Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

Internet

Mozilla VPN Review | tech radar

tech radar

👨‍💻

It started its life as a simple Firefox browser extension, but Mozilla VPN is now a completely standalone product that secures all your internet traffic on Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, and Linux.

The network is smaller than some competitors at over 400 servers across 40+ locations and over 30 countries, but it’s probably enough for most users.

Mozilla VPN is powered by the excellent Mullvad Network. Some companies are silent about the fact that they are reselling someone else’s network, but Mozilla is very open. Click the “See full list of servers” link on the Mozilla VPN website, for example, and it will take you to the server list on the Mullvad website.

You can choose to use DNS servers that block ads or tracking (Image credit: Mozilla)

  • Similar offer on Amazon for $0

Features

Mozilla VPN’s feature list has grown exponentially since its launch, and the service now outperforms many specialized VPNs in some regions.

The network is peer-friendly, for example. WireGuard’s fast protocol support improves performance, and there’s a kill switch to protect you in the event of a VPN outage.

Multi-Hop VPN allows you to connect to a VPN from one location (Phoenix, for example) and exit from another (possibly London), making it difficult for others to track your activities.

Split tunneling support (called app permissions here) allows you to select which apps are protected by the VPN, and which ones are using your normal internet connection.

Other benefits include IPv6 support, the ability to choose which DNS ad or servers to block, or use your preferred DNS.

There are still weaknesses. Mozilla VPN only supports WireGuard, for example. There is no support for setting up the service on routers. And you still can’t set up apps to connect automatically when they access public Wi-Fi, too.

There is no live chat support, but Mozilla has a decent number of support articles. You can also submit questions to the support team from the website if you are in serious trouble.

We’ve spotted a potential nuisance. Although Mozilla VPN says it works with up to 5 devices, this means selected and registered devices. If you’re using the Service on, say, two mobile devices, a laptop, and a tablet, you can’t use it on a new device until you remove support from one of the other devices.

There are a few companies that do something similar (KeepSolid VPN Unlimited is one), but most providers limit you to simultaneous connections only. You can still only connect a specific number of devices at once, but the VPN doesn’t care about any of them, and there’s no hassle about registering or removing a specific device.

Payment methods now include PayPal in addition to cards (Image credit: Mozilla)

Mozilla VPN Pricing

Mozilla VPN averages $9.99 for a monthly bill, dropping to $7.99 over six months, or $4.99 on an annual plan.

Although it’s not that expensive, it’s a jump from Mozilla VPN’s $4.99 per month launch price. Also keep in mind that you pay for access to Mullvad’s servers. Go straight to Mullvad and you’ll pay a flat rate of €5 per month (about $5.75), no matter how long your subscription is.

Discover  Windscribe VPN 20GB/Month Free

Mozilla VPN’s payment options have improved quite a bit since launch time, with the service now accepting PayPal in addition to cards. (However, there is no Bitcoin yet.)

If you sign up and the service doesn’t work for you, no problem, you’re protected by a 30-day money-back guarantee. There are no scam catches or exceptions, as far as we can tell (and we’ve spent some time researching): if you’re unhappy, just tell the company within the first 30 days, and they’ll get your money back.

Mozilla VPN puts user privacy first (Image credit: Mozilla)

Privacy and Registration

Mozilla sells its VPN in part as from a “name you can trust,” which is a big plus. Even if you think Mozilla’s reputation largely comes from not being Google or Microsoft, it’s still ahead of most VPNs in trustworthiness stakes, and its partner, Mullvad, is one of the more privacy-focused providers.

Mozilla VPN makes its overall approach very clear — “Your privacy comes first,” “We do not store logs of your online activity on our servers” — and the company provides more information in a brief privacy notice.

The Company collects your IP address when registering and using the Service, along with technical information about its setup (application version installed, operating system, hardware configuration) and “interaction data”: when you log in, when the server application requests information, etc. Mozilla says that the IP address is only kept “temporarily”, although it doesn’t say how long it might be “temporary”.

If you are not satisfied with this, you can disable some of it. The Windows app installer asked us if we wanted to send usage data to Mozilla, to make it clear what was going on, and gave us a chance to say “No, thanks”. (If you don’t notice the installer option, you can also turn it off from settings.)

Mozilla directs users to Mullvad’s privacy policy for more details, and this shows no logging of traffic, DNS requests, IP addresses, session times, or bandwidth used.

Although this does not have the level of technical detail that we see with some providers, Mozilla intends to read the document along with the general privacy policy and general privacy principles (‘Gather what we need, deselect where we can and delete it when not). are necessary”, for example, and “the information is used and shared in a manner that is transparent and beneficial to the user.”)

Mozilla VPN thoroughly audited by Cure53 (Image credit: Mozilla)

audit

Mozilla says all the right things about privacy, but users should not be left to take any provider’s words on trust. We’d like to see some independent evidence that the VPN lives up to its promises.

In August 2021, Mozilla delivered just that by publishing the results of a second Cure53 audit on its service.

This did not look at the servers, most likely because they are run by Mullvad, so it can’t definitively show that there is no logging. But Cure53 manages to inspect all the apps, including looking at the source code, which gives it plenty of opportunities to spot any privacy and security issues.

Discover  Why is the internet slower if I connect to a VPN?

Cure53 discovered a number of vulnerabilities, and made some recommendations for improving the design of the application. But the major issues have now been resolved, and the Cure53 report concluded that the apps have “growthed significantly in security” since their last revision, leading to the discovery of a single vulnerability on a “medium” scale.

Zero vulnerabilities would have been better of course, but that rarely happens. Cure53 performs exceptionally detailed reviews that capture even the smallest issues, and the organization will always reveal some concerns.

Overall, we think the audit is positive news in many ways. The scope was large, encompassing all Mozilla applications; The company shared its source code; The results of the review were reasonable, and the full report was published. We give Mozilla a lot of credit for putting it under this level of scrutiny, something that most VPNs haven’t done yet.

Mozilla VPN is available across a number of platforms (Image credit: Mozilla)

apps

Getting started with Mozilla VPN requires creating a Firefox account, but that doesn’t involve anything more than providing your email address and age. (Yes, age – we’re not sure why either).

Upon creating the account, we handed over our money and directed the site to the downloads page. We took a copy of the Windows client, downloaded it, and installed it in a matter of seconds.

This is the user interface of the Mozilla VPN app on Windows (Image credit: Mozilla)

The Windows client for Mozilla VPN has a very simple, straightforward and standard interface. The small console shows your default location, and you can click on it to select another one. A large on/off switch connects and disconnects you as required, and icons as well as showing status indicate when you are protected and when you are not.

The client does not have an “automatic” setting where it chooses the fastest server for you, and there is no search box, filtering, or favorites system to quickly find the most used sites. Connecting can take a bit more scrolling and clicking than we’d like.

There is some compensation in Mozilla’s use of the ultra-fast WireGuard protocol, which usually got us communicating in 2-4 seconds. Even a fast OpenVPN connection usually takes 5-6 seconds to establish, and some make you wait 20 seconds or more.

Unfortunately, Mozilla VPN has very few settings (Image credit: Mozilla)

Settings

Windows settings for Mozilla VPN start with a simple tunneling system. This allows some apps to be set up to use your normal internet connection instead of a VPN, which can be useful to improve performance or fix problems (banking apps that won’t work if it looks like you’re in another country, for example).

The DNS Settings screen allows you to choose DNS servers that block ads, “malicious domains” or both, and you can also enter your own custom DNS server. (You can only enter a single DNS IP address, though, as this can cause problems if the server fails or is poorly performing.)

The notifications page includes an option to display an alert if you connect to an unsecured Wi-Fi network. This is useful, although more powerful apps can automatically connect to the VPN as needed as well.

Discover  Best VPN for Chromecast in 2020

A host of other technical features include the ability to enable or disable IPv6, and access to devices on your local network (or not). In general, though, the client keeps its settings to a minimum.

As mentioned above, there is no option to change the protocol: it’s WireGuard or nothing. But other than that, there is a fair amount of configurability here, and Mozilla VPN definitely outperforms many of the competitors.

The Mozilla VPN client for Windows has a kill switch but no option to turn it on or off (Image credit: Mozilla)

kill switch

Although Mozilla’s Windows client has an automatic kill switch, there is no option to turn it on or off, or otherwise modify how it works. This is useful for security, as there is no way you can accidentally disable it. But it can be bad news if the lock switch causes some problems on your device, as there is no way to configure it.

We ran some tests, and found that the kill switch did a mostly good job of blocking our internet if the connection was dropped.

However, there are some extreme situations, including a failure of a Windows service in Mozilla, which can result in the VPN dropping, loss of protection, and the kill switch not starting, all without the app raising a notification warning the user.

This isn’t something you’re likely to come across very often, and we’re confident that a key lock will protect you in the vast majority of real-world situations. But it’s not perfect, and Mozilla still has to do work to close its vulnerabilities.

Mozilla VPN’s Android app is largely modeled on the Windows client (Image credit: Mozilla)

Android app

Mozilla VPN’s Android app is a close clone of Windows architecture.

The bad news is that you get the same basic site picker, with no favorites or recent list to speed up reconnection.

The notification section is also missing, so you don’t get an alert if your device is connected to a new network. (Annoying, because we think you’ll need this on mobile more than on a Windows PC or laptop.)

It doesn’t come with a key lock either. You can set up the auto kill switch in Android manually, but the app does not help you to do that.

The app includes all other Windows settings and options, though: split tunneling, advertising, “malicious domain” that blocks DNS, IPv6 support, and more. We like to have bookmarks and the “auto connect when accessing unsecured Wi-Fi” feature, but if you’re going to use its configurability, the app is still worth a try.

iOS app

Apple users won’t be surprised to hear that the Mozilla VPN for iOS app has the basic set of features.

There is no split tunnel, for example. There is no custom DNS setting. There is no ability to enable access to devices on your current network.

You get at least options to raise notifications when you switch servers or change your connection status. The app includes…


Don’t forget to share this post with friends !

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related

Internet

AnyConnect: Install a self-signed certificate as a trusted source 👨‍💻 kmgmt-2879-cbs-220-config-security-port objective The goal of this article is to walk you through creating and...

Internet

ITProPortal . Portal 👨‍💻 We live in a dynamic moment in terms of technology. Even criminals are becoming more technically savvy and are using...

Internet

Avira Free Security Review You need antivirus protection on all of your devices, whether you’ve budgeted for it or not. If ready cash is...

Internet

Is free antivirus enough for my computer? 👨‍💻 At first glance, a free antivirus may seem like a tempting option. After all, why should...