Being a VPN Provider in a Heavily Censored Environment- VPN.asia
As the name implies, VPN.asia is a service provider focused on one of the most restricted and problematic areas in the world, in terms of internet access. We contacted them to learn about how they operate, and what makes them safer than other VPN's? Here's what they had to say... Share
Please provide some background on VPN.asia: What was your motivation for starting a VPN service? How has your location affected that decision?
I am myself an expat living in Bangkok, Thailand. We have been managing a hosting company for over 10 years. Back in 2014, as internet restrictions became more predominant in Asia and Western of Europe, we decided to set up a VPN service that will give them free access to the internet. Nowadays, it’s not only restrictions that our customers are concerned of, but also huge fines granted to those who download torrents.
We had the domainname VPN.asia for quite a while but didn’t do anything with it until 2015. We launched VPN.asia, targeting mostly expats and foreigners in Asia.. but of course, everybody is able to use VPN.asia and we are no different than any other VPN provider. We have customers from all over the world and we are growing everyday.
What makes your solution unique compared to other VPN providers?
We try to be very user-friendly with our website and applications. Nowadays there are so many people using a VPN because of the laws in all the countries. I’ve found many providers selling VPN services for users, but without any knowledge it is quite difficult and sometimes can be a real pain in the neck.
We NEVER log information from our customers besides their email address.
What are some of the challenges you encountered while attempting to protect users without logging their data?
It’s very difficult to have a customer base without having any of their information. The only info we do log is the customer email address, but we would never give away that information to anyone.
VPN has recently become illegal in China. How has that affected the way you operate?
Doesn’t change much for us. We just try to keep the VPN running in China as they keep blocking protocols. The way to find customers in China will always be difficult because the GFW will always hunt on the VPN providers. On the other hand, they are the ones who need it the most, so those who really want a VPN in China will always find their way back to us or other providers.
Why should the average user be worried about internet surveillance? And is there a difference between government and corporate surveillance?
Personally I don’t like when people have the possibility to look into my history. ISP’s have the possibility to do this and also now they are able to fine you because of abuses when downloading torrents. I think that everyone else should be worried about this.
I don’t think there is any difference between government and corporate surveillance as they pass on the information to the government if needed or if asked for.
How do you explain the duality between the increasingly strict privacy regulations on the one hand, and the quick expansion of internet surveillance programs on the other hand?
The strict privacy regulations are an excuse that they use to snoop on your privacy (i.e. internet surveillance). If you will come up with an argument against internet surveillance, they will say that it’s for the greater good, when in fact they are snooping on your privacy.
In your opinion, what new trends and technologies can we expect to see in the vpn market over the next few years?
I think the VPN providers will become more and more user-friendly, and it will be more commonly used by everyone.