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Hide My Ass! (HMA!) Is a company, with Its claim to fame has been its number of readers — it’s more than 400 million now. This provider has witnessed its share of controversy with respect to user privacy. It recently made upgrades in the hopes of winning back the loyalty of its subscribers and redeeming itself service to it. Hidemyass Enable Cookies
We took it To get a test run to find out how much it’s improved and if it’s well worth the cost.
What’s a VPN?
It creates an encrypted tunnel to when you trigger a VPN Protect your information as it moves from the computer to a host controlled by the VPN. From that point, your info exits onto the open internet. It’s a very simple concept, but one with enormous consequences for security and your privacy.
For starters, it prevents anybody lurking in your neighborhood Network from intercepting or monitoring your activity. Though the airport or coffee shop Wi-Fi system looks safe (it might even be password-protected) it’s not reallysecure unless you are using a VPN. For another thing, a VPN can stop your Internet Service Provider (ISP) from gathering information about your online activities so it can sell anonymized user information to the highest bidder.
A VPN also makes it more Challenging to correlate your Online activities together with your own identity. Because your traffic is exiting in the VPN company’s server, you seem to have its own IP address, effectively hiding your true site. It also forces even the most determined attacker to try to sort through all the traffic from different users on the same VPN server to obtain what they’re after. For these reasons, and much more, you want a VPN on your life.
Note that a VPN encrypts your visitors till it exits via the VPN server. Provided that the website your information should be protected all the way along its journey. Also, while VPNs can offer a modicum of anonymity, a tool such as the Tor network is much better at hiding your identity.
Journalists and political activists have long used vPNs To circumvent censorship in countries with repressive internet policies. They’re also useful if you’re looking to circumvent geographic restrictions on streaming content. A VPN can spoof your existing place, providing you with access to restricted content such as BBC streaming or MLB TV. Many VPNs don’t enjoy these actions (which may be in violation of terms of service or even local legislation ) and content providers like Netflix are also cracking down on users that snore their location and the VPN services they utilize to do it.
There’s a good opportunity That you may not have ever laid hands on a VPN before. If that’s the case, don’t worry! We have got a whole feature about the best way best to prepare and use a VPN. Hidemyass Enable Cookies
There are many ways. My Preferred method employs the OpenVPN protocol, which is known for its speed and reliability. Additionally, it is open-source, and therefore has been chosen over for potential vulnerabilities by anyone with the interest to do so.
Hide My Ass utilizes OpenVPN on Windows, using an older version Of the program that supports PPTP, and L2TP, also. There are also two distinct versions of the macOS app which, taken together, support IPSec (IKEv1 and v2), L2TP, and PPTP. Note that these old versions of this app have been phased out from the programmer. The iOS variant uses just IPSec, and the Android program uses just OpenVPN.
That is a bit of a hodgepodge, and I am disappointed that Hide My Ass does not offer OpenVPN on all platforms. Nevertheless, some of the issue is with the platforms. Apple requires programmers to jump through extra hoops if they want to include OpenVPN within an app, but a lot of them are starting to move in this direction. I’d love to view Hide My Ass do exactly the same, across the board.
Your Privacy With Hide My Ass
With any security product, you want to be sure that the Company behind it’s going to be operating in your best interests. This is particularly true for VPNs, which are supposed to improve privacy and safety. If a VPN company is just as nosey as your ISP, there is not much point in using it.
What is noteworthy is that Hide My Ass Will store this information for two to three weeks, while VyprVPN shops it for just 30 days. Other providers hold even less info, or else they dispose of it immediately. Hide My Ass states it retains this data for this time period in order to improve performance, prevent fraud, and stop bad guys from using the VPN to send spam. The company, especially, also lists document sharing as one of the illicit activities it takes this information to stop, despite the company being fine with the use of BitTorrent on certain servers.
It May be possible that this advice could be used To correlate an individual’s identity to specific activity on the internet, but it would likely be very hard. Even with this information, an audience would have to know which VPN server to watch and then compare this action from Hide My Ass’s logs, and have the ability to parse out the target’s traffic from everyone else using the exact same server.
In the past, some VPN companies monetized consumers by Injecting ads in their web traffic. Hide My Ass says it doesn’t do this, and goes much farther. A business representative explained to me that the firm does not gain from user data at all.
The actual place of a VPN company also matters, as it Can inform what protections are given to clients. Hide My Ass has its company headquarters in London, and works under the legal jurisdiction of England and Wales. Notably, the UK at large does have data retention legislation. That’s not perfect. Many VPN providers function in countries without data retention legislation, or in ones which have favorable privacy protections for customers. Hidemyass Enable Cookies
I do not think it is likely to make a determination Concerning a company’s advantages based on its location. But, it is important to comprehend policies and the laws at work in a business with such intimate access to your own information. I encourage readers to consider this advice, and choose a VPN service with which they may feel comfortable.
Servers and Server Locations
A key differentiator between VPN providers is the amount of Available servers and their distribution. Lots of servers means you’re more likely to locate a server that is not bogged down with other users. For its part, Hide My Ass has an extremely commendable servers at its disposal. That said, NordVPN, Private Internet accessibility, and TorGuard VPN have over 3,000 servers apiece. These are my benchmarks for robustness in the VPN server category.
Geographic distribution of these servers can be very important. A great deal of locations means more to pick from for purposes, but also ensures that no matter will likely always be a local server for your performance. Hide My Ass has an extremely impressive 286 server places across some 220 nations. It’s easily.
The list of accessible server locations offered by Hide My Ass is especially noteworthy because it covers regions often ignored by VPN businesses. It’s, for example, server places that are numerous . Additionally, it maintains servers in China, Russia, and Turkey, which have net policies.
Some customers May Be concerned about a company’s Usage of servers. These are software-defined servers that produce servers that are several are effectively operated as by a single server. Virtual servers may also be configured to act as if they are in 1 state when they’re really in another, which is an issue if you are concerned about where your data is traveling.
A company representative told me that a 225 of the 286 server places are all virtual servers. Only 61 of the server locations are hardware, and 450 of Hide My Ass’s 876 servers are virtual. That’s far beyond providers. NordVPN, Private Internet accessibility, TunnelBear, IPVanish, and TorGuard utilize physical infrastructure.
A business representative explained to me that bulk of the Firm’s physical server infrastructure is located in Amsterdam, Frankfurt, London, Miami, New York, Prague, Seattle, and Singapore. This doesn’t really jibe with what Hide My Ass lists on its site. I’d love to see future versions of Hide My Ass be clearer about when you are linked to a virtual server.
Setup and interface
Getting Started with Hide My Ass! Is super easy and the upgraded apps are very user-friendly. You’ll be given a license key, As soon as you sign up for your account. It is possible to use your own credentials (password and username ) to log into almost any program. With the aim of this review, we’ve tested out the Windows client as well as the iOS program. Hidemyass Enable Cookies
As Soon as You’ve Logged in and launched the , you will be greeted with the Success! screen. Click Got It! To access the app’s screen. Here you have Freedom Mode: Instant Mode, Location Mode, and three options for modes.
In Immediate Mode, you can click on the arrow And you’ll be linked to the server for your site.
In Location mode, which can be chosen by you Server you connect to. Click on Change Location to see your options. There is. We all will show you an alphabetized country listing. Clicking the arrow will show you locations within this nation.
Quick Access shows you a list Recently linked to, as well as some options that were recommended. Streaming will give you a choice of two servers acceptable for unblocking popular streaming services such as Netflix, one at the united states and one in the UK.
Peer to Peer shows You permit P2P filesharing. Finally, there’s the Favorites choice; to indicate a server you can click the center to the right of the server name.
Going back To the main screen, the one other option here’s Freedom Mode, that is targeted at users who want to bypass censorship. This mode will connect you to a server in the closest country that’s deemed to be free of censorship.
You can Access the Settings by clicking on the menu icon at the upper left-hand corner of the main display and choosing Preferences. Here, you will see three tabs: General, Network Security, and Kill Switch. In the Generalscreen, you may change your startup options, like starting when you turn on your pc or when the app starts.
You also Possess a Personal Privacy department housing one alternative that relates to Quick Access in Location Mode. If you would like to hide your history, you can uncheck the box.
Next, We’ve got the Network Security screen in which you can choose settings for wifi protection that is automatic. It is also possible to turn on the IP shuffle feature which makes it harder for somebody to detect where you are by periodically changing your IP address. An additional option in this display allows you to utilize TCP with OpenVPN. This is only recommended if UDP is blocked or throttled. TCP is more secure, but UDP is generally faster.
The Tab is the Switch tab, so that it works for all applications, where you are able to toggle on this feature. You decide whether or not to use it and can also add software.
This Is a app and it both aesthetically pleasing and searchable.
Many Providers will have a mobile program that’s unrecognizable compared to the desktop version. But, HMA! Has streamlined its product, and the iOS app looks nearly identical to the Windows version.
Once you’re Logged in, you’ll get to the screen, which is essentially the same as the main screen in the background program. Here you can choose from Location Mode Immediate Mode, or Freedom Mode.
The Only real difference is that if you pick Location Mode, your choices are presented in another manner. You’ve got three tabs: Countries, Cities, and Favorites, but lacking are Quick Access, and the options found in the such as Streaming, Peer to Peer.
To Access the streaming servers in the app, you will have to visit the Cities list and locate the Liberty Island server beneath US, New York. Even the UK Town server may also be found on this listing for access to UK Netflix and BBC iPlayer.
Moving on, The settings to the program can be retrieved by clicking the menu icon at the upper left-hand corner of this screen and select Settings. There you have two choices: Personal solitude and Link Rules.
In The Link Rules segment, you can adjust wifi security settings and decide whether to auto reconnect when wifi or mobile connections are interrupted.
The Personal privacy section has One alternative: Share utilization data with third parties for analytics, which will be your permission to”enable app and apparatus use information to be shared with third parties for analytics.” Keep in mind that this is permitted by default so that it may be one of the first things you wish to turn off.
In General, This is a slick and intuitive app, but many users might be missing extra features such as a kill button and the option to change protocols.
Servers and functionality
The Hide My Ass! Network includes more than 850 servers. Some of them are virtual servers, but a consumer support representative was unable to tell us just how many. Hidemyass Enable Cookies
As we Discussed earlier, HMA presents many choices for choosing the right server, including distinct styles and the ability to indicate servers as favorites. Are indicated with a emblem that was P2P.
We analyzed Servers for functionality in the UK and the US in terms of streaming browsing, and downloading. Besides there being an obvious lag in page load times when attached with a UK server, when browsing, there were no problems. This is not unusual for geographically distant servers (the tests were carried out in Toronto, Canada), but might be frustrating, particularly for users with slow internet speeds.
We did not See any lag or buffering while streaming 1080p with any of the test servers and could play online games with no issues.
HideMyAss! and Netflix
Hide My Ass! unblocks Netflix! But don’t expect to simply connect to any Waiter and go. When we analyzed servers that are random with US Netflix using the desktop client, we had no luck whatsoever. But if you select the Streaming option in the dropdown within Location Mode, then you will see two options: a US server (USA, New York, Liberty Island) and a UK server (UK, Donkey Town). Note that in the cell app, you’ll have to obtain these within the Cities listing in Location Mode.
Connecting Server gave us access to Netflix without difficulty. Linking to the UK one allowed access to BBC iPlayer in Addition to UK Netflix. Many providers just focus on providing US Netflix access, so it is refreshing to see one that strives to give entry to the UK library also. What’s more, BBC iPlayer is breaking down on VPN use, so the ability to unblock this support is a nice perk.
If you are On the lookout for Amazon Prime Video, you might have to go elsewhere. HMA! Is having difficulty unblocking this service at this time and a customer care representative informed us that there isn’t any estimated timeframe for when it may be functioning .
HideMyAss! in China?
Hide My Ass! Does not operate reliably in China. It used to, but HMA! Answers in support forums have indicated that the support will function for some users. You could try your luck, but you’d best look elsewhere if you need a China VPN.
HideMyAss! Speed test performance
For any VPN That is compatible with our evaluation methods, we run. We use a evaluation server to connect to VPN servers in the United Kingdom, the US, Australia, Hong Kong, and Germany. For each and every place, we download an evaluation file (50MB in size) from a US server. This can be done four times per day in intervals. The average download speed for each test is listed and the information is displayed.
You can view From the Simple chart below HMA! Compares to the VPN services we have been testing. While it does not have the fastest rates, it is close to the front of the package in regards to download speeds.
You can see that the spread in outcomes is not as tight as some of the other evaluation VPNs by clicking the comprehensive tab. This means when it comes to speeds you may see some inconsistency.
It is Important to note that these tests aren’t definitive and may serve as a general indication of the functionality you might see. The internet’s volatility adds a factor of randomness. What is more, you’ll probably see smaller or discrepancies, and wait times with a slow link. Hidemyass Enable Cookies
If you Want Any help while setting up or using the service, HMA! Has a couple of alternatives for you. Clicking the Help tab on the Site, you’ll find a Getting Started section and a Knowledge Base. These each house posts related to setting up, troubleshooting, and general queries. So before seeking other alternatives, you may want to research both there is some crossover.
Additionally, You’ll locate a Community button which contributes to a discussion section. This is segregated into different topics; while others are active some appear to be out of date. Under that, there are a number of FAQs.
If you do not Find what you’re looking for, or you simply want a fast response, you can click on the live chat button. The service is prompt and educated, and agents were able to swiftly solve issues we encountered. At one point, there was a representative unable to answer some security questions and advised he’d escalate the issue. This was responded to in under 2 hours which is very fast for an email response.
Safety and privacy
Hide My Ass! Is based in the UK, so it’s subject to data retention laws. The UK can be a Five Eyes (and Fourteen Eyes) country, so it is part of an alliance which allows tracking by external governments. Additionally, it’s home to the Charter which imposes regulations on British ISPs that greatly affect user privacy of the Snooper.
For many Data retention laws in their home country are not really an issue. That is because they operate with a real no-logs policy whereby they do not maintain any connection or visitors logs. They can’t be tied to an individual user, even when they do maintain connection logs.
Moreover, Hide My Ass! Telephones the VPN IP address Connected into a session. Here is the IP address that a site operator can view and document when you visit it. It would technically be possible to piece together each of a user’s online activity since both the actual and VPN IP addresses are logged, involving the finish and VPN site logs. You might have seen news of a 2011 FBI situation involving HMA! In which it handed over logs which were used to track down a hacker that is LulzSec. This can be a black marker for solitude.
One way to Make this less of a problem and to perhaps confuse things a bit would be to take advantage of this IP address shuffle feature. When enabled in the Network Security screen of the desktop app, this switches your IP address outside. It would not make you untraceable but could add a layer of obfuscation.
Privacy Issues on the safety front, Hide My Ass! Fares pretty well. It utilizes. This is in conjunction with 4096-bit RSA keys and perfect forward secrecy. It employs the protocol UDP by default, however you can change to TCP within the desktop client. PPTP, L2TP, IPSec are also available, depending on what program you’re using.
The versions boast To work for programs. The connection will be killed by A kill switch if the VPN link drop for a certain reason. This feature is not available in the mobile apps
A live chat Customer service representative informed us that there’s no DNS leak security. However, a different firm representative assured us that there is actually DNS and IPv6 leak security, but no WebRTC leak protection. Indeed, when we analyzed the support for leaks, we did not observe any DNS leak issues other than WebRTC leaks. HMA! Whereas personal ones would be preferable from a privacy perspective, Does utilize DNS servers that are public.
1 handy Feature that Hide My Ass! Offers is wifi protection, which can be customized in the from the Network Security section of their or the Connection Rules tab of the app that is cell settings.
Characteristics and pricing
Hide My Ass! Offers one merchandise with prices you sign up for. It is definitely not among the cheapest services available. A 12-month planwill put you back $6.99 a month, which is higher than the normal cost for a similar duration. What is more, a great deal of VPN suppliers will supply a protracted plan; for instance, a two- or three-year term with discounts. Hidemyass Enable Cookies
If You are not ready to sign up just yet, HMA! Does provide a turn-key program for $7.99 per month or you could pay on a monthly basis for $11.99 per month. These rates are a bit above average when you compare to competitors.
Payment Choices include PayPal credit cards, and UnionPay. Unfortunately other and bitcoin cryptocurrencies aren’t viable payment methods. There is a money-back guarantee, so you’ll have your payment refunded, if you’re not satisfied with the service.
So what do You get for your money? Hide My Ass! Has a network of more than 850 servers in over 180 nations. Some are devoted to accessing streaming websites and specific servers permit P2P filesharing (read: torrenting). All plans come with unlimited bandwidth and you may connect up to five devices. Programs are available for Windows, MacOS, iOS, and Android. The VPN may be configured with Linux and some routers. Pre-configured routers can be found as an alternate.
From a Security standpoint, HMA! Provides perfect forward secrecy strong encryption wifi security, and the desktop apps come with a kill button. However, the policy issues that plagued the ceremony from the past remain, so privacy is a problem.
For the most part, HMA! Provides a service that is great. It has an adequate network of servers, unlimited bandwidth, and fast speeds. It’s in a position to unblock popular streaming services like Netflix UK, Netflix US, and BBC iPlayer. Plus, it gives strong security intuitive apps, and excellent customer care.
On the Surface, it seems like HMA! Would be a fantastic option for torrenters, with no information Caps and some servers suitable for P2P. However, the problems with the privacy Coverage are any other, in addition to a concern for those looking to torrent privacy-conscious users. This is the important turn-off for this Provider, but it is a large one. Other issues include the inability to operate Reliably in China and also the price tag. Hidemyass Enable Cookies