Private Internet Access Review
Private Internet Acces is a popular service that has an excellent reputation ★★★★★. Private Internet Acces matches up to its reputation. For only $69.95 per two years you receive a real VPN that is does not miss anything important.With $69.95 per two years Private Internet Access is the frontrunner for inexpensive (Cheap) VPNs
You receive access to:
3 Protocols: PPTP - OpenVPN - L2TP
SOCKS5: it is rare enough that it is worth highlighting, Private Internet Acces offers SOCKS5. It is particularly useful if you need to change IP for one or more programmes. (SOCKS5 does not have encryption built into the protocol.)
A connection programme that is unique in proposing options such as the choice between type and level of encryption (GCM and CBC for both AES-128 and AES-256 encryption), its Data Authentification (SHA-1, SHA-256) and Handshake (RSA or ECC).
Payment methods that are as diverse as Bitcoin (very fast) and Any Gift Card (Paygarden).
3279+ Servers in 33 Countries. But is this a real problem? A specialist told me that 95% of users concentrate on 5-6 countries
Users looking to download torrents and protect their privacy online will love Private Internet Acces:
Torrents: Private Internet Access is one of the best choices for Torrent users who are looking to make their downloads anonymous. How to download torrents anonymously with Private Internet Access? Private Internet Access includes both VPN and SOCKS5 proxy service, that will let you choose in how you download torrents anonymously.
VPN: Private Internet Access allows P2P torrenting on a series of OpenVPN servers like Sweden, Mexico, Romania. The advantage of Private Internet Access is that you can modify your encryption level. So you can get higher speeds by choosing a lower encryption like None / None / ECC-256k1.
NO LOGS: Private Internet Access keeps no logs. We always recommend torrent users choose a true non-logging VPN for maximum privacy/security.
SOCKS5: We always recommend a VPN that has the SOCKS5 option for downloading on BitTorrent. For a VPN connection does change your overall connection and can interfere with your surfing as it changes the IP. But with a SOCKS5 proxy only your torrenting program uses the SOCKS5 while the rest of your network connection stays neutral, using your ISP IP. The other advantage of SOCKS5 is to make sure that torrenting only occurs when the SOCKS5 protocol is active so your IP address can never publicly appear on the torrent network by accident.
VPN Kill Swith: Other notable feature is "Internet kill switch". It is beneficial if you use a VPN for torrenting. Torrent is the protocol for file sharing that is most monitored by everyone. Kill Switch will stop your internet from working if your VPN connection drops and will prevent your IP address from leaking and exposing your true identity. Unscrupulous companies, content monitoring sites, and defenders of authors' rights can’t identify your location as your IP address never leaks.
You also have support for port forwarding, which can help with optimizing your torrent performance.
Privacy Online: Private Internet Access has reputation for protecting user data.
- Since they are USA-based (run by London Trust Media), there is no requirement for them to keep or record any user session data.
- In addition, Private Internet Access has proved its no logs claim in court not once but twice!.
- Logs are never written to the hard-drives of any of their machines and are specifically written to the null device, which simply acts if the data never existed.
- Moreover, the encryption system does not allow them to view and thus log what IP addresses a subscriber is visiting or has visited.
Security - A VPN connects you to the internet safely without any risk of interception by a third party (protecting your personal data) or prevents D.P.I. So they control the route taken by your information, which means that an authorised party cannot gain access. In this regard Private Internet Access is very efficient and constantly improving!. On top of that, Private Internet Access lets you choose the kind of encryption for each of the steps in an OpenVPN connection. This is the real and unique bonus of Private Internet Access in that they let you choose your type and level of encryption.
- Data Encryption = Choose between the encryption algorithm of AES or nothing. Private Internet Access uses 256-bit AES Encryption (Generally seen as highest level security, and used for top secret communications by the US government).
- Data Authentication = Choose from SHA-1, SHA-256 or no hash code.
- Handshake = Exchange of Diffie-Hellman keys with RSA Certificates (2048 or 3072 or 4096bit) or exchange of Diffie-Hellman keys with ECDSA encryption (Elliptic Curve Digital Signature Algorithm). The recommended curve is ECC-256k1 (256bit key). PIA also offers ECC-256r1 and ECC-ECC-521. Its OpenVPN has a good level of encryption, particularly when it comes to Handshake. Their handshake key length is up to 4096-bits (2048-bit keys are considered safe enough!).
- If you need maximum security, Private Internet Access recommends this configuration:
- Maximum Protection — AES-256 / SHA256 / RSA-4096
We were delighted with the clear instructions for the three step connection process for OpenVPN. And the choice to be able to take or leave the encryption level or hash code function. VPNs that offer all this information are few and far between. Normally they settle for a 2048bit level of encryption for OpenVPN and that is it.These are the Default Recommended Protection for Private Internet Access: AES-128 / SHA1 / RSA-2048. Of course we tried this configuration to check and it worked perfectly.
In the end the only point on which we would question the site is for Handshake which serves as a mutual identification using a key. Some doubts have been raised recently around the security of ECC (Elliptic Curve Encryption). ECC offers a fast and perhaps too greedy encryption with keys. It is in direct competition with the great RSA but offers smaller keys with “lighter” calculations compared to its competitor.
Some doubts come from the secp256r1 curve certified by the NIST. According to some experts (including the wise Bruce Schneier) the NSA influenced the American Institute of Normalisation, NIST, to certify this pseudo-random number generator that has a weak point. In other words the numbers generated are not unpredictable. A backdoor, or entry point, into a mechanism for generating random numbers means the whole security system will be compromised and vulnerable to attackers or surveillance organisations. If you still wish to use elliptic curves we advise secp256k1 (certified by Certicom) the one that uses Bitcoin for transaction signatures.
Anonymous payment - Maximizing your protection means paying and signing up for those services and products with VPN providers that accept gift cards or Bitcoin. The amount of information you supply to Private Internet Access depends on your payment method. For maximum privacy, you must pay with bitcoin or Gift Card, of which our favourite is Bitcoin. Bitcoin is a great way to keep your identity private.
Private Internet Access is one of the most respected providers in the industry. Private Internet Access is an excellent choice for Bittorrent or P2P. $6.95 per month with all of their extra options is an excellent deal.