CyberGhost Review: Is it the leading VPN now?
|CyberGhost pros||CyberGhost cons|
CyberGhost is, undoubtedly, one of the leading VPNs. But in autumn 2019, it managed to surprise even Virtual Private Networks professionals. In the period of two years, CyberGhost increased the number of its services twice! For a long time, CyberGhost's server network hasn’t changed. In 2018, there were nearly 3000 servers. But in autumn 2019, the network became a little wider (3700 servers). And suddenly, one day the number of servers increased to 5900 (now there are 5500 of them), and the number of countries rose from 60 to 90.
However, not only the size of a server network matters a lot. CyberGhost has everything for Internet privacy, safety, unblocking streaming services, and torrenting.
The provider has established itself as a secure VPN. It is a perfect choice not only for regular safe browsing but also for unblocking streaming services. CyberGhost is good for torrenting as well.
Sounds well, right?
I think it would be also interesting for you to learn how to use CyberGhost free of charge.
Keep reading and you will find the answers to the following questions:
- What are the features of CyberGhost?
- What platforms are supported by CyberGhost?
- How many servers does CyberGhost VPN provide?
- How to use CyberGhost?
- How to get CyberGhost for free?
- How successful are CyberGhost VPN tests?
- What company is the owner of CyberGhost?
Features of CyberGhost
Before covering the main features of CyberGhost, let’s have a look at its tariffs and prices. I think there are a lot of Internet users who are ready to pay for privacy and security on the Net. As you can see in the screenshot below, the pricing for the VPN is average. However, the one-month plan is expensive:
The longer period you are going to pay for, the cheaper the price for you will be.
What’s CyberGhost's logging policy?
If you are looking for a VPN with zero logs policy, CyberGhost is undoubtedly the right choice. Together with such advanced services like ExpressVPN or NordVPN, CyberGhost provides its customers with a reliable no-logging policy.
Here is a screenshot from their official website:
CyberGhost does not know your real IP address, what virtual IP addresses you use, and what websites you visit. Great!
What encryption methods are applied?
Regardless of the platform you use, the VPN provides you with military-grade 256-bit encryption. Such encryption is considered to be the most secure and robust. It protects your traffic and guards your data against cybercriminals. It is, of course, crucial in today’s complex cybersecurity environment.
Moreover, CyberGhost boasts its “Force HTTPS” function that is designed to access websites via secure https but not through https. The CyberGhost extensions offer the same function as well.
What protocols are used by CyberGhost?
Providing Virtual Private Network, CyberGhost uses such protocols as PPTP, L2TP/IPSec, and OpenVPN.
OpenVPN is considered to be one of the most robust protocols, whereas PPTP is the fastest one, though, not so secure. That’s why the CyberGhost client on Windows, Mac OS, and Android are based on OpenVPN protocol.
The CyberGhost VPN app for Windows allows choosing between OpenVPN, IKEv2, and L2TP. For this, open the app, find “Settings” in the bottom left corner of the app, and look for Connection settings. That’s it, in “VPN protocol” you may set the preferred one.
You can also choose “Automatic selection” to let the app automatically detect the best protocol for your network connection.
What are the other useful features of CyberGhost?
Being an advanced VPN, CyberGhost has a lot of useful features. Only in the app, you may adjust settings in order to use an adblocker, tracking blocker, malware blocker, data compression, and automated HHTPS.
All these functions can be found in the app, in the “Connection features”.
Now the question “Is CyberGhost safe?” is completely answered!
Besides, the VPN provides:
SecureConnect: The function for preventing a third party code to establish its own routs parallel to the encrypted tunnel.
Kill Switch: If your Internet connection is not stable and can drop, it is better to avoid using a VPN without a Kill Switch function. Actually, even if you have the most stable connection, Kill Switch is a must! Why? The point is there is always a possibility that a VPN connection will interrupt. This is the case even for the best VPNs. However, Kill Switch disconnects you from the Internet and all your sensitive data remains protected. While using and testing CyberGhost I noticed that this function works well!
Proxy: For traffic cascading, SOCKS5 and HTTP proxies are supported.
CyberGhost: Servers and platforms
As a rule, there are no problems to get a VPN on major platforms such as Windows, Mac OS, Android. All (even far from being reliable and trustworthy) services try to provide apps for various operating systems. Not all of them are convenient or user-friendly, though.
However, what concerns servers, not all VPN providers have diverse server network. And if they do, a server park is not always evenly distributed.
Let’s have a look at what platforms CyberGhost supports and what servers it owns.
Platforms supported by CyberGhost
There are a lot of different types of devices that support CyberGhost:
- Windows Vista and higher (OpenVPN, L2TP, IPSec, and PPTP);
- Mac OS (OpenVPN, L2TP, IPSec, and PPTP);
- iOS (L2TP, IPSec, and PPTP);
- Android (OpenVPN, L2TP, IPSec, and PPTP);
- Linux (OpenVPN, L2TP/IPSec, PPTP);
- Chrome OS (PPTP, L2TP, OpenVPN);
- Routers (OpenVPN);
- Raspberry Pi (OpenVPN, L2TP, IPSec, or PPTP);
- Others (Vu+ Solo2, Synology NAS, Virtuelle Maschine).
The VPN for Windows, Mac OS, iOS, and Android has beautifully-designed applications. The "Smart rules" option allows creating your own privacy triggers.
Here I should also mention that if you want to use OpenVPN protocol on iOS, you have to configure it manually.
How many servers does CyberGhost VPN provide?
The service tries to expand their server park constantly. Currently, the VPN owns servers in 90 countries. All 5,500+ servers are spread throughout the world. You can connect to such rare locations as Pakistan, Macedonia, Colombia, etc.
Though, what I find especially helpful is that the app shows the distance and load. The CyberGhost app also displays the number of users connected to this or that server. This information is rather useful and helps to choose the fastest server for your needs. Besides, you may mark servers as your favorite for a faster connection.
You may find server categories in the right window of the app. Here you may find the locations for streaming, torrenting, NoSpy servers, etc.
As you can see the service is torrent-friendly. There are 25 servers available for P2P connections (Almost all of them are in Europe. There is also 1 server in Canada and 1 in Japan).
How to use CyberGhost?
CyberGhost is a secure VPN. Like all advanced VPNs, it is easy to download and use the VPN. I think you have already noticed that the service provides a useful and convenient app. It allows adjusting settings to your preferences. I liked it a lot. However, sometimes I wished the app was more compact as it takes too much space on the desktop.
Actually, the process of getting CyberGhost is quite simple: you have to create your account on the official website, download the app, and enter your credentials. Step-by-step installation on Windows will be described in the section “Use the company’s money-back guarantee”.
How to get CyberGhost for free?
At the close of 2018, the company took a decision to end its free version. As it is stated on their official website, the primary aim was to put emphasis on the privacy and security of their customers. The point is free versions are not always a good choice for complete anonymity on the Net.
Here is the quote from their blog:
Despite all these, there are still methods to get the VPN for free.
Use CyberGhost free trial
The VPN still offers its customers a free trial. Though it is possible to use the VPN for 24 hours only. You won’t be limited in features and no credit card is required with this method. However, 1 day is a too short period of time. That’s why I recommend you to look through other methods that allow using CyberGhost for free.
CyberGhost for free on Chrome or Firefox
The first method to use CyberGhost for free is to download its Chrome or Firefox extensions. They are completely free of charge and also able to hide your IP and provide you with complete anonymity.
However, it’s rather a proxy than a VPN. It won’t secure your computer. You will also be limited to such features as multiple protocol support, 24/7 live chat, Kill Switch, etc.
Moreover, with the extension, you will be able to access only 8 servers in 4 countries: Germany, the Netherlands, Romania, the United States.
The extension is useful in case you need a security tool to surf the Internet safely. However, if you need a VPN for more complicated tasks and want to access advanced security features, it would be better to use another method.
Use the company’s money-back guarantee
CyberGhost has the longest refund period I have ever seen. It offers its customers a 45-day money-back guarantee. It means you may try to use the provider free of charge 45 days!
How to do that? Quite simple!
However, using the service’s money-back guarantee implies to pay for the VPN first and, only when the refund period comes to its end, return money back.
Another warning here is you should buy the service from the official website of the VPN. Otherwise, a money-back guarantee may not be valid.
So, what do you need to do first?
- Go to the official website of CyberGhost and choose the plan (1 month, 1 year, 2 years, 3 years). Be attentive here. In case you choose the 1-month plan, the refund period will be only 14 days.
- As soon as you pay for the service, you will be able to go to the CyberGhost account. Here you may choose a platform you want to install the VPN on. Actually, the VPN allows using it on 7 various devices.
- After successful installation the app on your device, I recommend you to create some kind of reminder in order not to forget to request a refund. If you do not ask for a refund within 45 days, it will be impossible to return your money.
- When a day will come to get a refund, contact the CyberGhost support. There are 3 ways to contact them: submit a request, email them, or use live chat. As for me, the last method is the most convenient.
CyberGhost VPN tests
Before using a VPN, I recommend you to go to any IP leak test website in order to make sure your real IP address is hidden and invisible for others on the Internet. That is what I did before surfing the Net with CyberGhost. The results are below!
IP Leak Test for CyberGhost
Successful IP leak tests for a VPN is immensely important. They show that your real IP address is reliably hidden from third-parties on the Net.
Of course, it would take too much time for me to test all CyberGhost servers. However, those ones that were tested by me didn’t show any leaks. Here is one example with the server in Germany:
As you can see, the IP address is the same as the app indicates. That’s a success!
Speed test for CyberGhost
In fact, speed is a vital criterion while choosing a VPN. Can I say that CyberGhost is a fast VPN? Well...
The download speed with my Internet provider is usually near 80 Mbps. When connecting to the servers in Europe my download speed was reduced by 50%. Have a look at the speed test results with the server in Europe in the USA:
CyberGhost server in Europe
CyberGhost server in the USA
You might think the results are too bad. However, every VPN lowers speeds and we can do nothing about it. It happens because of encryption.
50% reduction is, of course, not the best result. Though, I have 41.32 Mbps with the VPN. Such speed is appropriate for all Internet activities whether it is regular browsing or online gaming, torrenting, etc.
My advice for you – use an Internet provider that guarantees a fast Internet connection. The faster it is, the less reduction you will face when using a VPN for safe browsing.
Test for Netflix
I also want to note that CyberGhost perfectly works with Netflix and other streaming services. It is really fantastic! You just need to choose the section “For streaming”, and the list of servers will appear. Each server is optimized for a particular video service:
Here you will find the servers for the following services:
- Netflix (US, UK, DE)
- Europe1 (FR)
- 7TV (DE)
- Amazon Prime (US)
- CBS (US)
- ORF (AT)
- HBO Now (US)
- Eurosport (UK)
- ITV (UK)
- Spotify (US)
- ESPN+ (US)
- YouTube (US, DE, CA)
- Comedy Central (US)
- RTL (FR)
- YouTube Red (US)
- Pandora (US)
- NBC (US)
- Yle (FI)
- Crunchyroll (US)
- ARD (DE)
- TF1 (FR)
- Globo (BR)
- Fox Sport (BR)
- MTV (US)
- Canal+ (FR)
- Fox (US)
- CBC (Canada)
- Zattoo (DE)
I checked Netflix, Amazon Prime, and HBO at random. All services work with CyberGhost.
However, Hulu is not available with CyberGhost:
If you need to register or watch Hulu, use Surfshark.
CyberGhost was founded in 2011 by the German-Romanian company, CyberGhost S.A. In 2017, the brand and the company were bought at 9.2 million euros by the Israeli company, Crossrider Group. This company is also related to England and Greece.
This fact would have remained unimportant if Crossrider hadn’t been caught for spreading adware. Later, the company had to change its name to Kape Technologies in order to “get rid” of its past.
Today Kape Technologies is not involved in adware spreading, but its capitalization has reduced twice since 2017. It is not the best news for CyberGhost. It is possible that the increase in the number of servers and countries in autumn 2019 has a link with the attempt to foster an interest in Kape Technologies stock.
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Conclusion: pros and cons of CyberGhost
So, in my review, I tried to cover the most vital aspects of the VPN. In this section, I’m going to provide you with the pros and cons of the VPN.
- As for me, the major pro of the VPN is its reliability. Why? Judge for yourself! The VPN uses the most advanced protocols and encryption method, doesn’t save logs, and has perfect customer support! Yes, I forgot to mention that.
- Every time when I got some questions about the VPN protocols or others I used their live chat in order to connect with the CyberGhost team. I am completely satisfied with their answers. They were full and useful. What is especially vital here is that I didn’t have to wait. The live chat box showed me that I was the second in the queue, but I got their answers immediately.
- Their software is the second advantage that I cannot but mention. It is beautiful, simple, and intuitive. You can adjust the desired setting right here. Put your preferred servers into “favorite” in order to connect them quickly.
The only minus of the app is that when I changed settings, for example, switched to the dark mode, the VPN software turned off and I had to launch it again. Also, it will be better if the app was more compact.
- Extra security measures of the VPN are helpful. Kill Switch works well! Every time I disconnected from a certain server, my Internet connection was interrupted. It means all my data and my IP stayed hidden. Kill Switch is even automatic and you do not a possibility to turn it off.
- The VPN has a lot of benefits. CyberGhost is a good choice for torrent trackers and unblocking streaming services. It even owns special servers for these purposes.
As for the cons of CyberGhost, I want to mention the following ones:
- CyberGhost’s Premium one-month subscription is expensive. Besides, the money refund period is limited on this plan. It only lasts for 14 days.
- The second problem is the speed reduction. If CyberGhost servers in Europe still provide fast speeds, it’s not the case for American or Asian servers.
So, it’s up to you to decide whether the VPN worth using or not. Though, my answer to CyberGhost is “Yes”! The advantages are greatly surpassed in number, just look:
+ Robust protocols and encryption;
+ User-friendly application;
+ Extra security measures;
+ No-logging policy;
+ Diverse server park;
+ Good speed with servers in Europe.
- Free trial is only 24 hours;
- One-month plan is expensive;
- Not all servers are fast enough.
Top 3 alternatives
Are you looking for other secure VPN options? Try the following services:
- Surfshark: cheap VPN with military-grade encryption, 800 servers in 49 countries and perfect customer support.
- NordVPN: top-rated VPN based in Panama, super robust and user-friendly, allows up to 6 multi loggings.
- ExpressVPN: professional VPN provider with the widest server network (94 countries) and strong privacy and security features.
Best for streaming