F-Secure Freedome VPN Review

June 26, 2018

7:17 am

Rating

71%

Ease of use:5 stars
Features:2 stars
Privacy:3 stars
Speed:3 stars
Help & Support:5 stars
Value for Money:4 stars

Pros
  • Superb interface
  • Good security features
  • Decent speeds
  • Transparent privacy policies
Cons
  • Doesn’t unblock Netflix
  • Tracker features involve some logging
  • Annual payments only

Slick, useful and inexpensive

F-Secure Freedome VPN is a terrific service that doesn’t cost the earth. It’s developed by F-Secure, one of the biggest names in internet security and antivirus software. If you’re new to using a VPN and want to go with a name you can trust, then F-Secure Freedome VPN is a smart choice.

Freedome on privacy and security, creating an encrypted and secure network link between your PC or smartphone and one of F-Secure’s VPN servers, though which you connect to the larger internet.

This can stop snoopers on the same public WiFi network from monitoring your Internet communications, while also switching your IP address and location for the virtual IP address and location given to the VPN server. In this way, a VPN can make your online activities anonymous, while enabling you to use websites or services which might be blocked inside your country.   

Why use F-Secure Freedome?

F-Secure is a globally trusted name in online security. As you might expect, Freedome comes with some strong security features, including tools to stop third-parties, like advertising companies, from tracking where you go and what you do online.

Freedome also has tools to prevent you visiting malicious websites inadvertently, which should cut down your risk of a malware infection.

Beyond this, both the PC and mobile apps are very slick and easy-to-use. While all VPNs do a similar job, this one scores high for its polished presentation.

F-Secure Freedome VPN enabledGetting Started with F-Secure Freedome VPN

F-Secure offers a free trial of Freedome which you can then unlock with a subscription, so you can download and install the app without signing-up for anything or giving any payment details. Once installed, you’re given a short walkthrough on how to use it. Frankly, it couldn’t be much easier.

There’s a massive button stating Protection Off, and you click it to turn Protection On. It’s completely clear when you are and aren’t connected through a VPN, and if the app isn’t visible, you can rely on the clear Windows 10 notifications coming through.

Switching locations is just as easy, with Freedome’s 25 locations organised into continental zones. There’s no guidance to help you pick one for, say, unblocking US catch-up TV or streaming services,  so you need to know which location will cover your needs.

Freedome’s mobile app is just as intuitive, but make sure you don’t download the Business version; this only works with a Freedome for Business account.

F-Secure Freedome protecting from hackersF-Secure Freedome: The Good

Beyond being easy to use, Freedome’s security features are a real strength – and one it likes to shout about.

Security Alerts

The app tells you how many malicious websites it has blocked and you can log and even get a diagram of all the trackers it’s stopped from working. The app doesn’t bombard you with options, but it still has important features like a killswitch, which halts active connections if the VPN suddenly fails, protecting your anonymity.

Auto-Launch Option

You can also set the app to launch and even initiate a VPN when Windows starts, and there are clear links to a helpful FAQ from within the app.

Speedy Connections

Short-distance VPNs are very speedy, which is great news if you just want an extra layer of protection. Over longer distances the speeds are less impressive, but they’re still on the right side of average. Work over a transatlantic link and the internet still feels smooth and usable.

Excellent Privacy Policies

Finally, Freedome has great, clear privacy policies, making it clear what they log and what they don’t do with your information or your traffic.

F-Secure Freedome VPN Server LocationsF-Secure Freedome: The Not-So-Good

This is largely a great choice for a VPN, but there are one or two drawbacks to be aware of.

Can’t Access Netflix

Freedome can unblock US catch-up TV services such as Comedy Central or NBC, but it can’t unblock US Netflix.

If you’re planning to stream the latest shows while on a European vacation, you might want to use another VPN – we’ve rounded up some of the best VPNs for accessing Netflix.

Slow Initial Connection

Freedome can also be a little slow to make the initial connection, taking over 30 seconds in some cases. As mentioned above, though, its speeds are good once the VPN is up and running, which is the most crucial thing.

Some Logging

You should also be aware that the tracker logging feature means there is some logging some of your online behaviour. F-Secure makes it clear that this is the case and tells you how long this information will be retained and who has access. For the most privacy-conscious VPN users, this will be a red line, however.

F-Secure Freedome prices

You can use the whole service free for five days, but after that you have to pay for an annual subscription.

The price depends on how many devices you want to cover, including PCs and phones, and goes from $49.99 for three devices to $79.99 for 12.

The Verdict

While some VPNs from the big internet security software companies have been over-priced and under-par, Freedome is a really useful VPN with some powerful features, that’s easy to use and comes in at a competitive price. It’s a slick, mature VPN from a company with a long history in security and a refreshingly transparent approach.

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Stuart Andrews has been writing about IT and consumer technology for over twenty years, working across many of the UK's biggest specialist titles. While specializing in PCs and related technology, software and cloud-based services, he also writes about IT in education, video games and internet security

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