Cybersecurity

Published on April 15th, 2020 | by Manish Gehlot

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RusVPN Review: A VPN Newcomer With Solid Offering

RusVPN is a no-logs privacy VPN provider registered in Commonwealth of Dominica. Dominica is outside the ‘The Fourteen Eyes’, an alliance of power countries that collect, retain and share data with each other. No mandatory data retention policies or law apply to RusVPN forcing it to log or retain any connection or uses data. So, RusVPN is legally at liberty to deliver a privacy VPN that they promise us.

RusVPN has deployed robust servers in 37 countries and counting. Easy to install VPN apps for Windows, Android and iOS. Browser extensions for both Mozilla and Chrome as available. There is even a free plan included with these browser extensions. It has seamless support for streaming services like Netflix, gaming services like Steam along with fearless ability to download torrents with 100% anonymity. It is a complete VPN package at a startling price of 4.99 USD month only when paid annually. Always trust, but verify. Continue reading our neutral review to find out whether this new VPN provider is your money.

Core Technology

Latest open source OpenVPN server software with 256-bit 2048 RSA technology. For legacy clients support for PPTP and L2TP VPN is available too. Lack of WireGuard VPN support might be a breaker for some.

Speed

Without VPN:

With OpenVPN/UDP/1194 to Switzerland-4.ovpn:

With OpenVPN/UDP/1194 to Indonesia-7.ovpn:

Speed and latency is decent. I had no issues streaming Youtube or Netflix in HD even during these hard times with networks already throttling streaming services.

Unblocks many Netflix libraries and has accurate geo-location for Youtube on most servers

Netflix US

Netflix CH/Europe

Youtube accurate Geo-location

Prime US

BBC iPlayer does not work in our tests with any of the UK servers unfortunately.

Apps, browser extensions

RusVPN offers apps that work out of the box on iOS, Android and Windows platforms. I personally tried the Android App, I am impressed by the slick and neat interface.

Android App

There is a built-in kill-switch function in Android App that can be enabled with a single tap from Settings. With RusVPN you do not have to worry about leaks owing to abrupt disconnections, if any.

Mozilla Browser Extension

Mozilla browser extension has full VPN server list, built-in account information section etc. It is a quick tool to access your favourite websites right from the browser using secure proxies without routing whole of your Internet traffic via VPN gateway.

Security – VPN authentication, protocols, cipher, connection encryption

OpenVPN is the core secure VPN technology of RusVPN. It uses latest stable versions of OpenVPN servers without any legacy bugs unlike many other popular VPN providers.

When connected using a vanilla OpenVPN client, it uses a minimum of 256-bit of AES encryption for both TLS connection used to exchange keys and data cipher. AEAD cipher in GCM mode is used, which is modern and recommended cipher suites for performance and security. It was introduced in recent OpenVPN version 2.4.x.

TLS Control Channel: TLSv1.2, cipher TLSv1.2 ECDHE-RSA-AES256-GCM-SHA384, 2048 bit RSA

Data Channel: using negotiated cipher ‘AES-256-GCM’

L2TP VPN, proxies are deployed to use recommended AES encryption for data transmitted to the servers for robust connection security.

For authentication of OpenVPN connections, individual client cert/key pair is used which is considered to be of excellent strength versus most user generated passwords or pass-phrases.

For browser proxies and L2TP/PPTP VPN, password is used as authentication method.

Do I leak?

In our independent tests using multiple tools available online, we did not find any IPv6, DNS or webRTC leaks in any of the VPN protocols or apps offered.

RusVPN is one of the rare privacy VPN provider that is willing to show efforts by investing time in protecting its clients who do not even prefer to use their branded VPN apps for iOS, Android, Windows etc. Upon analysis I found that their OpenVPN servers are pushing null IPv6 routes to prevent IPv6 connections from native ISP when connected to VPN. This is usually addressed by VPN providers with various tricks using their VPN apps but RusVPN fixed it universally with OpenVPN servers, so now you get to use any OpenVPN client you like without worrying about IPv6 leaks from native ISP. Even big providers like ExpressVPN do not put such efforts in their service and just focus on users of their VPN apps.

Note: Some of the OpenVPN configuration from locations like Switzerland – 4, Norway etc do not push null IPv6 routes to protect IPv6 leaks. Make sure you check https://ipv6.google.com before upon VPN connection and report the same to support team.

Logging policy

We run a non-permanent connection log to solve technical problems including random name generation and internal IP address assignment (private IP address) which are reliably removed every few hours. We strictly and purposefully do not write down any information to mitigate our legal liability. We do not monitor the activity of your browser and do not record any records. It is simply impossible with our internal interface. All data about the use of the service is anonymous and is not tied to your real, public IP address.

As RusVPN states, a minimal connection log with non-user identifiable data [excluding your home public IP from ISP or any other linkable meta-data] is kept for troubleshooting purposes only. Further it is rotated or overwritten every few hours. There is absolutely no retention of connection or usage logs with RusVPN.

An easy to read privacy policy that is so lucid says a lot about the intention of this company. RusVPN aims to uphold universal fundamental right to privacy of every user.

Pricing, payment options and Refund policy

For a start-up or new privacy VPN company, RusVPN really surprises us with aggressively competitive pricing. If you opt for a 3 year plan, you are only paying 2.99 USD a month for this well-thought and executed VPN service.

RusVPN has plethora of payment options for you including Credit/Debit cards, Paypal, Webmoney, Qiwi and everyone’s favorite crypto currency Bitcoins.

A full Refund of amount paid is available within 30 days of first date of payment regardless of RusVPN plan in case you do not like RusVPN or are not satisfied with the service for whatever reason provided that you have no used more than 500MB of data.

Note: The low data limit clause in the Refund policy is expected given the amount of spam they have to deal everyday, so, it is advised to get a month of subscription before committing for long-term plan.

Conclusion

RusVPN is a legally able, technically solid, robust VPN provider. It is registered outside 14-eyes or countries known to collect and share data. It accepts bitcoin, has servers around the globe, albeit, some popular locations like India are missing for some reason. It works out of the box with most L2TP/OpenVPN clients even on routers. VPN apps on iOS, Android and Windows are fully functional and low on resources. Browser extensions for Mozilla and Chrome gives RusVPN a huge mileage for non-geeks who just wish to unblock a specific streaming library from different location. Out of the box support for torrenting with no bandwidth or speed limits adds more value to RusVPN as an overall package.

Despite minor glitches, average speed, rather limited VPN protocol support, missing *nix/macOS apps, RusVPN stands out as a potential pro privacy VPN provider with an actively growing list of VPN servers/locations. If it were not for the lack of BBC iPlayer support, RusVPN truly earns a recommendation for best VPN for streaming and torrenting at the same time, a rare package in 2020.

If you are looking for a pro privacy VPN provider, RusVPN stands out with torrenting, content streaming support. Sign up now!

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About the Author

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I am a privacy, security, encryption and software freedom enthusiast. I am into VPNs, TLS security. Recently I also got into technical writings. I am working as a VPN support and consultant at some nordic VPN providers.



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