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ProtonMail makes its free VPN service available to everyone

June 20, 2017 | Telepresence Options

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Story and images by Engadget

The free tier isn't as robust as the paid ones, but it's free forever.

ProtonMail, the encrypted email created by CERN and MIT scientists, has released a new product in response to the administration's roll back of Obama-era internet privacy rules. Starting today, you can try out the company's VPN service, which was in beta testing by 10,000 initial users for a year, by getting it from the official ProtonVPN website. The great thing about it is that it has a free tier that's free forever. It might not be as robust as the paid ones, but it still routes your connection through multiple encrypted tunnels in three countries.

By offering free options, the company can reach more people, especially now that there's a lot more interest in using VPN all over the world. In the US, the new FCC chairman and various Senators want to kill net neutrality in addition to nullifying rules that protect user data. UK Prime Minister Theresa May wants to regulate the internet. People in China, Egypt and other places where the internet is heavily censored also need VPNs to get around restrictions, while others need the service to keep their info secure and private.

If you decide to stick with ProtoMail's service as your primary VPN provider after using it for a while, you can always choose to pay later to help the company continue offering its free services. ProtonMail says it relies on user upgrades to keep the company running, because (in its own fighting words) it doesn't "abuse user privacy to sell advertisements" like "Google and Facebook."

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