HideMyAss VPN Review- Does It Steal Your Data?

HideMyAss VPN Review

HideMyAss VPN Review- Introduction

HideMyAss VPN service promises “total privacy and protection,” plus the latest-and-greatest
OpenVPN protocol and encryption options. It claims to give you access to your favourite sites
online like Netflix and others. Is it more like a proxy or a full-blown VPN service. HideMyAss
(HMA)VPN delivered consistent server speeds, delivers good device compatibility, along with a ton
of servers. Let’s have a clear look at it.

HideMyAss VPN Review: Pros

Pretty Consistent Server Speeds

HMA’s combined speed tests have placed them at 20th position out of 74 on the VPN server list.
That doesn’t sound that much good but let’s see how it works overall. Let’s start this HideMyAss VPN review
with just a reading of the internet connection we have. While writing this HideMyAss VPN review it came to
our notice that the HMA server the benchmark speeds without a VPN were 97 Mbps download and
53 Mbps upload. Later, we got connected to various VPN servers around the world and were able to
use a reputable third-party tool (SpeedTest.net) to get current performance readings.
HideMyAss VPN upload and download speed can be such as follows:
US Server (New York)
Ping: 113ms
Download: 58.98 Mbps (39% slower)
Upload: 30.38 Mbps (43% slower)
EU Server (Amsterdam)
Ping: 41ms
Download: 63.34 Mbps (35% slower)
Upload: 50.12 Mbps (6% slower)
Asia Server (Hong Kong)
Ping: 284ms
Download: 19.25 Mbps (80% slower)
Upload: 13.09 Mbps (75% slower)
UK Server (London)
Ping: 45ms
Download: 64.42 Mbps (34% slower)
Upload: 43.30 Mbps (19% slower)
These are quite decent in the real world. They’re not the fastest by any stretch. But the US, EU,
and UK servers were all much consistent, which is a good indicator of overall performance
across their other servers. Unfortunately, Asia dragged them down a bit. However, if you have
a 75% chance at getting the US, EU, or UK speeds, you should be enough happy

Tons of Servers Available in Major Countries

HMA’s servers reach out across all six inhabited continents which is a huge plus to be mentioned in
this HideMyAss VPN Review. That’s over 860 servers in 280 locations across 190 countries. They
reach out to remote destinations like Greenland, cover Africa and the Middle East pretty well,
covering a few smaller Pacific Islands, too. It seems like the only place they don’t have a server is in
Antarctica. HideMyAss Servers in different countries- That’s significant because of many other VPN
companies tout huge server lists, only to have them all highly concentrated in North America and
Europe — leaving the rest of the world high and dry.
Here’s how it server count and IPs breakdown by locale:

HideMyAss VPN server count– Generally speaking, the more available servers, the
better they are. Now, this is just not the end at all. Many VPN companies lie about their
servers, in fact. They might lease or rent many of these servers from other companies,
thereby ‘artificially’ boosting their total number. But the overall, total size is almost a
good indicator for expected performance. It means your chances of finding a less-
crowded server is far more better. As well as one closer to your physical location (which
tend to be faster than ones further away).

Good Device Compatibility

HideMyAss! has pre-built apps for Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android devices.
Unfortunately, each HMA account only allows for two different devices to be used at one time.
Which is quite a low count to be very honest. Other VPN companies we’ve reviewed offer close
to five at a minimum. They also offer a business VPN plan for larger numbers of devices. But it’s
more expensive though. Fortunately, HMA works on routers too. FlashRouters in particular, have
HMA pre-installed in them, so all you have to do is just sign in and begin. This means you can
hook up a router, and then connect as many devices including smart TVs and gaming consoles.

You can protect all of these devices with OpenVPN (256-bit encryption), PPTP and L2TP/IPSec.
It’s not the most extensive protocol list we’ve ever seen, but again, it covers the basics well.
Most of the people should just stick to OpenVPN by default, anyway. Unless device limitations
force them into L2TP/IPSec. And as a general rule, stay away from PPTP as much as possible.

Easy-to-Use App

The HMA app is very simple to use. Sign up for an account, grab your install files and
authentication code, and you’re all set to begin. The app is even available in multiple languages,
so you’ve got tons of options. Simply login with your access credentials, and you’re a click away
from connecting.

HideMyAss! VPN client login– You can get connected instantly. Or, switch up your
location and adjust settings. That’s all it is about! No complexity or technical skills are
required as it can be said that it is one of the more user-friendly apps ever tested till
date.

Leak-Free Connection

VPN connections aren’t always as secure as they appear to be. The little green icon on your app
looks good to go. But your ISP (and everyone else) can actually see where you’re sitting. We ran
HMA! through a series of DNS and WebRTC leak tests to specifically look for this problem, and
they came out clean in each one. Hidemyass is free of leaks. Unfortunately, they did slightly let
us down in the VirusTotal.com test.

HideMyAss VPN Review- Cons

HMA! delivers most of the features you’d be looking for. No issues or glaring holes there. Speed
is pretty good. Tons of servers. Available for most devices. But it’s what’s under the hood that
scares us a little bit. Read on to find out.

Potential Suspicious File in their Install

A VPN protects you from the prying eyes of aggressive governments, ISPs, or hackers. But who,
exactly, protects you from the VPN themselves? That’s the key question we’re trying to help
you within this review. For starters, we take the installation files from every single VPN
provider and run them through VirusTotal.com to double-check that they’re not inadvertently
infecting your machine. HMA!’s files game back with a suspicious warning. HideMyAss virus total
potential warning could be a false positive. However, you might want to test your own install
files to make sure they’re clean before downloading to your device. But unfortunately, it’s also
just the beginning of a few warning signs.

HideMyAss! Collects Some Log Files

Here’s where HMA! lets us down. Their logging policy confirms that they hang onto
the following data:
Username
Connect and disconnect timestamps
Amount of data transmitted (upload and download)
The IP address used to connect to the VPN
The IP address of the VPN server using
Already, that is not anything good that requires mention in our HideMyAss VPN Review. You don’t
necessarily want your VPN to keep track of your own IP address. Because that still gives them a direct
link between online activities and your location (and potentially your identity). But that’s not all they
track.
They also have the power to collect the following:
Prevent and detect fraud against the service (e.g. credit card fraud).
Prevent and detect abuse of the network, such as spamming, file sharing or other illicit
activity.
Monitor the use of the network for technical purposes and to manage and improve the
service.
Sounds harmless? But It does on the surface. However, when you take a few historical events
into consideration, you can see where the warning spots start popping up. “Recursion” was the
online name used by Cody Kretsinger, a hacker involved in the Sony Pictures hack of 2011.
“Was” is the key word there. Because Cody’s now sitting in jail since a very long time. HMA!
handed his information over to the FBI, which was instrumental in Kretsinger’s conviction.
HMA! did their best to justify their actions, but they haven’t managed to live down to their
reputation. Of course, we don’t condone using VPNs for illegal activity. But the fact that the
VPN provider had information on Kretsinger’s activities and handed it over to law enforcement
is constantly worrying many people. Especially when you take into account their jurisdiction.

Inside Five Eyes Security Alliance

HMA! is owned by Privax Limited, a UK-based organization. First off, the UK is among the most
aggressive when it comes to spying on their own citizens. But as a card-carrying member of the
Five Eyes security alliance, it means they also have the help of other aggressive governments
like the U.S. That’s not actually good. You already saw why in the last point. When courts come
calling, HMA hand over your data instantly. They also have a connection to your personal data.
Other HMA! users have been complaining about having their accounts suspended for violating
Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) statutes. So, one can’t even guess what’s happening?
HMA! is definitely logging your activity. This is a massive security issue that I needed to mention
in this HideMyAss VPN Review They’re willingly sharing it with UK courts. And then those courts
are turning around and sharing it with government agencies across the world. Avoiding any illegal
activity while using HMA! is a good start. But it’s also not the point. Using a VPN isn’t about concealing
illegal acts. It’s about keeping your private information completely private. And the evidence all says
that HMA! fails miserably here. In this case, the VPN tasked to protect you is also another major point to
turn your mood on.

Spotty Netflix Streaming and Torrenting Discouraged

HideMyAss was a very popular choice for streaming Netflix a few years ago. Unfortunately, this
isn’t the same today. HideMyAss for Netflix is not as effective as it used to be. We were only able
to get one server in Amsterdam to successfully stream content. The others were tried, including
New York (U.S.), District of Columbia (U.S.), Montreal and Glasgow which all badly failed. But,
before continuing on to conclude that HideMyAss for Netflix doesn’t work. I would like to further mull
over some facts. To be honest HideMyAss VPN for Netflix for does…Well, let’s just say sometimes,
if you are lucky enough. Before writing this HideMyAss VPN Review, when we tested random servers
with US Netflix using the desktop client, we had no luck whatsoever. However, if you select the streaming
option from the dropdown within Location Mode, you’ll see two choices: a US server (USA, New York,
Liberty Island) and a UK server (UK, Donkey Town). Note that in the mobile app, you’ll have to find these
within the Cities list in Location Mode. Connecting to the US server gave us access to Netflix without issue. Connecting to the UK one enabled access to UK Netflix as well as BBC iPlayer.  Many providers only focus
on providing US Netflix access, so it’s refreshing to see one that strives to give access to the UK library too.
What’s more, BBC iPlayer is seriously cracking down on VPN usage, so the ability to unblock this service is
a nice perk.

Similarly, HMA doesn’t prohibit torrenting, they also aren’t exactly torrent-friendly, either. HideMyAss VPN
might not block your torrent client, but users have reported either extra-slow data transfer or outright blocking
of torrent servers. DMCA warnings haven’t added to anyone’s confidence level, either. If you’re getting a
warning or an account suspension for violating copyright restrictions, it’s probably because of HMA!’s records
of your torrenting activity.

Poor Support Speed

HideMyAss!’s support team is available on social media and email. Except, they don’t respond
as quickly as we like to hear from them. Many support requests on Twitter are simply referred
to the standard channels. There are some situations in which they’ll ask for a DM with
additional information, though. So, their support services aren’t that good enough, further adding
to the list of cons in this HideMyAss VPN Review.

HideMyAss VPN Review- Price and Plans

HMA! has three individual price plans. You can avail exactly the same features with each one.
The only little difference is a small price break for longer pre-payments.
$11.99 monthly i.e Rs 854.47/ month
$47.94 every 6 months i.e Rs 3416.16 ($7.99 per month i.e Rs 569.41/month– 33% discount)
$83.88 every 12 months i.e Rs 5977.71 ($6.99 per month i.e Rs 498.14/month 42% discount)
It also offers a 30-day free trial. You’ll just need to enter a valid credit card details to avail the
benefits. But they also provide a 30-day money-back guarantee. So, it means you’re looking at
60 days to test their service. This is one of the best deals you’ll find. The only refund issues are
that it has to be the first time you’ve purchased HideMyAss!, and you have to have used less
than 10GB of bandwidth. You’ll have to fill out the refund request form. An annual commitment
for $6.99/month is not the cheapest VPN out there. But you get a long period to test it’s
services which should be worth a few extra bucks.

HideMyAss VPN For China- Does It Work?

HideMyAss VPN For China does not work reliably in. It used to, but recent HMA! responses in support forums have indicated that the service will no longer work for some users. So this VPN is not recommended in this HideMyAss VPN review, if you wish to use it for China.

HideMyAss VPN for Android

Before penning down this HideMyAss VPN review I had to test the HideMyAss Android app and I must say I was impressed with the colorful design, which appears to have remained to this day. Besides this, another notable facet of the Android app is that it uses the OpenVPN protocol, which I prefer. All the best Android VPN apps include it, so that’s a good mark in its favor.

HideMyAss VPN for iPhone

Similar to Android, before writing this review of HideMyAss VPN for iPhone/iOS we tested the app and were pleased with its look and feel on the Apple handset. Its colorful, friendly design fits right in, and will be accessible even to people who have never used a VPN before.

The iPhone version of Hide My Ass only uses the IPSec VPN protocol. That’s too bad, although the reason likely has to do with Apple’s app developer policies. Still, several of the best VPN apps for iPhone include OpenVPN despite the hoops Apple makes developers jump through. I’d like to see future versions of Hide My Ass include this protocol.

HideMyAss VPN for Windows 

Hide My Ass uses OpenVPN on Windows, with an older version of the app that supports L2TP, and PPTP, too.

HideMyAss VPN for Mac

As with Windows, there are two versions of the Hide My Ass app for Apple computers. One is intended for legacy support, while the other is available from the Apple App Store. The legacy edition supports the L2TP, PPTP, and IPSec IKEv1 protocols. The version in the App Store uses the newer IPSec IKEv2 protocol. I’d prefer it if Hide My Ass used OpenVPN.

Also, Check Our VPN Section Where You will find  Lot’s Of Other Best VPN.

So, Is HideMyAss VPN Recommendable?

No, it is not. HideMyAss! starts out well. Speed and server numbers were respectable. Plus,
they might have the best name of the lot. But in the end, privacy concerns are just too
overwhelming. There is no doubt that HideMyAss! wants to do the best they can in supporting
their customers’ privacy. But combine their past logging activities, infamous court cases, and
aggressive jurisdiction are just too much to overlook. Plus, this affects other activities you might
be looking for, like Netflix or Torrenting. Both are basically nonexistent at the moment, and we
don’t see that changing anytime soon which is a major flaw.

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1 thought on “HideMyAss VPN Review- Does It Steal Your Data?”

  1. Thank you for sharing! I have a similar opinion as I’ve used it for some time in the past, they always had great deals.. Yet after some time I had to change it as I really wanted to see some netflix shows that were not available in my country. Thus I’ve tried nordvpn and expressvpn, both worked great but in the end I’ve stuck with nord as I had zero problems streaming in 4k.

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