PHOENIX, April 6, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- With the repeal of the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) internet privacy regulations that prevented internet service providers (ISPs) from selling users' browsing history, Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) have been generating more and more attention. While VPNs – which allow you to use the internet without your ISP seeing your network traffic – are a valuable tool, they aren't a cure-all solution to everyone's internet privacy woes. And they certainly are not all created equal according to Bishop Fox, a leading global cybersecurity consulting firm.
Bishop Fox's researchers analyzed 10 of the most popular VPNs to determine which ones offer the highest levels of privacy, performance, and ease of use. The team, led by security associate Kevin Sugihara and security analyst Kameron Tinsley, identified five VPNs (not ranked in any order) that performed the best across all the criteria. They are: ExpressVPN, PureVPN, TorGuard, TunnelBear, and CactusVPN.
"Each of these five VPNs got high marks for ensuring privacy and preventing an ISP from gathering information about an individual's web traffic," said Sugihara. "They are all great for varying reasons, so you have to find the one that works best for your particular circumstances."
Bishop Fox's "A Guide to Choosing the Right VPN" explains the pros and cons of each of the cybersecurity experts' picks, and which VPNs weren't selected and why.
To test privacy, the Bishop Fox team looked at the different encryption and protocols supported, then generated and analyzed traffic leaving the virtual "test" machine to ensure it was encrypted. More importantly, they wanted to make sure no traffic was leaked in plaintext. To test performance, Bishop Fox browsed the internet with the VPNs enabled and compared it to no VPN at all. The researchers also ran and tested five major speeds on the VPN. Ease of use was determined by how difficult it was to run and configure the VPN, how difficult it was to navigate through the user interface (UI), how easy it was to contact support and get questions resolved, what kind of device support was offered, and whether the program ever crashed or froze (as well as how it behaved when it was forced to).
"VPNs are not perfect, but they are one of the smartest ways to protect your data from being sold to the highest bidder to do with as they please," added Sugihara.
About Bishop Fox
Bishop Fox is an independent cybersecurity firm that protects businesses from today's increasing security threats. Since 2005, the firm has provided assessment and penetration testing and enterprise security consulting services to the world's leading organizations.
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SOURCE Bishop Fox