Last year, ProtonMail introduced a very good free VPN for Macintosh and Windows systems. (See http://bit.ly/2mGoOyg for the earlier article about what was then a new VPN product.) Now the company has expanded its offerings to include a free VPN for Android cell phones and tablets. Unlike most other free VPNs, ProtonMail promises to never include any malware. The company also promises there will be no ads and no selling of user data.
The Android version of ProtonVPN can be downloaded for free from Google Play and is free to use, but, like ProtonMail and ProtonVPN for the desktop, the service has a number of optional paid tiers with more features and higher speeds.
ProtonMail’s primary product (encrypted email that is very private) launched in 2013 and is now used by millions of journalists, activists, and members of the general public, according to its developers.
For more information, see https://protonvpn.com/support/android-vpn-setup/.
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Categories: VPN (Virtual Private Networking)
ProtonMail and ProtonVPN both are really good. But why should someone using a Google (Android in this case) care about privacy?
Google Tracker are ubiquitous, so what exactly should you protect yourself from when using a Google service?
—> Google Tracker are ubiquitous, so what exactly should you protect yourself from when using a Google service?
I believe you answered your own question. “Don’t use a Google service.”
Admittedly, in some situations, there are not a lot of alternatives. If you want a smartphone, your choice these days is between Android (produced by Google) and an iPhone (produced by Apple). You can add extra plug-in apps to either one that should increase privacy but the base product in both remains suspicious. Apple does give more “lip service” to privacy, of course, but that still is not a guarantee.
In short, I prefer to avoid Google products whenever possible. It is not a 100% perfect world so I still have to use a Google product when the alternatives are limited. For instance, I do use an Android phone but I added a VPN and other software to improve its privacy features. (The VPN hides spying by Internet Service Providers but probably does not block spying by Google.)
It is not a perfect world. We all have to make compromises. I simply try to improve my privacy whenever I can. I accept that fact that it is not perfect.
You are obviously very deep in the privacy issue and I respect your point of view.
‘Apple does give more “lip service” to privacy, of course, but that still is not a guarantee.’
You’re right that it’s not a guarantee, but it’s still two fundamentally opposite business models.
While Apple encrypts all content by default, keeps biometric data locally on the devices, and actively opposes tracking, Google thrives on analyzing users as best it can and marketing the data it collects.
There’s a very good paper about it that you may already know:
Click to access DCN-Google-Data-Collection-Paper.pdf
I think you raise good points and I agree with most everything you wrote. Thank you for taking the time to post such clear and important comments.
In short, I think we both agree on a couple of things: (1.) there are no perfect solutions and (2.) we all should evaluate the options available to us and each person should make his or her own decisions without being restricted by corporate spying.
Thank goodness for choices.