Private Internet Access Review

Private Internet Access (PIA) has built a strong reputation over the years.  They are committed to users privacy and have developed a number of features to help.  PIA supports high levels of encryption and advanced client features like VPN kill switch and DNS leak protection.  Members privacy is further enhanced by their “no log” policy and anonymous payment options.

Private Internet Access ReviewPrivate Internet Acces (PIA) VPNSP Special

Private Internet Access offers a single plan with unlimited VPN access. Members can connect to their network with up to five devices with a single account. Secure your laptop, mobile phone and three other devices at the same time. The retail price of PIA is $6.95 a month. PIA VPN offers discounts on longer terms including deep savings on annual sign ups.

PIA SpecialThe PIA team has is kindly offering our guests a special discount.  As a VPNSP guest you can save 50% off PIA VPN  Enjoy a full year of VPN from just $3.25 a month.  Visit our PIA VPNSP Special page to learn more.  You will clearly see the discounted pricing as shown above.

Sign Up Process & Payment Options

Private Internet Access has a simple sign up process.  Once you choose a billing cycle you’ll be presented with a list of payment options.  Depending on which you choose the screen will display the information required to sign up.  For example paying with Bitcoin just takes an email address while paying with credit card requires your name for billing confirmation.

You can sign up for VPN using a number of payment methods. Private Internet Access supports PayPal, credit card (Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover, etc.), Bitcoin, Google Wallet, Amazon, Ripple, Stellar, CashU, and OKPay. They also accept gift cards from select merchants.  We recommend bitcoin for those seeking the highest level of anonymity.

PIA VPN Risk-Free Trial Period

The team at Private Internet Access offers a 7 day money back guarantee. You can test the PIA network risk-free for a week. If you run into issues or decide to cancel the service for any reason simply request a refund in the first 7 days. There are not any limitations to the guarantee so you don’t have to worry about crossing any usage or connection limits.

Visit PIAKey VPN Service Features

Private Internet Access provides members with a number of features that set their service apart from the competition.  Here are some examples:

PIA features

  • P2P and VoIP support – PIA supports P2P / file sharing usage and VoIP services.
  • VPN kill switch – PIA users can ensure they stop communicating anytime the VPN drops.
  • DNS leak protection – prevent leaking DNS queries while connected to the PIA VPN network.
  • VPN clients – custom software for Windows.
  • Mobile apps – custom mobile app for Android.

VPN Server Locations

Private Internet Access manages a network of over 3,400 servers spread across 18 countries.  Members enjoy unlimited access to the service.  Switch between servers anytime with the PIA desktop client and mobile app.  Here’s a list of server locations:

PIA network

  • United States (New York, Arizona, Ohio, Texas, Florida, California, Washington), United Kingdom (London, Southampton), Australia (Sydney, Melbourne), Brazil, Canada (Toronto, North York), France, Germany, Hong Kong, Israel, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, Romania, Russia, Singapore, Sweden, Switzerland, and Turkey.

Security and Privacy

Private Internet Access supports OpenVPN, PPTP, and L2TP protocols.  They offer multiple data encryption, authentication, and handshake options in their Windows client.  You can configure them manually or use one of these presets:

  • Default protection – AES-128 / SHA1 / RSA-2048
  • All speed no safety – None / Noe / ECC-256K1
  • Maximum protection – AES-256 / SHA256 / RSA-4096
  • Risky business – AES-128 / None / RSA-2048

Private Internet Access has a “no log” policy.  They do not maintain logs of any kind.  That means they won’t log your activities when using the VPN service.  The PIA service is very popular in the P2P community.  They are well known for privacy.  They even accept bitcoin for more anonymous payments.

Visit PIACustomer Support

The PIA support team has an online ticketing system for any technical, billing, or sales questions.  They have a contact page with a series of FAQ’s that provide answers to the most common questions.  PIA also maintains a knowledgebase to help resolve technical problems.

PIA VPN Speed and Reliability

Private Internet Access manages a network of VPN servers in key countries around the world.  The most popular server locations are in the United States, Canada, and Netherlands.  I haven’t run into any performance issues with the service.  You have 7 days to fully test their network.

PIA Speed Test

  • PIA US speed test – after connecting to a VPN server in New York using their OpenVPN client we tested our Internet speed and found it to be 61.10 Mbps download and 3.50 Mbps upstream.
  • PIA Canada speed test – we connected to a server in Toronto and were able to achieve 57.55 Mbps download and 3.79 Mbps upstream.
  • PIA UK speed test – after connecting to the London VPN server via OpenVPN we tested our Internet speed again and found it to be 27.50 Mbps download and 3.19 Mbps upstream.

Visit PIAVPN Client Software and Compatibility

The PIA team has developed a Windows client with advanced features like VPN kill switch and DNS leak protection.  They also have a mobile app for Android users.  They have set up guides for other devices including Mac, iPhone, iPad, DD-WRT routers, and more.  As a member you can connect to their VPN network on up to 5 devices at a time.

PIA Windows VPN client in action

PIA Windows ClientThe PIA client supports Windows 8, 7, Vista, and XP.  Here are some advanced features of the Private Internet Access Windows app:

  • VPN kill switch – disable your internet when the VPN disconnects
  • DNS leak protection – prevent DNS leaks while using PIA
  • IPv6 leak protection – disable IPv6 when on the VPN

PIA Android app in action

PIA Android appThe PIA app requires Android 2.2 and up.  Here are some of the key features of the Private Internet Access Android app:

  • Defaults to UDP – connect using UDP for the best speeds
  • Auto connect – automatically connect on start or device boot
  • Port options – select a popular or random port

Tips for Using Private Internet Access

When you join PIA the service will open new doors.  We’d like to end with some tips to help you select the best server location and protocol for different situations.

  • Secure your internet connection – if your primary goal is to secure your data and increase your online privacy then I suggest you connect using the OpenVPN protocol.  For the best performance you will want to connect to a nearby server.
  • Unblock geo-blocked sites like Netflix – if your primary goal is to unblock popular online streaming sites like Netflix, Hulu and HBO Go then you will want to connect to a server in the United States. In the case of Netflix you can connect to a server in another country if you want to view a content library in another region. For BBC iPlayer and other British channels connect to a server in the UK. The same is true for channels in other countries.
  • Watch live sporting events – this is one of my favorites.  PIA can help you watch live sporting events like the World Cup, Olympics, ICC Cricket, Super Bowl, and Grand Prix circuit.  Connect to a server in the region in which you’d like to watch coverage of the event.

Conclusion

Private Internet Access offers fast, reliable VPN access at a great price.  PIA ha a strong “no log” policy.  They fully support P2P and VoIP .  PIA has servers in key countries.  Just make sure their server locations meet your needs.  PIA has custom software for Windows and Android users.  They also offer set up guides for Mac, iOS, DD-WRT routers, and more.

PIA is one of the most well known VPN services in the world.  They’re often featured on popular sites like TorrentFreak and have a loyal following.  The VPN kill switch feature and multiple levels of encryption help show PIA’s commitment to user privacy.   Sign up through our PIA VPNSP Spacial page and enjoy unlimited VPN from just $3.25 a month.  All new members are covered under their 7 day money back guarantee.

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