Reviews

FastestVPN Review

By June 4, 2020 July 21st, 2020 No Comments
FastestVPN Homepage

FastestVPN Review Overview

2.80/5
Rated #25 VPN / 45

Devices

Unblocks

Pros

  • Fast Speeds recorded on UK server
  • Connect up to 10 devices and use them simultaneously
  • Unblock\\\\\\\'s Netflix and iPlayer

Cons

  • Irregular Privacy Policy

When an old co-worker first started using a VPN, they purchased what they thought was good deal: a FastestVPN subscription.

At the time, they couldn’t get the VPN to connect whatsoever. After spending a few hours going back-and-forth with FastestVPN’s support team via email (and live chat), the old co-worker ended up calling it a loss, as all the support team could tell them was: “Well, it’s working fine from our side…”

The thing is – they weren’t the only one with the issue:

FastestVPN User Review

But this was quite some time ago and FastestVPN reportedly made some upgrades for 2020. We were interested to find out whether the service (and support) improved at all since the above discussed nightmarish introduction.

And of course, we’ll be sharing our findings with you in this review.

How FastestVPN Compares to the Competition

Price$3.49/mth$6.67/mth$2.75/mth$1.11/mth
Rating
Servers557230006434150
Multiple ConnectionsUp to 6Up to 5Up to 7Up to 10
Speed 93 % 79 % 79 % 75 %
LoggingNo logsNo logsNo logsYes
Support24/7 live chat24/7 live chat24/7 live chatYes
Killswitch
Refund30-Day Moneyback Guarantee 30-Day Moneyback Guarantee 45-Day Moneyback Guarantee 15
Devices
Unblocks

Take a look at How We Rate VPN Providers!

Location Uncertain

The first step is always checking where a VPN is based. The FastestVPN website is a bit buggy – scrolling is choppy, making things difficult to read – but we quickly discovered the VPN claims to be located in the Cayman Islands.

FastestVPN Location

However, we also discovered more than a few VPN providers lie about their location. This is especially true when the company is based in a 5 Eyes, 9 Eyes, or 14 Eyes jurisdiction but claims to be in a privacy-friendly country… such as the Cayman Islands.

So we started digging a little deeper.

First, we checked the Page Source to see whether there was any Google Analytics code. This code includes the internationally recognized abbreviated country code, showing where the website owner is based. Unfortunately, we couldn’t find any Google Analytics coding (even though FastestVPN claims to use it).

We then did a WhoIS check for the website. Sometimes this will give you the country of registration, but no luck this time.

So we checked the Page Information instead, clicked on “View Certificate” under the Security tab… and found this:

FastestVPN Certificate

It’s probably safe to assume Cloudflare doesn’t own FastestVPN. At the very least, we can’t find anything to suggest they do!

But this does leave us with a bit of a sticky situation, as we can’t verify FastestVPN’s location.

While we’re tempted to give the provider the benefit of the doubt, we also prefer to err on the side of caution.

Incomplete Privacy Policy

FastestVPN’s Privacy Policy claims the provider only logs your email address:

FastestVPN Privacy Policy

However, you’ll notice “FastestVPN also uses Google Analytics, Hotjar and Livechat software,” which means there’s at least some information being logged anytime you visit their website.

There’s also no mention of passwords being stored, but once you set up an account and login on the website, your password and payment method are both recorded there.

The provider is also stingy on details regarding the third-parties it’s partnered with. All we know is “It may be, but is not limited to, promotional offers” (emphasis ours)… which again indicates at least some information is being logged:

Fastest VPN Privacy Policy 2

And of course, with a simultaneous connections limit in place, the FastestVPN servers are bound to be keeping connection logs. While it’s likely to be temporary, being automatically deleted after you end the connection, this information should certainly be included in the Privacy Policy. Furthermore, it should be specified whether or not these connection logs are anonymized.

The only hint FastestVPN is recording this information at all is found in the FAQ section:

FastestVPN Privacy Policy 3

Despite the “Please visit our Privacy Policy for details,” as we already covered, those details are not included there. This leaves us with a bad taste in our mouth, as it’s very clear FastestVPN’s Privacy Policy is incomplete. It’s anyone’s guess as to what else is being left out and why.

Once again, while we’d like to give them the benefit of the doubt, we have to err on the side of caution.

Military-Grade Encryption, but VPN Protocols Need Update

The first bit of good news is FastestVPN uses military-grade 256-bit AES encryption and some of the best VPN protocols:

FastestVPN Encryption

Unfortunately, this is the only information their website offers. You need to pay for a subscription, download and install the app, click “Menu > Settings” to see what the “and more” VPN protocols refers to.

On the plus side, you can switch between UDP, TCP, or IKEv2, with IKEv2 being the default. (L2TP and PPTP are too unsecured to be included as positives).

However, if you want to use OpenVPN – generally recognized as the most secure option – you need to download the open-source OpenVPN GUI and manually configure it to connect to FastestVPN. This involves reaching out to the provider’s support team.

Overall, we think FastestVPN’s 2020 update should have focused more on security and less on a flashy new user interface.

Kill Switch, Split Tunneling, DNS Leak Protection

Coming back to a spark of good news, the update did at least include one overdue security upgrade: the inclusion of an automatic kill switch.

FastestVPN Kill Switch

We’re glad to see this, as the kill switch is an important security feature that should always be on by default.

FastestVPN also offers a few other great features, including split tunneling (which allows you to create exceptions for running some of your internet traffic via your normal connection) and the super-important DNS leak protection:

FastestVPN Split TunnelingFastestVPN DNS Leak

However, it is worth mentioning several users complained about IP and DNS leaks. We weren’t able to replicate the issue at first, but once we re-enabled WebRTC in our browser, we immediately started experiencing sporadic leaks.

This means you need to disable your browser’s WebRTC if you want to benefit from the “built-in DNS leak protection.”

Limited TOR Compatibility

Tor Project Logo

FastestVPN doesn’t offer any sort of Double VPN feature, also known as a Multi-Hop. This is unfortunate, as it’s a great option to have if you want to double your encryption and halve the chances of someone discovering your real IP address.

The alternative we typically recommend is using The Onion Router. This free proxy browser reroutes your connection via 3 “nodes,” adding a little bit of encryption and completely spoofing your location. It’s not as good as a Double VPN feature however, and you should use the TOR-over-VPN method if you want to stay secure.

Unfortunately, FastestVPN is extremely slow when connected to TOR – slower than usual – to the point of usability being basically impossible. So TOR-over-VPN is not a likely option here either.

Very Small Server Park

We don’t have an exact number, but FastestVPN seems to only have “150+” servers in “31+” countries.

You have to hunt for this information on the website, as the number is only given on the Pricing tab and seems to be roughly accurate based on their Server/Host Name List. This latter page can only be found via the FAQ section, it seems.

As for “31+” countries, only 30 are listed anywhere on the site.

FastestVPN Countries

We counted the same number in the app, so we don’t know where that extra 1+ is supposed to be found.

This is another series of negatives for FastestVPN. Not only is their server park incredibly small (even if the “250+” claim given by some of our competitors is true), but it seems you can’t even trust the provider to be honest about the number of countries they’re found in.

Speed

One reason a small server park is a negative is it can result in poor VPN speeds. We go into greater detail in our post What Is The Fastest VPN. Spoiler alert – FastestVPN doesn’t even make the top 10!

In brief, however, it has to do with network congestion. This happens when too many users are sharing a server and it has to operate at (or close to) maximum capacity. As a result, performance drops and speed suffers.

Network congestion isn’t the only issue that can negatively affect VPN speed, however, so we put some effort into accounting for such things when doing our tests.

With that said, here’s how FastestVPN performed:

No VPN

FastestVPN No VPN Speed

US Server

FastestVPN US Server

UK Server

FastestVPN UK Server

Surprisingly, FastestVPN offered above average speeds for the UK servers we tested.

Device Compatibility and Connections

FastestVPN Devices

FastestVPN offers an impressive list of compatible devices:

  • Windows
  • Mac
  • Linux
  • Android
  • iOS
  • Routers
  • Kodi
  • Smart TVs
  • Fire Stick/Android Box
  • Chrome (browser extension)
  • Firefox (browser extension)

There isn’t an app for any of them, but the page does mention being able to use FastestVPN on gaming consoles too. This is likely via a router setup.

You also get up to 10 simultaneous connections, which is about double the industry standard. This is definitely one of the few things FastestVPN has gotten 100% right.

One thing we do want to note, however, is Mac users may want to steer clear of FastestVPN entirely. Some users reported their system freezing and needing to be restored from a backup disk after installing FastestVPN:

FastestVPN User Review 2

We were unable to replicate this issue, but you do need to be aware of it. Err on the side of caution by taking a look at our guide on the Best VPNs for Mac.

Subscription Plans and Pricing

Typically, FastestVPN only offers 3 different pricing tiers:

  • 1 Month – $10
  • 1 Year – $29.95
  • 3 Years – $39.95

However, at the time of writing, the provider is running a limited time offer for a 5 Year Plan at $49.95 ($44.95 if you click the yellow arrow to apply the extra coupon):

FastestVPN Deal

As for payment methods, some VPN review sites mention cryptocurrency as an option. However, only credit cards and PayPal are offered when purchasing a subscription.

It’s possible you can access additional methods like cryptocurrency by talking to FastestVPN’s support. Unfortunately, we cannot confirm this, as the support team is consistently ignoring our attempts at contacting them.

Limited Streaming

While FastestVPN proudly promotes itself as a viable option for streaming any service from any location, reality proves otherwise.

FastestVPN Streaming

The provider claims to work with BBC iPlayer and Kodi, but makes no such promises for Netflix. This is ironic, as we were unable to access either of the two promised streaming services, but had success with Netflix US and Hulu via the Miami (Florida) US server.

Unfortunately, none of the other Netflix regions worked.

Part of the problem is such services are using robust anti-VPN software. More relevant to this review, another part of the problem is, while some VPNs still work for streaming, others don’t, but promise to.

If streaming is a major motivation behind searching for a VPN, we suggest checking the following guides for better options:

Torrenting

FastestVPN allows Peer-to-Peer (P2P) connections and even has specialized Unix-based torrenting servers to make this easier for users:

FastestVPN Torrenting

We were able to confirm these servers do the job as advertised, though the speeds weren’t all that fantastic. Still, if you’re not doing a lot of file-sharing, it works well enough. If you’re a heavy torrentor, however, you’ll want to use one of the Best Torrenting VPNs instead.

Usability and Support

As mentioned in the introduction to this review, when an old co-worker first tried to use FastestVPN a few years ago, it was a nightmarish experience. The installation took forever, they had to log in multiple times, and they couldn’t connect at all.

They weren’t alone in this either. Here’s another user review, from just before the update:

FastestVPN User Review 3

Unfortunately, the same was almost true this time around. We had to attempt downloading the app several times before it was successful, and the setup file kept getting tagged as “unsafe” by Windows Defender.

FastestVPN Windows Defender

We were also required to restart our PC – a big pet peeve.

FastestVPN Restart

That said, the installation process was pretty quick and we were able to establish a connection.

FastestVPN Connected

Overall, the usability upgrades are a nice touch, but we feel FastestVPN focused too much on appearance and not nearly enough on function.

Fastest VPN Locations

There are still a few things you need to manually tweak (like enabling the killswitch) before the VPN is safe to use.

FastestVPN Interface

As for support, forget about it. The live chat button disappears sporadically (conveniently just when we find something we want to ask them about) and, as already mentioned, our emails have gone unanswered thus far. This leaves you relying on the FAQ section, which is as incomplete as the Privacy Policy.

EDIT: During the editing of this review, we did have success in reaching an agent through FastestVPN’s live chat. The support agent we spoke to was friendly and prompt, and confirmed cryptocurrency is not a payment option. We’re happy with this development and happy to give FastestVPN credit where credit is due.

How to Cancel FastestVPN and Get Your Money Back

According to the Pricing tab’s Common Questions section, canceling FastestVPN should be as easy as logging into your Account and following a Cancel Subscription link:

FastestVPN Unsubscribe

However, the Terms of Service say you cannot cancel an active FastestVPN subscription:

FastestVPN No Cancellation

Refunds have to be requested via email within 15 days of purchase… whether you get one, however, seems to be an entirely different story:

All-in-all, our experience with FastestVPN was pretty much the same: a nightmare. You’d be well-advised to stay clear.

FAQs

How much does FastestVPN cost per month?

FastestVPN costs $10 per month.

Does FastestVPN work for Netflix?

Yes, but only with the USA Netflix specialized servers and the Florida server.

Is FastestVPN legitimate?

FastestVPN does not conduct itself in a manner that suggests legitimacy. Their published information is inconsistent, their location cannot be verified, and the Privacy Policy seems to be purposefully incomplete.

Furthermore, several users complained their refund requests are either denied or ignored despite complying with FastestVPN’s Terms of Service and refund policy.

Is FastestVPN a good VPN?

No. There are several issues with the features and functionality, as well as several more concerning issues as detailed in the previous FAQ entry.

Does FastestVPN hide My IP address?

Yes, FastestVPN is able to hide your IP address provided you have WebRTC disabled in your browser.

Does FastestVPN charge monthly?

Yes, though there are also 1-year and 3-year subscription options.

Is FastestVPN a zero-logs VPN?

No. FastestVPN’s Privacy Policy is incomplete and does not disclose all of the data being recorded (as revealed in other sections of the website). This means there’s a chance the provider is logging other information not disclosed anywhere.

Can you cancel FastestVPN anytime?

No. The Terms of Service reveal “No cancellation of the current account is allowed during active subscription period.”

Is FastestVPN safe in China?

No. FastestVPN’s Privacy Policy and security features leave much to be desired for safe use in China or any other location.

Mandee Rose

Mandee Rose

Mandee Rose is the editor and lead writer & researcher at TheVPNShop. A technical writer and blogger with 6+ years of experience in the cybersecurity sector. During her college years, she chased the dual-major of Cyber Security and Journalism while simultaneously offering freelance services online. As a result, Mandee was able to combine both of her passions by writing for companies like LatestHackingNews, BestVPN, Tactical Engine, Hoxhunt, AI Jobs (Medium Blog), and more. Today, she continues sharing her technical knowledge via investigative writing on topics like VPNs, programming, data breaches, artificial intelligence, and other infosec concepts.

Leave a Reply