Surshark is relatively new in the VPN industry, but it is quickly gaining popularity in the VPN market. The VPN started in 2018 and is based in the British Virgin Islands. A glance into Surshark clearly shows that indeed their offices are there; however, Surshark has several experts working from various offices worldwide.
Its location in the British Virgin Islands is good news for VPN users because it is a privacy-friendly state since it doesn’t have surveillance-sharing agreements with other states.
Surshark is among the VPNs with super-strong encryption and a client-friendly app. Its user-friendliness and pocket-friendly prices make it an amazing VPN. Without a doubt, this newbie is already putting pressure on top VPNs such as ExpressVPN, CyberGhost, NordVPN, and others.
Surfshark 1-minute review
Like most VPNs, monthly subscription plans are always expensive. For better deals, sign up for two years, and they will guarantee the best monthly plans of as low as $2.49 a month. You will also get regular discounts and deals.
Surshark comes with all the basic features such as over 3,000 servers, AES-256 encryption, and tons of additional amazing features like MultiHop, a feature that allows you to route through many servers at a time.
Don’t worry about torrenting because the split tunneling feature is available. This feature is excellent, and it will allow you to separate your connections. Adblocker is also available and a kill switch.
When it comes to logs, this VPN’s published policies are enticing, and its location in the British Virgin Islands is good news. However, it has been a long since it undertook an audit of its browser extensions, it would be better if we see another audit of the full VPN.
Surshark speeds are incredible, mainly when you use WireGuard. Speeds of around 200Mbps on the US and the UK locations are good. Rates are perfectly good even on overloaded servers. However, speeds of 100Mbps with OpenVPN are disappointing. This sounds terrible, though clients have the option of using WireGuard.
Surshark VPN outshines other VPNs when it comes to streaming, with it unblocking iPlayer, Amazon Prime, Netflix, Disney+, Hulu, and more as simple as one plus one. In streaming, there is little to be improved. Torrenting while masked is available, and P2P support implies that you expect good speeds all around.
Surshark’s apps are simple and intuitive, perhaps too straightforward for seasoned VPN veterans, however for most, they are easy to use and offer a lot to play with. Mobile apps are similar with a friendly, usable interface with stable connections. When connecting to your mobile devices, the unlimited connections policy is one of its own.
Customer support is 24/7, with live chat and knowledgeable articles available. The articles can’t provide all answers to your issues but can suffice most of your issues. The live chat is inclusive and ready to help you out.
In general, Surshark is an amazingly powerful VPN, and its appealing cheap price tags make it parallel with the top VPNs on the market.
Latest updates: Surfshark VPN Review
When it comes to staying up to date, Surshark is pretty good, and the most current update is the addition of more than 1,500 new servers. This takes its total number of servers to 3,200+. This has solved some of the VPN’s minor issues from previous reviews. 1,700 servers that the service had previously couldn’t match with the high-end VPN service providers.
Additionally, full WireGuard addition is reasonably fresh. This feature has helped Surshark to boost its speeds to almost the top of the pack.
Surfshark on paper
Number of countries: 65+
Number of servers: 3,200+
Platforms it support: Firefox browser extension, Mac, Windows, iOS, Fire TV, Android, Apple TV, Linux, other TVs, Xbox, Chrome, and Linux.
Split tunneling: Yes
Simultaneous connections: Unlimited
Kill switch: Yes
Geographical location: British Virgin Islands
Protocols supported: OpenVPN TCP, WireGuard, IKEv2, and OpenVPN UDP.
Support: email, 24/7 live chat, and knowledgebase
Surfshark VPN price: how much is it, and is there a Surfshark free trial?
As with many VPNs, shorter subscription plans, most of the time, tend to be expensive. Surshark’s regular monthly plan doesn’t look that reasonable. $12.95 per month is actually more costly than some of its competitors.
The price will go down to as low as $6.49 per month if you opt to pay for six months once. This is relatively pricey, but you will discover a huge drop in the price if you go for a two-year subscription plan. A two-year plan, which is the longest option on offer, is as low as $2.49 a month. This price beats every other premium VPN service provider.
Some VPN users, I am quite sure they will be certainly be put off from signing up for a lengthy plan; however, it is such a good deal when you compare to other VPN providers of its ilk that are fairly expensive. For instance, your first twenty-four months of access to Surshark will cost you a one-off payment of $59.76. When compared to top-notch VPNs like NordVPN, you will pay $83.88 for just a single year.
If you still find the above deals not fair enough, don’t worry; try out the seven-day VPN free trial. You have seven days to test it on iOS, Mac, and Android. Despite this, this is not enough, and there is no free trial option for Windows. Many VPNs of their caliber don’t give free trials at all. However, if you are serious about knowing it better, it makes sense if you sign and up and try the one-month money-back guarantee in case it doesn’t live up to your expectations.
On payment options, you don’t have to worry. Surshark offers a variety of payment options to its users. You have the freedom to pay Surshark with the most popular credit cards and various cryptocurrencies. PayPal. Amazon Pay, Alipay, and Google Pay are all available.
How private is Surfshark?
Surshark VPN is filled with privacy mechanisms. Some of the classic privacy features in place include AES-256 encryption beefed with secure protocols like TCP, OpenVPN UDP, WireGuard, and IKEv2. There are also some other advanced privacy structures. Surfshark uses a private DNS on each of its servers. This feature enables its users to add an extra layer of protection, thus preventing third parties from interrupting their online activities.
Surfshark also features a VPN chaining mechanism. This feature allows its clients to route their traffic via two separate servers. This feature is accessed through the MultiHop button, and it majorly allows a user to connect to one location and disconnect from another.
The MuiltHop feature means that even if a cyber-crook can access the exit server, he is not in a position of tracking down your IP address. Surfshark provides its customers with 15 routes. The first server is your location of connection, and it could be the USA, Singapore, India, France, the UK, Netherlands, Germany, or Australia.
The second one is your exit location, and this usually appears to someone looking to where you were. The options available for this are Hong Kong, the USA, Germany, Sweden, France, Singapore, Portugal, and the Netherlands.
How secure is Surfshark?
Surfshark VPN Review
Surshark comes with an in-built Whitelister panel that allows users to come up with whitelists of apps, websites, and IP addresses that you can reroute through the VPN. The process works the same as split tunneling, and in case you notice that the VPN disrupts a site or app, the whitelist does fix the issue.
You also have the option of setting up the whitelist so that only your chosen sites and apps are directed through Surfshark. It works out perfectly, and don’t expect any issues. The good news with this feature is that it is available on PC apps; many VPNs offer it only on mobile users.
Surfshark’s CleanWeb feature is impressive because it blocks all malicious content, Ads, and web trackers. However, it does not offer remarkable results as expected. Utilizing dedicated tools, for example, uBlock Origin, allows you to block more unnecessary content and have reasonable control over your online activities.
There is also an option that automatically activates your VPN when you start Windows, depending on your security needs; it can also toggle between the different protocols.
Does Surfshark have a Kill Switch?
Another fantastic and most crucial security feature that Surfshark comes with is the kill switch. This feature allows users to be automatically disconnected from the internet in case the VPN connection stops or fails. However, there are a couple of issues with it.
Firstly, the kill switch features deactivate the internet unless you are connected to the VPN. This simply means that you cannot utilize the internet at all unless the VPN is active. It would be better to sever the connection only in case it fails during a VPN browsing session. This is the best method, and it is the one employed by many VPNs, allowing the user to go on with browsing minus necessarily having the VPN activated.
Secondly, the kill switch feature does not notify you that it has been activated and that your connection has been forcibly shut.
Lastly, the kill switch feature is supposed to be activated manually. If you don’t activate it manually and your VPN connection fails, be sure you will be online without protection, and to make matters worse, it will not notify you of the failure.
Does Surfshark keep logs?
Surfshark’s location in the British Virgin Islands is encouraging news. The country’s local laws do not require the provider to log VPN-related activities, and Surfshark doesn’t do the same. This policy is similar to that of ExpressVPN, which is also located in the same country.
The full details about Surfshark’s policies on logging are available on their FAQs page. Still, to brief you, Surfshark confesses that it doesn’t collect IP addresses, VPN server location history, internet activity, information regarding timestamps or sessions, and bandwidth usage.
When it comes to independent security audits, you should know that one of the leading companies called Cure53, has audited Surfshark. However, the audit was done in November 2018, and it covered the VPN’s browser extensions and a little less.
How fast is Surfshark? – Surfshark VPN Review
Under certain circumstances, Surfshark is a fast VPN. During our tests, the connection speeds were excellent, actually quicker than usual.
When we tried out the VPN on a UK data center, the OpenVPN speed results were slightly disappointing. The average connection speeds were poor (70-90 Mbps). When the same speed tests were done from a US location, there was a slight improvement. The speeds averaged between 100-105Mbps. These speeds, when compared to other VPNs like ExpressVPN they are slightly low.
Next, we tried out WireGuard instead of OpenVPN, which this VPN utilizes as standard. The speeds were very impressive with WireGuard.
With WireGuard, the speeds from a UK data center doubled and averaged between 140-150 Mbps. The connections speed hit over 200Mbps from a couple of locations in the US.
200Mpbs is a commendable speed although, some advanced VPNs like NordVPN achieved more than 300 Mbps with its advanced NordLynx protocol.
Apart from looking for the best speeds, our team also wanted to know the worst speeds. To carry out this, we decided to select the most overwhelming and most distant servers. Once more, the results were not bad as we expected. Connecting all the way from the United Kingdom to Argentina resulted in speeds of 30-35 Mbps averagely, even with the most overloaded server.
To conclude on speed and performance, Surfshark is a good-performing VPN. However, there are some odd occasions when this performance can backslide. Speed depends on your location and the servers you are using, so it is better if you try out all these within the first 30 days money-back guarantee before you commit yourself to the VPN.
How good is Surfshark for streaming?
When it comes to accessing streaming sites, Surfshark is at par with top-notch VPNs. Many VPNs claim to be the best at streaming, but unfortunately, they don’t live up to their promises. Surfshark is different here.
Surfshark is very comprehensive as a streaming VPN. Apart from unblocking Netflix in more than 15 jurisdictions, it also lists the ones in which it functions.
During our tests, we tried accessing Netflix from five different locations. We had no issues accessing the US Netflix, so Surfshark lives to its promises. Apart from unblocking Netflix, we were equally pleased with how it accessed other streaming sites too.
With Surfshark, we were also able to enjoy watching YouTube content from the US, although this is one of the easiest Firewalls to breakthrough. There were no issues unblocking iPlayer, Disney+, and US Amazon prime too. This was from three locations in the United Kingdom. All three were successful.
How good is Surfshark for torrenting?
Although it is not one of its primary functions, you can also use Surfshark for torrenting. The platform allows Peer-to-Peer support for almost all of its servers. For additional masking, clients can decide and pay for the service using Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.
Another feature that can help users to be secure when using Surfshark for torrenting is its whitelisting abilities. With this feature, you have the option of singling out your torrent client, giving it a chance to drive traffic via the VPN while your remaining internet traffic is routed via a standard connection.
How good are Surfshark’s desktop apps?
Surfshark VPN Review
Installation and connection to Surfshark VPN is a very straightforward procedure. In our case, we tried it on Windows 10, and it was pretty easy. However, if you want to install it on Mac, there is one for this too.
When it comes to versatility, the user interface was more flexible and beyond our expectations. It adapted well when we tried to resize. Before you resize, the app displays a menu with server locations, a content button, and information about the current server status. After you expand the interface, it displays more options and panels that can be selected.
In the list of locations, some icons show the strongest servers. However, the list doesn’t explicitly show latency. There is also the favorite tab that enables you to store the locations that you mostly use.
Another good news from this VPN is that it features a NoBorders mode. This superb technology allows you to access the VPN’s services even in countries and jurisdictions where it is prohibited. This is great for VPN users from China.
As stated earlier, Windows and Mac users enjoy the MultiHop feature, kill switch, and whitelister features too. The Windows app was very impressive, and its functionality is superb. However, some minor improvements they can make to the Windows app.
How good are Surfshark’s mobile apps?
Surfshark is a mobile VPN. It is impressive. Most VPN service providers overlook mobile apps, but Surfshark’s Android VPN and iPhone VPN are both packed with advanced features and are very functional. Aesthetically, these applications are comfortable and very clean to use. Some slight touches like dark mode make it more intuitive and pleasurable when using.
The Android app is remarkably similar to Windows. The interface is the same. It is possible to use whitelisting, split-tunneling, ad blocking, and MuitiHop features. Mobile users also have the option of using multiple support protocols such as WireGuard, OpenVPN, Shadowsocks, and IVEv2. The kill switch is also available.
Additionally, Surfshark’s Android apps allow you to adjust performance on mobile networks. You can connect automatically to the VPN in some situations. Then select from the many encryption methods such as Chacha20Poly1305 or AES-256-GGM.
How good is Surfshark’s browser extension?
Surfshark supports two browser extensions; Firefox and chrome. This is a little bit limited compared to some providers like ExpressVPN, which include different browser extension versions. However, the ones available on Surfshark offer an excellent range of features.
When using either Firefox or Chrome, you can take full advantage of all its key features. You can take advantage of the provider’s Malware blocking, DNS technology, CleanWeb ad, and so on.
What customer support does Surfshark offer?
Surfshark has a comprehensive customer support site that has some of the answers to your questions. It includes guides, FAQs, and tutorials which cover most of the issues. However, it cannot provide solutions to all your problems.
When it comes to finding the answers to your issues, it could be better to make some improvements to how the content is organized. For instance, if you type ‘Windows’ in the search bar, you get a list of articles related to Window issues.
Surfshark’s support is available 24/7. You can chat to the support if you don’t find answers to your issues on their knowledgebase. When we tried the service, we were able to get a response in under one minute. However, we were unable to know whether it was a personal service or a script-focused conversation.
With Surfshark, you will enjoy anonymity and streaming at a surprisingly low price. As with any other product, it has its issues; however, they are not that much that they can keep you away. Some improvements, such as the introduction of WireGuard for Android and iOS, have made the VPN compete favorably. Though it will cost you more than Surfshark, ExpressVPN has more advanced features, covers more locations, and its customer service is unbeatable.