We are back with yet another VPN review for our readers, this time of Bitdefender Premium, a trusted name in computer security. The company started in 2001 with a software suite covering various security aspects. The most prominent of which was the famous antivirus. Now, the same company has decided to venture into VPNs. It has come out with the latest product that works towards privacy and safety. However, is the VPN worth it? What we will be figuring out with this Bitdefender Premium VPN review is the effectiveness of the service and whether the product is up to the hype. To learn more, users can keep scrolling.
Disclaimer — We are informing our readers that the following write-up is subjective. We at VPNWired.com do not prefer a product. Readers can always visit the official Bitdefender VPN website to learn more about the VPN service.
Overview of Bitdefender Premium VPN
Bitdefender Premium VPN is a product that allows users to protect their digital lives. The software is a part of a security suite developed around 2001 in Romania. It consists of products like antivirus and has a legacy of decades. However, at first glance, the VPN failed to impress us, unlike its reputation. The product unnecessarily logs your data and lacks advanced features. While it is somewhat fast, it leaks DNS details. Also, it fails to bypass geolocation and VPN blocks.
Due to its privacy issues, it is also unsuitable for torrenting. Despite all its flaws, the VPN can be for beginners, or those who do not care so much for privacy. But then, it defeats the whole purpose of the product. The VPN is by no means private, and one of the worst we have seen. While the Bitdefender brand is famous for its antivirus software, we can’t say the same for its VPN.
Specs of Bitdefender Premium VPN
|Key data||Bitdefender Premium VPN|
|Logging policy||Logs data|
|IP and DNS data leaks||Yes|
|Number of simultaneous connections||10|
|Customer Support||Live chat, Email, Online resources|
|Cheapest price||$4.16/month on yearly plan|
|Free trial||7 Days (No payment info required)|
|Money-back guarantee||30-day money return warranty|
Bitdefender Premium VPN features
The following are the features that are present in the Bitdefender VPN. Let’s take a look!
While the Romanian jurisdiction isn’t that much of an issue, the service outsources its VPN data to Aura (owner of Hotspot Shield VPN), which acts as a data processor for Bitdefender. But that is not a typical setup. Aura is a third party that gains control over your data, all due to the VPN service. Also, the so-called data processor logs more than enough. If Bitdefender Premium VPN was a no-logs service, it wouldn’t be a problem, as it wouldn’t hand over sensitive data anyway. However, the company logs PII (Personally Identifiable Information) and hands it over to third parties. Here’s what the service logs:
- Client IP Address
- Bandwidth use
- Device information
- Website logs
- Geolocation based on nearest VPN servers
The security on the VPN client is a mixed bag of sorts. On paper, it has the basics down, but it still lacks crucial information, on a DNS level. The VPN is not a secure option, no matter how you perceive it to be. The service uses Catapult Hydra VPN protocol to facilitate VPN tunneling and 256-bit AES for encryption. There is also the option to choose OpenVPN, which is the market standard. However, there are no advanced features or other services like port forwarding or Smart DNS.
- VPN Protocol — OpenVPN (TCP/UDP), Catapult Hydra
- Encryption — AES 256 bit
- Security — IPv6 leak blocking, VPN kill switch
- Advanced features — Split tunneling
Connectivity and server locations
Bitdefender Premium VPN works more or less on the same networks as Hotspot Shield, courtesy of Aura. It also uses the same proprietary VPN protocol, Catapult Hydra. The vendor doesn’t have an entire VPN infrastructure and outsources the servers from the same company. While we agree that Bitdefender isn’t the first one to do so (other examples being similar antivirus brands like McAfee), it’s detrimental to the VPN service. All these VPNs rely on others for their service far too much. As for server locations, Bitdefender Premium VPN has a network of 4000+ VPN servers in 49 different countries.
The VPN is on the faster side and capable of HD streaming when it can bypass geo-blocks, which isn’t a lot of times. While the service is quick to claim unparalleled prowess when it comes to streaming, the truth is quite the opposite.
Yes, P2P traffic is supported on Bitdefender Premium VPN servers, and the service is also fast enough to attract users. But we do not recommend torrenting with this VPN, all thanks to the DNS leaks a VPN usually prevents and its logging policies. In a nutshell, while your ISP (Internet Service Provider) can’t make out what you’re torrenting, it will certainly know when and where you are doing it.
The VPN won’t be able to function in highly censored states. The service has no option for obfuscation. Thus, it won’t be able to bypass VPN blocks. Also, the VPN restricts its use in the following countries:
We don’t recommend using Bitdefender Premium VPN if you intend to travel to a highly-censored nation—it won’t work.
The customer care is well done, as expected of a reputed company. It has the option of 24/7 live chat and emails, both equally supportive and helpful. There is also a forum for the community and online guides.
Bitdefender Premium VPN platform support
The service is available on popular platforms like Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android. But that’s it. You can’t enjoy it on IoT (Internet of Things) devices or streaming gadgets. A VPN router is also unavailable, and the same goes for browser extensions.
Subscription plans and pricing of Bitdefender Premium VPN
The service offers a free trial period of 7 days and has a 30-day money-back guarantee. It is also not that costly, at $7 per month and $4.16 per month for the monthly and annual subscriptions, respectively. However, we can’t say it is a value-for-money choice, as there are far better options for much more affordable pricing.
- Monthly — $7 per month
- Annually — $4.16 per month
- Very fast
- Comes from a famous brand
- Privacy-friendly country of origin
- Uses Catapult Hydra protocol
- AES 256 encryption
- VPN kill switch
- Mid-sized VPN network (4000+ servers)
- Allows P2P traffic
- No advanced features
- Inadequate for streaming or torrenting
- No obfuscation
- Rented VPN infrastructure
- Leaks DNS
- Intrusive data logging practices
- No apps for IoT (Internet of Things) devices
The final question of the article is, “is the VPN worth investing in?” For us, that’s a big no. While some of us may have used and even loved the Bitdefender suite of security products, Premium VPN is not up to the mark after our review. It is fast, yes, but other than that, it has a lot of flaws. Be it its obtrusive logging practices or outsourcing the whole network to another vendor, the VPN fails to inculcate trust, which is absolute in this business. Also, the service lacks features, necessary and advanced alike. Thus, we can’t recommend this VPN to either beginners or advanced users
Bitdefender Premium VPN Review
Bitdefender Premium VPN is a service based in Bucharest, Romania, but rents its infrastructure from Aura, owners of Hotspot Shield VPN. Therefore, it depends on them far too much, which reflects on offered features, information logging, DNS leaks, and poor torrenting capabilities. We can’t vouch for it.