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 Premium VPN Reviews 2014, Best VPN Reviews

Steganos Internet Anonym VPN Review

Editor's Overall Rating: 
No User Reviews
Steganos Internet Anonym VPN Review
Editor's Rating
Order to Installation
Software/GUI
Ease of Use
Features
Network & Speed
Help & Support
Scope of Protection
Overall Rating


Site: www.steganos.com
Site languages: En/De/Fr

Steganos Internet Anonym VPN INTRODUCTION

Steganos provides a paid OpenVPN (SSL encrypted connection) service in the middle of the market range of price. The service provides bandwidth limited to 50GB per month. On each connection, Steganos provides its users with a different IP. There is no server switching. In fact, there is no choice of servers whatsoever. The application randomly chooses the server for you and this cannot be configured.

Steganos provides the OpenVPN standard with an easy to use software application at the middle of the market price range. Steganos has only German servers. The application has no features and is simple to use but a nightmare to set up. The Privacy Policy is less than ideal as certain personal data and IPs are logged and stored.

Review Summary

Steganos is not a VPN Service. They are an online security full service company selling their own antivirus and many other products and VPN is at best an add-on. They have not targeted this market with the VPN user in mind.

As a result their offering is not stellar. The set up is a night mare and at the end of a long hard slug to get the application running, one winds up with a simple connect button with no features whatsoever and no servers to choose from. Not to mention a completely insecure German-only server network managed by a German company with a Privacy Policy in which ‘privacy’ is not a key concept. We cannot recommend this service.

Steganos Internet Anonym VPN PROS:
• Easy to use application with one button – connect and no other features

Steganos Internet Anonym VPN CONS:
• No server switching because the application is not configured for choice of servers.
• Only provide a random server/IP without any choice
• Application has not features whatsoever other than to connect.
• Fair support
• Nightmare of a set up and launching the application.
• No off shore servers, only German servers managed by a German company
• No secure servers as it is illegal to provide VPN in Germany so all the servers could be forced to log and cache at any time
• No privacy policy to speak of
• For the value, expensive
• 50GB bandwidth limitation
• Dynamic IP with no Fixed IPs for using with PayPal & Credit Card merchants
• Only 128 bit encryption
• Does not support IPv6
• Does not provide a fastest server in the application
• Logs and stores IP, username and email address
• Expensive considering the paucity of the offering

Full Review

From Order to Installation: ★½☆☆☆ 

With Steganos your account is up and running within 1 hour if you pay with your credit card. The most difficult part of the process is the number of popups you have to go through to finally finish the check out, payment and then get the correct password and find the download. You create a password at the beginning but that’s not the password you use for the download! Finally I got the download after about an hour of fussing around. But then comes the hard part – There is a lengthy unexplained process from installation to desktop application that really put me off this product and company.

Steganos utilizes its own electronic download for the executable application:

best-vpn-review

It runs and surprisingly you wind up at the windows pop-up that windows can’t verify the publisher which means they don’t have the software certificate:

best-vpn-review

You would think that a big security house like Steganos could pay for the wild card or certificate for their software. You install the software anyway because you paid for it and the installation continues and completes.

After having paid for the software you still have to unlock it with a serial number that is supposed to come in the mail:

best-vpn-review

Then you download the personal certificate which takes awhile:

best-vpn-review

Until you get the following:

best-vpn-review

Although I have a valid serial number after a number of tries (my internet works fine), I give up and go back to the beginning. After some time I figured out that you have to first activate your license which then allows you to enter the personal certificate/serial number. But this information is not provided anywhere either in the installation mail or elsewhere:

best-vpn-review

When you do that correctly you get the message that your license has been activated and that you can now use your license:

best-vpn-review

Only then do you get access to the Steganos servers:

best-vpn-review

And only now do you have access to the software application and connection.

This was an extremely cumbersome set up procedure. It appears Steganos is more interested in securing their own software then giving the user a reasonable experience. This took a couple of hours!

Steganos provides you with an icon on your desktop. From the icon you can open the desktop application or exit the VPN program if you still have any energy left after the installation process.

Software/GUI: ★★½☆☆ 

The setup took a little more than 2 hours. It really put me off the product and the company. But finally I did get the desktop application to function:

best-vpn-review

The application is pretty straightforward with a daily view of the traffic consumption (there is a limitation of 50GB per month). But that’s all there is to it. No switching servers, in fact no choice of servers at all. Steganos uses Hetzner Hosting and 1&1 in Germany which are good hosting and fast servers:

best-vpn-review

Updates: Steganos provides automated updates.

Ease of Use: ★★★★½ 

Very easy to use but without ANY useful features.

Features: ½☆☆☆☆ 

The Steganos application has essentially one feature: connect.

Server Network: Location, Availability & Speed: ★★½☆☆ 

Steganos has a network of servers in Germany only.

Keep in mind that VPN providers that are based in cooperative jurisdictions and have servers in other cooperative jurisdictions or in their own jurisdiction cannot protect your data as it is transmitted across their servers. By definition a court order in cooperative regions can force Steganos to log, cache and submit any information to local and international authorities. And Steganos’s Privacy Policy clearly is not favorable to the user. The laws in Germany do not permit VPN services and this may, in time, negatively impact on Steganos, particularly as they have servers only in Germany.

Example server Ping time: Steganos Germany, server to LA, USA 150 ms ping time.
Without Steganos the ping time was 152ms, so there was little latency on this server test at 10.30PM EST.

best-vpn-review

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

All presale questions are answered within one hour generally by form emails.

Post-sale support is done by mail (no ticket system but has a hotline for ordering not for technical support). Their stated response time is 12-24 hours but I had email responses in a couple of hours.

Scope of Protection:

Protocols: ★★★☆☆ 

Utilizing standard VPN protocols, Steganos changes your IP, and provides you with a dynamic IP generated from any of its servers. Each time you connect, you will receive another IP address. This has the downside that if you want to connect to PayPal or to your credit card merchant with a VPN and your IP changes every time you connect, PayPal will likely put your account on hold because they are suspicious of changing IP addresses. Its best to use a VPN that provides both shared and a fixed IP so that you are safe but can deal with your shopping online in a convenient way.

Further, considering that Steganos is a German company and only has German servers, the security and privacy aspect here is abandoned.

Protocols: OpenVPN

Steganos does not support IPv6 or port forwarding. All ports are automatically unblocked and SMTP mail is not permitted.

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 Steganos is to be completed by August 15th and will be posted here then.

Open VPN provides both 128 and 256 Bit AES. Steganos choose the less strong encryption standard probably because it’s faster to implement.

Server Security: Pending Test

To be independently tested pending permission from Steganos.

Privacy: ★☆☆☆☆ 

Steganos Privacy statement at their website: https://www.steganos.com/en/legal-service/privacy-policy/ states that they collect ‘standard’ information: Username, email address and IP is collected. If you want more information you have to write to Steganos as there is no written Privacy Policy as you would expect from a security and VPN provider. In effect, there is no way to verify what they log and cache and there is probably little privacy from using Steganos.

Steganos Internet Anonym VPN Review Summary

Steganos is not a VPN Service. They are an online security full service company selling their own antivirus and many other products and VPN is at best an add-on. They have not targeted this market with the VPN user in mind.

As a result their offering is not stellar. The set up is a night mare and at the end of a long hard slug to get the application running, one winds up with a simple connect button with no features whatsoever and no servers to choose from. Not to mention a completely insecure German-only server network managed by a German company with a Privacy Policy in which ‘privacy’ is not a key concept. We cannot recommend this service.

Steganos Internet Anonym VPN PROS:
• Easy to use application with one button – connect and no other features

Steganos Internet Anonym VPN CONS:
• No server switching because the application is not configured for choice of servers.
• Only provide a random server/IP without any choice
• Application has not features whatsoever other than to connect.
• Fair support
• Nightmare of a set up and launching the application.
• No off shore servers, only German servers managed by a German company
• No secure servers as it is illegal to provide VPN in Germany so all the servers could be forced to log and cache at any time
• No privacy policy to speak of
• For the value, expensive
• 50GB bandwidth limitation
• Dynamic IP with no Fixed IPs for using with PayPal & Credit Card merchants
• Only 128 bit encryption
• Does not support IPv6
• Does not provide a fastest server in the application
• Logs and stores IP, username and email address
• Expensive considering the paucity of the offering

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

Features Overview

Steganos Internet Anonym VPN Service Description
Price: 15.95 USD per month
99.95 USD per year
399.95 USD per year with unlimited bandwidth
Bandwidth Limitations: 50 Gb
Server Locations: DE
Data Logging: Yes
VPN Protocols: SSL
Encryption Strength: 128 Bit
Public IP: Shared
Other features: Visual time and cost control meter
Payment Methods: CC, PayPal
Test Account: ?
Moneyback Guarantee: ?
Steganos Internet Anonym VPN TOS & Privacy Policy
p2p Allowed: On authorized p2p file sharing networks
Mass-mail Allowed: ?
Personal Data Collected: ?
Itshidden Paid Vpn Company Information
Location: Germany
In business since 1998
Other Security Products: Steganos Privacy Suite, Steganos Safe, Steganos Password Manager, Steganos Trace Destructor

Information incomplete or incorrect? Please let me know!

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