NordVPN Review

NordVPN

Summary

For more information about NordVPN click here.

Features:

  • Strict no log policy
  • Custom software for Windows, OS X, iOS and Android
  • Connect up to 6 devices with one account
  • P2P Friendly
  • No Bandwidth Limit
  • Pay using Bitcoin, PayPal, Credit Cards and more
  • 767 servers in 57 countries (Updated Regularly)
  • Double VPN for increased anonymity
  • IKEv2/IPsec, OpenVPN, PPTP, L2TP, IPSec security protocols offered
  • Free proxy list (up to 3000 free proxies)
  • Multiple Device Support: iPhone, iPad, Routers Game Consoles and More
  • Multiple OS Support: Windows, iOS, OS X, Android, Linux, Blackberry and More
  • Shared IP (Static/dynamic)
  • Decidated IPS (special price)
  • Own DNS servers
  • Open VPN AES-256-SHA
  • IKEv2/IPsec (AES-256-GCM / SHA2-384 / PFS 3072-bit)
  • Unique Smart Play feature for added streaming connectivity
  • Customer Support (24/7) via ticket system, Facebook, Twitter or Email
  • Encrypted Chat
  • Convenient server map and custom software

Customer Service

NordVPN offers quite a few different options to reach there customer service team. They have my favorite option with a live chat feature. I had a few questions for their customer service team and I had them all of them answered satisfactorily with in a few minutes. I had made initial contact with the folks at NordVPN with in a few seconds of using their live chat service. They also have a few other options for reaching out to them. They have a ticket system and email services available. These would be a little bit slower I would have to imagine, but they do offer them. And then these were two that I was particularly interested in: Facebook and Twitter. So, I inquired further about this with their customer service rep. He described that you just need to go to either there Facebook page (here) or Twitter page (here) and send them a private message, post or tweet and you can get answers back in a short period of time. Their Facebook page says that they usually respond with in an hour. NordVPN’s customer service rep did say though that their fastest response time will still come from the live chat option available on their website.

Pricing

NordVPN offers four pricing plan’s. They offer a standard monthly subscription at $11.95/ month. No discount at this pricing point. Their second plan is a semi-annual $42.00 recurring subscription which works out to $7.00/month. The semi-annual plan works out to a 41% savings versus the monthly plans rate. The third one is a yearly plan is a yearly plan that is billed annually at $69.00 per year, which works out to $5.75/month. This is a 52% savings as compared to their monthly subscription, but their best offer is on their 2 year plan which comes at a whopping 67% off at a monthly rate equal to $4.00/month. This is billed every two years at $96.00 biannually.

NordVPN Payment Plan Chart

Plan

Price

Discount

Monthly Recurring Subscription

$11.95/month

None

Six Month Recurring Subscription

$7.00/month; $42.00 billed semi annually

41%

Annual Recurring Subscription

$5.75/month; $69.00 billed annually

52%

Bi-Annual Recurring Subscription

$4.00/month; $96.00 billed bi-annually

67%

To Purchase NordVPN go here.

Refund Policy

NordVPN has a 30 day money-back guarantee. So you can purchase their service and take it for a test drive for 30 days with no worries. What is really cool about NordVPN though is that they offer a 3 day free trial that you don’t have to put any money out for. Details about their 3 day free trial can be found here. One thing to be noted about their refund is that if you have purchased their services through the Apple app store or Google play you cannot get a refund.

Free Trial Installation Guide Video

 

Payment

NordVPN has the following ways of paying for their service. You can make a payment with the three major credit cards: Visa, MasterCard or American Express. Payment can also be made using Paypal or Bitcoin. NordVPN offers the ability to pay with different gift cards. For instance when I logged in to their payment window it gave me the options of a few different store’s gift cards. I could use Subway, CVS and a couple of others to pay for the service. According to their customer service agent that I chatted with depending on where you are located they could have different store’s gift cards that are available for use. For me there was a total of six alternative payment options including gift cards. Below is a screen shot showing some of the options that were available to me.

 

NordVPN has a couple of other payment options as well. You can use Neosurf or Mint as a couple of other ways to pay for your subscription. If you purchase the app for your tablet or smart phone you can pay for the service either through iTunes or the Google Play depending upon your device’s maker. The final way that I found to pay was through something NordVPN called NordVPN credits. You can earn these credits by referring your friends or family members over to NordVPN and for every purchase that they make purchasing NordVPN’s service. You receive a 20% credit towards your own personal account that can be used to pay for your own account. So for example. Lets say you had a family member who bought $100.00 dollars worth of services from NordVPN you would get a credit of $20 that would be put in your account and could be redeemed the next time you are up for renewal. So, that is a pretty cool way to pay for your service, by telling others, getting them to sign up and then NordVPN rewards you with a credit towards the purchase of your next subscription.

Privacy

NordVPN’s service has over 760 different servers in 57 countries. They have servers across the globe from the USA to the Netherlands over to Singapore and back again. They have servers on every continent except for Antarctica for reasons that don’t need to be addressed. NordVPN has a few different categories of servers they are explained below.

Server Types

Double VPN – your connection goes through two VPN servers before it goes out onto the internet.

Onion Over VPN – your connection goes through NordVPN’s server and then onto the onion router (TOR) and then onto the internet.

Ultra Fast TV – servers for online streaming

Anti-DDoS – used for a less interrupting connection

Dedicated IP Servers – Servers with a consistently dedicated IP address.

Standard Server – Regular VPN server

P2P – allows for peer to peer traffic to occur. There won’t be any rerouting of traffic into NordVPN’s P2P blackhole if your using torrent client or any other P2P options.

NordVPN uses the industry standard AES-256 encryption for their VPN service. They use the following security protocols: IKEv2/IPsec, Open VPN, PPTP, L2TP and IP Sec. In keeping with the privacy theme, NordVPN has a strict no log policy. They don’t track your or keep logs of your surfing habits. You can also have upto 6 devices connected under one account. This will allow you to have your smart phone, tablet, PC and laptop all protected at the same time and you only need one account for this.

Speed Test

We did some speed tests using the following three websites: www.speedtest.net, www.speedtest.org and www.speakeasy.net/speedtest. The purpose of our different speed tests was to determine how much NordVPN slowed down the Internet’s download and upload speed’s. We used each website to do a pre and post NordVPN launch to see how it slowed down the download and upload speed’s. We found the following results: www.speedtest.net showed NordVPN slowed the download speed by 0.30Mb/s and the upload speed by 0.09Mb/s, www.speedtest.org recorded no decrease in download speeds and actually had an upload speed increase of 0.16Mb/s and www.speakeasy.net/speedtest slowed the download speed by 0.31Mb/s and the upload speed by 0.07Mb/s. The average download speed decrease was 0.22Mb/s and the average upload speed decrease was by 0.01Mb/s.

Speedtest Images

Speedtest.net – Before

Speedtest.net – After

Speedtest.org – Before

Speedtest.org – After

Speakeasy.net/speedtest – Before

Speakeasy.net/speedtest – After

Speed Test Results Chart

Speed Test Review Video

 

For more information about NordVPN click here.

IP Location

The IP Location test is done to show if the servers that are selected once NordVPN was activated all show broadcasting from the same location. We used www.iplocation.net, which is a aggregate site which uses five other sites to show IP locations. The five other sites are: www.ip2location.net, www.ipinfo.io, www.eurekapi.com, www.db-ip.com and www.maxmind.com. So, we selected 4 different locations to test. We started off in Albania, then moved over to India, then down to Australia and finally ended up in Canada. The Albanian, Indian and Canadian servers all showed consistent locations amongst the five websites. The Australian servers showed four of the five server broadcasting from Australia with one server broadcasting from the United Kingdom. Below I have taken screen shots of each of the locations.

IP Location Images

Albania

India

Australia

Canada

IP Location Video Review

Server List Complaint

One thing that I did not like about NordVPN is the lack of specific location selection in the server selection. It is done by nation only. You can’t get more specific than that. You can choose any nation where NordVPN has servers, which to their credit is quite large, but you can’t go to smaller subnational divisions like to the city or state level in the USA for example, or the provincial level in Canada. You just have to pick a server and see where it is located out of after it is connected by using a website like www.iplocation.net. As shown below both Australia and the United Kingdom have large many different servers throughout their respective nations. In some cases like Thailand, as shown below, there is only one server so, it isn’t applicable.

Server List

Australia Server List

 

United Kingdom Server List

Thailand Server List

Platform’s Supported

NordVPN offers VPN protection for the following operating systems: Windows, iOS, Andriod, OS X and Linux (although, they don’t list Linux on their features page). They also support devices like your iPad, iPhone. Routers, different game consoles and more.

DNS Leak Test

The domain name system is the process by which website address’s like, www.safesecuresurfing.com, are translated into the internet protocol which is how the computer’s speak one to another using the internet protocol. A DNS leak is a flaw within the system which reveals your true IP location to the server’s your broadcasting from. Thus your privacy has been compromised. So, when we are testing NordVPN’s servers for a DNS Leak we want to be sure that there is only one server being broadcast. So, we use three websites to show if we have a DNS leak before and after the servers are launched. We use www.dnsleaktest.com, www.dnsleak.com and www.dns-leak.com to compare and contrast the results.

NordVPN passed the DNS Leak test with no troubles as all. All three websites showed that before NordVPN server was launched that there was multiple leaks occuring, but after the three website had been launched there was no leak occurring. This is shown in the chart below.

DNS Leak Test Chart

DNS Leak Test Images

dnsleaktest.com – Before

dnsleaktest.com – After

dnsleak.com – Before

dnsleak.com – After

dns-leak.com – Before

dns-leak.com – After

DNS Leak Test Video

For more information about NordVPN click here.

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