Our SpyOff review found a provider aiming for quality service, but falling short on a few counts which further transparency would readily clarify. Performance is slightly above average with a decent VPN client. Give the free trial a look using the link below, or read on for further considerations.
SpyOff has threee pricing tiers similarly to most other providers. $11.10 will buy you a month-to-month Starter service while the price drops down to a year with the $7.77 monthly Premium plan. Each plan comes with all available servers. The difference is in savings. Alternatively, you may opt for the $12.22 Premium Plus plan – also billed once per year – which includes Premium Support and more VPN tricks. It’s slightly odd to charge extra for unclear benefits, as we’ll discuss in more detail.
SpyOff isn’t the most economical VPN on the market, but it does deliver an above average service, though the inability to pay with anything other than a (major) credit card does raise some concern as to how worried about SpyOff company is. Either way, there’s a a f money-back guarantee to see for yourself.
The SpyOff review video demonstrates the service relatively well, though, it’s entirely in German.
Sareta S.r.l (SpyOff’s parent company) is based in San Marino, (but has German ties since several members of the team had German affiliations). That said, San Merino isn’t in any way bound to the DRD or other surveillance directives. As such, the website and service is available fully mirrored in both languages, making this provider a great choice for German folks. Up to three simultaneous connections are allowed to the service at any given time. There are currently over 21,000 IP addresses in 21 countries and counting.
Try out SpyOff’s speedy network and free trial a look below.
When you are surfing online while using a VPN you are completely anonymous. No one knows your activities including SpyOFF. SpyOFF does not restrict or log any of your activities. What you are doing while you are connected to the VPN is your own responsibility.”
The quote above taken from my anonymous email to the SpyOff support team reads well, as the privacy message is one all VPN providers would do well to operate on on principle, if nothing else. Unfortunately, my request for exact information as to what encryption suite (encryption protocols, authentication, and so on), was rebuffed as seen below. The SSL security likely refers to website access – but there’s no way of knowing with such limited feedback. SpyOff will hopefully come forth with full details on the matter soon.
“The connection with SpyOFF is secured via SSL encryption on every system. We can not provide you with a full encryption suite.”
Instead, we’re left with this image depicting protocols, which may well be confusing to less techy people not used to VPNs (though there is slightly mor information if you scroll down the page). It’s always reccomended to go with the Ultra Secure option, as this is the only choice using OpenVPN. Balanced mode uses L2TP, and highspeed uses PPTP. Both have been proven insecure, and should be avoided where possible – save maybe streaming – if you’re in any way concerned about anonymity. There isn’t any official word on P2P, though the earlier quote would imply a ‘hear no evil, see no evil’ attitude in place.
The SpyOff website is well laid out on most counts, with pricing, features, trial signup and contact links clearly denoted in the top banner. The only point which could be improved is to have the English/Geman language toggle at the top of the screen, instead of all the way at the bottom.
Walls of German text (not pictured here) threw me for a loop when I first visited the SpyOff website!
The bottom banner has more useful links to the glossary of terms (pseudo FAQ section that’s in certain ways a bit more useful), as well as links to SpyOff’s oft-updated social media accounts.
Spyoff’s blog is fully in German without a native translation option (just run Google translate). There’s an even mic of content ranging from service updates to news from around the global privacy and broader IT spheres.
Support is something of a mixed bag. The resources on the site are adequate, but SpyOff could do well by streamlining and amalgamating the two disparate (one long, one short) FAQ sections into one, and by possibly instituting a user forum to encourage an open flow of ideas and engagement. LiveChat support would also be useful as is isn’t currently available due to limited staff – which might change moving forward.
That said, the email responses I received to opening up a ticket such as the one pictured above were courteous and timely.
Registering for SpyOff requires a username, working email address, and paying by credit card. You’ll subsequently receive an email or how to get started, or jut follow the prompts from the Client Area to download an install the VPN app relevant to your device(s).
The VPNProvider Windows VPN client
The SpyOff Windows VPN client looked and felt intuitive, and was clearly given ample design attention. There’s a side by side server menu with the left half showing server location while the right side portion displays the various servers to pick from in each country.
You should always stick with the Ultra Secure OpenVPN – though High Speed is visibly selected here – based option whenever possible, for maximum security and anonymity. Connecting is simple, just click on the button and wait for it to turn green as shown above.
Opening up the setting menu in the bottom left of the client brings up some handy features, like auto startup with Windows, and a popup blurb that’ll show you if your VPN connection drops, or alert you in the situations wherein you click disconnect and hastily click outside the app on your device. You may set the killswitch to block all web traffic from the moment you start your computer, or instruct the SpyOff app to continually attempt a rec-connection. I was positively impressed with the Windows client, and the performance testing below only served to back those feelings up.
Performance (Speed, DNS, WebRTC and IPv6 Tests)
Speeds were excellent on our 30 Mbps test connection, with UK and French servers both averaging a shade under 10 Mbps. Meanwhile, US severs showed a similar curve of about 9 Mbps, though it’s worth noting that the geographical proximity also dropped the baseline average to 12 Mbps, as you rightly expect.
No IP leaks whatsoever came up during testing. It’s always satisfying – though it shouldn’t be much more than matter of course – as DNS leaks make using a VPN even more dangerous than an unecrypted connection (seeing as how you’re then falsely operating on the basis of being protected).
Check ipleak.net for DNS leaks, including the WebRTC bug. For IPv6 leaks, use test-ipv6.com. A third option that mixes the two prior ones is found using doileak.net. It’s a good idea to run some of these tests from time to time, even if you have little to worry about.
In addition to dedicated Windows, Android, OSX, and iOS apps, SpyOff has setup guides for Linux, or a router if you wish to encrypt your entire network. The guides aren’t extremely detailed and lack pictures, but they are well-written and easy enough to follow provided you have a base technical understanding about VPNs (which you can quickly dive into using our VPN for Beginners Guide).
Android, iOS, Linux, etc
The SpyOff Android app looked and felt the same as it Windows cousin did. It was smooth to use and quite speed for being a mobile app, both in connecting to a server, and maintaining decent speeds while streaming and browsing.
SpyOff Review Conclusion
Sleek Windows App (& Android)
I wasn’t so sure about
A Bit Pricy
Full Encryption Specs A Mystery
SpyOff’s overall service is a tad on the pricier side of the fence and some valid concerns on encryption detract from the existing solid foundations for a quality VPN service. Speeds are in the upper range out, with reliability to match. A few additional tweaks could well catapult this expanding provider into the elite. Take a look at SpyOff’s free trial offer below.