Trevor Akinde, Author
Riley Marsden, Chief Editor
Since 2012, the use of VPN (Virtual Private Network) services has increased dramatically. With so many reports about privacy invasions on the internet, it becomes necessary for you to take some protective measures while browsing the web.
With that being said, we’ve picked AirVPN and put it under the microscope to see how trustworthy it is and whether it can really protect your data.
About the Company
AirVPN is based in Italy, which is considered a red flag since Italy is a member of the Fourteen Eyes Alliance, an international intelligence-sharing agreement. The agreement states that participating countries may cooperate with each other if the online activity of some users is required.
However, the company has constantly noted that the service operates under the European Union’s law jurisdiction, which contradicts with the Fourteen Eyes agreement.
On a side note, it was never publicly revealed who the people behind AirVPN are, which could raise some transparency questions. Nevertheless, many VPN companies prefer not to disclose the names of their key people as a protective measure to prevent blackmailing.
The company claims that only a select few of its team have access to the VPN’s servers to protect users from getting their data misused. What’s even more interesting is that the company offers a free server-monitoring system, which allows anyone on the internet to monitor the infrastructure status of the VPN’s servers.
Further, the service features separate entry and exit IP addresses on all of its VPN servers to protect users against correlation attacks, a feature that’s often overlooked but is actually pretty important.
AirVPN was founded in 2010 by a team of activists and hackers. It was a free project at first, but the service evolved into a fully-fledged company in 2012.
At first, the service only had two servers in one country. Since then, it has grown quickly, and as of writing this article, the VPN offers more than 240 servers in 21 countries. While the number of servers isn’t that much compared to other more prominent VPN services, AirVPN makes up for that by ensuring that their users’ data is safe and private.
DNS Leak Results
DNS leaks can be a significant threat as it exposes DNS requests on your computer to the servers of internet service providers. According to independent testing platforms, AirVPN had no DNS leaks up to this date.
If you want to reach out to AirVPN’s customer service, you can either file a support ticket and wait for a response (usually takes 48-hour), or ask your question on the support forums, where you’ll receive answers from other users and AirVPN’s official representatives. You also get a database of some of the most frequently asked questions.
We’d have preferred a faster way to get help, like live chat or phone support, but the ticketing system and the forum should get the job done. It’s also worth noting that the company has always claimed that they would never outsource customer support to ensure an excellent user experience.
To date, AirVPN hasn’t released a warrant canary, which can be a bit disappointing. If you don’t know what a warrant canary is, it’s simply a transparency procedure that some VPN services use to announce that they haven’t received any secret warrants from the government that’d force them to give away users’ data. It’s not a guaranteed proof of privacy, but it makes users more trustful in the service.
Pros and Cons
Is AirVPN Secure?
We can’t really say for sure whether AirVPN is 100% secure or not. The service was never accused of infringing the data of its users, but some factors, like the fact that the service is based in a Fourteen Eyes member country, have made us doubtful.
Does AirVPN Work With Netflix?
Yes, AirVPN is capable of unblocking US Netflix. Some algorithm updates to Netflix may cause problems, but once AirVPN is updated, you can continue using Netflix normally.
How Many Simultaneous Connections Can I Establish From a Single AirVPN Account?
AirVPN allows you to connect up to 5 devices simultaneously using the same account at no extra cost. If you’re using the same network to access the internet and want to connect to the same server on all of your devices, you can either use a router or a gateway-configured computer.
Does AirVPN Allow P2P Connections?
Yes, AirVPN allows P2P connections, which means that you can use it to download torrent files without getting your identity exposed.
To optimize AirVPN for torrenting use, log in to your account, select “Forwarded ports” under the “Client’s Area” section, and choose a port or let the computer choose it automatically for you. After that, you must set up the port used for incoming connections on your BitTorrent client and match it with that of the VPN.
We have mixed feelings about AirVPN. The fact that the service is based in Italy, a member of the Fourteen Eyes Alliance, in addition to the absence of a warrant canary, could make users untrustful in this service.
On the other hand, there’s no proof that the company has a history of privacy sins, especially since it has continuously stated that it’s compliant with EU laws regardless of international agreements.