iVacy Review – Cheap and Cheerful VPN But Is It Any Good?

Best Budget VPN

iVacy VPN

Editor’s Rating: 7.2 /10

While you may not have heard of Ivacy before, this VPN service provider has gained a lot of attention around the world in recent years. They have won numerous awards and made significant innovations that have been adopted by others within the industry.

With their surprisingly low price tag and attractive features, this relatively unknown company has certainly piqued the interest of many privacy-focused Internet users. But is the service any good? Check out our Ivacy VPN review to see if it’s right for your privacy and security needs.

About iVacy

IvacyVPN is not a new company by any means. They have been in the VPN game since 2007. Throughout the last decade, the company has honed its service to provide customers with as many great features as possible. They’re based in Singapore and currently have over 1,000 servers located in over 50 different countries. What’s unique about Ivacy VPN is that their server locations are spread out to over 100 different places and include spots where most VPN providers don’t go. These include countries in South America and Africa.

The 1,000-plus servers are comprised of both bare-metal servers for optimal security and virtual servers. Ivacy is pretty transparent about which servers are physical and which are not, giving you the opportunity to choose one that you’re comfortable using.

One of the most notable parts of Ivacy’s history is the introduction of split-tunneling. Split-tunneling gives users more flexibility and control by designating what goes through the VPN and what goes through the ISP. This feature is something that you won’t be hard-pressed to find with most VPN providers.

However, did you know that Ivacy was the company that pioneered this technology? This was all the way back in 2010. In the years since, the service provider has added a host of great features. We’ll be examining some of these features to see how the service stacks up.

Ivacy VPN: The Good

Impressive Speed and Performance

Ivacy is not a new company by any means. They have been in the VPN game since 2007. Throughout the last decade, the company has honed its service to provide customers with as many great features as possible. They’re based in Singapore and currently have over 1,000 servers located in over 50 different countries. What’s unique about Ivacy VPN is that their server locations are spread out to over 100 different places and include spots where most VPN providers don’t go. These include countries in South America and Africa.

The 1,000-plus servers are comprised of both bare-metal servers for optimal security and virtual servers. Ivacy is pretty transparent about which servers are physical and which are not, giving you the opportunity to choose one that you’re comfortable using.

One of the most notable parts of Ivacy’s history is the introduction of split-tunneling. Split-tunneling gives users more flexibility and control by designating what goes through the VPN and what goes through the ISP. This feature is something that you won’t be hard-pressed to find with most VPN providers.

However, did you know that Ivacy was the company that pioneered this technology? This was all the way back in 2010. In the years since, the service provider has added a host of great features. We’ll be examining some of these features to see how the service stacks up.

Great Security Features

For most people, the whole point of having a VPN is to keep their information and identity private. In our connected world, it’s very easy for hackers to obtain sensitive information and for companies to sell our browsing habits for profit. Having multiple layers of security can ensure that you are browsing safely. Luckily, Ivacy prioritizes security and offers various forms of protection for peace of mind.

DNS and IPv6 Leaks
VPNs work to encrypt your IP address before it sent out to the Internet as you browse the web. This is what VPN services are designed to do. Unfortunately, leaks do happen. When a DNS leak occurs, your ISP knows what sites you have visited, even if you used a VPN.

Ivacy does a good job at preventing leaks from happening. Each time you visit a website, your DNS requests are first routed through the Ivacy VPN server before they’re sent to a third-party service. To the DNS service, that request appears to be coming from the VPN server, effectively preventing leaks. IPv6 leaks are quite common, but this technique from Ivacy helps to decrease the chances of this happening.

Other features are also in place to prevent leaks. While leak protection is already built into the standard Windows and MacOS client, Ivacy also has browser extensions for Chrome and Firefox. The company actually recommends that users utilize the browser for better protection.

Virus and Malware Protection
You can’t have enough protection from viruses and malware, especially if you’re downloading files off the Internet. Ivacy has a unique feature that offers an additional layer of protection to keep your computer safe. It automatically scans each and every file you download. This is something that you won’t find with most VPN service providers.

The Advanced Server Level Virus and Malware Protection feature is included with every plan at no additional cost. The files are scanned in real time and capable of detecting over 4 million different virus signatures. While you should still utilize your own antivirus software, this extra perk is definitely something that sets Ivacy apart.

Kill Switch
A VPN’s features are only effective if you’re connected to its servers. The second you lose a connection, all that anonymity is gone. Thankfully, Ivacy has a kill switch feature to ensure that you’re not suddenly exposed and vulnerable as you surf. The kill switch can be activated within the client. In the event that you lose connection to the VPN server, all of your online activity is shut down immediately to prevent your IP from being discovered and logged.

Ivacy’s kill switch is available on all platforms, except iOS. However, this is because of Apple’s strict app guidelines. One unique thing about Ivacy’s kill switch feature is that it modifies firewall settings on your desktop. As a result, your IP stays hidden even if the VPN client crashes.

Multiple Protocols
Many different protocols are available to keep your online activity and IP address secure. Ivacy typically defaults to the most secure option, which is OpenVPN. OpenVPN uses SSL certificate technology to keep what you’re doing on a website hidden from prying eyes. It’s the same technology that’s used by banking websites to make sure that no one is watching you check your balance or make transactions. The entire session on the website is encrypted. Ivacy does the same thing by encrypting access points.

OpenVPN is the default protocol for Ivacy in most cases. However, the service also uses PPTP, SSTP, L2TP, and IKEv2. For secure browsing on the MacOS client, Ivacy uses IPsec. This protocol puts your data through an authentication suite as well as a separate tunneling protocol, such as L2TP or IKEv2.

256-Bit Encryption
256-bit data encryption is one of the most secure types of encryption available. For this reason, it’s often referred to as military-grade encryption. This protocol is virtually impossible to hack. Ivacy uses it to keep all of your data secure as you browse.

When you see those headlines about big-name websites getting hacked, it’s because they use inferior encryption methods. Essentially, hackers will use software to attack login pages to get into accounts. The software runs through every possible letter and number combination until it gains access. A 256-bit encryption system is so complex that it can take several decades for software to figure out the right combination.

Truly Log Free

If you do a quick search for VPN companies that say they offer a zero-logging service, and you’ll find plenty of options. These companies advertise the fact that they don’t keep any information about your time on the VPN. However, that’s not always the case. Read the fine print in their privacy policy and you’ll quickly see that there are a lot of caveats to their logging policies.

Ivacy is not one of those companies. They stay true to their word and actually do have a no-log policy. They don’t take logs about your online activity, how long you’re connected to the VPN, or even how much bandwidth you use. The only information they keep is the email address that each user has connected to their account. While the number of VPN providers that tout a zero-log policy is a dime a dozen, there are very few that actually mean it. For this reason alone, Ivacy is one of the best VPN options for anonymity.

Optimized Servers

Whether you’re new to using a VPN or you simply don’t want to configure settings to get the performance, Ivacy can make things a lot easier for you. The service provider has optimized servers based on the particular tasks you want to do. Smart features are also available, making it easy to configure the VPN without having to get into the nitty-gritty details.

P2P
Some VPN providers frown upon torrenting or make it difficult for you to do so unencumbered. Ivacy not only allows it, but they also give users to the tools to share files efficiently. The VPN offers many optimized servers that are set up for p2p file sharing. These servers can provide users with the best seeds to get their files downloaded as fast as possible. With all of the great security features that Ivacy has, you can also rest easy knowing that you’re downloading safely.

Port Forwarding
Torrenting can be a bit tricky with a VPN. This is because of NAT firewalls. NAT firewalls are pretty much standard with VPN providers. They’re designed to keep users protected by stopping any new connections that weres requested. Unfortunately, this added layer of protection also makes it impossible to download files through a p2p client.

Ivacy offers NAT firewall with port forwarding. The port forwarding feature makes it possible to open up the connection a bit. Essentially, you’ll have the opportunity to provide access to incoming connections as they are requested. It’s a great go-around to the issues that NAT firewalls create. You still get the protection of NAT firewall, but also get the versatility and convenience of port forwarding.

Nat firewall with port forwarding is considered an optional upgrade with Ivacy. It costs an extra $1.00 per month and can be controlled within the client.

Dedicated IP Address
If there’s another region-locked website or streaming platform you want to connect to, Ivacy offers dedicated IP addresses. Dedicated IPs are a great solution to unblocking content. This feature does come with an extra cost of $1.99 per month.

Detailed Support

When it comes to your online security, customer support is not something that you should skimp on. VPN support varies dramatically from provider to provider. Typically, providers with lower monthly fees have the worst support around. Great customer support is often traded out for attractive subscription costs.

Fortunately, Ivacy has a pretty reliable support team. They’re available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. There are also multiple ways to get help when you need it. The easiest is through the live chat function. Response time is surprisingly fast. It takes only a few moments to get a response in most cases. Even if you write an email to the support team, you can expect to get an answer within a few hours. Better yet, the customer support staff doesn’t just stick to the website. They’re also on social media responding to questions just as fast as they do through email.

Those who don’t want to speak to a live person can troubleshoot through the support page. There are many frequently asked questions to find a quick solution to common problems. A handy search bar is also available.

To make things easier after you sign up, Ivacy has many setup guides as well. Their guides are fool-proof, including step by step instructions on how to get the service up and running. There are separate guides for most devices so that you can see detailed instructions that apply to you.

Intuitive Clients

Finally, let’s talk about apps and clients. While it may not seem like a huge deal at first, the design of the applications can ultimately make or break your VPN experience. A poorly designed interface can make incredibly difficult to get your VPN configured the way you want.

The Ivacy applications are designed with simplicity in mind. They have a beautiful interface that’s clean and easy to understand. Whether you download the Windows client or the MacOS client, you’ll have simple icons that lead you to individual settings to customize the VPN. A prominent “ON” button is used to connect and initiate the kill switch.

Ivacy VPN – The Bad

Now that we have gone over some of the great things about Ivacy, let’s look at some of the cons. No VPN service is perfect. While these issues may not affect every user out there, it’s good to keep them in mind.

No Streaming Of Netflix

Many streaming platforms have restrictions on what types of content you’re allowed to view based on your location. A VPN gets around many of these restrictions by masking your true location and making it seem like you live in a specific area. Many users utilize VPN services to access the American Netflix library, which is significantly larger than that of other countries.

With that being said, not all VPNs can do the job. Netflix actively blocks VPNs to keep a lock on their content. Some of the biggest VPN providers are blacklisted, making it impossible to access the platform even if your IP address is masked. Ivacy is one such VPN that can’t unblock Netflix.  So if you’re looking for a Netflix VPN, Ivacy isn’t the service for you.

Questionable Money-Back Guarantee

The money-back guarantee is a serious sour spot in an otherwise great VPN. It’s true, Ivacy VPN does offer a guarantee that lets you take the service out for a test spin without much risk. This is pretty common in the industry. If you don’t like what the service has to offer, a guarantee lets you get the subscription fee you paid back.

The issue with Ivacy’s money-back guarantee is that it’s a bit misleading and lacks transparency. They say that you can get your money back if you’re not satisfied within 30 days if you buy a year-long subscription. If you choose to just get a one-month plan, the guarantee is for only 7 days. This information is well-advertised and easy to find. However, what’s not easy to find is the stipulations.

To see how the guarantee truly works, you have to do a bit of digging into the legal disclaimers and fine print. There are a few small details that essentially voids the refund.

The two biggest are:
1. Your payment methods
2. How much you used the service.

To get the refund, you can’t have used more than 500MB of bandwidth or made a VPN connection more than 30 times. Additionally, you don’t get the refund if you paid the subscription fee using BitCoin, BitPay, Coin Payments, or Paymentwall.

Details like this aren’t a huge deal, as long as they’re clearly displayed to potential customers. Ivacy provides this information on a separate Terms of Use page, making it harder for people to find right off the bat.

Proxy Compatibility

Ivacy VPN is, unfortunately, not compatible with any third-party proxies, such as Tor. While VPNs are meant to shield your identity no matter what your online activity is, many people choose to use additional proxies to add another layer of protection. This technique of safe browsing is quite common with users from countries with very strict censorship laws and legal ramifications for breaking those laws.

The fact that Ivacy doesn’t support proxies might not be a deal breaker for most users. However, to those who rely on these proxies to stay safe on and off the Internet, it’s a pretty big issue.

Mac Limitations

Ivacy VPN is available for a number of different devices and platforms, including MacOS. However, the features you can get on Mac computers is not the same as what you would get on a Windows machine. The client has a very similar design, but it lacks two key features. On the MacOS client, you cannot initiate the split-tunneling feature or get your own dedicated IP address. To take advantage of those offerings, you’ll have to download the client on a different device.

Ivacy Pricing

When it comes to pricing, Ivacy is very affordable. It’s one of the cheapest VPN options on the market, especially considering all of the great features that come with it. All plans have all of the features we discussed earlier. This is, of course, with the exception of port forwarding and dedicated IP addresses. These features come with an extra monthly cost.

Ivacy VPN offers three different subscription plans. The only differences between the plans are their commitment length and the overall monthly costs. Heavy discounts are applied if you choose to pay for the service yearly.

1 Month Plan: $9.95 per month
With this plan, you are paying for the VPN service monthly. This is the basic plan that doesn’t offer any additional savings. On the plus side, you’re also not making any long-term commitments. Over the course of a year, this option with cost roughly $119.40.

1 Year Plan: $3.33 per month
Those who choose to pay for an entire year upfront will receive significant savings on their monthly VPN costs. This plan costs only $40.00 per year, billed once per year. That’s a 66 percent saving.

2 Year Plan: $2.25 per month
For the most bang for your buck, you can pay for two years in advance. This plan is billed every other year and costs only $54.00 for 24 months of service. It can provide users with 77 percent savings.

5 Year Plan: $1.33 per month
This plan is not always offered by Ivacy. It’s available during promotional periods. If you happen to catch it when it’s offered, the 5-year plan is certainly the most budget-friendly option. With one payment of $79.80, you get 60 months of service. This equals only $1.33 per month and 87 percent off the base price.

Accepted Methods Of Payment

Because Ivacy is available to Internet users across the globe, the company accepts many different payment options. They accept credit cards from most of the familiar carriers, such as Visa, MasterCard, and American Express. Popular online payment platforms like PayPal and AliPay are also accepted.

Ivacy works with payment processors like Paymentwall and CoinPayment for non-standard methods. As noted earlier, if you do choose to pay with cryptocurrency or PaymentWall, you’re not eligible for the money-back guarantee.

Available Devices

Dedicated applications are available for a wide range of devices. Each application is designed for that specific device, allowing you to customize settings as you please. With every Ivacy VPN account, users can connect up to 5 devices simultaneously.

Computers

Ivacy can be used with Windows, MacOS, and Linux operating systems. The Windows client typically defaults to OpenVPN for the most secure connection, though, users can switch to other protocols. The MacOS client utilizes the IPsec protocol, but it doesn’t allow for dedicated IP addresses or split-tunneling.There isn’t a dedicated client for Linux. However, Ivacy does support Linux through guides and setup files. Their support section provides detailed instructions on how to establish a PPTP protocol on Ubuntu and Mint. You can also configure OpenVPN on Linux manually with their setup files.

Mobile Devices

Staying secure on the go couldn’t be easier thanks to Ivacy’s mobile applications. There is an app for Android devices and iOS devices. The Android version utilizes OpenVPN and has most of the same features as the Windows desktop counterpart. The iOS application doesn’t have all the same features. It lacks a dedicated kill switch, though that’s more on Apple than it is on Ivacy. It does, however, have the secure downloading feature and uses IKEv2.Blackberry devices are also supported. They can be set up through Blackberry’s dedicated VPN settings menu.

Consoles

Those who use their Xbox, PS3, or PS4 to browse the web can take advantage of the many features Ivacy has to offer as well. There are a few ways to set things up. In addition to dedicated applications, you can also connect the console through computer network sharing functions.

TV Devices

Ivacy supports a number of television devices. You can utilize the VPN service on your Amazon Firestick, Roku box, and smart TV. If you use Kodi, Ivacy also has a dedicated VPN to help you stream anonymously. A detailed setup guide is available for easy configurations. There’s also a separate section on the Ivacy website with more information about Kodi and how the VPN works with the media player.

Browsers

You can use any browser with Ivacy VPN. However, the company does provide you with separate browser extensions for Chrome and Firefox. The extensions offer WebRTC protection and make it easy to connect to a server directly from the browser window.

Do We Recommend Ivacy VPN?

All in all, Ivacy VPN offers incredible value. With a year plan or more, you can get security and privacy for only a few bucks a month. Usually, VPNs at this price don’t offer nearly as many features as Ivacy does. They take your security very seriously and provide you with the tools you need to customize the way your information is, or isn’t, shared on the Internet. Ivacy is an ideal VPN option for anyone who wants an easy-to-use VPN service that’s reliable, versatile, and affordable.

More VPN Reviews & Resources

If you want to read more of our reviews about VPNs then check out the following:

  1. Best VPN for Netflix
  2. Best VPN Services
  3. NordVPN Review
  4. What is a VPN?

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