Shellfire VPN – Substantial Improvement Required
|Price||$3.97/month ($95.16 for 2 Years)|
|Protocols||OpenVPN, PPTP & IPSec|
|Bypasses China Firewall||No|
ShellFire VPN is an old service. Starting its operations back in 2002, the provider is based in Germany and offers its best subscription deal at $3.97/month (2 Year Deal).
But this VPN, instead of solving user problems, has many major issues of its own that make it a very unsuitable choice as a VPN to opt for any purpose.
We conducted extensive tests and have analyzed all aspects of this provider related to security, unblocking, privacy, compatibility, and support to come up with comprehensive Shellfire VPN Review 2019.
So let’s start.
ShellFire VPN Jurisdiction and Logging Policy Review:
Shellfire VPN is based in Germany.
And that’s a big problem as far as user privacy is concerned.
Germany is a part of the “14 Eyes Alliance” which means that it can not just force VPNs to provide sensitive user information when required, it is also obligated under the alliance to share and collaborate with member countries when they furnish similar data gag order to VPNs in the country.
Sounds a bit complex right?
Let me make it even easier for you.
Germany can obtain any stored user data from Shellfire VPN and so can any member country of the 14 Eyes alliance if they make a request to Germany.
There is a reason why many top VPNs are located in obscure locations like Panama and the British Virgin Islands and that’s because they want to be located in a place where they won’t face the danger of receiving a data gag order from the government anytime.
Shellfire VPN certainly loses some major points due to this guffaw.
The provider, however, doesn’t keep any major user activity logs at all.
The company’s official website states:
“Connection and usage data (for example file transfers, connection times) are only collected if they are required as means of accounting. This is not the case for flat rate tariffs.”
Connection timestamps and bandwidth are the only two types of logs kept by Shellfire VPN apart from personal information like your email and payment details to keep your account functioning.
This privacy-oriented logs policy by Shellfire VPN does alleviate some of the dangers of being located in a 14 Eyes country like Germany because if a provider doesn’t store logs at all, it will have no information to hand over to the authorities even if they demand it.
Shellfire VPN Encryption and Protocol Review
Shellfire VPN uses AES-256 military-grade encryption to protect user data traveling on its VPN connections.
Military-grade encryption is impenetrable which means that not even the wiliest of hackers can get through.
Even via quantum computing, it would take thousands of year to decipher data encrypted through this level of encryption.
Shellfire VPN also offers OpenVPN, PPTP, and IPSec as protocols.
Protocols secure connection endpoints. In more simpler words, if encryption protects your actual data from being used by the wrong people, protocols ensure that no one can access this data in the first place by routing it through a secure tunnel.
OpenVPN is the most secure protocol out there with no known security vulnerabilities. It’s based on SSL technology which generates special keys for connection initiation and endpoints giving any connection incredible security.
It’s great that Shellfire VPN offers this protocol because the other protocols it offers i.e. PPTP and IPSec are not as secure and have been attacked on previous occasions.
Shellfire VPN does get these two things right but that’s just about it as there are many other gaping holes in its security that render it unusable for a VPN user who is concerned about privacy and anonymity.
Shellfire VPN IP Leak Test Review:
IP leak tests are integral towards checking any VPN service in order to ascertain whether or not your real IP is being protected and hidden through the VPN.
For this, we conducted IP leaks tests at multiple times.
But disappointingly, Shellfire VPN does leak your real IP and is especially prone to WebRTC leaks.
This makes Shellfire VPN unsuitable for nearly all kinds of VPN related functionalities like Torrenting, anonymity, Netflix unblocking, bypassing censorship and more.
Seriously, this was the biggest deal-breaker of them all.
What makes the matter worse is that the provider does not offer an automatic kill switch, which automatically blocks your device from accessing the internet when the VPN connection stops.
This protects your IP from being exposed as there something that is stopping the device from accessing the internet without the VPN connection.
Shellfire VPN Pricing And Free Trial Review:
Shellfire VPN currently offers three different types of pricing plans. All the features offered by Shellfire VPN are available in each plan with the subscription deals differing in only the period for which the subscription is acquired.
- Monthly Subscription: $8.36/month
- Yearly Subscription: $5.31/month ($63.66 billed once)
- Two-Yearly Subscription: $3.97/month ($95.16 billed once)
The monthly deal and the yearly deal both are priced quite high and do not lie within the affordable range at all. The price quoted by the provider for these plans is way too high considering the features on offer.
The only good plan here is Shellfire VPN’s Two Year deal, costing the user $3.97/month. Its affordable but when you can get a much better VPN like Surfshark for $1.99/month on its two year deal, which has much more to offer, even Shellfire VPN’s best deal appears unsuitable.
However, if you want to check for yourself whether you should opt for this service or not, you can subscribe to Shellfire VPN’s zero-commitment free trial. You are not charged anything for this trial at all and there is no limit on the amount of bandwidth you can use either.
The only restrictions that you will face in the free plan are firstly the speeds, which will be capped at 1 Mbps and secondly, you will just be able to access 2 servers.
Shellfire VPN also offers a 14 day refund period if you want to check out its paid subscription deals.
Shellfire VPN Payment Methods Review:
Payment for Shellfire VPN’s plans can be made via a wide variety of options. The provider supports conventional payment forms like Credit Card and Paypal and even unconventional payment types like cryptos, through which you can make anonymous payments.
Shellfire VPN needs to be commended for being very user-friendly at each step of the way. If only the prices can come down, Shellfire VPN will be a service that can be seriously considered.
Shellfire VPN Apps Compatibility Review:
If you want to use Shellfire VPN, the provider offers compatible apps for Windows, Mac, iOS and Android OS.
While these four platforms are among the most popular out there, many top-grade VPNs are now offering a greater degree of compatibility by offering apps for even niche devices like Kodi and Firestick in order to power greater user ease on multiple platforms.
Shellfire VPN’s offering is basic but not bad, however, it could seriously do wonders if it plans to add more apps to its repertoire. Even compatible browser extensions would be considered a welcome addition.
But are the apps user-friendly themselves?
The app interface on each platform is clumsy and feels more like a software belonging to Windows 98 era than a modern-day VPN client app.
On top of this, the apps are slow to respond.
However, the biggest issue here is that Shellfire VPN’s apps have malware and engines in them.
Shellfire VPN Server Network Review
ShellFire VPN has only 37 virtual server locations.
Most of these locations are spread out over most of Europe and North America.
Asia, Africa and even South America get the snub since Shellfire VPN doesn’t offer enough servers there.
This matters because if a user has a server near to its real location, it could experience faster speeds by connecting to it and hence get an optimized experience.
The longer the distance between a user’s original location and the server location, the higher the ping rate and the lower the speed.
So if someone from let’s say Vietnam, tries to connect to Shellfire VPN, it will have slow speeds all the time because firstly, there are not enough servers near to the location and secondly, even if they are a few, they will be crowded with users thus creating bandwidth bottlenecks.
VPNs that charge less than Shellfire VPN like PureVPN offers up to 140 countries in terms of server locations.
Shellfire VPN Speed Test Review
We conducted a ShellFire VPN speed test to find out simply whether its fast enough to offer a great experience or not.
First, it did a test without a VPN connection and then conducted tests using its servers in the United Kingdom.
Here is the result of my speed test without the VPN.
Below is the result of ShellFire VPN connected to the UK server:
The drop in speeds was not just significant, it went down to almost unusable limits.
1.25 Mbps in Upload Speeds, not good enough seriously!
The speed tests clearly indicated that this is not the VPN to get if your work involves high data usage.
Shellfire VPN Netflix and Torrenting Support Review:
Another big disappointment.
None of Shellfire VPN’s servers worked to unblock Netflix, let alone Netflix US.
So that’s that.
But for Torrenting, Shellfire VPN offers a few dedicated servicers however considering the fact that it leaks your IP, we wouldn’t recommend that you opt for it for Torrenting or P2P.
Shellfire VPN Customer Support Review
Shellfire VPN still doesn’t offer live chat support and remains reliant on email/ticket-based support to solve user issues.
So why is this exactly a problem?
Well, if you are a Shellfire VPN user and get stuck on some issue for let’s say installation or connection issues, you will have to wait for a long time for Shellfire to revert back to you.
Live chat support is offered by best VPNs like ExpressVPN and Surfshark because it allows for maximum user ease. Through live chat, you can solve your issues in real-time without wasting too much time going back and forth.
Email based support is dated, slow and inconvenient, so it’s another thumb–down for Shellfire VPN here.
Is Shellfire VPN Recommended?
NO! We don’t recommend you to opt for Shellfire VPN.
This provider has so many bads that I didn’t even get a chance to give it a second thought.
Shellfire VPN is located in Germany (14 Eyes Country), it suffers from IP leaks, apps were found to have malware and engines, speeds were pathetic and there is no live chat support. And that’s just scratching the surface.
For $3.97/month or even for free (if you are using Shellfire VPN’s Free trial), Shellfire VPN is not to be used at all as it won’t allow you to do anything substantial or at the very least, even stay secure.
If you want a low cost but a much better VPN service, you can opt for Surfshark. The provider is super secure, can unblock Netflix, offers secure apps for all major platforms, supports Torrenting, keeps zero logs, offers live chat support and much more for just $1.99/month (2 Year Deal).