
In this case you need a special dedicated IP address that you can then whitelist in this network before you can use it for secure remote access.
Do you get a dedicated IP with SaferVPN?
At the time I was writing this review of SaferVPN, I established that SaferVPN does not have any dedicated or static IP address that you can use for such purposes.
But you should also remember that a dedicated IP does not provide the anonymity that a shared IP address would. A dedicated IP address is tied to your account. So any activities on this IP can be traced back to you.
However, if you still need a dedicated IP, then why not check out my list of the best VPNs for dedicated IPs?
If you need to constantly be protected while accessing the internet then you need an automatic internet kill switch.
With a kill switch, you can always ensure that your real IP never gets revealed to the internet.
This is how it works…
You are only protected with your VPN as long as you remain connected to their VPN servers.
If for some reason you get disconnected, like when your internet connection drops or when you are switching servers, other applications on your device that continue to access the internet at this time might expose your real IP address.
A kill will block internet access for your entire device any time that you are disconnected from the server.
So any other applications that we’re accessing the internet will have to wait until you reestablish a secure VPN connection with the VPN server.
Does SaferVPN have a kill switch?
I would be very infuriated if they didn’t.
SaferVPN has an automatic internet kill switch that will block internet access for your entire device in case you get disconnected from the server for any reason.
So you don’t have to worry about your torrent client continuing to download torrent files and exposing your identity online after the vpn disconnects.
Though I don’t think you’ll be using SaferVPN to torrent anyway.
Unless you didn’t hear what I just said about the activity logs that they keep.
A split tunnel enables you to split some of your traffic to go through your VPN tunnel while others are directed through your ISP as usual.
This is particularly important if you have some apps on your device that are having some trouble working flawlessly with your shared IP addresses that your VPN assigns you.
For example, say your banking app keeps asking you for additional verification every time you try to login with a VPN issued IP address.
All this could be resolved if you whitelist your banking app so that it connects to the internet using your ISP issued IP address that it already recognizes, instead of this strong one from the internet.
In that case, a VPN split tunnel will come to your rescue.
It enables you to whitelist your apps so that you decide which ones will have their traffic channelled through your VPN and which ones will not.
Does SaferVPN have a split tunnel?
SaferVPN doesn’t support split tunnelling… at least not at the time I was writing this SaferVPN review in 2020.
So if you want to be able to split tunnels for the internet traffic on your device, then SaferVPN cannot help you with that… you’ll have to look into other options.
Here are the best VPNs with split tunnelling that you can check out.
Works in China?
Because China is a very popular travel destination, most people want to know if they will be able to use their VPN in China.
And it’s for very good reasons.
Internet access in China is strictly regulated by the government. Don’t you think you can access anything online just like you’d do in your home country!
For example, popular sites that we rely on everyday like Google.com, YouTube.com and Facebook.com are completely blocked in China.
Life might seem like a living hell if you are not able to access these websites for an extended period of time… especially when you are thousands of miles away from home or anyone who knows you.
And lastly, China blocks VPNs too.
They have a very powerful deep packet inspection technology that is able to detect and block any VPN traffic.
Their assumption is that you could be using a VPN for the purposes of circumventing their content blocks and restrictions.
So will SaferVPN work in China?
Currently, all SaferVPN servers are blocked in China.
So you will not be able to use your SaferVPN subscription to access the internet in China because they are not able to obfuscate their traffic to make it invisible to the great firewall of China.
In case you just want a VPN that will work in China with no problems, then I got you covered…
I have this list of the best VPNs for China that have been tested and proven to work.
IPv6, DNS & WebRTC Leaks
Will SaferVPN leak your IPv6 address?
In order to establish if SaferVPN leaks your identify online, I used ipleak.net to test for leaks in IPv6, DNS queries or real time technologies like WebRTC.
From the screenshot below, I established that SaferVPN does not leak your identity through any of these channels.
So you can rest assured that your DNS requests are not being forwarded to a public Google DNS server that can actually track your activities online.
Tor is a popular browser that is often used for anonymous access to the internet… it is called “The Onion Router” in full.
Even though Tor will ensure that the websites that you visit never get to know that it’s you who requested those pages, it is not 100% foolproof.
This is because the entry node to the Tor network usually sees your real IP address.
If you want complete anonymity with Tor browser, then you need to incorporate a VPN that supports this browser.
This VPN will ensure that your entry node IP address is spoofed to make you look like you are based in a fake location… this way nobody even gets to know where you are really from.
Does SaferVPN work with Tor browser?
SaferVPN support the Tor browser.
In fact, there are tutorials on their support website that will guide you on how to set up the SaferVPN app to work with the Tor browser.
This is a breath of fresh air if you are a Tor browser diehard.
As we near the end of this SaferVPN review, let’s look at their different pricing plans to establish if it is a really budget friendly VPN.
How much does SaferVPN cost?
Just like other VPNs, SaferVPN will start you off with a high-cost monthly plan but provides you huge discounts if you choose longer plans.
In fact, their one month plan is damn expensive.
SaferVPN costs $ 12.95/month on their month by month plan.
If you opt for a 1-year plan, you get a 58% saving by paying only $ 5.49/month, billed as $ 65.88… though still expensive. On the 2 year plan, you get a 75% discount where you pay $ 3.29/month, billed as $ 78.95… now this is getting reasonable.
Lastly, their best discount is on the 3 year plan that goes for only $ 2.50/month, billed as $ 89.99… now that’s what I am talking about, an 81% discount.
But then this leaves me wondering…
Is this just a marketing strategy or something?
From what we just saw here, SaferVPN is a pretty average VPN service… even PureVPN does much better.
So it shouldn’t cost that much in the first place… yet it does.
I’ll leave that to you to think out.
What payment options do you have when purchasing a SaferVPN plan?
The more payment methods that a VPN supports the better because it increases the chances that you’ll find a payment method that works for you.
I particularly usually look out for anonymous payment method like cryptocurrencies or gift cards.
It is also great for anonymity because these anonymous payments do not ask for your billing address which is personally identifiable information.
So you can create an account with a disposable email address and then pay with some Bitcoins… this way nobody ever really gets to know who you are.
Luckily, at the time of writing this review of SaferVPN, they accept payments through all the major credit cards, PayPal as well as Bitcoins. So you can make a payment for your VPN subscription with Bitcoin if you have a Bitcoin wallet.
Here are other great VPNs that accept Bitcoin payments.
What if you go ahead and purchase SaferVPN but then realize that you don’t like your purchase… can you get your money back?
SaferVPN has a 30 days money back guarantee that safeguards your purchase.
It means that you have up to 30 days from the day you made your purchase to test drive and evaluate their services and decide if you want to keep your purchase, or ask for your money back.
However, it is important to note that you don’t get a refund on the Bitcoin payments.
So with SaferVPN your Bitcoins only go one way.
What if you still want to test SaferVPN but don’t want to risk any money upfront?
Check out the next part on the free trial.
Does SaferVPN have a free trial?
SaferVPN does have a free trial that you can sign up for and get to enjoy access to their premium features without paying a dime.
However, the free trial only lasts 24 hours.
So you only have 24 hours from the time you sign up to evaluate their services and decide if you want to be billed for a premium plan after the trial ends or cancel your trial before it ends to avoid being billed.
Either way, I think it’s a great way to test this VPN if you are still on the fence and don’t want to have to deal with refunds after you purchase.
How many devices does SaferVPN support?
If you are looking for a vpn that you can use to protect a myriad of other devices, then SaferVPN may or may not be the vpn for you.
At the time I was writing this SaferVPN review in 2020, they only support upto 5 simultaneously connected devices.
What this means this that you can only connect a maximum of 5 devices using the same account at any one time.
So if you only have a few devices to protect then, sure, SaferVPN will do.
However, if you want to protect more devices then 5 devices is quite limiting… you might then want to think of using a router but what if that is not an option?
In addition to supporting 5 devices, SaferVPN also has apps for Windows, Mac, Android and iOS. You can download and install these apps freely from their website and start using your SaferVPN subscription.
In addition to these apps, in case you want to protect your entire wifi, SaferVPN has pre-configured routers that you can purchase and use without needing to configure anything.
There are also guides on their website for getting your router to work with other compatible routers.
You can also take the security in your browsers to the next level by using their browser extensions for Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox.
Let’s finish this SaferVPN review by looking at the kind of customer support that they offer, if any.
So do you get any customer support from SaferVPN?
Fast and efficient customer support is very important, especially if you are not a tech-savvy person or are completely new to VPNs.
I personally can figure out things on my own, but often need to get some clarifications and my prefered mode of reaching out to support is through live chat support.
I consider that any VPN that does not offer live chat support is not worth their salt.
Does SaferVPN have live chat support?
SaferVPN has live chat support that you can use to ask and get answers in real time.
In addition to the live chat support, SaferVPN also has a ticketing system that you can use to get answers for more detailed queries from their technical support.
There are also a ton of guides on their support website that you can use to troubleshoot some of the some common VPN connectivity issues.
So I would say that they are pretty much dialed when it comes to customer support.
I hope this review of SaferVPN has helped you learn of some of the pros and cons of this vpn.
Are you now read to make a choice of whether this is the VPN for you or not?
If you are somehow impressed by this VPN branding and colour schemes, then I suggest you only purchase it if all you need is to stream Netflix UK and few other streaming platforms.
However, I don’t recommend SaferVPN if you are someone who is very privacy-conscious, because at the moment that is an area that SaferVPN has decided to sleep on.
Here are some VPNs that are great for privacy and still provide you better services that what SaferVPN offers you.
Have you used SaferVPN before?
Please share your thoughts in the comments below.