McAfee Safe Connect VPN Review

McAfee Safe Connect VPNMcAfee Safe Connect VPN is the popular anti-virus company’s foray further into the security realm. Branching into other areas of security has become common with companies. It offers software for PC, Android, and iOS. However, it seems to exclude OSX and Linux operating system support. As you might expect, the website is sharp looking because it has the funding of the antivirus software behind it. This VPN does have a cost that we will talk more about in a moment. We have also noticed that the Android version has just over 500k downloads. In this review, we will put McAfee Safe Connect VPN through the paces and see how it holds up.

Pricing

As far as pricing goes, McAfee Safe Connect VPN has two plans as you can see in the image below.

McAfee Safe Connect VPN Pricing

You can get a month of the service for $7.99 USD. However, you can get a year of service for $47.99 USD. That works out to about a 50% savings over the month by month version. That starts after your seven day trial. They also offer a 30-day, money back guarantee.

About the Company

Unlike some of the other companies that make VPNs, McAfee is quite well known. It is named for the founder, John McAfee, and is run by the security company he sold to. Not surprisingly, McAfee is located in the US. That is a bit concerning because that leaves it open to the “14 Eyes” countries. Those are countries that share information with each other. If one country has access to them, there are 13 other countries that do as well. That definitely makes us nervous.

Security

Security is something that we find very important. However, finding information on the VPN is not easy to do. We did discover that it uses bank grade AES 256-bit encryption. There are not any other options that you can select. Whereas some companies tell you that they offer no logs, McAfee is not one of them. They make no bones about the fact that they collect data on you. They definitely keep connection and activity logs as well as other information that can and will identify you easily. Their policies also suggest that they sell the information they collect to third parties.

Features

As far as features go, McAfee Safe Connect VPN offers very little. We were not able to find a list of much of anything it does besides offer the member AES 256-bit security and offer 23 different locations. It does offer up to 5 different That may give the user the ability to unblock some streaming services. Of course, McAfee talks about keeping their users safe. However, because of the information they collect and keep, it is hard to see that they do much of anything.

Server Locations and Countries

On the subject of locations and countries, there are a list of 23 locations. However, no matter what version you use, the app does not seem to list what cities the servers are in.  Lets take a look at the locations it has to offer. Those are Australia, Brazil, Canada, Switzerland, Germany, Denmark, Spain, Finland, France, UK, HongKong, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, Norway, New Zealand, Romania, Sweden, Singapore, and the USA. As you see, there are a number counties that you can access.

Hands-On Testing

As far as the McAfee Safe Connect VPN goes, itis easy to use and uniform across the platforms. Follow the instructions to get started.

  1. Sign up for service.
  2. Download the PC, iOS, or Android app.
  3. After logging in to the console, select the location you want to use.
  4. Click on the button labeled “Start Protection”

McAfee Console

Now that you have connected, it is time to test the speed. Please note that we tried to use the Windows version, and we got the following message.

Because of that, we used the Android version as you see below. The VPN shows quite a difference in speed. While it is still a large loss, it is fast enough to do just about anything you want to do.

McAfee VPN Speedtest

Why you should use a VPN

Since so many establishments now offer free WiFi, you will want to use a VPN when you connect. While WiFi is great, the cybercriminals think it is great as well. By connecting to the server of your choice, you create a secure and encrypted connection. That way, you greatly reduce the risk that criminals or cyberthieves will steal your private information.

Another reason to use a VPN is to help you get around geo-restrictions. No matter where you are, connecting to a server there will help. That is because it makes the blocking software think you are located somewhere else. That can be a real advantage if you are trying to access certain regions or you are being blocked from viewing content. Simply connect to a server and you can start browsing or viewing the content you want to access.

What About Leaks?

One of our favorite tests is the leak test. No matter how good the VPN claims to be, it won’t protect you if the DNS leaks. Since the purpose of a VPN is to protect you, DNS leaks means that your real IP address or location can be easily found out. That is why we typically test all VPNs in our reviews for them. As you can see in the test we ran, the McAfee VPN does not leak. That is definitely something we like to see.

Should I Use this VPN?

Ultimately, this VPN will do what it says it will do and help you get around geo-restrictions. However, if you are worried about privacy, you will want to stay away from this one. They admit that they sell your information and definitely keep logs on not only uour connections but your activity. If you do things that may be considered to be in a “gray zone”, this is not a good option.  There are plenty of other options that do not keep logs or sell your information.

Final Thoughts About McAfee Safe Connect VPN

There are several things that make using this VPN a bad choice. Those include the retention of logs, the locaton of the headquarters (the US),  the promise to fully cooperate with the laws of the US, selling your information to 3rd parties, and more. However, it may not be bad if you are just trying to unblock content or keep your computer safe from hackers. It has decent speed, and you should be able to get around geo-restrictions if you want to use something like SoundCloud, Pandora, or others. We suggest you take a look at our top 10 VPNs for other options.

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