Kaspersky is an industry-leading cybersecurity company, so you’d expect its VPN to offer top-of-the-line security features. But is it safe to use? And is it fast and powerful enough to help you stream and torrent?
I tested Kaspersky VPN for two weeks, so I can all of these questions for you.
Streaming – Does Kaspersky Secure Connection Work with Netflix?
Previously, we have had some issues getting Netflix to work with Kaspersky VPN. I like Mr. Bean, so I wanted to see if I could get Netflix UK to work first (it has the most Mr. Bean movies and even the cartoon). I was excited to see that the paid version of Kaspersky does unblock Netflix UK!
I was also able to unblock BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime Video, and Netflix US. I did have some initial issues with Netflix US, but a quick switch of servers took care of it. Please note you won’t be able to unblock Netflix or BBC iPlayer with the free plan, or at least that was my experience.
Speeds – How Fast is Kaspersky Secure Connection?
If you buy a subscription your speeds are much better than with the free version. I found that Kaspersky Secure Connection free auto connects you to the closest server, but if I used the paid version I had access to servers further away.
The first premium server I tested was in the UK. Speeds were plenty fast for streaming content in HD and even 4K. Download speeds were strong at 61.5Mbps, with an upload of 45.6Mbps. Granted I was accessing during non-peak hours, but that’s still pretty impressive.
The next server I tested was a bit farther across the pond, Japan to be exact. Download speeds decreased by around 2% to 60.8Mbps, and upload speeds increased 3% to 46.6Mbps.
The last server I tested was in Australia, where download speeds dropped a fair amount in comparison to the UK and Japan servers. Download speeds decreased by 18% to 50.3Mbps, while upload speeds increased by around 1% to 47.4Mbps.
Overall, I would like to see more server coverage across Kaspersky Secure Connection’s free network. Its local servers are quick but since the free version doesn’t allow you to connect to servers further away, you’re fairly limited.
On the upside, their paid service offers access to a handful of Netflix libraries, including Netflix US and UK, and speeds fast enough to prevent buffering and allow you to view in HD or 4K. Speeds did decrease on the paid version during peak hours, but with only 100 servers, that’s not surprising. I was still able to stream in SD though.
Is Kaspersky Secure Connection Good for Torrenting?
Kaspersky doesn’t store any information that can identify what you are doing online when connected to the VPN. Still, there are some gray areas around Kaspersky Secure Connection’s privacy and logging policies that make it a risky choice for use with torrenting. You can read more about Kaspersky Secure Connection’s privacy and logging policies under my safety assessment below.
Is torrenting important to you? Take at the best VPNs for torrenting for a safer and faster alternative.
Security – Is Kaspersky Secure Connection Safe?
Kaspersky is a globally well-respected cybersecurity company, so I was surprised to find that its VPN is missing several basic security features.
Kaspersky Secure Connection does use military-grade 256-bit AES encryption. It also provides DNS leak protection, which prevents your DNS requests from being accidentally leaked to your ISP.
A kill switch is a staple VPN security feature, so the addition of a kill-switch for Windows and Android was appreciated. According to Kaspersky, they intend on having one for mac and iOS within the year. You can read more about why this is such an important feature in our complete guide to kill switches.
It also added IPv6 leak protection for all platforms it supports. Unfortunately, Kaspersky Secure Connection still lacks an ad-blocker or any type of anti-malware feature – surprising for a company famed for its antivirus software.
You can bundle your Kaspersky Secure Connection VPN with other Kaspersky antivirus software, but this costs you more money. Other VPNs like CyberGhost and Surfshark offer built-in ad, tracking, malware, and phishing protection at no extra cost.
Does Kaspersky Secure Connection Keep Logs?
Kaspersky Secure Connection states that it has a no-logs policy. This should mean that it doesn’t have any information to hand over about you, even if it is obliged to by law.
A quick look at its terms and conditions sadly proves otherwise. Kaspersky Secure Connection logs some of your data, like your MAC address, hardware information, user session ID, and traffic information.
One important thing to know about Kaspersky Secure Connection is that it is based in Russia. In one respect, this is a positive as it means it’s not located in a 14-Eyes Alliance country.
Still, Russia does not have the best record when it comes to privacy – especially regarding VPNs. The government has a record of forcing VPNs to hand over user data. Though Kaspersky promises, that when asked to cooperate with government entities they only block access to websites considered illegal in those specific countries and they don’t provide any user information to those governments.
Under its strict list of ‘Application Usage Restrictions’, it claims that any violation of this list ‘‘For the purpose of obtaining unauthorized access, interfering with or inflicting damage on the application. Any such violation will be reported to the appropriate authorized executive agencies, and we will assist such agencies in revealing your identity’.
This clause prohibits users from using the VPN to access content with the intent of damaging the application. In which case, Kaspersky would share only information about the incident in question, and the identity of the person involved in the illegal activity. Seems like a legitimate way to protect your interests.
Still, the VPN’s list of violations includes any activity that might be considered illegal in any country, so I can’t recommend Kaspersky for torrenting just in case you download something you shouldn’t.
Kaspersky Secure Connection’s unreliable streaming record and slow speeds on its free versions, and decreased speeds on its paid servers during peak hours, might be due to its limited server network.
It only gives you access to 100+ servers in 35 countries – including the US, UK, Germany, France, Canada, Sweden, Spain, Japan, Hong Kong, and Russia.
|Number of countries with servers||35|
|Number of servers||100|
|Number of IP addresses||100|
|Does VPN keep logs?||Yes|
|Does VPN include a kill switch?||Yes|
|Number of devices per license||5|