Our seemingly never-ending journey to finding VPN services and testing them to see if they’re suitable for you is far from reaching the end and our latest ‘discovery’ is tigerVPN.
Though we’re unable to just zap you through the whole process in one swift motion since the contents of this review are going to be pretty lengthy, we included a table of content in the following section, so you can quickly jump to the parts you’re most interested in.
- Company information
- Slovakia Jurisdiction
- Terms of service analysis
- A quick introduction to tigerVPN
- Creating an account
- Downloading the app on your device
- Checking the installer for malware
- Installing the application
- Trial included
- Running tigerVPN on your computer
- Changing the settings
- List of servers
- Services unlocked
- TOR and torrenting support
- Customer support
- Security check-up results
- Speed test results
- Pricing plans
The company that developed and supports tigerVPN is conveniently called Tiger At Work, and its headquarters are located in Bratislava, Slovakia.
The project came to life in 2011 and its revenue source is built around subscriptions or, as they put it, “We make money with the service we provide and that’s it.”
We’ve been able to learn from the product’s website that the headquarters of the company behind the tigerVPN project is based in Slovakia, but how is that important for you and how can the location of such a business impact you, the common customer? Let’s find out.
First thing’s first, it is 100% legal to use a VPN in Slovakia, since there are no restrictions and/or regulations that could forbid this kind of activity. Additionally, we have found that the constitution of this country aims to preserve press freedom and the freedom of speech, although, from time to time, journalists experience pressure from political parties.
The state doesn’t monitor communications such as chat rooms, transmitted emails and the such, but they do keep an eye out for websites that promote or advocate hate speech.
It is also quite important to mention the fact that Slovakia is not a member of the 5, 9 14 Eyes Alliances, so as far as we’re concerned, they can’t be coerced into handing out digital information (including their customers’ personal data) to government institutions or intelligence agencies located in other countries that are members of said alliances.
Terms of service analysis
In order to have a better understanding of where exactly Tiger At Work stands in the battle for keeping privacy safe and sound, we’re going to give their Terms of Service a good rub and see if we can find some information that’s relevant to our cause.
As usual, we’re not going to overload your reading space with unnecessary details, and, more so, we’ll try to present you a shortened, user-friendly version of the document.
- You should know that the terms and conditions in this document are exclusively available in English, and, as a result, any form of communication with Tiger At Work must be done in the same language;
- If you are not able to understand English, you are advised not to sign up with the service;
- If you visit the website, contact the company, sign up for an account or redeem a license key, it will be automatically seen as your acceptance to all the terms and conditions in this document;
- The registration data that you provide the company with must be both accurate and authentic;
- The terms and conditions document will be updated whenever necessary without further notice, so it is in your best interest to visit the document’s page frequently and ‘scan’ it for any potential changes;
- At the top of the document, you may find the date and time when the ‘Terms & Conditions’ became effective, so you can monitor any changes easily;
- They offer a trial which they consider to be a compatibility test for Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS, so no upfront payment will be required if you decide to give the service a ‘test drive’;
- The main (and only one for that matter) VPN standard of tigerVPN is OpenVPN, so it’s the only protocol they support and troubleshoot. This means that attempting to use any other protocol is not supported and it will not be serviced;
- If you sign up for their service in one location and decide to use it in another one, they can’t guarantee that it will work the same, or work at all;
- They claim no responsibility if your ISP (Internet Service Provider) decides to block the access to their service. I’m guessing they don’t support obfuscated traffic, but we’ll find out soon;
- If you change the environment in which you’re using tigerVPN and it stops working, you won’t be eligible for a refund;
- They claim that perks that come ‘alongside of IP masking’, such as bypassing geo-restricted content and viewing content in other countries should be considered a side effect and should not constitute the reason why you’re purchasing their service;
- You are not allowed to carry out illegal operations or ones that are prohibited by law in the country you’re currently in, regardless of whether you’re simply visiting or living in it;
- Sometimes, their service might become temporarily unavailable, due to timeouts, network downtime, fiber cuts, and other such events. However, they claim to be monitoring these events and make the details of their services public;
- Although they have multiple servers running as we speak, they only guarantee ‘permanent access’ to at least one of them, at any time, since other servers in other countries are considered to be backups and may become unavailable at any time;
- The support they offer you is not to be seen as technical support and is only valid to tigerVPN’s apps and website;
- If you purchase a subscription during promotion and disable the recurring payment, your right to receive support will end one year after you activate the service;
- A bandwidth limit is imposed, so you can’t consume more than 1 TB per month on EU and US servers or more than 0.1 TB per month on servers outside of the US and EU;
- They don’t guarantee or offer liability for downtimes and/or personal or financial losses that resulted from these events;
- Tiger At Work aren’t offering their services for businesses and corporate clients by default, but they can be contacted for a specially-tailored offer;
- You’re not allowed to monetize their services (using their services to secure your business);
- 7-day refund policy is available, but you have to contact them personally. In other words, simply canceling your service before the 7 day period ends isn’t enough to get your money back;
- If you don’t use their service regularly or you’re inactive for more than 2 months, your account will be terminated and become invalid. If you want to reactivate the service (the one that you paid for), a reactivation fee may be required of you;
- You are not allowed to use the service in such a way that other customers are harmed or become unable to use the service;
- You are liable for anything that goes wrong on your account, whether it’s you who did the deed or somebody else that’s using your account;
- You are not allowed to engage in any kind of unwanted communication (spam), regardless of the channel you want to use;
- You are not allowed to transmit (send, receive) illegal content (e.g. child pornography) while you’re connected to the service, regardless of the channel;
- You are not allowed to distribute or retrieve any content that’s protected by any proprietary right (e.g. copyright) without the permission of the owner;
- You are not allowed to perform any operation that might resemble hacking;
- You are not allowed to post or transmit any objectionable material (e.g. promoting racism, hate speech, abuse, threats) of any kind while connected to the service;
- You are not allowed to use the service in an unlawful manner;
- If you violate any of the terms and conditions described above (and many others, since we only brought the most important ones to you), your account will probably be terminated and your right to a refund will be canceled;
Remember that we’re only trying to bring you the quintessence of the Terms & Conditions documentation and there are other regulations, conditions, clauses, terms, whatever you want to call them, available in the document. Those are equally important as the ones above, meaning that breaking them has the same consequences, so you should give a thorough read to the original document.
In our opinion, Tiger At Work’s Terms and Conditions document has a lot of fail-safes, so in case anything goes wrong with their service, they’re covered. Not as much when it comes to something bad happening to you or your account.
They claim not to impose any traffic limitation, but a few words later we learn that you can’t consume more than 1 TB per month in some situation and 0.1 TB in another one, stating that customers who do that (exceed these values) are using the service for more than what it’s worth. Fair enough, but at least own it and call it for what it is (i.e. bandwidth limit) instead of making contradictory claims.
More so, they will deactivate your account if you don’t use it for more than two months, even though you probably paid for a whole year. So first they claim that customers who use more bandwidth than allowed are bad for business, and then they deactivate accounts for not using ANY of the bandwidth for two months. And, get this, they may also ask you to pay a reactivation fee in case your account was deactivated like described above and you want to reactive it. Not cool.
But since we’ve collected everything related to your actions and their consequences in the previous section, we’re just going to focus on how they handle your online privacy.
We’ve split the contents into 3 distinct categories that should highlight the types of data they collect, how do they collect it and what are they doing with it.
- Your account data (email address and password);
- Your financial payment data (PayPal information, credit card details);
- Your tax and VAT data (timestamp and geo-location);
- Data used for preventing fraud and abuse (geo-location and anonymized financial data);
- The VPN protocol you use and its version;
- Your operating system;
- The version of the app you’re using;
- Statistics regarding traffic;
- Your connection session details (the server location);
- Your favorite servers (optional);
- Your debug information (optional);
- Tracking and usage data (cookies, affiliate links, web beacons);
How / when do they collect the data:
- When you create an account on the website and/or the apps;
- When you sign up to receive replies on their website messenger (live chat);
- When you make inquiries, send them emails or use their in-app support request;
- When you engage with them on social media;
- When you sign up for a competition, survey or promotion;
- When you contact customer services, regardless of channel (e.g. email, in-app, Facebook);
- When you leave comments or reviews regarding their services or products;
- When you interact with them, they might use automated tools to collect data (browsing actions, patterns);
- They can receive data about you from their third-parties, including technical, contact and financial data;
How do they use and share your data:
- Your account data will be used to generate a VPN account and your credentials, let you access your account, pay invoices, cancel the service, as well as communicate with and reply to the support team. You are advised not to use fake emails;
- Your financial payment data will be used to authorize the source of your payment, recharge you with the payment fee (if applicable). They store the last 4 digits of your credit card so you can identify the card you’ve used for payment;
- Your tax and VAT data (geo-location and timestamp) will be used so that Tiger At Work can pay VAT on your behalf;
- The data used for preventing fraud and abuse is pretty much self-explanatory. This type of data will be used to prevent credit card abuse (stolen cards or non-authorized payment methods);
- The data used for providing the VPN service (e.g. protocol, version, tracking, and abuse) will be used to, you guessed, provide you with the service;
The following excerpt gives us some insight on their logging policy:
“At no time, we store, read, analyze or in any other way process the traffic exchanged between you, our servers and the public internet. In other words, we do not save, read or have technical access to any DNS queries, websites you visit, data you transferred or communications.
tigerVPN sells subscription to pay for its service and has never and will never sell, share, or give away any data.”
A quick introduction to tigerVPN
Okay, so we now know that tigerVPN is, as its name strongly suggests, a VPN service that can keep your connection private and secure. But what else can it do?
Judging, by the way, it’s advertised on its official website, tigerVPN can also bypass geographical restrictions and website filters, make you able to “browse invisibly,” shield you from others using a NAT firewall and is a “premium service with an affordable price tag.”
In the following sections of our review, we’ll check and see just exactly how many of the claims above (and others on their online presentation) are true and expose the ones that aren’t (if we find any, that is).
Creating an account
Although they’re handing out a free trial (and being pretty vocal about it, too), you must still register for an account in order to be able to use tigerVPN on your device, whichever that is. So, in order to register an account, you must follow these steps:
- Navigate to the landing page of the product;
- Locate the “Get started” button and click it (check the screenshot);
- Select any of the subscription plans that are shown on the newly-opened page (the one you prefer);
- Select your preferred payment method (Credit Card, PayPal, License Code);
- Provide the form with valid credentials;
- Provide the form with valid payment details;
- Give your consent and agree to the policies, terms, and conditions;
- Choose whether or not you want tigerVPN to send you marketing messages;
- Click the “Pay Now” button;
Performing these steps should enable you to create an account without an issue.
Downloading the app on your device
The short answer would be ‘navigate to the landing page of the product and click the Download button’, since the app will download automatically on your Windows computer. It’s true. However, maybe you want to retrieve it on a second device. Here’s what you have to do:
- Navigate to the landing page;
- Click the “Download” button located at the top-right of the screen;
- You’ll be notified that your download has started, but you’ll be able to see other things, as well;
- Select any of the platforms you’re interesting in (click their corresponding icon);
Now, depending on what your choices were, you should be either facing the product’s page on Google Play or App Store, retrieving the installer executable for Windows or the DMG file for Mac.
Checking the installer for malware
If you think that the next step in our process should be installing the product on our devices, you’re wrong. As a rule of thumb, anything that comes in touch with your computer, especially if it’s from the Internet, should be at least subjected to a basic malware check.
We’re relying on VirusTotal to perform this malware checkup and although we understand that 0-days make it impossible for their accuracy to be 100%, it’s still better than skipping this operation and risking the well-being of our computers and probably our network.
We’ve detected nothing wrong with the tigerVPN installer, and now we know for sure that it’s clean. If you’re not convinced, feel free to take a look at our results and also check our screenshot below.
Installing the application
Assuming that you’ve successfully downloaded tigerVPN’s installer executable on your computer, it’s time to deploy it in a safe and efficient manner. Don’t worry, the process is almost 100% automated, but we’re going to describe the steps, just to be sure.
- Double-click the installer executable you’ve just downloaded;
- Wait for the components to be extracted;
- Click “Next” on the main window of the installer;
- Choose a valid destination path on your computer for the app to be installed;
- Check the information available in the confirmation screen;
- Click the “Install” button;
- Wait for the installation to complete;
- Choose whether the program should be launched at the end of the installation or not;
- Click the “Finish” button;
You’re all set! tigerVPN has been installed on your computer and you can now start using it.
The version of tigerVPN we’ve installed on our computer is 3.5.3.
Alright, so you’ve made it this far. If you didn’t touch the last part of the installation, you should be seeing the main window of the application, asking if you’re going to activate the trial or log into your account.
Yes, I’ve mentioned it a few times before, tigerVPN comes with a trial version and they’re actually urging you to give it a try, since they treat it more as a ‘compatibility test’ rather than a trial. If you already know for sure that the app works for you, go ahead and log in. Otherwise, just hit that “Start Free Trial” button.
If you do, after going through several confirmation screens and the such, you’ll reach a login screen requiring that you provide it with valid credentials, so it can allow you to pass. This is where you either log into your account or register for the trial. This can only be done in-app, so trial registration is not available on the website.
Running tigerVPN on your computer
Regardless of whether you chose the trial or logging into your account, you’re now facing the main app of the application, which consists of a large section where all the servers are placed, a ‘Favorites’ list to organize your favorite servers, an on/off switch used to connect to / disconnect from the service and a gear-shaped button used to access the configuration menu.
Simply clicking a server will do the trick, so there’s no need to flick the switch. However, you can use the switch to shut down a connection. Adding a server to your favorites list can be done by clicking its corresponding heart icon.
Changing the settings
As mentioned above, if you’re interested in tampering with the settings that this application provides you with, all you have to do is click the gear-shaped button. From there, you can notice that there are four different sections, which you can navigate through: System Settings, Troubleshooting, Account Settings and Logout. Well, the last one isn’t exactly a section, but I’m sure you’ve figured that one out by yourself.
In the System Settings category, you can enable TCP override, sort servers by city name, show the list of favorites by default (instead of the ‘all’ list), hide the startup balloon, display the app as a window and run at startup. There’s not much you can do here and not a lot of technical settings are available for you to toy with. We couldn’t help but notice the lack of the kill switch and split tunneling options.
The Troubleshooting section can be used to submit reports directly from the app, check the VPN status and access the help documentation. Last, but not least, the Account Settings category can be used to manage your account and check your karma points. Karma points are some sort of reward system implemented by Tiger At Work, where you complete some tasks and receive rewards such as extra connections.
List of servers
It might not be a complete list of servers, but it’s a comprehensive list that holds the locations you can connect to while using tigerVPN, along with their host names and IP addresses. The last two bits can be used to establish the connection manually.
|BR||Rio de Janeiro||rio.tigervpn.com||126.96.36.199|
The list of locations is far from being impressive, but at least it covers many major locations. Holding many servers on your network is important to any VPN service provider, as some of them might sometimes become unavailable, and having a backup is always a good thing.
Although we don’t have a complete list of servers, tigerVPN claim that they have more than 300 servers online in 61 locations that cover 42 countries.
To be a straight-shooter, tigerVPN can’t unlock many of the entertainment services you yearn for. They can unlock Netflix in a bunch of locations, but not the U.S. version of Netflix, which is highly disappointing.
Same goes for Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, Spotify and other similar services. They also have a list of countries where Netflix is available via tigerVPN, which we’ll post right away.
|Buenos Aires||South America||No|
|Hong Kong||Hong Kong||Netflix not operating in Hong Kong yet|
|Rio de Janeiro||Brazil||Yes|
TOR and torrenting support
We’ve decided to test tigerVPN’s ability to support torrenting and P2P file sharing activities since that’s one of the major reasons why users all over the world decide to finally give in and try using a VPN. In other words, they’re looking for a tool that can ensure their privacy remains intact while torrenting.
First of all, it works, and without slowdowns, throttling and interruptions, too. However, you are advised to only use servers in Amsterdam, Bucharest, and Montreal, since the application doesn’t feature “P2P-friendly” servers or other kinds of server organization.
Moving on, we’ve tried to see if you can use TOR in conjunction with tigerVPN, and while it is possible, you might want to refrain from doing that. Why? Well, for starters, it will bring your speed to its lowest minimum. Well, not exactly, but the slowdown you will experience from doing so will be unbearable. Additionally, if you’re unfortunate enough to land on a malicious TOR exit node, your connection will probably be monitored, since the traffic that’s passed through these malicious nodes is usually unencrypted.
Luckily for you, tigerVPN has a live chat. As a matter of fact, they have it all: live chat, knowledge base, ticket system, email support and, if you’re feeling really confident, you can reach out to them on social media.
On the other hand, the response time on live chat isn’t a constant. Sometimes you’ll see that the team usually responds in a few hours, while other times you’ll get to see this: “The team typically replies in 1d.”
However, we’ve been fortunate enough to reach them in a more convenient timeframe, and the responses we’ve received were friendly, but most of all helpful.
Security check-up results
Now that the fun’s over, it’s time to get the big guns out. And by that, I mean that it’s time to perform our series of tests to determine exactly how secure tigerVPN is and whether or not can it keep your connection airtight, keeping every intruder at bay.
For our security tests, we’ve chosen a server in New York, U.S.A. and the testing will be carried on as we’ve described in this article.
Conclusion: After running our series of security tests, we’ve discovered that tigerVPN doesn’t leak IP, DNS, WebRTC and/or Flash IP data. More so, we didn’t find any inconsistency regarding server location, compared to other similar services. Good job!
Speed test results
Now that the security tests are out of the way and we’ve finally concluded that tigerVPN is totally secure, we can shift our focus to how fast this VPN provider’s servers can go. For this test to yield accurate, unbiased results, we’ve chosen multiple servers, as opposed to the security tests, where we only picked one, since we’re aiming for a widespread. This can help us understand how location can affect speed.
- New York, U.S.A. – 48 Mbps;
- Frankfurt, Germany – 59 Mbps;
- Buenos Aires, Argentina – 27 Mbps;
- Hong Kong – 2.7 Mbps;
- Johannesburg, South Africa – 1.2 Mbps;
- Sydney, Australia – 560 Kbps;
Do you see the slope? After the first two tests, we thought that the only way is up. Boy, were we wrong… After the huge drop in Buenos Aires, it only got worse, with a 2.7 Mbps speed in Hong Kong and the Australian lowest point of 560 Kbps.
tigerVPN currently provides you with three different plans, that are not only different based on their duration, but on the features they provide you with, as well. They are as follows:
|Plan||1 Month||12 Months||3 Years|
While the 3-year plan is clearly the most profitable one (strictly from a financial point of view), notice that the yearly plan has extra features, even though it’s a bit more costly.
To wrap it up, tigerVPN is a VPN service provider that’s been developed by the Tiger At Work company, which are based in Slovakia. While Slovakia has a pretty relaxed jurisdiction when it comes to Internet freedom, it still has some regulations regarding hate speech. Slovakia is not a member of the 5, 9, 14 Eyes Alliances, so tigerVPN can’t be persuaded by other member countries to hand out their customers’ data.
tigerVPN’s Terms and Conditions documentation has a bunch of contradictory clauses, such as the company doesn’t impose a limit on the bandwidth traffic, but there actually is a limit of 1 TB per month for US and EU servers and 0.1 TBs per month for servers outside of the EU and the US. More so, if your account is inactive for more than 2 months, it will be deleted, whether it was a paid account or not. Re-activating it might cost you extra.
Their list of servers comprises ‘more than 300 servers’ in 61 locations in 42 countries. While it’s not even near to being an outstanding amount of servers, at least they cover pretty much all the major locations around the world.
Their application is simple enough for anyone to use since its controls are on the surface, you don’t have to spend a lot of time looking around to find them. On the other hand, there’s not much customization that you can do to the service, except for toggling some app-related options such as running on startup or displaying the ‘favorites’ list by default.
During our security tests, we weren’t able to find anything wrong with the service, meaning that there were no IP, DNS, WebRTC and/or Flash IP leaks detected during the tests’ runtime. Our speed tests yielded some pretty good results in the US and EU servers, but disappointing values were observed in locations such as Australia, Hong Kong, and South Africa.
Unfortunately, the service is not able to unlock a wide variety of services, such as Hulu, BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime Video and the U.S. version of Netflix, but it can unlock Netflix from a bunch of locations. Torrenting and TOR both work, but you can only torrent from Amsterdam, Bucharest, and Montreal. More so, we advise you not to use TOR in conjunction with tigerVPN. In fact, we urge you not to use TOR in conjunction with any VPN, since the risks you expose yourself to outweigh all the benefits of doing so.
The monthly plan might be a bit pricey, but at least the bigger subscriptions come with generous discounts. However, you should be aware of the fact that plans are different by features and not only by duration (i.e. some plans have more features than others). They also offer a 3-day trial (which they call a compatibility test) and have a 7-day money-back guarantee.
Do we recommend tigerVPN? Yes. It might have some weird terms and conditions and its servers might not be the fastest, but their security is great, they offer good customer support and their apps can be easily used by virtually anyone who can boot a computer.
+ Works with TOR and supports torrenting; (5)
+ Slovakia is not a member of the 5, 9, 14 Eyes Alliances; (5)
+ Good security, leak-free; (5)
+ Good customer support; (4)
+ 3-day trial; (4)
– Some terms and conditions are contradictory; (1)
– Low-speed results; (2)
– Can’t unlock various entertainment services; (1)
tigerVPN receives a 3.37/5 rating.