Hola VPN Review: A Free VPN Service that is Too Expensive

Ali Qamar  - Cybersecurity Analyst
Last updated: November 10, 2023
Read time: 27 minutes
Facts checked by Abeerah Hashim

Hola VPN does not offer encryption, logs heaps of information, is merely a peer service, and has other issues. But you get good speeds. Find all about it in this review.

HolaVPN is a service provided by Hola Networks Limited, which is out of Israel.

If we had any household names in the VPN industry, Hola VPN would probably be among them. It’s been around since 2012 and boasts of having served more than 200 million users ever since. It presents itself as the foremost P2P VPN in the industry. Unfortunately, I’m not sure that’s the best thing.

This P2P thing doesn’t mean you’re in the best torrent VPN. It means that your internet access becomes a P2P resource. Let me explain it further.

A typical premium VPN service charges you a fee, and that’s how it pays its bills and stays in business. On the other hand, free VPNs collect your online data for sale to data mining companies. Unfortunately, Hola’s business model is not exactly either of those. The network is not supported by the members’ fees but by imposing dubious practices that are far from secure for its users.

Let’s start at the beginning. In Hola, you have to share your bandwidth with other users on the VPN. So your IP address won’t be hidden from the world at all. Instead, it will be shown as somebody else’s address – another user in the Hola network, and vice versa; your IP will be reported as somebody else’s. That’s what a peer-to-peer VPN is.