When the last CyberGhost VPN review was conducted, it wasn’t easy to recommend without hesitation. However, the company based in Romania has come on leaps and bounds, and CyberGhost VPN version 8 is very different from the app that users were using before.
It’s not only changed in the VPN software. Now, the company is waving goodbye to its rocky past. CyberGhost VPN is up to another level in the ranking tables to where it should rightfully sit.
It used to have a poor image in the eyes of many, with logs being kept of subscribers and its associations with the 14-eyes coalition.
Straight away after installing the app, you can see the difference. Old-time users may be used to the quirky interface, but while still being easy to navigate and use, it looks like a very different VPN app.
During this CyberGhost review, one of the most significant changes we saw was in the VPN network. The number of VPN servers has climbed up to the stratosphere, and CyberGhost now delivers one of the largest VPN networks there is.
We will go through every area with a fine toothcomb and see what changes for subscribers and if it now makes sense for more advanced users to consider CyberGhost, against the many other VPNs if they think of switching providers.
Potential subscribers will welcome insightful information and advice. By the end of this CyberGhost review, we hope to deliver enough information, making purchasing choices easier.
Read on, and we will find answers to the following questions:
- Is CyberGhost a good option for unblocking websites like BBC iPlayer, US Netflix, and others?
- Does CyberGhost deliver fast enough streaming speeds for HD content?
- How good is user security when using CyberGhost?
- Does CyberGhost offer excellent value for money?
Before diving in deep, here is a quick overview of what we recommend the VPN for and what are the pros and cons
- Users who want good extensive privacy and good online security
- Families who need plenty of simultaneous connections
- Individuals who take part in streaming TV
- Easy to use experience
Plans and Pricing
Along with all the other changes that you find with CyberGhost. Plans and pricing also see a shakeup in what CyberGhost offers; even since earlier in December, things are now different for a subscription.
There have been a few deals over the last couple of months, and now can be a great time to take advantage of their latest offering.
Now, there are no packages, and CyberGhost offers one plan for you to purchase. It does come with shorter or long sign-up periods, depending on what you want.
- 3 Years: $2.75 per month. Billed as $99 every three years. It comes with two months free
- 2 Years $3.69 per month. Billed as $88.56 per month.
- 1 Year $5.99 per month. Billed as $71.88 per year
- Monthly $12.99 per month
Once you select your plan, you choose an additional dedicated IP address. This can help deliver more security on remote services should you require this $5 per month add-on.
Payment options include credit card, PayPal, and Bitcoin for anonymous signup.
One thing worthy of noting is if users select the monthly plan, you don’t have access to the CyberGhost NoSpy Servers. For $12.99 per month, VPN users will want all the features.
The money-back guarantee has seen a welcome revamp; it is still the same 45-day money-back guarantee (in most cases). However, there are a few changes in how you can obtain this.
The monthly plan only offers a 14-day refund window, but this is better than many other VPN offerings.
For the 6-month plan and above, subscribers can make use of the 45-day refund period. What differs now is there are no restrictions, and it is a no-questions-asked refund. Many VPNs want to fix issues first before they use their money-back guarantee.
CyberGhost follows industry-leading practices for their money-back guarantee, and now, they do not care:
- If you cancel a recurring payment or not
- If you are a prior free trial user
- The number of VPN server connections you make
- The amount of time you are connected
- The amount of bandwidth you use
- The number of devices you try CyberGhost on
To cancel, all you need to do is contact this VPN provider’s customer service and advise them you wish to cancel.
Is CyberGhost VPN Free?
Free VPN’s in many cases, are not that good an option for anything. They install malware on your device. They offer almost zero security and can pass your data onto any third party they wish. Besides, they won’t work reliably with streaming services.
CyberGhost doesn’t offer a dedicated free version, and rather than delivering and needing to maintain a cut-down version. They do offer free trials.
Windows and macOS desktop computers – 1-day free trial. This doesn’t offer much, and it would be nice to see longer. However, new subscribers can easily use this along with the 45-day refund and test out all the functions.
Mobile devices fair a little better. They have a CyberGhost free version they can use for 7-days.
These are not slimmed-down services that lack additional features; these are the same as the paid plan. You see a countdown timer in your VPN app, which shows the amount of time you have remaining before you either need to install or upgrade.
When you begin to look at the features, you do need to ask:
What is CyberGhost used for?
By the end of all these features and this CyberGhost VPN review. You will see you can use it for nearly every internet activity you can imagine. There are tons of security to remain safe and secure, and there is plenty of speed for streaming.
CyberGhost VPN will keep you safe and anonymous, no matter what you want to use it for.
With all the bad press CyberGhost received in the past, many ask, is CyberGhost safe?
Now, with the revamp and all the changes, which they have done. CyberGhost is among the safest VPN users can choose from. A high number of VPNs claim they are secure, yet this VPN now delivers on its promises.
The service was initially developed in Germany. Since then, they relocated to Romania for its headquarters. Here, there are no mandatory data retention laws.
For encryption, the VPN uses the following:
- Perfect forward secrecy: With this, even if an encryption key is compromised, it can’t be used for any other session decryption.
- SHA 256 authentication
- 2,048-bit RSA keys
- AES 256-bit encryption
Besides, CyberGhost has in place their private DNS servers, which they use by default. Doing this means it is one less thing; users need to worry about and have to enable.
In testing, we found the apps all prevent any DNS, IPv6, and WebRTC leaks. In the case of IPv6, you will find this is disabled by default, and it will need enabling if you use it.
Protocol use is among the top and all you expect from a premium VPN provider. OpenVPN is the default, while users can select from either L2PT/IPsec or PPTP. PPTP is the least secure, and many VPNs don’t offer this as an option.
OpenVPN users can select between OpenVPN TCP and OpenVPN UDP and AES 256-bit encryption if they require a slightly faster connection for less sensitive data.
One other protocol in use is IKEv2 and is seen as second to OpenVPN. Users will find this is used in cases where OpenVPN cannot run.
Shared IP addresses are another way to protect user identity. With a massive pool, users share these IPs, and anyone attempting to trace back to one user from this IP can be almost impossible.
The CyberGhost secure VPN has done an excellent job in overhauling its security; there is little to fault the performance, and how to secure the VPN is now. For users who wish to go for even more privacy, they can use TOR over VPN. (Read Adblock Not Working on Crunchyroll)
With this in use, the TOR browser will bounce data around a couple of different servers before it emerges onto the internet. It offers levels of anonymity that are much higher than other forms, yet there is a hit on connections speeds because of the double-hop element and extra encryption.
Security features extend to their secure NoSpy servers, a kill switch, and the options to enable the ad-blocker, malware, and tracker features.
One area where privacy is a concern is, does CyberGhost work in China? It can. Although not reliably. It appears this is the weakest area, and even this should not be held against CyberGhost; many VPN companies will not even attempt to work behind the Great Firewall of China.
One area a VPN user needs full confidence in is their VPN of choice isn’t retaining their data. Previously, there were some disturbing concerns, and even with all the changes, many potential users ask the following question.
Does CyberGhost keep logs?
CyberGhost doesn’t log any online user’s activity, web targets, or other communications.
Like nearly all other VPN providers, it keeps a few connection logs. It is noteworthy; none of these can be tied to an individual user.
Any payment and registration details aren’t tied to the VPN service, and all subscribers are given an anonymous ID.
The CyberGhost website still collects a decent amount of visitor information, but none of this is related to their VPN service.
VPN apps do collect minimal non-personal data for analytics and troubleshooting. These snippets may be sent to a third party (MixPanel). They can include connection attempts, although not IP addresses, connection or disconnection timestamps, user IDs, or the VPN server in use.
It appears the CyberGhost VPN takes a very different approach and now wants the users to see it does care about their online privacy. Now, they have an annual transparency report. Like other VPN providers, this shows the innermost workings of what the VPN does and doesn’t do concerning user safety.
With a strict zero-logging policy, it is nice to see these yearly security reports come back clean and CyberGhost delivers on its promises. (Read Netflix Free Trial No Credit Card)
One final thing to note is GDPR compliance. While this may be why there are changes, it is great to see a company doing as they are supposed to do and not finding ways around this.
A VPN company, which may face massive fines, can lose a user faster than for any other reason. Online reviews are continually praising CyberGhost for the changes; and how secure the service is.
Ease of Use
In a couple of the newer VPNs, there seems to be a trend of offering unlimited device connections. In theory, this may make users think they can connect an unlimited number of devices to the virtual private network.
In reality, there will be limits to the number of devices that have simultaneous connections. VPN’s do slow connections a little; however, adding an unending number can bring a network connection to a crawl.
It makes sense to restrict this number to something more realistic. CyberGhost offers 7 simultaneous connections. This is a decent balance, and it does mean it won’t bring connection speeds to a crawl.
On a Windows laptop, users can set this as a hotspot. With internet sharing, more users can connect while having a secure connection through the VPN.
Platform support is excellent, as well. CyberGhost supports Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, Amazon Fire TV, and Linux (Linux users will have to forego the apps and manually configure connections).
It can be used on other platforms, including routers, network-attached storage, and custom versions of Linux. CyberGhost has a list of guides detailing how to set it up on Chromebooks, Raspberry Pi, and more.
It is worth noting here; the kill switch does work on both Android and iOS devices. For this to happen in the competition can be rare. It is as essential to stop any data leaks on phones as it is on desktop devices.
When subscribers first start the registration process, it is best to do so directly from the website or within an official application where the free trial ends and the upgrade button appears on the screen.
There are false ads around offering a higher discount than the one CyberGhost currently provides.
Also, users who register and pay through Apple need to pass through Apple in a refund. It is advisable to continue registering through the official channel rather than through a third party. The money-back-guarantee comes directly from CyberGhost itself.
On the home page, there is a countdown timer that runs for the New Year’s sale. If it reaches zero, it starts again.
- Click on the yellow ‘-79%’ splash logo or the ‘Get it for $2.75/mo’ button to take you to the page with the plans.
- The 3-year plan is selected by default. This is colored green, while the others are black and white.
- Select the option you require and scroll down for the payment options.
- Choose one, and the site takes you to your appropriate payment provider.
- Once you select one, you will need to add your email address for verification.
When you pay, you will get your confirmation/ welcome email. This is where you can download version 7 of CyberGhost. You can download it for mobile devices from the Google Play Store or the Apple Store respectively, depending on your device.
User’s who upgrade to the most recent version of the software will see the difference in the user interface. This is far from the flashy block design of yesteryear and now follows what the market leaders have to offer.
After installing the application, CyberGhost seems to launch in the system tray. However, a window the size of a phone appears in the lower corner. This is a regular Windows client application you can drag and drop as you please.
The CyberGhost application asks for your login details, and once you enter them, it unlocks. For quick connections, slide the “on” switch to the right, and the application automatically connects you to the fastest server according to your location. For regular safe surfing, this is more than satisfactory, although, for any other online or streaming activity, you’ll need to go deeper into the application.
Selecting a different server based on your requirements is easy, and all you need to do is click “connect to” at the bottom of the user interface. CyberGhost shows some available servers, although this is not the complete list.
During our tests, the application showed the streaming servers from the USA, UK, France, and Germany for Netflix and BBC iPlayer.
When you need to see all the servers, click on “more servers” at the bottom of this drop-down list. Older users can now see the difference between the older and newer versions.
You’ll see the full list of servers expanded. With this, you can see the number of users, the distance from your location, and the server load. Several are already set as favorites by default, and they are shown in a condensed drop-down window.
To refine the search for the best server for your activity, whether it is streaming or torrenting, you can find tabs for these two activities labeled “torrenting” or “streaming.”
The torrent servers display the number of users, distance from you, and server load in the same way as the ‘all servers’ list.
For streaming servers, instead of showing distance, load, and the number of users. CyberGhost shows the servers and the particular service for which it is optimized; this should give the best speed.
Users quickly see that it’s not just iPlayer and Netflix. The servers are specific for Channel 4 in the UK, one for Canal+ in France, and the specialized servers in Brazil for Globo SporTV and many others.
If there is any complaint, you cannot select individual servers. Instead, this has been taken away from the users, and the app selects the best server for your activity.
Under the tabs of the specialized servers, there is another couple. Intelligent connection features and Smart rules.
The connection features cover the ad blocker, the tracker, and the malware detector. Alongside this are HTTPS redirection and data compression. The area is where most of what happens inside CyberGhost can be configured.
Smart rules are more specific and cover areas of automation, which are configurable in CyberGhost. You can configure the startup settings, your default browser, what happens in known Wi-Fi networks or unknown access points, and the split tunnel.
All other “configuration” options are standard for VPNs. It includes protocols, transport protocols, and a “virtual network repair card.”
VPN’s come with special software that will create a virtual network card rather than connecting directly to the physical one. If there are any issues, this can cause connection problems. The CyberGhost repair button is a feature that more VPN providers should consider offering.
Many of the features are not so sophisticated; they are refinements of what was already in the older versions of CyberGhost.
It is hard to have more features in a VPN app that delivers all you can ask for. Saying this, there are some, which work better than others do. However, this is the newer version, and further refinement of these areas will come along in due course.
The apps offer plenty of security features you can toggle on and off, though one emission is the kill switch. Luckily, they enable this by default, and in the chance of losing your VPN connection, your system will be on lock-down until you get your VPN connection back or disable the VPN manually.
Split tunneling is known as the ‘Exceptions’ feature, and you can set this on the fly as your client is running. Here, you can allow or blocklist sites or services you don’t want to pass through your VPN, and you can set them to go through the regular path.
- Block ads
- Block malicious websites
- Block online tracking
- Automated HTTPS redirect
- Data compression
All these have their setting toggle, as we have seen, so there isn’t too much searching to locate them.
One of the critical areas where CyberGhost protects its users is in public hotspot areas.
When the VPN senses you are entering an encrypted Wi-Fi network, you can set it up to do what you want it to do. When entering open Wi-Fi access points, the action can be added as a separate rule.
There are known Wi-Fi networks, and unlike a general setting, you can set it for each hotspot you enter.
There are two free browser extensions available from CyberGhost. These protect Chrome and Firefox. Both are available free of charge and without the need for any CyberGhost account.
That user’s who wish to bypass restrictions can do so by using CyberGhost’s proxy. Therefore, if it’s streaming or blocked content, then it’s easy. They are not reliable for security as they act as proxies.
Like the full client, once you are connected, your internet connection will have your IP address hidden, and you’re given another one in its place.
There is unlimited bandwidth available, so you will not face restrictions on your connection. This blockchain extension offers the best opportunity to stay out of sight while browsing free.
Nevertheless, with both extensions, there are limitations in comparison with the fully paid client.
Wi-Fi connections are secure for the browser, but there is no killswitch, no customer support, or multi-protocol support.
The full client has access to over 5,907 dedicated servers. CyberGhost has in 90 countries, whereas the browser extensions have access to eight servers in four countries. The United States, Germany, Romania, and the Netherlands have two VPN server spots in each area that are accessible.
If there is one area that can catch you out when a VPN service comes with a complete overhaul, then with CyberGhost, it is the speeds of its network.
Before looking at the numbers, there are a couple of issues, yet these are negated by the performance this VPN delivers. All VPN connections do slowly because of the encryption required. However, it is the degree to which they slow that is crucial. The question remains:
Is Cyberghost any good?
In testing, we tested the speed of servers. CyberGhost has versus our base connection, which was unprotected. We conducted these tests at several different times on various servers.
One of the tests was conducted on one of the streaming servers automatically selected by a CyberGhost server. Thus, we were able to compare the service performance between manual and automatic selection.
All results were captured using speedtest.net, and we were sure to include more long-distance servers. In many cases, the selection of the closest servers offers nothing more than fast and secure connections. For streaming and torrenting, servers are usually located in other countries.
When we saw the results of the compilation, we saw CyberGhost massacre many of the top-ranked VPNs in the competition for pure download speeds.
It easily ranks near the top of the fastest VPNs for this year. In all locations that were tested, the bandwidth was more than sufficient to stream 4K video.
We are pleased to report that CyberGhost is now among the fastest VPN services we have tested.
With high average download speeds in all tested locations and during all hours of the day, it surpasses many second-tier VPNs.
There was a drop in speeds here and there, but the service is stable and reliable if you always use the same server locations.
We did see that the further away it was, there were no sudden drops, and drops were a percentage of the base upload and download speeds.
We concluded that the entire virtual private network sees the same optimizations and does not select server locations to optimize.
The tested streaming server performed well, and latency and upload speed remained mostly the same. However, there was a small drop in download speed as expected.
Any user who finds this consistency with regular server connections when accessing streaming services would be more than happy. The latency is excellent, and if you were in your home country, you wouldn’t be able to tell the difference.
Therefore, users looking for a good gaming VPN may have one of the best options available. The connections were reliable and never interrupted during the trial period.
The most surprising result was our tests for Indonesia. We chose this location because it should have less support than Australia and give a worst-case scenario.
It was the furthest place from the base by several thousand kilometers. Speeds were slower than other locations, but CyberGhost managed to produce a usable download and upload speed with decent latency considering it is an island.
- United States (Streaming). Ping 17ms. Download 25 Mbps. Upload 11 Mbps
- United States: Ping 18ms. Download 23 Mbps. Upload 10.5 Mbps
- UK: Ping 102ms. Download 11. Upload 7 Mbps (Read our Best UK VPN Guide)
- Japan: Ping 169. Download 12. Upload 6 Mbps (Read our Best Japan VPN Guide)
- Indonesia: Ping 225. Download 10 Mbps. Upload 3.5 Mbps
Sometimes, a VPN can be a fickle beast, and users, especially newer ones, will need some help. This is where a real champion comes in; because many VPNs have poor customer support.
Cyber Ghost support has one of the best knowledge bases out there. Although most users need live chat or email, these extended guides and tutorials are handy when they want to learn more about their service.
There are guides for almost every area you can think of at CyberGhost. This is derived from the more common one of installing and configuring the Windows client app and even setting up security protocols on a Raspberry Pi.
The guides are very detailed and, apart from being text-based, there are many images, which accompany each step. Anything that can confuse users in words can be clarified when they have a picture to relate to.
The knowledge base is broken down into sections. Beyond that, you can browse the problem-solving articles, the FAQs, and the recent announcements.
There may not be a large number of choices for direct support, but the quality is excellent. Email is a great bet because the right people can answer your questions. Representatives are trained in technical aspects and respond quickly, usually within the day.
For quick answers or help to unblock something, there is the 24/7 live chat feature, and this alone raises the profile of CyberGhost chat support. Still, too many companies do not offer this.
The VPN CyberGhost has leapt above the competition and offers a great customer support system. You can find this available in English, German and French. Live chat is a great addition, and it is another step to show is taking its business very seriously.
Netflix is often seen as the ultimate test for how excellent a VPN service is and what it can deliver. There are many VPN’s who give up and stop trying to circumnavigate the restrictions that are in place.
At one part of the life of this VPN, Cyberghost was one of these companies. For whatever reason, they have come back, and they have come again strong when dealing with global geo-restrictions.
It can be for many reasons, but now, they can bypass the Netflix restrictions and nearly anyone.
Some VPN companies can only bypass specific libraries. CyberGhost has no issue with unblocking other Netflix libraries in different countries; some even have shows that are not on the US version.
While the many VPNs that enable access have particular servers available, this can be a potluck if you can get a connection. CyberGhost goes about this differently, and we saw this earlier on.
A VPN user will select the desired service, and for this example, we will use US Netflix. You choose this from the servers, which deliver access, and then you start your Netflix app or stream from the website.
A user doesn’t need to select a server because this is already taken care of inside the client.
It can save time and disappointment when you find it; you can’t unblock sites you want to access.
Netflix libraries, Hulu, Amazon Prime, Crunchyroll, and the BBC iPlayer are some that have their own designated servers in the apps. Filter these, and you can select from any of the servers that clearly label what they are suitable for.
In the older versions of CyberGhost, it appeared comical how a user would do this, but now, it makes more sense and is easier to understand. It is hard enough trying to bypass restrictions, and if you have to try to remember which server unblocks which, it can be even more hard work.
One more thing to add to streaming is how well CyberGhost works with Kodi add-ons. There were no hiccups, and all live streams never faced any geo-restrictions. Bringing dead stream back to life, asking too much of this VPN, CyberGhost is good, but there are limits.
Torrenting and P2P file sharing are still big businesses. It appears movies and TV shows are more accessible now than they ever were. A VPN user may decide to download their favorite TV series or video, take it with them, and watch it on their mobile devices.
There will be fewer data charges, and it is easier than trying to find a good connection to stream.
Like streaming, a dedicated tab shows all the CyberGhost torrenting compliant servers in the network. Again, this makes things far more accessible and can deliver better results for download speeds. You can select one that has the least load and is closer to your vicinity. Then, in theory, and in most cases, you will have the best possible download speeds for your connection in reality.
There is nothing to do to remain safe, and the client app takes care of everything else. There are no IP address leaks so that any torrent swarm won’t have your real IP address included. Additionally, with the kill switch, your IP will never leak. It will appear to any copyright troll; you are an anonymous user from another location.
The great thing with both torrenting and streaming is your ISP can’t see what you are doing. To this end, it means they can’t throttle your connection as they do for so many others who stream.
CyberGhost appears to have re-written history, and wiped away all the bad parts, and gained a whole load of trust. They certainly make a big difference to the user experience, and now, they are on par with NordVPN in terms of numbers.
With unlimited traffic, they bypass blocking restrictions quickly, and the range of devices is up and up. It doesn’t matter if you are on a mobile, a Windows, or a Mac device; Cyberghost has you covered.
From what was among the average VPNs now climbs from the ashes and rises to the top ranks. It delivers full protection and for a reasonable price.
CyberGhost support seems to be the icing on the cake, and it is hard to see how far the new revamped VPN CyberGhost can go in the future.
With a massive influx of speed from the thousands of servers, CyberGhost has in place; there may be many other VPN’s who can’t match, never mind beat their performance.
Hopefully, this guide has made any purchasing decision more accessible because now there is much more going on for your money, and the parent company has done a great job of turning things around.