CyberGhost has much to recommend it as a VPN. The company makes the best VPN protocols available, and they use AES 256-bit encryption. It’s possible to connect just about any device to CyberGhost. Many potential customers also will appreciate the ability to connect up to seven devices at once.
One of CyberGhost’s most attractive features is that its headquarters is located in Romania. This country is not part of the Five Eyes, Nine Eyes or 14 Eyes surveillance alliances. For people who are conscious of security and privacy online, this is critical.
Member nations of these networks conduct espionage-style activities and share any intelligence that they gather. If even one intelligence agency gets their hands on your private data, you can be certain that it will be shared with others. When you’re trying to maintain anonymity, that’s the last thing you want.
Overview of CyberGhost
CyberGhost was founded in 2011, which means that they’ve been around for a while. They’ve had time to develop great features and get rid of issues along the way. Overall, they are pretty reliable, and they are relatively affordable too.
Although many find CyberGhost an excellent choice, a few of the best VPNs actually offer even faster data transfer rates and more extensive networks of servers. Whatever the case may be, the general consensus remains that many people find this VPN’s performance to be more than adequate.
Security and Encryption
Like many of the top VPNs available today, CyberGhost gives users a choice when it comes to protocols. OpenVPN is considered the best protocol in current use. It’s open-source software, which means that scores of volunteers have reviewed its code to detect and correct vulnerabilities. Additionally, because it’s open source, it’s possible for anyone to make improvements or amendments to it. A reliable VPN company may make some tweaks that enable even greater safety and security online.
Knowledgeable users may appreciate the opportunity to use other VPN protocols like IPSec and L2TP while they browse. CyberGhost is compatible with a wide range of devices, including those running Windows, Mac, iOS, Android and Linux.
Military-grade, AES 256-bit encryption is a default setting for CyberGhost users. This is great news for the security conscious. Also welcome news is that this VPN is compatible with The Onion Router, or TOR. While not necessary for all users, TOR may be useful for certain applications and for people who are living in places where Internet access is extremely limited.
Such users also may be interested in CyberGhost’s Double Encryption feature. Although using Double Encryption slows down data transfer, it may be critical to ensuring the online safety of individuals living under totalitarian regimes.
CyberGhost’s Server Locations
CyberGhost has a relatively extensive server network, though it cannot be said that it is as comprehensive as the networks provided by the best VPNs. Still, having 3,066 servers in 59 countries is hardly shabby. However, if you live in or frequently travel to the regions that are not as well represented in CyberGhost’s network, then you may do better with another VPN provider that has a more extensive presence.
North America is well covered by CyberGhost. In the US alone they have 500 servers. Just under 100 servers are in Canada. While many of the most highly rated VPNs have a presence in Mexico, CyberGhost does not. They do have 10 servers in Costa Rica. Since Central America is frequently overlooked, this is good news.
South America generally is not well covered by VPN providers. CyberGhost maintains servers in Brazil, Chile and Colombia, which is an improvement over some competitors.
It may be worthwhile to some users to know that CyberGhost uses a combination of physical and virtual servers. You can rest assured that a physical server actually is located where the VPN says it is. However, with virtual servers, it’s possible that software on the server merely makes it look like it is in one location while it actually is in another.
Some VPN users dislike or are suspicious of this practice. They do not want their private data to be routed through certain countries. If you’re one of these individuals, then you may prefer a different VPN provider that exclusively uses physical servers.
Using BitTorrent or P2P with CyberGhost VPN
In the spirit of total online accessibility and freedom, CyberGhost puts no restrictions on downloading torrents or sharing files via P2P. Unlike other VPNs, they don’t restrict these activities to a few servers nor do they try to throttle speeds on people who are engaged in these activities.
CyberGhost even has a few specialized streaming servers, so if one of your primary pastimes is streaming Netflix, Amazon Prime and others, you should easily be able to do so.
CyberGhost VPN’s Speed Test Results
It would be nice if CyberGhost could deliver the kind of data transfer rates that are achieved by other high quality VPNs, but they don’t. This may be so for several reasons. Perhaps they don’t have enough servers to handle the number of users they have. Whatever the reason, the results are undeniable. CyberGhost can’t keep up with the competition where speed is concerned.
Prior to turning on CyberGhost, things were moving along nicely. Baseline testing showed downloads of 98.71 Mbps while uploads were clipping along at 53.00 Mbps. Now, with the best VPNs, you would hardly notice too much of a difference. That’s not what happened with CyberGhost.
One of the servers in New York provided miserable download rates of 18.41 Mbps and upload rates of 7.12 Mbps. Considering the relative closeness of the test computer’s location and this server, the data transfer rate should have been much better.
A server in Amsterdam yielded better results, but not by much. With downloads coming in at 51.10 Mbps and upload rates at 21.10 Mbps, it is safe to say that this is not exactly impressive performance.
However, it was impressive when compared with the Hong Kong server’s performance. With download rates of about 4.0 Mbps and upload speeds of 15.65 Mbps, it’s clear that speed is not CyberGhost’s forte.
CyberGhost VPN’s Logging Policy
Internet Service Providers, or ISPs, are known to maintain logs of web traffic. In fact, they make a record of every click you make once you log on. No one is probably spending their day reviewing every move you make online, but the ISP does store these data for a time.
ISPs may sell these data to marketing companies. Alternatively, they may use the information to directly market to you. These data further may be accessed by authorities in law enforcement or the government. In fact, if your ISP is served with a subpoena, then they must share all of the data they may have gathered about your online behavior.
These data logs can be troubling for numerous reasons. In totalitarian regimes, it can be downright scary to have someone keeping such close tabs on you. Even if you live in a relatively safe place, do you really think that your most sensitive information is safe with your ISP?
The logging that ISPs do is one of the main reasons to use a VPN. The VPN makes it impossible for the ISP to track your clicks. Of course, if the VPN is keeping logs of your activities, then the point is moot.
They may be legally required to do so based on the location of their headquarters. This is especially true in the case of VPNs that were established in countries that belong to the Five Eyes, Nine Eyes and 14 Eyes surveillance alliances.
CyberGhost is based in Romania, a country that does not have ties to any of these organizations. Accordingly, when they say that they do not track any data on their customers, you can trust that this is the case.
No matter which website you visit or app you use, CyberGhost is not maintaining any record of it. You can talk to whoever you wish, complete financial transactions and play games, all with the assurance that no one is looking over your shoulder.
Pricing Options for CyberGhost VPN
CyberGhost is a little more expensive than some of the other high quality VPNs that are out there. Nonetheless, they do offer an extensive server network and some useful features. Their speed test results are troublesome, so this may mean that you will want to try them out for a short period before making a long-term commitment. Unfortunately, CyberGhost does not let you try their service for free.
If you want to pay on a month-to-month basis, then the cost will be $11.99 per month. That’s a bit steep, especially when considering the slow data transfer rates that seem to be a problem across the board.
You can save money by going with a one- or two-year package. This brings the price down to just $4.99 or $3.79 per month. There is even a three-year package for approximately $2.75 a month. Admittedly, that is more affordable, but what if you discover that you’re just not getting the performance that you hoped for? Then you’re stuck with an inferior service for what will feel like a really long time.
CyberGhost does offer a 30-day, money-back guarantee. A month is probably a sufficient amount of time for you to decide whether or not this service works for you. In addition to accepting credit cards, debit cards and PayPal, CyberGhost also accepts Bitcoin. However, they do not accept random retail cards for payment like other VPN providers do.
Is CyberGhost VPN Recommended?
Potential customers may find plenty to like about CyberGhost. One of the primary points in their favor is that they have a remarkably friendly interface, which is an advantage over other VPN services that have fairly stark and utilitarian dashboards.
Even someone who is a total novice when it comes to VPNs should have little trouble figuring out how to install and launch CyberGhost for the first time. Once on the dashboard, everything is clearly laid out, and one-click launching is available in the settings.
Additionally, CyberGhost has some decent security and encryption features in place. Sophisticated users will appreciate the ability to choose the VPN protocol that is right for their purposes while novices can trust that OpenVPN will provide them with all of the online protection that they need. Combined with AES 256-bit encryption, there’s little reason for concern while browsing. It also helps that double encryption and TOR compatibility are available for those with critical safety concerns.
Also in its favor is the fact that CyberGhost is headquartered in Romania and follows a strict zero logs policy. If you’re serious about anonymity and keeping your online time private, then CyberGhost is a decent choice.
However, it is best to keep in mind that CyberGhost did not perform well in data transfer rate tests. For a relatively large provider, they put up some pretty abysmal numbers. Imagine trying to log on to the Internet every day and being subjected to those kinds of download and upload numbers. It would be incredibly frustrating.
Granted, your experience with CyberGhost may vary, but the company cannot be given a whole-hearted recommendation when there are other VPN providers that deliver so much better speed. A good example of such a provider is ExpressVPN. Check out our review to see the test results yourself.