This VPN has been on the market since 2017, and, over the years, it has evolved into a quite decent product. But the question still stands: is Ivacy VPN good enough to compete with the best of the best – the industry leaders?
While Ivacy is well-known and respected by people in the industry, it is not nearly as popular around the world as, say, ExpressVPN or NordVPN. At the same time, the team behind this VPN is incredibly talented as they are solely responsible for the split tunneling technology. It allows users to hand-pick which apps should be protected by the VPN. Now, let us go ahead with the Ivacy VPN review and see whether it is a worthy alternative to the big names or not.
The HQ is located in Singapore, a member of the so-called “Five Eyes” surveillance alliance. That means the company is obligated to share any info they have on the users with the government. The good news is – they follow a strict (and true) no-logs policy, which makes it an excellent choice for the private users (we’ll talk about this in more detail later). Sadly, the number of available servers is rather modest: only 1000 servers spread across 100+ locations.
However, every single one of those servers is highly optimized and will offer a solid experience. With Ivacy, you can protect up to five devices simultaneously. Furthermore, it is not only compatible with Win, Mac, iOS, and Android, but also Linux, smart TVs, routers, gaming consoles, Roku, and Kodi. Yes, the list of supported platforms is very impressive.
What Do You Get With Ivacy VPN?
- Highly affordable pricing plans
- Industry-leading security and privacy
- User-friendliness, a straightforward interface
- Above average customer support
- The server network is highly stable
- Offers a 7-day free trial
- Compatible with most modern-day devices
- Belongs to the five eyes jurisdiction
- A money-back guarantee with many limitations
- Not the best choice for streaming Netflix
- A limited number of servers
The affordable price, impressive compatibility, and 7-day trial are one of the biggest reasons to consider Ivacy as your primary VPN. The user interface is very easy to navigate; customer service is lovely. Sadly, it’s not the best pick for unblocking access to streaming services. Furthermore, the MBG is very “greedy”: you will get a refund within 30 days, but only if you don’t exceed the 500MB/30 sessions limit.
Privacy and Security
Encryption and Protocols
With Ivacy, you can choose between one of the following protocols: OpenVPN, IKEv2, SSTP, PPTP, and L2TP. These are the most popular and effective protocols of our time; OpenVPN is the friendliest one, while IKEv2 is known as the impenetrable protocol. By the way, OpenVPN implements the same SSL technology that is used in many bank websites around the world.
Add the industry-leading AES 256-bit encryption, also known as the Military-Grade Encryption, and you’ll get a brick-strong layer of defense. Government agencies, top-notch security firms, and even the US Army use the same encryption to protect their assets. With that said, you can rest assured that your private data will stay that way with Ivacy VPN.
As mentioned earlier, Ivacy VPN was first to introduce the Split Tunneling technology. With it, you can choose to only route your browser traffic through the VPN’s secure servers. That helps save bandwidth and speeds up performance, which is a handy feature, especially if the Internet connection isn’t particularly fast. Prioritization of apps that need to be routed through secure tunnels more than others – this is what split tunneling is all about.
Ivacy also comes with a built-in Kill Switch – another excellent feature that will make sure your data stays private. The Kill Switch cuts the Internet connection the second the VPN goes offline and prevents any hackers/malicious software from accessing your device. Without a VPN, your IP address is exposed, and this feature is like an additional layer of defense.
Dedicated IPs aren’t shared with other users: they are only available to you. But why would anyone need a dedicated IP? The answer is simple: on a shared IP, you may get banned on several websites because of something other users did. With dedicated IPs, however, that’s never a problem (Ivacy offers “exclusive” IPs in seven countries around the world).
The NAT Firewall is nothing like the ones found in regular routers. It automatically replaces the built-in firewall inside the OS and filters out any suspicious/potentially dangerous data. A router firewall doesn’t do any of that, which means all sorts of harmful data can make it through with nothing to stop it.
Ivacy Logging Policy
Despite the high privacy standards, the fact that the HQ is in Singapore might scare some private users away. Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide whether you’re comfortable with Ivacy’s logging policy or not. Here are the facts: while the company follows the Five Eyes jurisdiction and can, at any moment, share user data with the government, the email address is the only thing they’ll have on you.
The number of available servers and connection stability – that’s what performance is all about. Compared to NordVPN (5000+ servers) and ExpressVPN (3000+ servers), Ivacy VPN is lagging (only 1000 servers). However, we were surprised by how well it performed in our speed tests. It’s still not nearly as good as the fastest VPNs on the market, but, thanks to the low price-tag, it does offer a good compromise.
We picked servers in four locations: the US, the UK, the EU, and Asia. That allowed us to achieve the most objective average results (your results may vary, but not dramatically). Overall, 80+ servers were tested, at different times of the day. If you’re a big fan of speed and use VPNs to download big files (maybe through torrents), you probably won’t be impressed by the following numbers:
US Server (Washington):
UK Server (London):
EU Server (Paris):
Asia Server (Hong Kong):
Download: very low
Upload: very low
Sadly, the Hong Kong servers proved to be practically unusable. But that doesn’t mean they’re useless: if you’re living close by, these servers will provide a decent connection speed. Overall, Ivacy’s performance in the speed tests was above average (taking into consideration the price, of course). For a regular user looking for an affordable VPN to connect to most locations around the globe, it is a solid pick.
No Leaks Detected
When there are DNS leaks, that means any third party (including the ISP and cybercriminals) can have sneak peeks of your online activity. A VPN’s #1 task is to keep your actions on the Internet secure and private, which is why DNS leaks are one of the first things we check. Good news: there are absolutely no leaks with Ivacy VPN – we tested it multiple times, and it performed flawlessly in every single test.
Torrenting and Streaming
Along with reliability, privacy, and performance, torrenting and streaming compatibility are among the most important factors when choosing a VPN. If a Virtual Private Network doesn’t support the P2P traffic, you either won’t be able to download torrents whatsoever, or will be forced to look over your shoulder continually. As for streaming, because of the limits and restrictions that big platforms like Netflix are introducing, a VPN is a must.
With it, you can easily access content that was otherwise blocked, or, as they say, geo-restricted. In a way, the situation on the market is like a constant “fight” between streaming services and VPN providers. There are no 100% guarantees with this: your VPN might be able to unblock access to your favorite shows today but fail tomorrow. Even ExpressVPN, one of the best picks for streaming, is struggling and trying to find new ways to outmaneuver Netflix.
Is Torrenting Allowed?
Good news right from the start: this company is not only allowing users to download torrents but also provides a list of P2P-optimized servers. They are located in the North-American region (the United States and Canada), though. If you’re lucky enough to live in NA, these blazing-fast servers will make you love Ivacy even more. They won’t do much good to you if you’re in the EU or Asia.
At the very least, though torrenting is illegal, you can freely use the P2P protocol in any corner of the world. And, you can always leave the optimized servers be and download torrents through regular ones. There won’t be any throttling with this VPN, and the provider won’t let the cops know you’re violating the law. Yes, that does sometimes happen with other VPNs.
What About Netflix?
It’s a…grey area, so to speak: as mentioned earlier, every single popular VPN on the market has a “target” on its back. Streaming platforms single out VPN servers and block them so that users can’t access geo-restricted content while trying to connect from outside of the country (which is the US for Netflix, for example). Ivacy issued a warning in late 2018, stating that Netflix will be hard to access because of a ban.
These days, the situation isn’t very different, and it all comes down to pure luck. Some people get easy access, while others struggle with it to the point that they get disappointed by the VPN’s performance. We tested it several times and managed to get through 65-70% of the time, which isn’t a terrible result, considering the strict limits. The same is true for BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and other popular streaming platforms.
How Much Does Ivacy VPN Cost?
- 1-Month Plan: 95 dollars a month
- 1-Year Plan: 3.35 dollars a month ($40 for the whole thing), a 66% discount
- 2-Year Plan: 2.5 dollars a month ($54 once you subscribe), a 77% discount
- 5-Year Plan: 1.33 dollars a month ($80 in total), an 87% discount, exclusive deal
With Ivacy VPN, you can always rely on a 7-day free trial. It gives a chance to test the product for an entire week without any limitations. And, like most rivaling VPNs, Ivacy offers a 30-day MBG (Money-Back Guarantee). The strange part is – there are several limitations with it, and it’s very hard for a regular user to find info on that.
Here’s what you need to know about this provider’s MBG:
- Refunds can be claimed within 30 days of the subscription date; if it’s the monthly plan, then you only get seven days
- Users that have already requested a refund won’t be able to get another one
- Payment methods including Paymentwall, Coin Payments, BitCoin and BitPay will make it impossible to get a refund
- If you consume 500MB+ of bandwidth (download and upload combined) within those 30 days, you won’t get a refund
- The same is true if you used Ivacy more than 30 times (for more than 30 sessions)
This isn’t a particularly big company; plus, Ivacy is a relatively affordable product. Regardless, customer support is well above average and can compete with the best of the best. First of all, the support agents are very quick to respond, user-friendly, and know exactly how to lend a helping hand. You can get a hold of them not only through the official website, but also social media (Facebook and Twitter).
There’s a knowledge base, a FAQ section, and a series of setup guides. If you prefer to handle problems on your own, these will be of great help. Or, you can always send them an email or get in direct contact with an agent through the Live Chat. It is the fastest and easiest way to talk to a real person and get an answer within minutes.
Do We Recommend Ivacy VPN?
Summing up, Ivacy VPN offers good value for money and will be an excellent pick if you’re looking for an all-around trustworthy service. True, it cannot compete with the leaders in terms of speed, coverage, and lacks some advanced features. However, for a service that you can get for cheap, it is quite impressive regarding privacy, security, connection stability, and torrenting capabilities.