HideMyAss is one of the biggest names on the VPN market right now. They have been providing VPN services since 2005 and currently have more than 940 servers, 120000 IP addresses, and 350 locations. They are, however, based in the United Kingdom, which is their biggest drawback as the UK has very strict Internet privacy laws. Our HideMyAss review will explore this VPN provider’s offer in detail in order to help you decide if they can meet your specific requirements.
Downloading the software client from their website is easy. You just log into your page and click on the ‘Software and Help’ button. Then, you select an appropriate client for your operating system. The installation process is also quite straightforward – just follow the step-by-step instructions.
The client dashboard has a horizontal menu that serves as a support section. It includes a knowledge base, email support, live chat, and forums.
The vertical menu features several options such as country selection, IP address settings, secure IP bind, speed guide, proxy settings, and billing & packages. The secure IP bind is actually a VPN kill switch, the speed guide allows you to find the fastest server to connect to from your location, and the proxy settings enable you to set a proxy.
Performance and Reliability
Like we mentioned at the beginning of this HideMyAss review, HideMyAss has a staggering 940+ servers on 350 locations in 220+ countries. Pretty impressive – no wonder they are among the top 10 services in the industry. They offer all three major protocols – OpenVPN, L2TP/IPSec, and PPTP. They also cover all the major platforms and provide the option of two simultaneous connections.
As for the performance and speed, what HideMyAss has to offer in that area is stable, reliable and solid but not as impressive as you’d expect from a company of that size and reputation. However, no major issues were reported in any of the extensive tests conducted and there were no IP and DNS leaks.
Like most big VPN services, HideMyAss supports all major operating systems, including Windows, MAC, iOS, and Android.
HideMyAss has what’s probably the most impressive geographic coverage in terms of server locations. They have servers in over 220 countries of the world. If you know anything about geography, you know that this means almost every single country there is. Their 940 servers are distributed in over 350 locations so you can rest assured that, wherever you are in the world, you’ll be able to find a server that is very, very close to you.
There is a Favorites List on your VPN client so you can save your preferred connections and there is also a quick search for locations. You get worldwide virtual IPs as well a selection of over 120000 dynamic IP addresses from highly varied locations.
As stated previously in our HideMyAss review, this provider offers the basic protocols – OpenVPN, L2TP/IPSec, and PPTP. It’s fairly easy to change between them. Client software is available for all major operating systems and it’s very user-friendly and intuitive. You can also use Hide My Ass on gaming consoles. Setup instructions are found in the knowledge base and they are fairly simple to follow. In addition, the company allows two simultaneous connections, which is fairly uncommon and gives a lot of flexibility, especially combined with uncapped bandwidth.
There is also Wi-Fi hotspot protection against identity theft, hackers and other intruders, which is definitely useful since most clients use public Wi-Fi at least occasionally and many of them do it on a regular basis. In addition, HideMyAss offers VoIP (Voice over IP) to help you save on your long-distance calls.
Another thing that sets HideMyAss apart from other VPN providers is the number of free services they offer. There is, for example, a very useful free web proxy service. It is a bit basic but definitely comes in handy. The best part is that it is available to all users, regardless of the plan. There is also a free anonymous e-mail for a period from one day to one year, various browser plug-ins (Panic Button, IP Checker and more) and a file upload facility.
Security and Privacy
As mentioned earlier, HideMyAss uses OpenVPN, L2TP/IPSec, and PPTP encryption protocols. The company is very serious about protecting your privacy, which is obvious from the free services they provide, all of them designed for better protection and online safety.
However, all these efforts seem a bit pointless if we remember the company is based in the United Kingdom. This means Hide My Ass is obliged to keep logs (albeit partial) and hand them over to the authorities upon request. Still, privacy protection that HideMyAss offers should be good enough for most users. If you do require absolute, untouchable privacy, this may not be the ideal VPN provider for you.
Hide My Ass offers phone, email, and live chat support. The support staff is knowledgeable and experienced enough to solve any problems. Before contacting support, you can browse their website. The help and support part of the website is large, active, and well-maintained. We recommend checking out their FAQ section and knowledge base where you can find answers to the most common questions. If you do not find what you are looking for on the website, just choose a way to contact customer support. In most cases, response times are good, meaning that you shouldn’t wait more than a few minutes to chat with a support representative.
HideMyAss has three cleverly named payment plans. The cheapest one is “Kick Ass,” a $9.99 package that is good for one month. The most popular one is the 12-month “Smart Ass” plan for $4.99 per month and the six-month plan, called “Half-Ass,” will cost you $6.99 per month. The services offered in all three packages are the same, the only thing that varies is the discount. They don’t have a free trial period but they do offer a 30-day money back guarantee, which is basically the same as a free trial.
If you want to compare HideMyAss with other VPN providers, click here to visit our Top 10 Cheapest VPNs of 2016 list. HideMyAss accepts a wide range of payment options, including PayPal and WebMoney. Bitcoin is, unfortunately, no longer accepted.
HideMyAss Pros & Cons
As we wrap up this HideMyAss review, here’s a quick overview of the features that wowed us and the aspects of the service that could use some improvement.
- Huge number of servers all across the globe
- Efficient, easy to use VPN client
- 30-day money back guarantee
- Free services
- No bandwidth restrictions
- 24/7/365 live chat support
- Often unimpressive speeds
- Privacy issues (keeping logs)
- Limitations on money-back guarantee
- Do not accept Bitcoin