Hotspots Shield is a VPN service launched in 2008 by AnchorFree. Since that time, over 650
million people around the world have installed one of its versions. The service features two separate products, a free version and a premium one with some extra features and benefits. Naturally, the vast majority of users use the free version.
In this post, however, we’ll talk about whether Hotspot Shield can offer online protection to users from China. So, if you’re interested in this VPN but still aren’t sure whether you can use it in China or not, keep on reading to learn all about its potential use against the dreaded Firewall.
Unfortunately, Hotspot Shield has a limited to no usability in China, as well as Iran, Pakistan, Oman, UAE, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia. So, if you’re located in one of these countries, your VPN traffic will most likely be blocked by governmental anti-VPN mechanisms. The Great Firewall of China received a particularly troublesome update back in 2017, which enabled it to actively seek out and block VPN traffic. Every time we tried to connect, we were blocked and unable to reach any of the Hotspot Shield servers.
It’s well-known that the Chinese firewall usually doesn’t check LT2P traffic, which gives VPN users a convenient loophole at the cost of security. Namely, this protocol offers a considerably weaker protection than, let’s say, OpenVPN, but that’s the sacrifice one has to make in order to use a VPN from China. Since Hotspot Shield only features its proprietary connection protocol (Catapult Hydra), this trick was not available to us.
Bottom line, Hotspot Shield doesn’t work in China or at least we weren’t able to connect during our testing circuit. We’re open to different experiences, of course, so make sure to let us know if you managed to connect to one of its servers while in China.