F-Secure Freedome VPN Review: An interesting VPN from a security giant
A VPN’s suitability varies from person to person depending on personal taste and needs. So does Freedome VPN fit your definition of the best VPN? This Freedome VPN Review helps you find out.
Pros & Cons
- Works with Netflix, BBC iPlayer, & more
- Lots of advanced features on all apps
- Zero logs & friendly jurisdiction
- Supports torrenting on all servers
- Solid security
- Works in China & other censored countries
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- Small server network
- Unreliable speed performance
- No browser extensions
Freedome is a VPN service from F-Secure, a company that has been in the security industry for over 30 years. The VPN service was established to complement F-Secure’s other security products, such as F-Secure Safe and F-Secure ID Protection.
Here’s a quick overview of Freedome VPN:
- Works with Netflix & BBC iPlayer
- Protects against tracking
- Blocks malicious sites
- Keeps some logs
- Small server network
- Based in Finland
Freedome VPN fronts itself as a VPN you can trust due to its parent company’s track record in the cybersecurity industry. But can you take their word for it?
This F-Secure Freedom VPN review dives into the nitty gritties of the VPN service to find out how trustworthy it is and if it lives up to its freedom name. We’ll also explore other factors such as features, capabilities, pricing, and more.
📑 Table of Contents
Although F-Secure isn’t an all-round VPN like SurfShark VPN, it still manages to provide some useful functionalities.
Streaming: Does Freedome VPN work with Netflix, BBC iPlayer, and other services?
Freedome VPN doesn’t promise any streaming functionalities on its website. However, we found that the VPN can unblock several streaming services.
The first service we tested was Netflix, and we were pleased to see that Freedome VPN works with the streaming service. We were able to access Netflix US, UK, and Canada without any issues.
When we tested BBC iPlayer, we weren’t able to access the service at first. However, disconnecting and connecting again (changing IP address) did the trick, and we didn’t experience any other issues.
Overall, Freedome VPN does well to work with multiple Netflix libraries and other streaming services. However, you may often experience some issues due to the VPN’s small server network. If you need more reliability, you can check out the best streaming VPNs.
Does F-Secure Freedome VPN support torrenting?
Yes, Freedome VPN supports torrenting. However, this is in a limited capacity. The VPN states that they have technically blocked peer-to-peer connections on gateways that can cause DMCA issues.
Unfortunately, this is more than half of Freedome VPN's server network. You can't torrent when connected to Australia, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, Poland, Singapore, United Kingdom, and the United States.
If you try to torrent when connected to any of the above countries, Freedome VPN will restrict your connection to that server for several hours.
It’s good to see that F-Secure VPN supports torrenting, although the tough restrictions may lead torrent fans to other torrenting VPNs.
Does Freedome VPN work in China?
No, Freedome VPN does not work in China. This is because the VPN doesn’t have any obfuscation technology. This means that if you try to use the VPN in highly censored countries such as China and the UAE, the VPN will be blocked through deep packet inspection (dpi).
Yes, Freedome is a secure VPN.
Freedome VPN is owned by F-Secure, and the company has been in the cyber security field since 1988. The security company is located in Finland, which is within the EU. The country is privacy-friendly as it has strict privacy laws and is not a member of the 14-eyes data-sharing treaty.
This means that F Secure Freedome VPN is not required by law to keep any data. However, the VPN isn’t a role model in this.
This already suggests that they store traffic logs, and it is confirmed later when they state that:
Our guiding principle is that we do not seek to spy on the exact content of your private communications…
To be more exact, this means that:
- We need to process some metadata (such as volume, country, IP address) of your traffic when providing the service to you;
- we automatically screen the traffic to inhibit usage that is against our acceptable use policy; and
- the service collects statistics to give you a view of your browsing history via the service, but we do not connect this information to you.
Basically, Freedome VPN collects your real IP address and location when you use the service, and they also log your connection time stamps and the amount of bandwidth used.
This means that the F-Secure Freedome VPN is not a no-log service. This becomes important as even though Finland is privacy-friendly, it doesn’t have strict measures in place to prevent authorities from seizing user data.
This has already happened to F-Secure. In January 2019, Finland’s National Bureau of Investigation contacted F-Secure requesting user data from Freedome VPN to aid in a criminal case in Germany. After F-Secure didn’t comply, the authorities seized data that contained users' IP addresses, device IDs, and connection timestamps (start and end time). Worst of all, this data belonged to all Freedome VPN users, not just the user in question.
Although this data didn’t include the specific user activities, it would be (and was) easy for the authorities to correlate IP addresses and connection times with the activities of concern.
F-Secure would later have the seizure overturned and the acquired data destroyed after a court ruling, but all this means that F-Secure is not the most private VPN.
As part of our Freedome VPN review, we conducted several leak tests to see if the VPN exposes any user data. We tested for IP leaks, DNS leaks, and WebRTC leaks using several random servers.
During our tests, we didn’t experience any information leaks.
Although Freedome VPN doesn’t have any IP or DNS leak protection features on the clients, these are enabled by default, and the VPN uses Private DNS servers.
Freedome VPN offers OpenVPN connections, and it uses AES-256-GCM encryption. The VPN then combines this with 2048-bit RSA keys with SHA-256 certificates.
Overall, Freedome VPN offers solid security. The standards used are on par with the recommended security levels.
Apart from encryption, FreedomVPN provides several protocols that you can use. These include OpenVPN, IKEv2, IKEv1. OpenVPN and IKEv2 are the two options on desktop apps. The iOS app uses IKEv1 (which is not secure) by default, but you can enable IKEv2 through a toggle button.
Freedome VPN provides some decent features.
A kill switch is a crucial privacy feature that prevents user information from being exposed accidentally. It does this by blocking internet connections whenever the VPN disconnects accidentally or when a connection is being established.
The Freedome VPN kill switch kicks in when it detects that the disconnection was unintentional (you didn’t click the disconnection button). To ensure that you can still connect to the VPN and unblock the internet, the kill switch doesn’t block traffic that is required to establish the VPN connection, i.e., DNS and DHCP. You can find the feature on Windows, macOS, and Android.
Being a security company, F-Secure runs a database of websites that can be harmful to your device or can steal personal information. This is an important advanced feature as it provides additional security by protecting your device and data.
On the desktop app, you can see all malicious sites that have been blocked.
Freedome VPN is able to prevent sites from tracking you across the web. If the app detects that a site is trying to track you, it immediately hides your IP address, blocks tracking cookies, and prevents apps and sites from sending any of your information to a database. This means that you can't be tracked from site to site or get profiled.
On top of that, Freedome VPN blocks HTTP traffic from going to or coming from sites that the F-Secure database identifies as a tracking domain. It does this by enforcing the "Do Not Track" header on all your activities.
This is a sort of a bonus feature that complements the tracking protection feature. The tool helps you know how various sites track you when you connect and what malicious sites the VPN has blocked.
To use Tracker Mapper, you will need to let the app temporarily track your browsing activities (since Freedome VPN doesn’t log activities). F-Secure says that your data is deleted when you start a new session or three days after your last tracking session.
Split Tunneling is a limited feature of Freedome VPN in that it is only available on Android. The feature is labeled as "Apps bypassing VPN," and it works by simply allowing you to select apps whose traffic should not be tunneled.
Network size is not one of Freedome VPN’s strengths. The VPN’s network consists of an undisclosed number of servers spread across 28 locations in 22 countries. This network is quite small compared to a VPN such as ExpressVPN that offers 160 VPN server locations in 94 countries.
Freedome VPN's distribution is also poor as servers are mostly found in Europe and North America. There are only two locations in Asia and only one in Oceania. There are no servers in Central America, South America, and Africa. If you live in those regions, you may want to look at other options.
Apart from the size and distribution, Freedome VPN does well to provide servers at the city level. All servers are listed according to the city, although only the US and Canada have multiple locations.
F Secure Freedome VPN uses a pricing format that is not synonymous with VPNs, but some VPNs from established security companies also use it. The VPN doesn't provide a 1-month plan, and plans vary according to the number of devices.
Below are the three main plans. Note that prices are listed in Euros, and the website converts them to USD (if you are in the US) at higher-than-normal rates.
- 3-device one-year plan: Costs 3.33 € ($4.40) a month, billed 39.99 € ($52.89). Renews at €4.16.
- 7-device one-year plan: Costs 5.83 € ($7.72) a month, billed 69.90 € ($92.67). Renews at €6.66.
- 7-device two-year plan: Costs 2.75 € ($4.97) a month, billed 89.90 € ($119.18). Renews at €4.58.
In comparison with other VPNs, Freedom VPN looks quite overpriced. For example, the discounted 1-year plan costs $92.67 for 7 devices. Surfshark VPN only asks for $59.76 to protect unlimited devices for the first 2 years.
Supported payment methods
F-Secure accepts payments through credit/debit cards, PayPal, Wire transfer, PayNearMe, and Check/ Money order. Note that in most countries, only the first three are available.
Significantly missing here is payment through cryptocurrency. This can be a drawback for users who would like to pay anonymously through Bitcoin or other cryptos.
Does Freedome VPN have a free trial?
Yes, Freedom VPN offers a free trial. This is a good move considering that the VPN doesn’t have a short-term plan that you can use to try out the service. Freedome’s free trial lasts for 5 days, and it doesn’t have any limits. You can access all servers, and bandwidth is unlimited.
To get the free trial, you only need to download the F-Secure Freedome VPN app. The app assigns you a unique ID, and you won't have to create an account. You can use the free trial on Windows, macOS, and Android.
Does Freedome VPN have a money-back guarantee?
Yes, F-Secure has a 30-day money-back guarantee. This means that if you are not happy with the product after buying it, you can still get a full refund. If you wish to cancel your subscription, you can reach out through the F-Secure support page. You can either call using the provided numbers or use the live chat if it's available.
Getting started with Freedome VPN is not as easy as with other VPNs. This is because the VPN doesn’t have an independent website but is rather found within the larger F-Secure website. This means that information about the VPN is scattered around the website.
When you are on the main website, you need to click “For Home” under the main menu, and then you’ll be able to select “F-Secure FREEDOME VPN.”
On the VPN page, you’ll find some information about the VPN and links that provide more information. To create an account, click "Get FREEDOME VPN Now." You can then choose a plan, and you'll be redirected to the checkout page. The VPN asks for lots of information (first name, last name, and zip/ postal code), but the checkout process is easy.
Which devices & platforms does Freedome VPN support?
You can install F-Secure Freedome VPN on several devices. These include:
These are the most popular devices, but they are also not sufficient. Some VPNs provide browser extensions, a Linux app, and even a router app.
Apart from the few apps, Freedome VPN doesn’t support manual installation either. This means that you can’t set it up using OpenVPN or configure it manually on your router.
Ease of use
To give you an idea of what to expect from F-Secure VPN, we installed the VPN on several devices and gave it a test run.
Desktop App (Windows)
The Freedome VPN Windows app doesn’t look like the conventional VPN apps. The app is a bit bulkier and has a wide design fitted with a packed sidebar.
After opening the app, you can see a huge connection button, and the VPN will automatically suggest a server for you. The main screen also shows the amount of traffic used, harmful sites blocked, and tracking attempts blocked.
Clicking the server button opens the entire server list, which is grouped into categories that include Automatic Location, Recent Locations, Europe, Asia, North America, and Oceania. You can’t favorite a server, but we noticed a little useful functionality that highlights the latest locations without opening the server list.
On the left-hand-side menu bar, the Browsing Protection tab lets you turn on the named feature, and you can also see the number of sites blocked. The Tracking Protection tab also works the same way.
Under Tracker Mapper, you can turn on tracking. This then gives a 24-hour countdown, and there's an option to "Show Tracker Mapper." This opens a new window that lists all trackers and blocked sites. You can also delete the logs.
The Settings tab lets you determine how the VPN behaves, and you can choose a protocol (between OpenVPN and IKEv2) and turn on the kill switch.
Overall, the Freedome VPN Windows app is easy to use. The app has some useful blocking and tracking features, although it misses some more important features such as split tunneling.
The Freedome VPN Android and iOS apps look pretty much the same, and they borrow the design of the desktop apps for familiarity. The apps’ main screen has a huge button, and it shows browsing protection state, connection protection state, amount of traffic protected, and the number of harmful sites blocked. The Android app also shows the number of apps you have secured as it has a split tunneling functionality.
The server button highlights the optimal location. Clicking it shows the automatic location, recent servers, and a button for all servers, which are then listed in various categories.
You can customize the app and the connection by opening settings while at the menu button. The iOS app lets you activate IKEv2 and keep the VPN connection when the device is idle. Its Android counterpart lets you add trusted connections, set split tunneling apps, and enable the automatic kill switch.
Overall, the F-Secure VPN Android and iOS apps are well designed and easy to use. However, the VPN would do well to make IKEv2 the default protocol on iOS as IKEv1 is vulnerable.
To give you an idea of how fast Freedome VPN is, we carried several tests while connected to different nearby and distant servers. All our tests were carried out on a Windows PC using a base connection of 50 Mbps.
When connected to the optimal location (same country), we averaged speeds of 40 Mbps. Servers in other nearby countries averaged 35 Mbps. When we connected to distant servers (different continents), we got between 27 Mbps and 34 Mbps.
Overall, we were impressed with Freedome VPN speeds, especially considering the small number of servers. You can also improve speeds by changing from OpenVPN to IKEv2, and, in our case, speeds improved by about 10 percent.
Being a product of a huge security company, Freedome VPN’s customer support is part of the larger F-Secure support. This doesn’t inspire confidence, but F-Secure does well to provide several methods of reaching out to them.
First, there's a live chat support option, which is the preferred support method in the VPN industry. Live Chat support operates from 9 AM to 6 PM, GMT+3. There’s also phone support for 17 countries that operates from 9 AM to 6 PM (may vary slightly) using that country's time zone. There’s also a number for all other countries.
Apart from the above, you can select FREEDOME on the support page, and you'll find various guides for the VPN. There’s also a forum where you can engage community members as well as see answered questions.
Is Freedome VPN any good?
Freedome VPN is a good option as it offers several useful features alongside privacy and security.
Is Freedome free?
Fredome VPN is not free, but it provides a 5-day free trial.
Is there Freedome VPN for Chrome?
At the moment, Freedome VPN doesn’t have any browser extensions.
Is there a Freedome VPN crack?
No, there’s no crack for Freedome VPN. Beware of malicious apps masquerading as a cracked version of the VPN.
F-Secure Freedome VPN is an easy-to-use VPN service that offers several useful functionalities. The VPN works with streaming services, supports torrenting, and provides browsing and tracking protection. However, the service also has some drawbacks in that it is a bit expensive, and it lacks advanced features for power users.
That said, if you are an F-Secure fan or you are looking for a simple way to secure your connection and access streaming services, Freedome VPN can be a good choice.