Private Tunnel Review 2018 – A VPN Service by the OpenVPN Team

Private Tunnel, also known as, PrivateTunnel offers much improved online security, steadfast connectivity and secures communication services to users globally. The provider is currently offering 23 worldwide servers located in 12 different countries of the world. This is one of few VPN reviews that surprised us and took our expectations to the next level.

Private-Tunnel-Website

Our Private Tunnel review will cover every aspect of the service and all the unknown features of the provider. We would also make sure to review the logging and privacy policy as this attribute eventually decides the success or reputation of any VPN service.

 

Pros

  • Worldwide connectivity
  • User friendly apps
  • Supports OpenVPN protocol with AES 256-bit encryption
  • Protection against Denial of Service attacks
  • Availability of malicious websites blocking feature
  • 7 days free trial period
  • Developed by same team that created OpenVPN

Cons

  • Headquarter based in US
  • Customer support is limited i.e. only email feature is available
  • Data limit of 20MB only

Private Tunnel Review – Unique Selling Proposition

What makes Private Tunnel VPN different from other providers is its unique selling proposition. Their unique selling proposition lies in “Worldwide Trust”. During the Private Tunnel review, we discovered that the product is by the same team that also developed OpenVPN technology. The team claims that the organization is currently enjoying the trust of over 3.6 million subscribers and those who prefer to use OpenVPN powered Private Tunnel service.

Pricing and Plans

The provider has proactively catered the financial demands of its subscribers in a successful manner. At present, the service is proudly offering different kinds of pricing plans that include fixed and flexible packages. However, both plans have same pricing. Still, you can choose more than three devices if you select a flexible package.

Pricing-Plans-of-Private-Tunnel

You can avail the fixed pricing plan by paying $6.00 on a monthly basis or pay $35.00 on a yearly basis. Conversely, you can select flexible pricing plan by paying the same price on monthly and yearly basis, but with limited features.

Payment Methods

According to our Private Tunnel VPN review, the provider accepts the following payment methods that include:

  • PayPal
  • Credit and Debit Card
  • Apple Gift Cards

The Apple Gift Cards payment method is only accepted through Private Tunnel VPN iOS application. According to its privacy policy, the provider does not offer its services in countries like Ghana, Cote d’Ivoire, and Nigeria. Additionally, we didn’t see Bitcoin as a payment options; meaning the service lacks anonymous payment options.

We suggest Private Tunnel to add the Bitcoin option as it provides an anonymous method of transaction. By doing this, the service can reiterate its commitment to user privacy.

Server Locations

The provider offers 23 servers across 12 countries throughout the world. These servers include:

  1. Hong Kong (1 Server in Hong Kong)
  2. Italy (1 server in Milan)
  3. Sweden (1 server in Stockholm)
  4. Switzerland (1 server in Zurich)
  5. Germany (1 server in Frankfurt)
  6. Netherlands (1 server in Amsterdam)
  7. France (1 server in Paris)
  8. United Kingdom (1 server in London)
  9. Spain (1 server in Madrid)
  10. Japan (1 server in Tokyo)
  11. Canada (1 server in Montreal, QC)
  12. United States (12 servers in different areas like New York, Seattle, Ashburn, Chicago, Salt Lake City, Denver, Atlanta, San Jose, Dallas, Miami, Los Angeles, & Phoenix)

Private Tunnel country servers

Compatibility Review

Private Tunnel VPN is compatible with different platforms such as Windows, Mac, Android, iOS and Amazon Digital Services. It does not matter which operating system you are using, just click on the download tab to use the software. You can navigate to the download section from the homepage. Rest of installation process is quite simple and self-explanatory.

If you are using Linux operating system, you can still select Private Tunnel VPN since the provider is also compatible with Linux operating system. Users just have to use the command line if they wish to use Private Tunnel VPN’s Linux service.

The service also works with routers. The list of routers it support includes; Vyatta, DD-WRT, pfSense, Tomato and OpenWrt. The bad news is that this service is not compatible with gaming consoles.

Meanwhile, you can also use this VPN on Amazon devices.

Private-Tunnel-Compatibility-Review

Private Tunnel Apps Review

As per the findings of our Private Tunnel review of 2018, the service offers dedicated OpenVPN apps for platforms like Windows, Mac, Android and iOS. The Windows and Mac users can visit official website to download the respective software. Likewise, users can also try the service by downloading the Private Tunnel APK from Google Play Store on their Android devices. Similarly, users can download the provider’s iOS app by visiting Apple Apps Store.

We thoroughly evaluated the Private Tunnel app for Android during the review by installing the app it on our device. The whole process of downloading and installation is simple and fast. You can easily select the server location of your own choice. Furthermore, we also crosschecked the IP address provided by the service. We were quite pleased to know that there were no IP leakages. This shows that users should trust the provider’s features and use the service without a doubt.

How to Use Private Tunnel?

The service offers an attractive and highly simple signup process for its subscribers. You just need to click the signup tab provided on the top right side of main web page. The signup tab will take you towards account creation where you will be required to fill the details that include Email and Password.

The-Sign-Up-Process-of-Private-Tunnel

Now click on the Create Account button and after clicking a confirmation message will be sent to your email address. Check your email account and activate you signup details by confirming the email sent to your inbox. This confirmation will take you towards Download App page from where you can download your preferred app for your device.

We would highly recommend the provider since the whole configuration is easily understandable and does not need any rocket science. If you are planning to use VPN service for the first time then you should try to Private Tunnel VPN.

Tutorials Provided

According to detailed Private Tunnel review, the provider’s official website does not offer any tutorial for its subscribers. However, the users can find information about the downloading of different platforms.

Furthermore, there is a sub-section named as support center provided that comes under the heading of Support section.

The only two guides available on the website are related to setting up the service on Linux and DD-WRT. Even these two manuals were hard to find as a section is a bit disorganized.

Apart from this, users will not be able to find anything related to tutorials. This was a downside to our review, as you would expect setup procedures and tutorials to guide new users. My recommendation to Private Tunnel is to add this section to its Support page.

Customer Support

The provider’s official website offers a dedicated support center that also includes sub-sections like Billing Questions, Account Questions, Connection Questions and FAQs. Through the help of these sub-sections, users can get the answers of their various queries. In addition, the support center offers information for users about issues such as connection problems, servers’ selection, payment methods, protocols and encryption levels and so on.

Users can track the status of their existing support requests by simply logging into their accounts. The service also provides support through email.

The website states that the ticketing system works 24/7 but that is not the case. You normally receive replies to your queries within 10 hours.

Most notably, the service now provides live chat support. We tested this service but received no replies to our queries, even when it showed that an agent was online. We commend Private Tunnel for providing live chat but we advise them to improve this service.

Private-Tunnel-Support

Protocols & Encryption

As per the findings of our Private Tunnel review, the service only provides OpenVPN protocols to its users. Other protocols like PPTP, SSTP, or L2TP/IPsec are not offered by the service. The provider is completely dependent on OpenVPN tunneling technology that has the below mentioned features:

  • Develops Layer 2 and Layer 3 tunnels quite easily
  • Can easily bypass NAT and Firewalls
  • Able to use all ciphers in the OpenSSL library for the purpose of encryption
  • Also uses SSL (Secured Socket Layers ) and TLS (Transport Layer Security) for key exchange

The interesting thing about OpenSSL library is that it facilitates OpenVPN users to cipher data by utilizing 128-bit or 256-bit encryption. Furthermore, the OpenSSL library also enables the encryption to use a vast list of ciphers. This list of cipher consists of AES, Camellia, SEED, Blowfish, IDEA, RC2, RC4, RC5 & GOST 28147-89.

Since the developers of OpenVPN founded the VPN, there is no surprise that it only supports this particular protocol. Nevertheless, we do not consider this factor a drawback.

OpenVPN is one of the best tunneling protocols in the market. It has all the tools to provide you a safe and fast connection.

Log & Privacy Policy

The service clearly states in its terms of service that ‘log files stored on our servers are used only for the evaluation of our servers’ performance.’ The provider does not keep the information of their users and doesn’t monitor subscribers browsing activity. Private Tunnel respects its users’ privacy in a true letter and spirit. Our Private Tunnel review reveals that the provider has to collect information of their users to monitor potential security breaches and abusive users. The information includes Name, Email Address, Credit Card Number, Home Address, and Phone Number.

Private Tunnel completely follows the DMCA notification guidelines. Hence, the service immediately terminates the accounts of those users who are found guilty of copyright infringements. The privacy policy of the provider is straightforward. It suggests that the users’ information is used for different reasons. These reasons include:

  • To improve customer service
  • To improve the performance of their servers
  • To send periodic emails to subscribers
  • To process transactions

The provider also fulfills the responsibility of protecting the subscribers’ information by applying various security measures. These security measures include the use of secure server. The service uses Secure Socket Layer (SSL) by which all the sensitive information is efficiently transmitted. After completing a transaction, the users’ confidential information like credit card number is not stored on their servers.

However, it is a bitter truth that Private Tunnel is based in the US. Hence, it becomes difficult for us to consider the provider as a completely log free service. We would recommend the users to make sure about the logging and privacy policy of Private Tunnel before selecting any pricing plan.

Private Tunnel Reviews on Reddit

The Private Tunnel VPN OpenVPN connection has surely made this brand a hot topic over Reddit. There are many users those who assume that the service is a must try, since it is a brainchild of OpenVPN technology team.

Few months ago, OpenVPN 2.4 was released. It is the latest version of cross-platform SSL VPN that helps you to develop security point-to-point or site-to-site connections. The users of Private Tunnel VPN need to know about the newest version of OpenVPN.

Since this service is not popularly known, many users are confused about the difference between OpenVPN and Private Tunnel.

Difference between OpenVPN and Private Tunnel VPN? from VPN

Performance Review

The servers of Private Tunnel are ultra-fast. We are taking about speed that is hard to find anywhere else. In particular, the European servers of the VPN are some of the fastest VPN servers we have ever tried.

While we were connected to the servers to the Amsterdam server, it was able to maintain 85% of our normal connection speed. This is an outstanding feat for the VPN providers. Moreover, the Canada server only slowed our connection to 83%, which is again, impressive to say the least.

The US connection was a bit slower as it maintained 79% of the speed. Nevertheless, the connection is only slow if you compare it against the higher standard the service has set for itself.

P2P and Torrenting Review

The service restricts torrenting on most of its servers. Furthermore, it does not recommend its user to conduct any P2P activity.

Private Tunnel clearly states in its torrenting policy that you will face issues while using P2P applications on the service. In addition, the providers strictly prohibit downloading copyrighted material.

Areas of Improvement

The relationship between the OpenVPN technology and Private Tunnel has given the service a massive boost to its identity. However, the service has to increase its servers’ location because it is currently providing its services in 12 countries worldwide.

We evaluated the Private VPN APK app in detail and we found the app quite brilliant since it does not take much of your time to install. In addition, the process of downloading and installation is easily understandable and does not need any kind of rocket science at all.

While we also tested different sections of the service like customer support, tutorials, and downloads. However, the customer support section did not come up to our expectations. There is still a lot of room available for the improvement. Particularly, we would appreciate if the service improves it Live Chat feature.

The good thing about OpenVPN technology is that you can explore various online communities and forums to get the solution of your problems.

The pricing plans of the providers are truly cost effective and eye-catching because you have a luxury to select from two types of pricing plans. These packages are beneficial for those subscribers who want to use the service on the go. The download section has installation setup for Windows, iOS, Mac and Android users. However, the tutorial section needs to be improved drastically because there is no such element available on the official website.

Besides these features and other benefits Private the service offer to its users. There is a major grey area, which we found during the Private Tunnel review. This area of concern is the provider’s logging and privacy policy since the service mainly operates from USA. Hence, we are not sure about its data retention policy that the provider has to follow the certain guidelines of NSA.

Alternatives to PrivateVPN

There are many useful privacy features that this service does not provide. In particular, it does not have an in-built kill switch or DNS-leak protection. If you are seeking these features, you can check out the reviews below.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Private Tunnel Free?

The service offers a 7-day free trial to the customers. The Private VPN free data plan is available for a week without costing you a penny.

However, you will have to first sign up with the service to avail this free plan. The providers will notify you as the final days of the trial period approach. After this, you will be given an option to sign up with the service.

Does Private Tunnel Support Netflix?

If you are looking for a VPN service to unblock geo-restricted content, you should definitely seek an alternative. The providers have stated with much clarity that the service does not provide you access to any streaming sites. These include Netflix, Hulu and BBC iPlayer.

However, we tested the service on the site anyways, hoping for a miracle. Understandably, all the servers of the VPN were blocked by the popular streaming services.

Final Verdict

We hope that you have made up your decision about the VPN after reading our Private Tunnel review. Apart from this major disadvantage, the provider is surely a safe bet for those netizens who want to secure their online privacy for the first time.

Based on the review, we have found the provider startling and the future looks quite promising. Private Tunnel VPN is still nascent in the VPN industry, but its attractive features like interactive website and user-friendly apps for different platforms make it a good choice for subscribers.

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Usman Hayat

Usman Hayat

Author
All Posts by Usman Hayat

Usman Hayat's Biography :


A business school grad specializing in marketing, Usman found his love for writing during studies. Salmi now pursues a career as a digital privacy & security advocate for VPNRanks working as a blogger. Salmi loves reading about sci-fi & technology while cricket is his game of choice. When the world cries ‘online freedom’ Salmi stands resolute raising his voice for the rights of netizens everywhere.


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