SPYOFF VPN REVIEW
SpyOff VPN: robust encryption and acceptable features make for a passable option
Data privacy and online security are concepts that people should not take for granted in our current reality. That is why VPNs have become highly popular apps, and brands struggle to demonstrate their features and effectiveness to earn a good reputation and, in the end, customers.
SpyOff VPN is a quality service that lacks the “star power” of some of its peers but protects users’ content and location with a myriad of features and protocols. With it, you can torrent, stream movies, unblock content in 40 countries, and protect yourself from hackers and cybercriminals.
VPNs are online resources that can offer privacy and security through anonymous browsing. They can build a virtual tunnel to mask the user’s IP address and traffic from all kinds of agents or unwanted situations, effectively positioning themselves between the user and the broader network to manage connection requests and leave the Internet Service Provider out of the equation.
In this article, we will review SpyOff VPN, which is a middle of the pack brand that has enticing offerings and clear issues, like most average providers. SpyOff’s server park was recently updated to add more locations and servers (it now approaches 1,000,) so users can unblock geo-restricted content in 40 nations around the world.
While privacy practices seem a little iffy, SpyOff VPN does not share any information with third parties, making its service a worthwhile addition as it protects your digital assets and overall online activity. It has robust AES 256-encryption and three protocols to choose from OpenVPN, L2TP/IPSec, and PPTP.
While the brand claims that it is based in San Marino, some suggest that there may be a parent company in Germany. Nevertheless, we recommend you to keep reading if you want to get to know SpyOff from a closer perspective.
Amount of Servers
Amount of Locations
|Torrenting and streaming allowed, Kill-Switch, DNS and WebRTC leak protection|
|Netflix and most major streaming providers|
Mone Back Guarantee
|$5.60 / Month (Yearly Plan)|
When it comes to privacy, SpyOff has a no logging policy, clearly stated on its website: “we do not record any usage data or connection logs”. By following another link, we find a separate data logging page, and the message is as follows: “Data logging is carried out by a process-controlled memory unit, a data logger. This data logger records data via an interface with a certain rhythm and places this data in another storage medium, such as a log file.”
While the extra information can be somewhat confusing, by further examining the page, we find that the VPN “does not log any of your activities… cannot trace which server you are currently using, nor which activities you are carrying out on the internet.”
However, in the terms and conditions, the following can be read: “For the customer’s protection, the provider stores the IP address of the internet connection from which the direct debit authorization was granted during registration.” It means that SpyOff does store your IP address and email address at the registration period. The brand is not known for its sharing practices.
With SpyOff VPN, the complete data transfer is safely encrypted. The user is safe, and as an additional security feature, the provider has set up a “warrant canary” page, which you could check at any time to ensure the brand hasn’t been the subject of a law enforcement investigation.
The provider explains that under its encryption, “nobody can ever see what you are doing on the Internet, and your data is not tracked and by that cannot be read by third parties.” SpyOff also has three protocols to choose from.
They identify the protocols as “Ultra Secure” (OpenVPN,) “Balanced” (L2TP/IPSec,) and High Speed (PPTP.) OpenVPN is the gold standard, as it has the robust 256-bit AES encryption on all popular devices such as Android, iOS, Linux, Mac OS X, and Windows. By using digital certificates, OpenVPN can authenticate data on both sides using username and password.
The “Balanced” is the equivalent of the L2TP/IPSec protocol, which offers a reliable combination of speed and encryption. It is available for iOS, Linux, Mac OS X, and Windows, and supports the block cipher AES with a key length of 128 bit.
The “Highspeed” is the PPTP protocol, which is very fast, but not nearly as secure as OpenVPN or L2TP/IPSec. You can use it for unblocking geo-restricted content, but it is beneficial for other purposes.
For the record, the AES (Advanced Encryption Standard) is the most widely used and secure encryption process available in the market today, and every brand with intentions of competing for a spot in the elite needs to offer it.
When it comes to performance, SpyOff can offer mixed results. Although it is proud to advertise itself as the “fastest VPN service alive,” the truth is that speeds can be a bit slow, depending on the server. It is not the slowest brand, at all, but it lacks the performance stability and high-end rates of some of its competitors.
The signup process is very standard and straightforward: the customer needs to choose a username and a password, choose its country and provide an email address. The page could present errors if you introduce non-accepted characters and signs.
The next step involves entering a payment method. You can pay with all the major credit cards, PayPal, or BitPay. Since there is a 15-day free trial, you won’t be charged a dime if you cancel your subscription within the first 14 days, but you need to make sure to read the small print.
You need to cancel before the 14 days because waiting until day 15 means that you will be charged. The other thing to keep in mind is that “if you do not cancel up to at least seven days before the end of the contract, the contract is extended by at most one further month.”
After choosing the payment option, another page opens with a download link for the appropriate client of SpyOff. An email arrives, and you need to follow the instructions to complete the process.
The layout and interface are simple and easy to use. There are no advanced setup options o complicated things such as load data, filtering, or server maps: you only see the servers and locations list. With no auto-select option, you need to browse for your preferred choice manually.
The VPN brand seems to be closely related to Germany (more on that later,) showing error messages in German, and often connecting to German servers after choosing one from a different country.
The interface provides the option to switch between the protocols available, which is very convenient. Remember that the high-speed option is PPTP, so think twice before actually choosing it.
There is no auto-connect feature, and if the VPN connection fails, the client does nothing. There is a kill switch, but you need to find it and activate it for it to protect you.
Despite not having fancy security offerings like some of the most widely recognized brands, SpyOff does have some features. It can offer unlimited bandwidth and server switching, which means that it is suitable for performing data-intensive activities such as online gaming, streaming, and torrenting, not to mention regular browsing.
Users can switch from servers and locations with no limitations, which is very convenient if the customer needs to find fast speeds, or wants to unblock content in another area without having to leave the client.
One of the best offerings that SpyOff has is its ability to let users connect an unlimited amount of devices at the same time under the same account. It is beneficial to build a small network at home or in your office, or if you own, for instance, a smartphone, a laptop, a desktop computer, and a router.
Unlike other VPN companies, SpyOff offers users the possibility to install and set up encryption and content protection services directly in routers, together with Flashrouters.
SpyOff also comes with a kill switch, which is a tool that, if active, deactivates the user’s Internet connection in the event of a VPN connection failure. That scenario would prevent the person’s IP address to leak on the web thus exposing its privacy and assets. However, you need to enable the kill switch feature for it to work.
SpyOff also offers unlimited data volume, which means that using streaming platforms and sites such as Netflix are possible without limitations. Users can upload and download as much content as they want. The provider also offers high-speed servers to boot.
SpyOff offers both, DNS and WebRTC leak protection, as well as the opportunity to perform leak tests if needed.
SpyOff isn’t a particularly cheap alternative: the pricing structure allows users to purchase subscriptions for one month, at $12.99, which ranks among the most expensive brands in the industry.
For six months of SpyOff VPN usage, the rates go down to $10.99 per month, which are billed $64.94 twice a year. However, right now, there is an exclusive offer available for new subscribers: if they sign up for the yearly package, the equivalent of the 30-day payment would be $5.60, which is collected $89.60 once per year. As per the terms of the current offer, there are four free months in the last offer!
All plans come with a 30-day money back guarantee. Additionally, SpyOff has another advantage over the competition: it offers a 15-day free trial for you to test all the features for a couple of weeks. It is, as previously outlined, 14 days.
Overall, SpyOff’s speeds are somewhere around the middle of the pack when we review the VPN market. The client advertises itself in its website as one of the fastest around the industry.
We found it to be average. It does slow it down a notch, but it is not an extreme drop off. For example, joining a UK-based server provided download speeds between 15 and 20 Mbps, enough to perform most tasks without much hassle.
Until recently, SpyOff’s network was average-sized, with 395 servers in 25 locations. However, the company has worked very hard and invested precious resources in taking that number to more respectable levels, and it can now claim that it has approximately 1,000 servers in 40 nations around the world.
Most of the countries in which SpyOff has servers are located in Europe and North America. However, there are some interesting areas as well, including some servers in Africa, Asia, and Oceania.
Platforms and devices
One of SpyOff’s most enticing offerings is that it allows an unlimited amount of devices to be connected at the same time under the same account. Not even the very best VPNs offer that to their customers.
When it comes to device and platform compatibility, SpyOff also gets good grades. You can set this service up in Android, iOS, Windows, Mac, Linux or even routers, with suitable apps for all of them. Today, it is essential to protect all your gadgets from prying eyes on the web.
We don’t know what to make of SpyOff’s jurisdiction situation. It hails from San Marino, which is a heaven for those looking for privacy on the web: it isn’t a member of the “14-Eyes” mass surveillance alliance, and it doesn’t have any data-retention laws.
However, although SpyOff’s parent company FriendlyDuck is from San Marino, the support ticket submission page has some German phrases. The knowledge base is in German and English, and the data logging policy clearly states that no data is logged because of a Berlin court ruling.
If that is the case, would it be possible that SpyOff operates under German jurisdiction? That would cause the high grades from the San Marino jurisdiction to collapse because Germany does belong to the “14 Eyes” surveillance alliance.
A very underestimated aspect of VPN brands is customer support. Having a friendly, highly responsive staff to solve people’s problems with the service quickly goes a long way to guaranteeing client satisfaction.
The elite of the industry is known for having a live chat feature to provide fast solutions. Sadly, SpyOff doesn’t offer this feature. If the customer support form sparked a fast response, there wouldn’t be a problem, but that isn’t the case, either.
|It works with Netflix and other streaming platforms||There are some catches in the payment section. Read carefully|
|It has three protocols and secure encryption||Speeds are nothing to write home about|
|It has a 15-day free trial and a 30-day money-back guarantee||The logging policy is questionable|
|Excellent security features such as a kill switch, DNS and WebRTC leak protection||Poor customer support|
|P2P and Torrenting supported|
|Recenlty increased server farm and locations|
In conclusion, although there are some red flags about the brand’s privacy and data logging policy, not to mention its real jurisdiction, we can recommend the company as a practical solution to achieve data privacy and online security.
It successfully fends off hackers, cybercriminals, malware developers, and other agents thanks to robust AES 256-encryption and security features such as DNS leak protection, WebRTC leak protection, and a kill switch. It is also suitable for Netflix streaming, torrenting, and online gaming.
Speeds are average. As for the price, we can conclude that SpyOff is not cheap by any means, but it won’t break your budget either: there is currently an offer of 16 months of the service and pay only 12.
Overall, SpyOff may be a couple of steps short of elite status. However, it is a stable company with further room to grow and the desire of making things right.