What Is VirtualShield VPN?
VirtualShield VPN is a virtual private network that encrypts your internet traffic and protects your connection from shady or harmful activities. Although the Delaware-based company has only been around since 2017, it has already gained a following for its simple service, useful features, and quick customer service.
We look into what makes VirtualShield unique and whether it’s the right fit for you in this in-depth review.
VirtualShield VPN Features
Here’s a quick rundown of VirtualShield’s key features.
The VirtualShield VPN app includes an internet killswitch, as do most standard VPN providers. If the VPN is lost, it prevents your device from connecting to the internet. This prevents data from leaking across your network when enabled.
IPv6 Leak Protection
IPv6 is a communications protocol that aids in the identification and location of computers on networks as well as the routing of internet traffic. While many devices still do not use IPv6, if yours does, you should enable it. As a result, any data leakage will be prevented, and additional security will be provided.
The VPN’s always-on feature ensures that you never connect to the internet without it. When you go online or your connection changes, the app will automatically activate the VPN.
This feature differs from the option to launch on startup, which launches the VirtualShield VPN app whether or not you are connected to the internet.
VirtualShield VPN has another option for you if you don’t want to use killswitch to completely shut down your internet connection when the VPN disconnects. You can use the app guard feature to block apps that may leak personal information. When the VPN disconnects, it will only disconnect the apps you’ve selected.
VirtualShield VPN is dedicated to adding features that will help you work more efficiently. Setting keyboard shortcuts for different functions to speed up specific processes is an example of this.
That brings us to the end of our look at some of the best features. Let’s take a look at the rest of what this service has to offer.
VirtualShield VPN Servers and Locations
VirtualShield is a relatively new company, as evidenced by its small server network. It operates 17 VPN servers in ten different countries.
It has eight servers in the United States and Canada, giving it good North American coverage. In Europe, you can find them in the United Kingdom, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland, and Serbia. VirtualShield has one server each in Australia, Japan, and Singapore outside of North America and Europe.
By any standard, this spread is quite small. We expected the VPN’s usability to suffer as a result of the lack of servers. This concern was confirmed by the speed test we conducted for our VirtualShield VPN review.
VirtualShield VPN Speed
Because of the extra layer of protection and how traffic is routed through the VPN’s server before reaching its destination, you will most likely experience speed losses with any VPN. With the best VPNs, however, this loss in download and upload speeds should be minimal, if not non-existent.
We used Speedtest to measure the speeds of servers in various locations during the speed test for our VirtualShield review. We also compared them to the speed we were able to achieve without using a VPN.
Without a VPN, we were getting download speeds of 8.74 Mbps and upload speeds of 2.9 Mbps.
With the VirtualShield VPN app, we got the following speeds for the US (Georgia) server, corresponding to losses of 69.1% (download) and 46.2 percent (upload):
For the UK server, the losses were 53.7% and 45.2%:
For the Germany server, they were 50.5% and 26.9%:
For the Australia server, they were 60.4% and 26.2%:
And for the Singapore server, the losses were 39.1% and 9.7%:
The amount of traffic routed through that server, as well as the distance between the server and the user’s physical location, can affect the speed loss. Because we were in Asia at the time of the test, Singapore was the closest server. As a result, the steady increase in speed from the United States to Singapore follows the expected pattern.
Furthermore, the speed losses on the closest server were well above the VPN industry median of 65 percent. Even the losses on the German and UK servers, which were far away from our location, were not excessive. We ran these tests again a few hours later to make sure they were consistent, and the results were the same.
If you’re in the United States or Western Europe, our VirtualShield VPN review found that you’ll likely get good speeds. If you use VirtualShield in most parts of Asia, South America, or Africa, where the service has no servers, the speeds will be slower.
Privacy and Jurisdiction with VirtualShield VPN
However, it states further down in the policy that it will disclose personal information if required by law or in response to reasonable law enforcement requests.
VirtualShield VPN LLC, the parent company, is subject to American surveillance laws because it is based in the United States. Furthermore, the United States is a member of the multilateral alliances known as the Five Eyes and the Fourteen Eyes. Within these alliances, data from US agencies can be shared with those from other countries.
In our VirtualShield review, we’d like to bring up another source of concern: the raging online debate over the parent company’s predecessor. It is difficult to find information about the company. Its domain, for example, is registered with a service that allows registration without providing WHOIS data.
Furthermore, its business address is provided by a service that charges a small fee for the use of its address. The company is registered in Delaware through a registered agent, which allowed the actual owners to avoid providing any information and form the company even though they were not residents of Delaware. Delaware is well-known for making it difficult to file lawsuits against corporations.
Of course, many debate participants argue that the fact that the owners have effectively hidden their personal information speaks well of a service attempting to protect user data. Law enforcement agencies are unlikely to obtain much data if they do not know who to contact for user information. Furthermore, if properly implemented, the zero-log policy should not leave the VPN service with much information to provide to the government.
Security and Protocols for VirtualShield VPN
The encryption method and tunneling protocols used by the VPN have the greatest impact on your online privacy and security. In this regard, our VirtualShield review discovered that the service performs admirably. All of your traffic is encrypted with 256-bit AES, the military-grade encryption standard used by all of today’s top VPNs.
We checked with the customer support team for more information because the VirtualShield website didn’t have detailed information on the supported tunneling protocols. UDP, TCP, and L2TP are supported by the Windows, Linus, macOS, and Android versions, according to them.
UDP and TCP use OpenVPN technology, which is the industry’s most secure protocol. The L2TP option employs Rasdial technology, which is both relatively safe and widely supported. The iOS app employs Internet Key Exchange v2 (IKEv2), a more secure and faster version of L2TP that may or may not be supported by all platforms.
Results of the VirtualShield VPN Leak Test
The actual IP and DNS addresses of your device are protected by a VPN. To see if this is the case, there are several IP and DNS leak tests available online. Below is the outcome of one of these tests, which was conducted using https://ipleak.net/.
After connecting to the server in Atlanta, Georgia, using the VirtualShield VPN app, we performed our IP and DNS leak tests. The test found a server in Georgia as well as one in Florida. Our exact location was kept a secret.
VirtualShield VPN and Streaming Services
The majority of users want to know if the VPN can bypass geo-restrictions on streaming services. Other VirtualShield reviews give the service high marks in this category, so we put it to the test. To access various streaming services, we used VPN servers in the United States (Los Angeles), the United Kingdom, Germany, Australia, and Japan.
We were able to stream Netflix USA, HBO Max, Hulu, Apple TV+, and the Criterion Collection with ease using the US server. Disney+, on the other hand, did not function, and Amazon Prime Video detected that we were using a VPN.
We were able to watch Netflix UK, Disney+, Amazon, and BBC iPlayer content on the UK server. Many other VPNs fail to connect to Amazon and BBC iPlayer, so VirtualShield deserves credit for succeeding.
On the other servers, we attempted to access Netflix. Our VPN connection was detected on the Japan server, but we were able to play content from Germany and Australia without any delays.
Overall, we think this is a good showing. VirtualShield’s Unrestricted Streaming add-on, which costs $9.99 per month, is recommended for even better access to all international streaming content.
Is VirtualShield VPN Good for Torrenting?
VirtualShield does not support port forwarding, which is an important feature for peer-to-peer (P2P) sharing. Other features such as killswitch and the zero traffic logs policy, on the other hand, aid P2P sharing and streaming. On all of its servers, VirtualShield allows P2P sharing and torrenting.
We compared the torrent download speed without the VPN to the speeds on some servers for our VirtualShield VPN review. Without the VPN, we downloaded a torrent file for a recently released movie at a speed of 800 kbps to 1 Mbps.
We first used the VirtualShield VPN app’s automatic connection, which connected us to the Singapore server. We were able to get a maximum speed of 200 kbps, with an average speed of around 150 kbps. We also tried the servers in the United States (Georgia) and Germany. We received a maximum speed of 300 kbps and an average speed of around 250 kbps for both.
Even the fastest speeds were only a third of what we could get without the VPN. With VPNs, the download speed reduction should be minimal, and in some cases, it may even increase. As a result, while VirtualShield is good for P2P sharing or torrenting privacy, its performance is below average.
Can VirtualShield VPN Bypass Geoblocks?
Geoblocks are country-based restrictions on internet usage, but VPNs with obfuscated servers can get around them. We haven’t tried VirtualShield from any of these locations.
Despite this, the lack of obfuscated servers and confirmations from user-written VirtualShield reviews indicate that it will not be able to get past China’s Great Firewall. If you live in China, Cuba, Iran, or Saudi Arabia, you should look for other VPN services that can help you get around the geoblocks.
One of VirtualShield’s developers’ goals is to make the service accessible to anyone. Given that the VirtualShield VPN app is one of the most user-friendly we’ve seen among all the VPNs we’ve reviewed, they’ve certainly succeeded.
As you can see, even inexperienced users can figure out how to use all of the features within minutes. There are also links to web pages with quick explanations of each feature in the settings. The user interfaces of apps on different platforms are very similar (Windows, Linux, macOS, Android, and iOS).
All of the features work flawlessly, and connecting to VPN servers is a breeze. Although the overall design could have been more elegant, we would choose usability over aesthetics any day.
VirtualShield also has Chrome, Firefox, and Opera browser extensions. These are stripped-down versions that only protect your browser’s internet activity and have fewer settings.
Customer service is another area where many VirtualShield reviews praise the service. While it still doesn’t offer phone support (unless you pay extra), it does offer a live chat service from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. PST. Users can also use the Contact link on the support page to submit a ticket.
We sent a few questions to the live chat system outside of business hours and were told we’d get an email response. We expected to wait a few hours but were pleasantly surprised to receive courteous and detailed responses in less than an hour.
A searchable knowledge base is also available on the VirtualShield website. We liked how the articles on this site aren’t as technical as those on other VPN sites.
VirtualShield VPN Price
VirtualShield’s pricing is split into two categories, each with three subscription tiers. However, before committing to a paid plan, we recommend trying out the VirtualShield VPN free trial for 30 days.
The following are the plans:
- Personal (up to three devices)
- 1 month: $12.99/month
- 12 months: $4.25/month
- 24 months: $3.49/month
- Family (up to 15 devices)
- 1 month: $29.99/month
- 12 months: $17.99/month
- 24 months: $14.99/month
Both plans come with all of the features we discussed in our review, as well as unlimited bandwidth. While the VPN does not offer a money-back guarantee, it does run promotions from time to time, such as a three-month subscription extension if you skip the VirtualShield VPN free trial.
VirtualShield also offers a variety of add-ons for a fee.
VirtualShield VPN Review – Verdict
In our VirtualShield VPN review, we discovered that this young player in the crowded VPN market has a lot to offer. It has strong security features, which is the most important factor to consider when choosing a VPN. It also works well with geo-restrictions on streaming platforms, allows for safe torrenting, and has a user-friendly interface that is ideal for those who are new to VPNs.
While our download and upload speeds were not ideal, we anticipate that they will be faster in other areas. The customer service is excellent, but it could be even better if the live chat hours were extended. We also liked the fact that there is a family plan that covers more devices.
On the downside, VirtualShield is a poor choice for users in most parts of the world due to its limited server network. In addition, the VPN will not work in countries with strict internet restrictions.
The most significant disadvantage for us is the pricey add-ons, some of which are included in other VPNs’ standard packages. While the base prices are reasonable, the hidden costs push it into the higher price range.
In general, we found VirtualShield VPN to be a competent service in our VirtualShield VPN review. Its “Coming Soon” features, as well as the expansion of its server network, could propel it to the top of the pack. In today’s market, however, there are several better options available for most users.