TunnelBear VPN ReviewOur rating
- English e-mail support
- No chat support
- No phone support
Despite that its server locations are limited to just 23 countries, customers have access to a decent number of over 1800 servers. TunnelBear is compatible with most operating systems including Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS.
TunnelBear also has specialized browser extensions for Chrome, Firefox, and Opera. And, with a TunnelBear subscription, users get protection for up to 5 devices simultaneously, which is more than enough for the average customer.
The TunnelBear app operates on military-grade AES-256 bit encryption and first-rate protocols, to ensure your internet connection is safe from prying eyes.
- Free VPN service
- Military-grade encryption
- User-friendly apps
- Based in Canada (Five Eyes)
- No refund policy
- No live chat support
|Type of IP offered:||Shared|
|Simultaneous connections / Users:||5|
|OS support:||Android, iOS, macOS, Windows|
|VPN Promotion:||Get VPN from TunnelBear VPN for 3.33$ per month|
- American Express
- Mastercard Debit
- Visa Debit
- Visa Electron
- New Zealand
- United Kingdom
- United States
TunnelBear VPN Security
The Canadian-based company TunnelBear is owned by the well-known online privacy company McAfee. Despite its simple appearance, the TunnelBear uses military-grade AES-256 bit encryption and the secure OpenVPN protocol as standard, to protect you from government censorship, spies, and malicious third parties. With TunnelBear, there is also the option to utilize the IKEv2 protocol on Windows systems. OpenVPN is our preferred protocol as it is fast, secure, and open-source. TunnelBear even offers the option to choose between OpenVPN TCP and UDP connections.
TunnelBear provides complete DNS and WebRTC leak protection, which means you can rest assured that your private internet connection data and real IP address will never become compromised, even if you connect to an unsecured public Wifi network. There is a reliable kill-switch too as part of its VigilantBear setting, a feature that we expect to see in every premium VPN product. This ensures that, in the case that your VPN server connection fails, the kill-switch will cut the transfer of data until it is reconnected so that no unencrypted data is exposed.
There is also the option to activate the 2021 TunnelBear LLC VPN's GhostBear setting which is designed to hide the fact that you are utilizing a VPN connection. This feature is useful for a range of reasons including overcoming VPN blocks on streaming websites.
TunnelBear boasts one of the best privacy policies of any VPN. The provider clearly explains exactly what data it collects and the reasons for it. TunnelBear reassures customers that it will never misuse or sell personal user information with third parties. The provider does utilize third party payment processing, however, this is standard in the VPN industry. TunnelBear apps do not store information about user activities, IP addresses, DNS queries, or timestamps.
For the users of its free version, TunnelBear does store bandwidth data in order to reinforce its limit. This information is rewritten at the start of every month.
The provider has impressively completed three independent code audits, the results of which have been publically released. This level of transparency is rarely seen in a VPN provider and is a major plus for any customer looking for a trustworthy and secure provider. The results of the audits that were carried out by Cure53, an independent privacy company, offer evidence of TunnelBear's commitment to user security and anonymity.
However, in the future, we would like to see TunnelBear follow in the footsteps of some of its competitors and make the move to RAM-only servers, which are much more secure than hard-drive storage.
TunnelBear VPN Features
If you sign up to TunnelBear you will gain access to apps for a range of operating systems including Windows, macOS, iPhone, and Android. All of the TunnelBear apps are well-designed, easy to use, and packed with excellent features.
App setup is easy with TunnelBear, no matter what device or platform you are using. There is support for 5 simultaneous connections which means that you will be able to protect most if not all of your devices at the same time. TunnelBear does offer a free version, however, users are limited to a meager 500MB of data a month, which is hardly enough to carry out the simplest of browsing activities.
TunnelBear VPN does not have the largest server network, with locations in 23 countries across Australia, Brazil, Europe, India, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, North America, and Singapore. This is significantly less than some of its competitors, however, all that matters is the locations that you require. If TunnelBear enables access to your desired locations, there shouldn't be an issue.
TunnelBear also offers an Always-on mode which ensures your VPN server connection is always activated. This means that you do not need to worry about forgetting to reconnect to TunnelBear VPN every time you use the internet.
Torrenting and P2P sharing is supported across all of TunnelBear's servers. However, TunnelBear VPN may not be the best choice if your main purpose is to stream geo-restricted content on sites such as Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, or Disney+. Upon testing, TunnelBear struggled to unblock any of these streaming websites. A speed test revealed relatively slow speeds when compared to other premium providers, which is disappointing.
In terms of pricing, TunnelBear is one of the most affordable options on the market, as long as you are ready to commit to a long term plan. Prices start at just $3.33 per month if you sign up for the TunnelBear 2-year plan. Customers can choose to pay anonymously for Bitcoin, however, this option is limited to the one-year plan.
Unlike many of its competitors, TunnelBear does not offer a money-back guarantee which is unfortunate. However, it is possible to test the TunnelBear app by utilizing the free trial version.
There is also no live chat option, which may cause issues for novice VPN users. However, you can contact the email support team through the Contact page on TunnelBear's website. Typically, you can expect a reply within a few hours.