TunnelBear is a VPN provider launched in 2011 by Daniel Kaldor and Ryan Dochuk. The platform boasts a minimalist design intended to suit the needs of all Internet users aware of the current security threats found online. TunnelBear is very easy to install and set up and it features a very comprehensive and easy-to-use interface, which is definitely a plus when it comes to users with moderate technological knowledge.
Our today’s blog, however, will try to answer the burning questions of all torrent freaks out there and determine whether TunnelBear has what it takes to ensure a seamless torrenting experience.
P2P File Sharing
In order to use clients based on the BitTorrent communication protocol, your VPN provider has to allow P2P filesharing in the first place.
TunnelBear VPN is based in Canada, which means it has to follow a rather strict no P2P policy. So, if torrenting is your regular everyday activity, TunnelBear is definitely not the VPN for you.
TunnelBear recognizes the fact that BitTorrent can be used for completely legal purposes, but how can the company know who actually uses it for downloading copyrighted content? It can’t, not without logging, at least. Since TunnelBear holds a very strong position against monitoring and tracking user activity, it opted to deny the P2P service altogether.
On the other hand, it does keep some connection logs for 30 days. Remember when we said that no VPN is actually log-free? Some are just more aggressive and intrusive than others. The amount of data TunnelBear logs is pretty trivial, though, and it’s not time-stamped, so it cannot be used to mount any time correlation attacks. What it can do, however, is pinpoint users who are breaking the no P2P clause. This makes its previous statement rather moot and reveals that it doesn’t allow P2P mostly because it doesn’t want to, not because of its strong anti-logging beliefs.
We can’t put all the “blame” on TunnelBear for its lack of P2P support. It is based in Canada, which introduced pretty hard-core legislation, leaving little to no breathing room for torrenting. Not to mention that Canada is a member of the infamous Five Eyes Treaty!
TunnelBear is actually doing a pretty good job against state regulations by not keeping any meaningful user logs. If it did, it’d have to hand them over if requested, so we can’t really blame the company for not wanting to clash with state authorities.
Be that as it may, if you’re looking for a good online security service provider suitable for torrenting, TunnelBear is not your VPN.