Last Updated: January 28, 2021
- Company location: Delaware, USA
- Torrenting: Yes
- Streaming: Yes
- Ad-blocker: No
- Double VPN: No
- Stealth VPN: No
- Zero-log policy: Yes
- Number of servers: 17
- Protocols: OpenVPN, Rasdial (L2TP), IKEv2
- Customer support: Excellent
People new to VPNs and streaming
- 30-day free trial
- User-friendly app
- Excellent customer support
- Strong streaming capabilities
- Expensive add-ons
- No obfuscated VPN
- Small server network
What Is VirtualShield VPN?
VirtualShield VPN is a virtual private network that protects your internet traffic and connection from shady or harmful activities. The Delaware-based company has only been around since 2017, but it has already won many fans for its hassle-free service, useful features, and prompt customer service.
In this comprehensive VirtualShield review, we investigate what makes it stand out and whether it’s the right choice for you.
VirtualShield VPN Features
Here’s a quick look at the key features VirtualShield offers.
Like most standard VPN providers, the VirtualShield VPN app comes with an internet killswitch. It prevents your device from connecting to the internet if the VPN gets disconnected. When enabled, this keeps any data from leaking across your network.
IPv6 Leak Protection
IPv6 is a communications protocol that helps identify and locate computers on networks and routes traffic on the internet. While many devices still don’t use IPv6, you should enable this feature if yours does. Doing so will prevent any data leakage and provide extra security.
The always-on feature ensures that you never connect to the internet without the VPN’s protection. If the app detects that you go online or your connection changes, it will automatically switch on the VPN.
Note that this feature is different from the option to launch on startup, which activates the VirtualShield VPN app irrespective of whether you are connected to the internet.
If you don’t want to use killswitch to shut down your internet connection altogether when the VPN disconnects, VirtualShield VPN has another option for you. Using the app guard feature, you can select apps that may leak private data. When the VPN disconnects, it will only terminate the connection on the apps you chose.
VirtualShield VPN is committed to adding features to help you work faster. An example of this is the option to set keyboard shortcuts for different functions to speed up specific processes.
That concludes our take on some of the best features. Let’s now take a look at what else this service has got to offer.
VirtualShield VPN Servers and Locations
VirtualShield is a relatively young company, which is reflected in its small network of servers. It has 17 VPN servers spread across ten countries.
Eight servers are in the US and Canada, which gives it a decent North America coverage. The ones in Europe can be found in the UK, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland, and Serbia. Outside North America and Europe, VirtualShield has one server each in Australia, Japan, and Singapore.
This spread is relatively weak by any standards. We expected this lack of servers to affect the usability of this VPN. The speed test we conducted for our VirtualShield VPN review confirmed this worry.
VirtualShield VPN Speed
You will likely experience speed losses with any VPN because of the extra layer of protection and how traffic is routed through the VPN’s server before reaching its destination. However, with the best VPNs, this loss in download and upload speeds should be very low or even negligible.
During the speed test for our VirtualShield review, we measured the speeds with servers at different locations with Speedtest. We also compared them with the speed we got without a VPN.
We were getting a download speed of 8.74 Mbps and an upload speed of 2.9 Mbps without a VPN.
For the US (Georgia) server, we got the following speeds with the VirtualShield VPN app, corresponding to losses of 69.1% (download) and 46.2% (upload):
For the UK server, the losses were 53.7% and 45.2%:
For the Germany server, they were 50.5% and 26.9%:
For the Australia server, they were 60.4% and 26.2%:
And for the Singapore server, the losses were 39.1% and 9.7%:
The speed loss can depend on multiple factors, including the server’s distance from the user’s physical location and the amount of traffic being routed through that server. As we were located in Asia when conducting the test, Singapore was the closest server. Thus, the consistent increase in speeds from the US to Singapore conforms to the expected pattern.
Moreover, the closest server’s speed losses were well above the VPN industry median of 65%. Even the German and UK servers’ losses, which were quite far from our location, were not particularly bad. We repeated these tests a couple of hours later to check for consistency and found similar results.
Our VirtualShield VPN review confirmed that you are likely to get good speeds if you are located in the US or Western Europe. The speeds will not be as great if you are using VirtualShield in most parts of Asia or South America and Africa, where the service doesn’t have any servers.
VirtualShield VPN Privacy and Jurisdiction
However, further down the policy, it states that it will disclose personal information if required to do so by law or to comply with reasonable law enforcement requests.
As the parent company, VirtualShield VPN LLC, is based in the USA, it is subject to American surveillance-related laws. Moreover, the USA is a signatory to the Five Eyes and Fourteen Eyes multilateral alliances. Data available in US agencies can be shared with those in other countries within these alliances.
We like to mention another worry in our VirtualShield review: the fairly active online debate about the parent company’s predecessor. It is not easy to find details about the business. For instance, its domain is registered to a service that allows registration without providing WHOIS information.
On top of that, its business address is provided by a service that allows the use of its address for a small fee. The company is registered in Delaware through a registered agent which allowed the actual owners to avoid providing any information and create the company without being Delaware residents. Delaware is notorious for making it difficult to start legal cases against businesses.
Of course, many participants in the debate argue that the fact that the owners have hidden their details so effectively speaks well about a service trying to protect user data. If law enforcement agencies don’t know whom to contact for user information, they are unlikely to get much data. Plus, if appropriately implemented, the zero-log policy should not leave much information with the VPN service to provide to the government anyway.
For our VirtualShield VPN review, we haven’t found any particular red flags as far as user privacy is concerned. However, we would like potential users to keep these aspects in mind when opting for or against this service.
VirtualShield VPN Security and Protocols
The VPN’s encryption method and tunneling protocols have the strongest bearing on your internet privacy and security. In this regard, our VirtualShield review finds that the service does a pretty good job. It uses 256-bit AES encryption for all your traffic, the military-grade encryption standard used by all the top VPNs today.
The VirtualShield website doesn’t have detailed information on the supported tunneling protocols, so we checked with the customer support team for more details. According to them, the Windows, Linus, macOS, and Android versions support UDP, TCP, and L2TP.
UDP and TCP use the OpenVPN technology, the most secure protocol widely used in the industry. The L2TP option uses Rasdial technology, which is also reasonably safe and supported by various companies. The iOS app uses Internet Key Exchange v2 (IKEv2), which is more secure and faster than L2TP but may not be supported on some platforms.
VirtualShield VPN Leak Test Results
A VPN protects your device’s actual IP and DNS addresses. There are several IP and DNS leak tests available online to see if this is indeed the case. The result of one of these tests, conducted using https://ipleak.net/, is shown below.
We conducted our IP and DNS leak tests after connecting to the server in Atlanta, Georgia, through the VirtualShield VPN app. Apart from a server in Georgia, the test also detected one in Florida. Our actual location remained hidden.
VirtualShield VPN and Streaming Services
Most users want to know the VPN’s ability to bypass geo-restrictions on streaming platforms. Other VirtualShield reviews rate the service quite high in this area, but we made sure to test it ourselves. We used VPN servers in the US (Los Angeles), the UK, Germany, Australia, and Japan to access different streaming services.
Using the US server, we were able to stream Netflix USA, HBO Max, Hulu, Apple TV+, and the Criterion Collection effortlessly. However, Disney+ didn’t work, and Amazon Prime Video detected that we were using a VPN.
On the UK server, we could stream content on Netflix UK, Disney+, Amazon, and BBC iPlayer. Amazon and BBC iPlayer are two services where many other VPNs fail, so kudos to VirtualShield for getting this done.
We tried accessing Netflix on the other servers. We could play content from Germany and Australia without any delays, but our VPN connection was detected on the Japan server.
Overall, we consider this a solid performance. For even better access to all international streaming content, VirtualShield recommends using its Unrestricted Streaming add-on, which costs $9.99/month.
How Good Is VirtualShield VPN for Torrenting?
VirtualShield doesn’t offer port forwarding, which is a useful tool for P2P sharing. However, other features like killswitch and the zero traffic logs policy also help P2P sharing and streaming. VirtualShield allows P2P sharing and torrenting on all its servers.
For our VirtualShield VPN review, we compared the torrent download speed without the VPN with the speeds on some servers. We used the torrent file for a newly released movie and received a download speed between 800 kbps and 1 Mbps without the VPN.
We first tried the automatic connection on the VirtualShield VPN app, which connected us to the Singapore server. The maximum speed we got on it was 200 kbps, with the average hovering around 150 kbps. We also tried the US (Georgia) and the German servers. For both, we got a maximum speed of 300 kbps and an average of around 250 kbps.
Even the best speeds were less than a third of what we were getting without the VPN. Ideally, the download speed drop should be marginal with VPNs, and in some cases, it can even increase. Thus, while VirtualShield is good for the privacy side of P2P sharing or torrenting, its performance is below average.
Can VirtualShield VPN Bypass Geoblocks?
Geoblocks are location-based restrictions placed on internet usage by different countries, but VPNs with obfuscated servers can bypass these restrictions. We haven’t used VirtualShield from any such location ourselves.
Still, the lack of obfuscated servers and confirmations by user-written VirtualShield reviews clarify that it cannot get through barriers like the Great Firewall of China. If you are based in countries like China, Cuba, Iran, and Saudi Arabia, you should look for other VPN services that can bypass the geoblocks.
Ease of Use
One of VirtualShield’s developers’ aims is to make it easy for anyone to use the service. They have certainly managed to achieve this, considering that the VirtualShield VPN app is one of the most intuitive we have seen among all the VPNs we have reviewed.
As you can see, even first-time users can figure out all functionalities in minutes. The settings also have links to webpages with quick explanations of each feature. There’s very little difference in apps’ interfaces on different platforms (Windows, Linux, macOS, Android, and iOS).
All features work smoothly and connecting to VPN servers is very quick. The overall design could have been sleeker, but we would rate the ease of use over appearance any day.
VirtualShield also offers browser extensions for Chrome, Firefox, and Opera. These are simplified versions with fewer settings and only protect your browser’s internet activity.
Another area where many VirtualShield reviews praise the service is its customer support. While it still lacks phone support (unless you pay extra for it), it has a live chat available between 7 AM and 7 PM PST. Users can also submit a ticket using the Contact link on the support page.
We submitted a few queries on the live chat system outside the working hours and were informed that we would receive an email reply. Expecting a typical waiting time of a few hours, we were surprised to receive polite and detailed responses in less than an hour.
The VirtualShield website also has a comprehensive, searchable knowledge base. We liked that the articles here are much less technical than those available at other VPN sites.
VirtualShield VPN Price
The VirtualShield price plan is divided into two categories, with three subscription tiers for each. However, we recommend trying out the 30-day VirtualShield VPN free trial before committing to a paid plan.
The plans are:
- Personal (up to three devices)
- 1 month: $10.99/month
- 12 months: $5.99/month
- 24 months: $4.99/month
- Family (up to 15 devices)
- 1 month: $29.99/month
- 12 months: $17.99/month
- 24 months: $14.99/month
Both plans include all the features we’ve mentioned in our review on top of unlimited bandwidth. While the VPN does not offer a money-back guarantee, it does hold occasional promotions, such as extra three months with the subscription if you forego the VirtualShield VPN free trial.
Moreover, VirtualShield offers a bunch of add-ons at an extra cost.
VirtualShield VPN Review – Verdict
Our VirtualShield VPN review has shown that there’s much to like about this young player in the crowded VPN market. It is strong on security features, the most important criterion when deciding on a VPN. It also performs very well with geo-restrictions on streaming platforms, allows safe torrenting, and its user-friendly interface is perfect for people unfamiliar with VPNs.
While our experience with the download and upload speeds wasn’t great, we expect it to be quicker in some other locations. The customer support is excellent but could be even better by extending the live chat hours. We also liked that the price plan has a family option that covers more devices.
On the negative side, the disappointing network of servers makes VirtualShield a bad choice for users in most parts of the world. The VPN also won’t work in countries with tough internet restrictions.
However, the most significant downside for us is the set of pricey add-ons, some of which are provided in standard packages by other VPNs. While the base prices are reasonable, these hidden costs make it among the more expensive options.
On the whole, our VirtualShield VPN review rates it as a reasonably competent service. The features it has marked as “Coming Soon,” along with expanding its server network, could even make it among the top players. However, there are several better options available for most users in today’s market.
VirtualShield’s plan starts at $4.99 per month, which allows you to use it on up to three devices. The family plans start at $14.99 per month and let you connect 15 devices.
Yes, based on its range of features, VirtualShield is a competent VPN service.
To use VirtualShield, download apps for the Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, and iOS platforms or extensions for Chrome, Firefox, and Opera. Log in and connect to one of the VPN servers.
No, VirtualShield has strict zero traffic logs policy.
Yes, the service ensures the safety of your internet traffic. Check out our VirtualShield VPN review for more information regarding the security of this service.