SpyOFF VPN Review (2019): Worth It or Not?

SpyOFF VPN isn’t very well-known and is a latecomer to the VPN world; however it looks promising with growing server numbers, a priority on privacy and the rare bonus of unlimited devices. Is this VPN a dark horse? Let’s take a look.

PROS

  • Above-average speeds
  • Excellent Netflix access
  • Good technical security
  • Up to 10 connections
  • 30 countries
  • Easy to use

CONS

  • No kill switch
  • Very basic
  • No torrenting
  • US location
  • Won’t disclose server numbers
  • Poor support

Speed & Expectations

VPN’s usually reduce internet speeds, but it’s important to know by how much, particularly for things like gaming, torrenting and streaming.

To measure this, we tested the 3 main speed indicators:

  1. Download speed: The rate at which data is transferred from the server to your device. This is measured in megabytes per second (mbps) and a higher number is better.
  2. Upload speed: The rate at which data is transferred to the server from your device. This is also measured in megabytes per second (mbps) and a higher number is better.
  3. Ping (or latency): Tested by “pinging” the server, it’s the amount of time it takes for it to receive and process your request. This is measured in milliseconds (ms) and a lower number is better.

First, we ran a baseline test using a default 100mbps internet connection in Chicago, IL.

Then we tested various SpyOFF servers across the globe.

We ran each test 5 times to increase reliability.

Speed results

These are the results of our baseline test:

So the average baseline score was:

  • Download: 78.3mbps
  • Upload: 12.1mbps
  • Ping: 10.8ms

Next we ran our tests on a SpyOFF United States server:

US averages of the 5 different speed tests were:

  • Download: 26.5mbps (66.2% slower)
  • Upload: 11.1mbps (8.9% slower)
  • Ping: 33.8ms (213% longer)

(You would expect these to give the fastest results since we’re performing the tests in the US).

Next we tested Europe:

Europe’s averages were:

  • Download: 33.7mbps (56.9% slower)
  • Upload: 10mbps (17.9% slower)
  • Ping: 112.8ms (944.4% longer)

Here’s Asia:

Asia’s averages were:

  • Download: 18.7mbps (76.2% slower)
  • Upload: 1.4mbps (88.4% slower)
  • Ping: 472.8ms (4277.8% longer)

Next, South America:

South America’s averages were:

  • Download: 27.2mbps (65.3% slower)
  • Upload: 5.8mbps (52.4% slower)
  • Ping: 284.4ms (2533.3% longer)

And finally, Africa:

Africa’s averages were:

  • Download: 29.3mbps (62.6% slower)
  • Upload: 6.1mbps (50.2% slower)
  • Ping: 291.4ms (2598.1% longer)

We then compared these results against its competitors.

First up, let’s take a look at download speeds:

VPNUSEuropeAsiaS.AmericaAfrica
SpyOFF-66%-57%-76%-65%-63%
VPN.ht-48%-78%-68%-67%-67%
vpn.ac-52%-51%-67%-47%n/a
Tiger VPN-48%-68%-68%-55%-72%
VPN Unlimited-27%-77%-79%-64%-61%
Cyberghost-35%-59%-71%-56%-68%
Torguard-37%-58%-81%-60%-67%
ProtonVPN-35%-50%-56%-77%-54%
PureVPN-26%-68%-94%-32%-89%
Trust.Zone-14%-99%-80%-66%-82%
AVG Secure VPN-56%-87%-69%-75%-68%
Hoxx VPN-12%-96%-93%n/a-68%
VPNSecure-68%-93%-98%-61%-77%
IPVanish-36%-54%-72%-76%n/a
NordVPN-40%-99%-69%-58%-75%
ExpressVPN-71%-58%-64%-95%-67%
Avast-45%-63%-72%-66%-77%
Windscribe-44%-57%-80%-98%-73%
Average-42.2%-70.7%-75.4%-65.8%-70.5%

Download speeds are above average in Europe and Africa, about average in Asia and South America, but below average in the US.

Next, how did upload speeds compare?

VPNUSEuropeAsiaS.AmericaAfrica
SpyOFF-9%-18%-88%-52%-50%
VPN.ht-10%-17%-25%-23%-63%
vpn.ac-6%-18%-44%-16%n/a
Tiger VPN-3%-14%-20%-17%-42%
VPN Unlimited-13%-39%-85%-19%-56%
Cyberghost-8%-16%-92%-37%-48%
Torguard-9%-20%-35%-22%-41%
ProtonVPN-2%-15%-20%-41%-29%
PureVPN13%2.5%-54%-11%-72%
Trust.Zone-13%-45%-67%-28%-84%
AVG Secure VPN-19%-58%-75%-80%-77%
Hoxx VPN-5%-90%-24%n/a-51%
VPNSecure-9%-19%-92%-26%-56%
IPVanish-5%-19%-84%-22%n/a
NordVPN-13%-46%-26%-16%-70%
ExpressVPN-9%-24%-34%-72%-42%
Avast-13%-42%-78%-70%-77%
Windscribe-6%-17%-52%-97%-53%
Average-7.7%-28.6%-55.3%-38.2%-56.9%

Upload speeds are above average in Europe and Africa, but below average in the US, Asia and South America. Asia scores the slowest result.

And finally latency:

VPNUSEuropeAsiaS.AmericaAfrica
SpyOFF213%944%4278%2533%2598%
VPN.ht273%785%1667%1282%2109%
vpn.ac60%388%968%487%n/a
Tiger VPN9%895%1786%1105%2309%
VPN Unlimited33%935%3946%1411%2535%
Cyberghost27%1085%2344%1352%2415%
Torguard7%1036%2023%1384%2502%
ProtonVPN17%810%1840%1185%2017%
PureVPN-23%708%489%1018%1823%
Trust.Zone104%1206%2438%1396%2750%
AVG Secure VPN1021%1111%2419%3560%3336%
Hoxx VPN566%1098%2470%n/a2794%
VPNSecure281%1051%2519%1530%2917%
IPVanish240%1038%4144%1424%n/a
NordVPN34%1278%2328%1560%2696%
ExpressVPN98%965%2122%1545%2461%
Avast33%1133%2465%1556%2815%
Windscribe310%1018%1904%2042%2782%
Average183.5%971.3%2341.7%1551.2%2553.7%

Latency speeds are above average in Europe, but below average in Africa and well below average in the US, Asia, and South America.

Speed (Summary)

SpyOFF VPN has below average speeds overall. Download speeds are just above average, but uploads are slow and latency is very poor in comparison to the competition.

Performance & Features

In this section we compare the most common features across VPNs.

Number of servers: 1,000+

How many active servers are available to connect to across all countries, regardless of their physical location.

This is fairly high, though the VPN giants go higher such as Torguard’s 3,000.

Number of countries: numbers: 37

How many countries the total number of servers cover, regardless of how many are located in a single country.

This is medium. It should be more than enough for most people, but the top VPNs offer 50+.

Number of connections allowed: Unlimited

How many devices can be connected to a server (or number of servers) based on a single VPN account or subscription.

This is extremely rare and generous of SpyOFF, and a massive plus of using their service. The average offered is 5 connections, so this is perfect if you have a lot of devices or are looking to cover your whole family.

Torrenting allowed: Yes.

Whether you can download and share files on a peer-to-peer or P2P network as opposed to a single server.

SpyOFF seems to deliberately not mention torrenting across its website, however torrenting does work on all servers.

Kill switch available: Yes (desktops).

Whether the VPN software can disable your connection to the network in the event you disconnect from the VPN server. This prevents your IP address from being exposed.

SpyOFF has a kill switch, which is great, but only on desktops, leaving mobile users exposed.

Performance and Features (Summary)

SpyOFF does pretty well in this section, with over 1,000 servers in 37 countries, unlimited connections, torrenting and a kill switch.

Privacy & Security

In this section we take a look at all the privacy and security aspects of the VPN to ensure it’s safe to use.

First let’s look at the technical aspects:

Protocols/Encryption: OpenVPN, PPTP, L2TP/IPSec, IKEv2/IPSec protocols with AES-256 encryption

SpyOFF VPN offers a fair few protocols for flexibility, including ultra-secure open-source OpenVPN. There’s also PPTP for maximum speed. It combines this with top-notch AES-256 encryption. You really can’t ask for more.

DNS leaks: None found.

IP leaks: None found.

WebRTC leaks: None.

Viruses/Malware: None found.

We uncovered no leaks, viruses or malware. However, during leak testing locations often appeared different to the server location we were supposedly connected to, which is odd.

Legal issues

Jurisdiction: San Marino. San Marino is a microstate in Italy that has most of its own laws, including no data retention laws, and no laws that could make company to release its data to the authorities, making it a pretty ideal location VPN-wise.

Logging policy: No logs.

SpyOFF has a very clear no logs policy.

They have a very lengthy and detailed privacy policy, which I appreciate as it means they are being thoroughly honest about their data and not trying to hide anything.

On top of this they have a separate no-logs page explaining things in more simple terms, to save you having to trawl through the legal speak of the privacy policy.

I wish every VPN would follow their lead.

On the no-logs page they clearly explain what they do and do not collect, and why.

They don’t collect your IP address, browsing history, or anything else you need to worry about.

They do collect app information like app versions, and the total amount of data running through their system, which is standard.

They also collect anonymous VPN connection diagnostics and crash reports. However, you can disable this at any time in the app settings, which gives you a nice level of control.

They explain that they don’t set limits on the number of connections so that they don’t have to log information relating to this.

They also take a jab at other VPNs that claim to be ‘no logs’ but, say, limit devices to 5 connections. In which case they need to take record data relating to this. Totally true.

However, their privacy policy states that they do collect your initial IP address when you initially sign up for the service, which I think is unnecessary.

They also have a warrant canary to further reassure users they haven’t handed any data over to authorities.

Privacy and Security Summary

SpyOFF VPN is one secure VPN. It got top-notch encryption and flexible protocols, and we found no leaks. However, locations often appeared differently than the server we were connected to. It’s located in safe haven San Marino, and it’s got a detailed no-logs policy and a warrant canary.

Usability

This section looks at the following aspects:

  • Streaming/Geo-spoofing
  • Compatibility
  • Overall UI/UX

Streaming/Geo-spoofing

Streaming is one of the main reason people buy VPNs, as you can geo-spoof your location to use Netflix in a different country.

We tested SpyOFF VPN against all major streaming services in the US, Europe, Asia, Africa and South America.

  • Netflix: Partially Detected. Netflix worked on US servers, but nowhere else.
  • Hulu: Detected. Hulu was competely blocked.
  • YouTube: Undetected. YouTube worked fine on all servers, but this is very easy to unblock.
  • Kodi: Undetected. Kodi worked fine with SpyOFF VPN.

Compatibility

Is SpyOFF compatible with a lot of devices for you to take full advantage of its unlimited connections?

We tested everything from Tor, iOS devices, Android devices, Smart TV’s, Amazon Firestick, Mac, Windows, to routers:

  • Routers: Partially Supported. SpyOFF supports DD-WRT or Tomato routers, but recommend that you purchase their pre-configured routers , which are highly expensive.
  • Tor browser: Supported. Tor works fine in conjunction with SpyOFF VPN. There’s also an option to connect automatically via Tor within the app, but this never worked during our testing.
  • iOS (iPad, iPhone): Supported. SpyOFF VPN has a fully-functional iOS app.
  • Android: Supported. SpyOFF also has an Android app.
  • Smart TV’s: Not Supported. Unfortunately SpyOFF offers no support for Smart TVs.
  • Amazon Firestick: Not Supported. There’s no support for Firesticks either.
  • Windows: Supported.
  • Mac: Supported.

Routers: Partially Supported. SpyOFF supports DD-WRT or Tomato routers, but recommend that you purchase their pre-configured routers, which are highly expensive.

Overall UX/UI

SpyOFF has a very small, uncluttered white and gray interface.

Although the ads at the bottom get annoying after a while and ruin the clean look.

You can connect quickly by clicking the on button. The location is set to ‘Auto’, where SpyOFF chooses an optimal location for you.

Click the ‘Choose Location’ button to access the server list.

This lists servers in country order alphabetically, which is easy to navigate.You can drill down further to city level by clicking the arrows.

You can’t choose specific servers out of 1000, however. This offers less customization, but easier navigation with a much shorter server list.

There’s also a search bar for quick access.

There’s no other sorting options or filtering options, but you don’t really need them.

However, it could really do with a favorites system. There’s a tab showing Recent Locations, which helps, it only shows the country you previously connected to, not city. A favorites tab would be far more useful.

Once connected, the on/off switch turns green.

Normally it’s obvious you’re connected because of a sound effect, and pop-up window, but nothing happens with SpyOFF, so you have to stay on the interface until it goes green. Slightly annoying.

Changing servers was a bit of a hassle, as you get a notification that you first must disconnect from the previous server.

There’s a button to get rid of this in settings, but this never worked for us, even after a reboot.

Sometimes it also changed the location but turned itself off, and you had to click the power button again for it to connect.

We also found the interface got confused sometimes, and started connecting or disconnecting when we didn’t want to. This may be due a long lag after clicking.

Connection times were quick when they worked, however sometimes servers failed to connect.

The interface also disappears from the taskbar without warning. It does appear in the system tray though and clicking this makes it reappear.

Settings are divided into several tabs. There’s only a couple of auto-connect settings.

Under Protocol you can turn on the kill switch, as well as choose your protocol from a range of options: OpenVPN UDP or TCP, PPTP or LT2P.

You can also activate OnionVPN, so that your connection is automatically rerouted through the Tor network. This is a great feature, but when we tried to use this we couldn’t connect to any server and kept getting error messages.

Under Advanced, you can turn on enhanced DNS leak prevention, and choose your log level: Off, Standard, or Detail. This is a nice option most VPNs don’t offer that gives you full control over your privacy.

You can also check for leaks, but this directs you to SpyOFF’s own detection tools on its website, which some may worry are bias.

The mobile interface (we looked at Android) looks much the same as the desktop.

The server list worked in the same way.

However, connection times were lightning fast, just a couple of seconds, and connections were more reliable

Unfortunately there were less settings though, with no kill switch or auto-connect options.

You can still choose your protocol (OpenVPN UDP or TCP).

You can also still activate OnionVPN and turn off the disconnect confirmation pop-up, but again these options never worked for us.

You can also refuse to send crash reports and other data to SpyOFF.

Usability (Summary)

SpyOFF underwhelms in this section. It’s got Netflix US access, but no Hulu. It’s got basic device compatibility (Windows, Mac, iOS and Android apps) and some router support, but nothing else. The UI would be pretty good if it weren’t buggy and unreliable, with connection issues and some options not working.

Pricing & Refunds

SpyOFF has 3 pricing tiers, which is common. There’s a 1 month option for $12.99, a 6 month option for $10.99 and a 12 month option that is normally $7.49 a month.

Currently the 12 month option is on offer for $5.60 with 4 free extra months.

The non-sale prices are, quite frankly, ridiculous. They’re not just above average, they’re the most expensive we’ve ever reviewed…even more expensive than ExpressVPN, the feature-packed VPN giant.

How SpyOFF can possibly justify these I don’t know.

The sale price is a lot cheaper, but still above average.

There’s a free 3-day trial, which is full access.

However, we also stumbled upon a hidden 30-day free trial.

You do however have to give your payment details, and if you forget to cancel you’re signed up for a year.

There’s also a generous 30-day money-back guarantee.

There doesn’t appear to be any caveats to this in their terms of service, which is great. However, it doesn’t go into detail about how the money will be refunded, for example if you pay by crypto, or how long it will take.

Payment options include card, Paypal, and Bitcoin. Not bad at all, but others offer more cryptocurrencies and other options like Alipay.

The payment and download process went smoothly. You can choose your password, but you’re emailed a long username you have to use.

Pricing (Summary)

SpyOFF VPN has 1 month, 6 month or 12 month pricing options, but they are off-the-charts expensive. There’s a free 3-day trial, or a 30-day trial if you can find it, though for that you have to give your payment details. There’s also a generous 30-day money-back guarantee with no exceptions. Payments are by card, Paypal, or Alipay.

Support

There’s technically live chat support, although this is very hard to find and it was never available for us.

There’s also a ticketing system or email.

Unlike most ticketing systems, you don’t get an automatic email confirming that they’ve received your question.

Responses were extremely slow. We had a record-breaking 5 day response time from them.

The response doesn’t include a copy of the questions you sent them, and there’s no record of the ticket you sent in your account either. After 5 days, you might have forgotten what you asked.

The quality was also pretty poor. For example, when I asked what specific devices had a kill switch, they just linked to their kill switch page, which doesn’t provide that information.

In response to questions about streaming and torrenting, they said ‘SpyOFF offers a VPN service, not a downloading or streaming service’.

But then they just recommended testing different servers in our desired country and seeing if the streaming services worked. This probably tops it as the most useless ‘help’ we’ve ever received from a VPN support team.

They didn’t give any information on which locations worked (in our testing, only the US worked).

Sadly the knowledgebase doesn’t make up for the poor support.

Despite the categories on the left, the information is disorganised and confusing, and the information is terrible.

They have some OK set up guides at http://www.spyoffvpn.com/en/tutorial.

However, this link is hard to find.

In the main knowledgebase area, there’s a section called ‘tutorials’ but none of the setup guides are actually included.

For manual setups, the only guide is entitled ‘Operating system-wide OpenVPN-Config’ Not exactly very clear. And all this does is provide a link to a third-party software website.

As for the smart device ‘tutorials’, these instruct you (in a long-winded manner) to install SpyOFF on the router, without offering any router setup guides.

It also mentions it’s working on a guide for Smart TVs, but this article was published 2 years ago and no guide is forthcoming.

In fact, most of the knowledgebase articles were written 2 years ago and have had no updates since.

Hilariously, they allow people to rate these articles, and unsurprisingly most are given 1 star.

The ‘Technical Issues’ category only had 4 articles. However, there is one recent and relevant article relating to a Firefox issue.

They also had a barely passable article explaining the different protocols.

Most of the general questions were also out-of-date, referring to different prices and 15-day trials.

Overall, apart from the setup guides, the knowledgebase just isn’t really useful.

Support (Summary)

SpyOFF VPN has a hard-to-find live chat that was never available for us, as well as a ticketing system and email. Responses were extremely slow and unhelpful. Unfortunately, aside from the setup guides the knowledgebase was also mostly poor and disorganised, with a lot of out-of-date articles and terrible information.

What Do Other Reviewers Say?

Our opinion isn’t the only one in existence, so here’s a roundup of what other reviewers thought of SpyOFF VPN.

Most found it secure. They unanimously liked the kill switch protocols and encryption, though most stated that SpyOFF offered 4 security modes within the app, which is no longer correct.

Most praised the strict no-logs policy, however one said they didn’t like the legal speak in the privacy policy, and like us one said they didn’t like that it collected your IP address upon registering.

Like us most didn’t find any leaks, however some found DNS leaks in their testing, which they found very concerning.

One accused SpyOFF of not owning any of their servers, though they provided no evidence for this.

Some found full access torrenting, whilst a few said it was restricted to a few servers.

Streaming access also varied alot across reviews. Some found streaming on all servers, some found only US Netflix, and one found no Netflix but said BBC iPlayer was unblocked.

Some cited a low server selection, but they quoted less than 400 servers, which is out-of-date. The more recent reviews praised the decent and growing server numbers.

Speeds differed massively. One found it to be very fast, with hardly any drop in speeds, and slight increases in speeds in some cases. However, others reported average to slow speeds

A big difference was most found the app sleek, user-friendly and intuitive. A lot also found it much more reliable than us, calling it very capable with great performance. However, one said it was unintuitive and needed configuring, and one found they couldn’t connect to some servers.

Some said the device compatibility should satisfy most people, since the most popular devices were covered. However, some bemoaned the lack of Linux, smart device and especially the restrictive router support.

All praised the unlimited connections, which they said was rare.

Like us most weren’t impressed with the support, citing slow responses and careless responses. However, some found the knowledgebase OK.

One major difference was opinions on price. Many reviewers thought that SpyOFF’s price were much more reasonable than us, still above average but not too bad and justifiable. One even called it cheap. A couple criticized the fact you couldn’t pay via crypto for extra anonymity, which is no longer true since they added Bitcoin.

A lot rated SpyOFF as excellent overall due to its speed, easy-to-use app, security, and unlimited devices. However some rated it average or poor due to its small server selection, speeds, poor support, and price.

What Do Other Reviewers Say (Summary)

Reviewers generally liked the security, unlimited connections, and sleek, easy-to-use app, and generally disliked the poor support. However, they had different opinions on speed, price, performance, and server selection. This is partly because some reviews were out-of-date and so had conflicting information. Overall lot rated it excellent, but some poor.

Our Verdict

SpyOFF makes a good first impression, with a decent server selection of over 1,000 servers in 37 countries.

Torrentors will be happy with its full access torrenting, and there’s US Netflix for streamers.

It’s also very secure, with AES-256 encryption and a choice of protocols offering flexibility in speed and security. We also found no leaks or viruses.

Legally, it’s located in relatively safe haven San Marino, with a detailed no-logs policy and a warrant canary. You can even choose the level of data you send from the app regarding things like crash reports. They even offer unlimited connections so they don’t have to track user data. This level of control makes it seem like SpyOFF really care about its users privacy.

Oddly though, servers often appeared to be in different locations than the ones we selected, which is suspicious.

Device compatibility is OK, with all the main apps covered, and some router, although they recommend you purchase one of their routers.

There are, however, some downsides to this VPN.

Firstly, it has below average speeds, especially where latency is concerned.

The UI looks promising, with a simple server list and a fair amount of options, however in reality the user experience is poor, with bugs, connection issues and options not working.

Support is terrible, with a slow, poor-quality ticketing system, and a pretty useless knowledgebase full of errors and bad advice.

These faults might be forgivable if SpyOFF was cheap, but in fact it’s one of the most expensive VPN’s in existence, even more expensive than ExpressVPN. The 1 year offer price is still above average.

It’s hard to see why anyone would go for SpyOFF at such a price. You could get a much more powerful VPN packed with high-end features, a non-glitchy interface and 24/7 live chat for less.

With this in mind, we give SpyOFF a rating of 2 out of 5 and we would not recommend it.


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