Best Free VPN Reviews 2014

Which VPN provider offers the best Free VPN accounts in the market? The only independent Best VPN Reviews site tests and reviews all free VPN services.

Best Premium VPN Reviews 2014

Which VPN provider offers the best Premium VPN accounts in the market? The only independent Best VPN Reviews site tests and reviews all premium VPN services.

Home » Best Free VPN Reviews 2014, Best VPN Reviews

CyberGhost VPN Basic Review

Editor's Overall Rating: 
One User Review
CyberGhost VPN Basic Review
Editor's Rating
Order to Installation
Software/GUI
Ease of Use
Features
Network & Speed
Help & Support
Scope of Protection
Overall Rating


Site: www.cyberghostvpn.com
Site languages: En/De/Fr/It/Es

CyberGhost Basic VPN INTRODUCTION
CyberGhost Basic is a free version of Simon Tools CyberGhost OpenVPN-based service with a number of limitations including a max of 2 GB of traffic per month. CyberGhost has a network of servers but only located in Germany. The German servers are extremely fast and the CyberGhost software has excellent features.

CyberGhos Free VPN service is subject to forced disconnect, queues and only 2GB of bandwidth which would not last much longer than a week at best. But the greatest limitation is that the servers are in a jurisdiction where VPN is illegal and this may not be a useful jurisdiction for many users. CyberGhost’s poor support is another disadvantage to consider.

Review Summary

Excellent software, easy to use, intuitive interface, and the use of one high speed server. On the other hand, the free service is subject to forced disconnect, queues and only 2GB of bandwidth which would not last much longer than a week at best. The un-personalized support and slow response time, poor FAQs, and Germany-only servers makes this service unusable for many that require either decent support or servers in various jurisdictions. In our view, German servers only is a risk for VPN users because even if the service says it doesn’t log information, it could be forced to as the officers of the company reside in Germany and have German servers under their control. This is not a safe solution for most.

CyberGhost VPN Basic PROS:
• Very good software
• Easy to use and intuitive
• One high speed server

CyberGhost VPN Basic CONS:
• Only German servers
• No off shore servers
• Unsafe privacy security with only Germany servers
• Poor support
• Poor FAQs
• Forced disconnect
• Queues to get online with the free service
• Limitation of 2GB of bandwidth which runs out in less than a week
• Inconvenient service

Full Review

From Order to Installation: ★★★★½ 

Installation procedure is simple and straightforward utilizing an electronic download from the site. The only negative is that at some point the installation stalls and opens a command prompt and for some time you can’t be sure whether it’s frozen or its part of the installation process. It turned out to be the installation process, so be patient.

After the download, you have a choice to purchase the Free service or the Premium service.
Unfortunately at this point in the installation I got a pop up that said: “Maintenance works: The service might be unavailable while this time.” I can understand one server being down for maintenance but all the servers? At the same time?

Software/GUI: ★★★★½ 

The CyberGhost Software is easy to use and has some very useful features. The status page allows you to connect with the basic Free connection. You just click the connect Basic and off you go. At the bottom of the GUI you can see the amount of traffic used so you know if you are getting close to your monthly limit.

best-vpn-review

In Settings you can choose to save login data, select a server automatically or the fastest server and what action you may want to take if the connection to the VPN servers is disrupted.

best-vpn-review

Updates: CyberGhost has automatic update facilities to update the program to the latest version when you start up the system.

Ease of Use: ★★★★½ 

Very easy to use with useful features described below.

Features: ★★★★☆ 

There are some differences between the Free and Premium service other than the additional bandwidth allotted for the Premium service. (40GB vs. 2GB). With 2GB, the Free service is really a trial service that will run out in a few days of use.

The Free service only allows the use of one German server vs. Premium which gives you a choice of over 30 German servers. And the Free service forces you to wait on a queue for availability which makes it somewhat useless if you need a VPN right away. This can be a couple of minutes to much longer. Further if the service is busy and you are on the Free service you can be force disconnected at any time. So the Free service is an annoying trial at best:

best-vpn-review

In this screen shot, there is no server available for the free version. At the bottom of the application are the statistics for amount of traffic usage.

best-vpn-review

Server Network: Location, Availability & Speed: ★★★☆☆ 

CyberGhost is a German service, literally. They have over 30 servers in Germany but ONLY in Germany. Now Germany is a country where it is illegal to host or run VPN so this would give me pause to use this service. Germany is also a country which abides very strictly to European Law and retention of data laws in Europe is quite strict so I would not feel very comfortable about only using German servers for all of my surfing. That said, the servers are fast and work.

Unfortunately none of the servers are in non-cooperative or off shore jurisdictions so from a security point of view this VPN does not provide you with true anonymity. Keep in mind that VPN providers that are based in cooperative jurisdictions (CyberGhost is based in Germany) and have servers in other cooperative jurisdictions cannot protect your data as it is transmitted across their servers. By definition a court order can force CyberGhost to log, cache and submit any information to local and international authorities.

CyberGhost German server to LA, USA 157 ms ping time.
Without CyberGhost the ping time was roughly the same, so there was little if any latency on this server test at 8PM EST.

Presale Support to Product Help & Support: ★★☆☆☆ 

Support requests were simply not answered. Although I wrote several times with questions about whether P2P and port forwarding is allowed and whether IPV6 is supported, I received no response whatsoever.

They do provide a forum but it’s only in German and the FAQs are more of a marketing tool and do not answer points about support and other basic issues. You cannot expect much support from this company.

Scope of Protection:

Protocols: ★★★★☆ 

Utilizing standard VPN protocols, CyberGhost changes your IP, removes packet headers and provides you with a dynamic IP generated from any of its servers. Although dynamic IPs are somewhat less secure than shared IPs, the overall security is still quite high.

Protocols: OpenVPN

CyberGhost has not disclosed whether it protects IPv6.

Encryption: Pending Test

Encryption Strength Specified: 128 Bit AES

The effectiveness of any VPN provider is dependent on how effective is the encryption. Our independent encryption Test of CyberGhost is to be completed and will be posted here then.

Server Security: Pending Test

To be independently tested pending permission from CyberGhostVPN.

Privacy: ★☆☆☆☆ 

CyberGhost does not have its own privacy policy. It hands over the rights to its partner, Digital River: “Digital River GmbH (share-it!) is the seller of the products in your shopping cart and your contractual partner”. So, in effect, CyberGhost assigns its privacy agreement to Digital River which is a USA corp located in Prairie, MN.

Digital River collects whatever information it can from your requesting information about products, submission of orders, purchasing, downloading or registering products and of course for the purposes of verification of your identity.

“Digital River provides its partners and suppliers with a variety of fulfillment, support and e-commerce related services. Some of these services may be provided through sites bearing our partners’ and suppliers’ names and trademarks and are not in the sole control of Digital River. Additionally, Digital River may provide links from our Website to the websites of third parties who may provide services to you directly or on our behalf. THE PRIVACY POLICIES OF THESE THIRD PARTY SITES MAY BE DIFFERENT FROM OUR PRIVACY POLICIES AND WILL GOVERN ANY TRANSACTIONS UNDERTAKEN ON THOSE SITES. We urge you to review the privacy policy of any site to which you are linked.” This means that any information they collect can be shared with partners who’s privacy policy you could only know about if you researched their policies.

And worse:
“YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION PROVIDED TO US WILL INITIALLY BE PROCESSED ON OUR COMPUTER SERVERS LOCATED IN GERMANY, BUT MAY ALSO NEED TO BE TRANSMITTED TO OTHER DIGITAL RIVER COMPANIES FOR THE PURPOSES SET OUT IN THIS PRIVACY POLICY AND FOR GROUP ADMINISTRATION PURPOSES. THIS WILL INVOLVE A TRANSFER OF YOUR PERSONAL DATA TO DIGITAL RIVER INC. IN THE US… SUCH INFORMATION MAY ALSO BE TRANSMITTED OR MADE AVAILABLE TO (I) THIRD-PARTIES PROVIDING SERVICES TO DIGITAL RIVER OR (II) PRODUCT MANUFACTURERS, LICENSORS AND/OR OR SUPPLIERS, LOCATED IN THE UNITED STATES OR ANOTHER TERRITORY OUTSIDE THE EUROPEAN ECONOMIC AREA.”

So through Digital River, CyberGhost provides your personal information to third parties not under your control:

It allows Digital River to use Cookies and WebBeacons to collect…” IP addresses, search terms, domain names, and browser types. We use this information to track usage and other patterns on our Websites. We may share this aggregate information with our partners or service providers.”

Further Digital River shares your personal information with law enforcement to protect the legal rights of Digital River and even if Digital River were to enter into a business combination with another entity.

In effect, CyberGhost through Digital River has renounced any privacy for its subscribers.

CyberGhost VPN Basic Review SUMMARY

Excellent software, easy to use, intuitive interface, and the use of one high speed server. On the other hand, the free service is subject to forced disconnect, queues and only 2GB of bandwidth which would not last much longer than a week at best. The un-personalized support and slow response time, poor FAQs, and Germany-only servers makes this service unusable for many that require either decent support or servers in various jurisdictions. In our view, German servers only is a risk for VPN users because even if the service says it doesn’t log information, it could be forced to as the officers of the company reside in Germany and have German servers under their control. This is not a safe solution for most.

CyberGhost VPN Basic PROS:
• Very good software
• Easy to use and intuitive
• One high speed server

CyberGhost VPN Basic CONS:
• Only German servers
• No off shore servers
• Unsafe privacy security with only Germany servers
• Poor support
• Poor FAQs
• Forced disconnect
• Queues to get online with the free service
• Limitation of 2GB of bandwidth which runs out in less than a week
• Inconvenient service

Editor’s Rating
Order to Installation
Software/GUI
Ease of Use
Features
Network & Speed
Help & Support
Scope of Protection
Overall Rating

Feel Free to write your own review of CyberGhost Free VPN Basic!

One User Review »

Write your Review

Add your comment below, or trackback from your own site. You can also subscribe to these comments via RSS.

Be nice. Keep it clean. Stay on topic. No spam. No self-promotion. Just the Facts.

You can use these tags:
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

This is a Gravatar-enabled weblog. To get your own globally-recognized-avatar, please register at Gravatar.

Click stars below to rate.
Ease of Use
Features
Network & Speed
Help & Support