Security for everyone - Reviewing F-Secure Freedome VPN
With the increasing numbers and types of threats on the internet, you just can't be too secure. Nowadays mostly everyone knows that using an internet security suite is highly recommended, but while these applications protect against viruses, malware and hackers, there are some other tools that help us keep our privacy and personal information safe. VPN services are made just for that: to let you use the internet while remaining anonymous and protected, even on unsafe WiFi networks. F-Secure is an antivirus provider which also has a VPN service, called Freedome. Today we take a look at its latest version for Windows. Read this review and learn what it has to offer:
What F-Secure Freedome has to offer
Freedome is made by F-Secure, a Finnish cyber security and privacy company based in Helsinki, who have been in the business since 1988, focusing mostly on the corporate market with enterprise-grade offerings. They have a series of security applications for home users as well, and Freedome is one of them. It's good to know that Finland has very strict privacy laws, thus a VPN service offered by a Finnish company will not be subject to so-called "Big Brother laws" applicable in some countries.
Where To Buy
Currently, Freedome is available in three different plans, the only difference between them being the number of devices supported. You can buy a Freedome subscription for 3, 5 or 7 devices, which means that you can run the VPN application simultaneously on this many devices. All plans are for 12 months, so you can get protection for three devices for $49.99 per year, or for five devices for $59.99 per year, while the protection of seven devices has a yearly price of $79.99.
Freedome is available on both desktop and mobile devices, the range of supported operating systems includes Windows 7 or later, OS X 10.10 or later, iOS 9 or later and Android 4.0.3 or later. Unfortunately, Freedome is not available on Linux, nor does it have a version that can be installed on your router, as some other competitors have.
The VPN service offered by F-Secure is available worldwide, excluding Bahrain, Iran, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates.
All subscription types include unlimited traffic; they can be purchased without an account, offer complete privacy (meaning that none of your traffic is logged) and come with tracking and browsing protection and a tracker mapper.
Would you like to try the Freedome service before buying it? F-Secure offers a 5-day trial of the Freedome application, without any restrictions. This should be more than enough to check out the available servers, speeds and other features offered. Moreover, they also offer a 30-day money back guarantee, so even if you have purchased a subscription, you still have a month to make up your mind.
As for global coverage, Freedome doesn't have VPN servers in many countries. You can connect to VPN servers in the following locations: Germany, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Ireland, Italy, Norway, Poland, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, The Netherlands, United Kingdom, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, Canada, Mexico, United States, and Australia. As you can see, there are barely any servers in Asia, while Africa is completely missing from the list and so is Russia.
Because we are talking about a privacy-related service, it would be good to have the possibility to pay for a subscription in Bitcoins, which would make the whole process completely anonymous, but, unfortunately, you can only pay with a credit card, PayPal or wire transfer.
Download and installation
Downloading and installing Freedome on Windows is an easy process. First, you need to download the 38.7 MB setup file, called Freedome.exe.
Installing Freedome for Windows is as easy as launching the executable you have just downloaded, pressing the Start free trial button, accepting the license agreement, and waiting for the installation wizard to complete. It is worth mentioning that, to be able to install Freedome, you need administrative privileges.
Also, for it to function properly, Freedome might ask you to allow the installation of a set of virtual network drivers - Freedome TAP driver. If asked, choose Yes to allow the installation; otherwise, Freedome will not be able to work.
Note, that if you have other VPN software installed, the virtual network adapters might conflict, thus making one or both VPN applications unusable. It is recommended to have only a single VPN client installed on your Windows computer at any given time.
Our first impression of F-Secure Freedome is mixed: the company doesn't offer many VPN servers, although the most important countries are covered. The downloading and installation procedure is simple, but if you want to buy a subscription, you cannot pay in Bitcoins. It's also great that you have a 5-day trial and a 30-day money back guarantee, so you can decide whether you want to use the application or not.
Using Freedome VPN on Windows
Upon launching the application, you are greeted by its main window. You will see a straightforward and elegant user interface with a menu on the left and the most important information in the center.
If you want to quickly connect to a VPN server, all you need to do is press the huge Protection OFF button in the middle of the window.
The application will now show that the connection is in progress.
Once the connection has been established the central button will display Protection ON. That's it, you are now connected to a VPN server and protected! If you want to disconnect, you only have to press the button again.
By default, Freedome connects to the VPN server closest to your physical location. This a good choice, if you don't need to be connected to a server from a particular country, but only need protection. The location of this automatically selected server is visible right below the connection button.
If you want to connect to a particular VPN server, you can click the name of the pre-selected server, and the Locations window will open, with all the available servers on the left. Click the one you need, go back to the main window and connect.
Freedome comes with a very simple, elegant and easy to use interface, which helps you a lot in completing the most used task: connecting to a VPN server. The automatic server selection works just fine, and it's also easy to choose a different server if you have to.
Go to the second page of this review to learn about the additional features offered by Freedome and the results it obtained in our performance benchmarks. You will also see our final verdict for this product.