Switzerland-based ProtonMail has officially released its VPN service, ProtonVPN, which includes a free tier for users apart from paid options. The new virtual private network (VPN) service comes from the provider of end-to-end encrypted email app, ProtonMail, which was made available last year to all on Android and iOS through an app. To recall, ProtonMail was developed by researchers at MIT and CERN.
As expected from a VPN service, the ProtonVPN is developed to let users browse the Web without being tracked as well as also bypass online censorship.
ProtonMail Co-Founder Andy Yen on the launch of new VPN service said, "In the past year, we have seen more and more challenges against Internet freedom, now more than ever, we need robust tools for defending privacy, security, and freedom online."
ProtonVPN's free tier offers servers in three countries, and allows usage on one device though bandwidth speed isn't guaranteed. The Basic tier of the service has been priced at EUR 4 per month (and EUR 48 annual fee), and offers access to all ProtonVPN servers across 14 countries as well as high speed bandwidth. It also allows usage on two devices. The Plus tier has been priced at EUR 8 per month (EUR 96 annual fee), and offers features like high bandwidth, connection to up to five devices, access to Secure Core, and Tor servers. The ProtonVPN Visionary tier offers top tier features like up to 10 devices allowed, highest bandwidth on offer, secure core and tor server access, and ProtonMail Visionary included as an add-on. The Visionary tier has been priced at EUR 24 (or EUR 288 annual fee).
One of the biggest highlights of the ProtonVPN is its secure core architecture which the maker claims routes users connection through encrypted tunnels. "ProtonVPN's advanced security features ensure that an attacker cannot eavesdrop on your connection. It also allows you to access websites that might be blocked in your country. This means an advanced adversary who can monitor the network traffic at the exit server will not be able to discover the true IP address of ProtonVPN users, nor match browsing activity to that IP," says the maker.
ProtonMail reveals that the secure core servers for the ProtonVPN are located in hardened data centres in Switzerland, Iceland, and Sweden. ProtonVPN was being tested for few months ahead of final launch by the ProtonMail community consisting of over 10,000 members.