Is Proton VPN Safe?

There are VPN’s out there that will cost you monthly that have solid systems and good reputations. There are some free VPN’s out there that aren’t so reputable. As far as a free VPN goes, is Proton VPN safe? Or in general, are free VPNs safe? We’ll be talking about that in this article.

Free VPN’s don’t have a track record of being very reputable due to inevitably selling your information to third parties for the sake of making money. After all, companies don’t create this software as a hobby and need to make money somewhere, right?

The Trouble with Free VPN’s

If the software isn’t the product that makes a company money, it’ll be the data generated via the product. Google, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, they’re all free to use but charge you your information to be sold to the highest bidder for the sake of advertising revenue.

Most people are cognitive of these info grabs by the platforms listed above and expect it from these types of services. But not from a VPN. It stands to reason that if you’re using a VPN, one of the ideas is to avoid third parties from catching or viewing your information and removing that potential breach in security. Hence the sour grapes of using a free VPN.

Having said all of that, ProtonVPN is a different story- or at least they claim to be, but in a way that makes sense.

How is ProtonVPN Safe while Remaining Free?

How are VPNs free?

You may be saying, “I don’t know how they do it!”

There are two major reasons that ProtonVPN can offer their VPN service for free.

Additional Features

As we’ve seen work with other businesses that offer software or services, there is a free account with the option to open up a broader range of features through monthly payments. The idea is for someone to use their free service and get to know and trust the service enough to expand into a paid service when the need arises.

We can see this a lot online when it comes to software or other types of online services. There’s a good reason for that- it works. Here’s the difference in what ProtonVPN has to offer between their free service, their basic service, and premium service.

Pricing is converted over from euros and is for their one-year plan rather than their monthly pricing.


1 VPN connection

Servers in 3 countries

Medium speed

No logs/No ads

No time limits or trial period. It’s a free forever service.

Basic – $54.01 US per year

2 VPN connections

Servers in 50 countries

High speed

No logs/No ads

P2P filesharing/BitTorrent support

Plus – $108.01 US per year 

5 VPN connections

Servers in 50 countries

Highest speed (10Gbps)

No logs/No ads

P2P filesharing/BitTorrent support

Secure Core VPN

Tor over VPN

Access blocked content

As you can see, there is a big difference in service between Free and Plus. However, not everyone is looking to get blocked content or torrent files. Some people are perfectly happy with 1 VPN connection. It comes down to preference. But in our opinion, ProtonVPN is the best free VPN.


ProtonMail is the second reason Proton VPN’s free service can stay free, and still not abuse your trust through selling your information to third parties. ProtonMail is their crowning product that assists in covering the costs of their VPN service.

So, between these two reasons (paid services for added features and ProtonMail), ProtonVPN does not need to sell your information to anyone else.  In fact, they vow never to do so. Being based in Switzerland, they are constrained by their word and face suffering major penalties by breaching their terms of service. Switzerland has some of the strictest laws concerning this type of thing, which is why some of the most popular VPN brands are based there.

All of these things lump together toward a “YES” when answering whether ProtonVPN is safe or not.

Is Proton VPN Secure?

The way this article is being approached, there’s a difference between “safe” and “secure.” A VPN that is safe to use hinges on how the company treats your information, or the overall business ethic.

As far as a VPN being secure, it comes down to the technology, and whether it’s effective. Let’s take a look at what ProtonVPN has in place to provide security.

  • They currently maintain 865 servers in over 50 countries.
  • They enforce their strict no-logs policy.
  • Secure Core architecture- Defends against network-based attacks and presents an array of complexities for the most ardent intruder.
  • High-Strength Encryption- Your communications are encrypted with AES-256 encryption.
  • 4096-bit RSA Encrypted Key Exchange- This is among the strongest forms of encryption today, providing a secure handshake between your device and the VPN.
  • HMAC with SHA384 is used for message authentication. This ensures that your messages are safe between your device and ProtonVPN’s servers.
  • Two Factor Authentication- An added layer of security to make sure only you have access to your account.

With all of the above available, let it be known that the level of security for the free package is in no way different than their most expensive package. The only things that differ are the added features, not the strength of security.

Because of that model, the free package of ProtonVPN is among the most secure free VPN’s out there today.


The evidence of this company’s competence is answered through their ProtonMail product. That service is wildly popular due to the levels of integrity incorporated in the product, and the multiple layers of features and security. Others who have conducted Proton VPN reviews have been impressed overall, finding few reasons to complain.

Those who have used and reviewed a ProtonVPN download have had top-tier, positive responses about everything from the user-friendliness to the higher-tech security aspects of their service.

The additional features that come through the paid program are only as beneficial as your preferences or requirements. But as far as their free program, there’s nothing out there that can beat it. Having all of the security measures of a top-paid service for free is only real if the company hosting the service is competent and capable.

We are asked quite often, “Are free VPNs safe?” Our usual answer would be “no”. However, from what I’ve been able to discern, ProtonVPN is both competent and capable of providing continued free coverage and security for years to come, even their free version.

If you have input on ProtonVPN or ProtonMail, I’d love to hear from you. Or perhaps you have other related experience or insight that would be helpful. We’d love to hear from you! Leave a comment below and we will respond. 



  1. Hi

    Thanks for putting this very imformative article together.

    I was really confused about all the different products available, and I’m not really wanting to spend money monthy until I know that the system is right for me.

    I’m very tempted to get this now that I understand what I can get for free before I need to add any extras.

    I love the fact that even the free version is just as secure as their paid up version, that’s definitely a plus.

    You’ve saved me a lot of trawling through the internet for this info, so thanks again!

    1. Certainly! I’m glad to provide this info to you. The only free VPN I’m currently aware of that I would trust is ProtonVPN. Remember that the free service with ProtonVPN, although providing the same level of security and privacy as top-of-the-line VPNs and the same as their paid versions, there are features with their paid version that may or may not be available with the free version. But it sounds like the free version will suit your needs fine, and you can always upgrade once you get a feel for their services.

      Let me know what you think!

  2. Somehow none of the VPNs seem to mask my Ip address for Netflix. Netflix still detects that I am from India and blocks the USA content for me. Let me try proton VPN and see if it works 🙂 Thank you for the review

    1. Hi Prav! Thanks for the comments. Proton should serve your purposes for accessing Netflix from India. Let me know if it solves your problem.

      Thanks again!

  3. Hey,

    I have been looking for a good VPN since March. As we now have to work from home, our remote working hasn’t been the best, so I have been using my own VPN’s, but only the free ones. The ones you are reviewing seems really good but is still free, so I will definitely give this one a go.

    I will let you know how I go with this VPN and if I have any questions or issues then I will contact you. If that is OK?

    Thank you for sharing and keep up the great work.

    All the best,


    1. Hi Tom! A good VPN is essential for working from home and even more important when working remotely out in the field in places like coffee shops, restaurants, airports, etc… As laid out in the article, free ones don’t have the features that paid ones have, but most will sell your info because that’s how they generate revenue. Where Proton is different is that they have other ways of generating money without compromising their clients identity and privacy. Proton’s method is through their ProtonMail service. It’s a 100% encrypted, secure email that is becoming very popular. Check it out when you can. Here is the link: ProtonMAIL

      Thanks for your comments. Let me know what you think of the Proton product(s) once you’ve tried them.

  4. This VPN will definitely save me alot of time and pain of constant disconnection when trying to work from home. You’ve laid out this information really well and very easy to read and understand. Paid version is definitely worth paying for after reading your article.

    Many thanks

    Best wishes

    1. Thanks Habib! It’s a must to acquire a reputable VPN service when working from home, or anytime really, but especially now that we are all working remotely. You will be pleased with ProtonVPN I’m sure, and if you would, hit me back on here after you’ve tried it out. We’d love your feedback no matter what it is.


  5. Hi Darrin! Thank you for a very informative article about VPNs. I have learned so much just by reading it. I never knew that these types of companies sold customer’s personal information to the highest bidder for the sake of advertising revenue.

    I am really a novice when it comes to VPNs, but I’m happy to learn from your article and glad to know that ProtonVPN is free and the security level for the free package is just as safe, efficient and competent as the most expensive VPN package and that the added features are the only difference.

    1. Thanks, Wendy, for your comments! And you are very welcome for the information! I hope it has helped you. Let us know if you purchase or acquire a VPN and let us know your thoughts.


  6. Hello Darrin,

    Thank you so much for this info on a safe and affordable VPN like Proton VPN. I need VPN because I work from home by teaching online for companies in China. Sometimes if the company I work for has problems with their interface or maybe the app that I use on my laptop, their tech support will request a remote check where we will give them permission to check our computer and control things remotely (I know some tech support are not based in China because one I spoke with a British guy). I need a trusted VPN to make sure we have a secure internet connection and our private data won’t be shared against our will. I don’t mind the annual fee, I think it is worth it.

    I have bookmarked your site for future reference. 

    Looking forward to reading more posts from you.



    1. Thanks Ferra! I’m glad you found the article helpful. In your situation, a VPN would definitely be an asset. Let me know if you have any questions.


  7. Hello, thank you for sharing your insight about Proton VPN. The fact that the company is based in Switzerland gives me peace-of-mind somehow. As I am based in a German-speaking country, I have done a quick search for reviews in German. The ratings mostly came up with 4 out of 5 stars or 9 out of 10 points. I did come across some more critical reviews related to ProtonMail (Spam, fraudulent mails), do you have more information about that? I suppose these things occur with any e-mail system? Anyway, Proton VPN seems like a trustworthy service as far as I can tell.

    1. Hi Drea! Thanks for your comments and question. I haven’t heard of any spam or fraudulent email issues with ProtonMail, but it doesn’t mean something didn’t happen. Sometimes people hear things and post it as inacurate as it may be. So, it could’ve happened, but their reputation is one of being the most secure in the email arena. 

      I hope that helps. 🙂

  8. I really enjoyed reading your reviews. I’ve wondered about the use of a VPN, but wasn’t that up to speed as to the benefits. This page sounds like a winner for someone like me. Since only a few months ago, you did a review on the “best” VPNs, have you since tried out this ProtonVPN?

    I have another question – I see things like file sharing and torent service in the higher end service. Is it possible to use any of these services expressly for file sharing? Using something like Drop Box gets expensive when trying to move or store large files. (Like DVD size.)

    Just want to say that I appreciate your clean use of spelling and grammar. It makes for much easier reading for me.

    I love your topic and field of information. Thanks,

    1. Hi Goldtooth! Thanks for your comments and questions. Honestly, ProtonVPN is one of the few top ones that I haven’t owned. I have seen the program, I’ve perused their app on other computers, and I’ve received ample input from qualified experts in the field regarding the security and functionality of ProtonVPN. Very soon I will personally try out the service on my devices. But I have zero doubt that it will meet all of my expectations.

      As far as file sharing is concerned, it isn’t something I’ve had need of, but for those who do a substantial amount of it, this is another added feature beyond the security of a person’s devices that a VPN provides. And I understand the same to be the case with torrenting. As you said, Dropbox and similar applications can become expensive for those who are sending and receiving a lot of thick files over the Internet. Finding another option while utilizing a VPN would certainly save some money.

      Thanks again for your comments and questions. I hope this has been helpful.

  9. One other thing: I’ve looked at some of your other articles regarding VPNs and the differences they have. Also, you explained a bit more about what makes a reliable VPN a reliable VPN. This was also helpful!

  10. Hello Darrin

    Your post is really interesting, I’ve read a couple of them and they were informative as well. Your entire site appears to be comprehensive and informative. I have not heard of Proton VPN but your post has given me insight into this company and their services, and from the article, I think it is a good option for me. I will give it a try and also recommend some of my friends to do so, it will save me from some stress and time too. Thanks for sharing

    1. Awesome! Thanks for the feedback and other comments. Please let us know once you have a system and place. We’d love to hear from you regarding your satisfaction or just what you think. 🙂

  11. Thanks a lot for sharing this info about this VPN. I have used them in the past and I must say they were really good then. Although I haven’t used them in a while I’m sure it is something I should get back rolling to protect my family’s online vulnerabilities. I do know that the free VPNs have a lot of risks as they usually leave a person more vulnerable than they were to begin with, but according to your post, ProtonVPN seems like it would be safe. Thanks for the information. I plan to try this one out!

    1. Thanks for your comments and input. We are always glad to help. Let me know what you think of ProtonVPN once you get it rolling. 🙂

  12. We all need to understand the importance of using a VPN because many people come up with a big myth that states that a VPN only takes in so much data when in truth it is a big help as it5 keeps one’s com[uter and identity safe and invisible to hackers, and everyone hopefully. I have not heard of Proton VPN before today but through your review, I can see now that it is very reliable and worth it. I’m inclined to check it out. 

    1. They are becoming a necessary piece of our digital lives and online presence. No security measures are completely foolproof, but the higher the level and the more components we have, the odds become astronomically in our favor that we will not get hacked or have our identity stolen. 

      Thanks a ton for your comments. Drop in any time.

      Darrin 🙂

  13. Hello Darrin! after going through the Internet to see which VPN is better, I came across the ProtonVPN and I was amazed and what I saw. Finding such a comprehensive VPN is great! I’m thinking about downloading this one soon. Also getting to understand the difference between a safe VPN and a secured VPN is very eye-opening. Thanks for the info! Cheers….

    1. Thanks, Justin! I appreciate your comments. Let me know how you like the ProtonVPN or whichever one you end up going with. We’d love to have your feedback. 

      Darrin 🙂

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