Back in 2019, Mozilla created a simple browser extension called Firefox Private Network that gave users encrypted access to the web for a safer more private browsing experience. Now just two years later, this browser extension has grown into its own fully-fledged VPN capable of competing with big names like ExpressVPN and Nord.
Mozilla VPN was born from a partnership between Mozilla and Mullvad VPN, hence why they both share the same servers.
However, this isn’t simply repackaging another service to target Firefox users; while there are many similarities between the two packages, there are also some notable differences.
If you are looking for an affordable yet effective VPN to protect yourself while browsing online, then Mozilla VPN is definitely worth considering.
This VPN is slightly more expensive than Mullvad, despite being powered by it. However, if you already use Firefox as an alternative to Google chrome and want to support the company behind it, this is a great way to do so.
In this review, we will be breaking down all the features Mozilla VPN has to offer and how it can help to protect your personal data while browsing online.
How Much Does It Cost?
A VPN is a service designed to hide your IP address. It prevents your internet service provider, or other malicious third parties, from monitoring which sites you visit as well as what data you send and receive online.
The end result is that you can browse the web much more privately without your personal information falling into the wrong hands.
This is a valuable service, so it should come as no surprise that it isn’t free.
For the basic monthly package, Mozilla charges $9.99 a month for its VPN. This is significantly more than its partner Mullvad charges for their service, but you can get it cheaper if you choose one of the bigger packages.
Like most VPNs, Mozilla lowers the price if you buy more months at a time. The 6-month offer comes in at $7.99 a month, while the full-year package adds up to only $4.99 a month.
This final offer is actually cheaper than Mullvad, but it will require you to make an upfront payment for the whole year of $59.88. This isn’t recommended for new customers who may want to pay for a single month first just to ensure the VPN is compatible with all their favorite websites.
How Private Is It?
VPN’s protect your data by relocating it to a remote server, often one in another country. They also encrypt all the data that passes through them, which means they translate it into a random string of nonsense code that is incredibly hard to decipher back into its original form.
This means that even if a hacker or other third party did get hold of your data, they wouldn’t be able to make any sense of it.
Unlike Mullvad, which uses a unique system for making an account that doesn’t require any personal information, Mozilla VPN does work in conjunction with Firefox accounts. This means you will need to give a valid email address, and other standard information in order to sign up.
Your IP address is also collected upon sign-up, but this is because the service is only available in certain countries and Mozilla needs to check your eligibility.
However, this is the case for most VPN services based in the states and the information that Mozilla chooses to retain is scant at best.
Overall their policy and transparency about what data they do and do not collect still demonstrates Mozilla’s characteristic commitment to privacy and internet freedom.
What Features Does It Offer?
Mozzila VPN allows you to have up to 5 different devices connected at once. The caveat to this is that each device needs to be registered and to add a new one you may need to delete one of your other devices if you are over the limit. It also has a range of other features that many people want to see when looking for a VPN.
Mullvad and Mozilla both use the same servers offering a choice of 37 different countries for re-routing your online activity. This isn’t as many as some of the top-tier VPN providers and the choice of countries is very limited.
There is only one option for South America and none at all for Africa. So like its partner, Mozilla doesn’t offer the best global coverage across its 400 available servers.
One of the major uses for VPNs is peer-to-peer (P2P) file-sharing, otherwise known as torrenting. Without one, all of your information would be shared with everyone else torrenting a particular file. Some services don’t facilitate P2P but thankfully Firefox VPN does.
There is also a killswitch built into the service for protecting you if your connection to a server becomes compromised. This means if your connection to the VPN is interrupted, then it will shut down your web browsers to prevent your data from becoming visible.
Since VPNs make it appear that your internet traffic is coming from another country, they are often used to access streaming sites. This means that someone in Britain for instance can access American Netflix for a different selection of content than they would normally get in their region.
Sadly Mozilla VPN won’t reliably work with streaming services like Netflix or BBC Iplayer as these companies often work to block VPN servers as soon as they are discovered.
You still might be able to connect to these sites if you come across a server that hasn’t been blocked yet, but it isn’t a guarantee.
This feature allows you to select which websites go through the VPN and which ones will rely on your regular internet service provider. This helps lower bandwidth consumption which will make your VPN considerably faster by removing unnecessary traffic that doesn’t need to be encrypted.
Multi-hop is when a VPN encrypts your data more than once and bounces your IP between more than one location for extra security. Mozilla has recently added this function to their service which. While it does take up more bandwidth, multi-hop is great for those instances when you want even more protection online.
Due to the way they work, VPNs will often reduce your internet speed when uploading and downloading, as well as increase latency. Mozilla does quite well in this respect, and only reduces upload and download speeds by roughly 25%.
Latency is a bit more of a problem and Firefox VPN has the potential to increase it by up to 57%. So overall Mullvad offers less latency, but much slower upload speeds than its new partner Mozilla.
Overall Mozilla VPN is a solid service that provides all the standard features and a few more. While it doesn’t excel above the competition in any area, it is a bit cheaper than the industry leaders like Nord and ExpressVPN.
You may be wondering why you shouldn’t just download Mullvad instead, seeing as it is cheaper, more private, and offers all the same servers. The main difference between Mozilla and their Swedish partner is that the firefox VPN is far more accessible for beginners and easier to use.
Furthermore, if you like firefox and want to support a non-profit company fighting for online freedom, then this is a great way to do so.
- Offers split tunneling and multi-hop.
- Can be used for P2P file sharing.
- Minimal reduction in upload and download speeds.
- Powered by Mullvad, a company dedicated to online privacy.
- Wireguard encryption for full security with faster speed.
- Easy to use.
- More expensive than Mullvad unless you pay for a whole year upfront.
- Can’t reliably access Netflix and other streaming services.
- Limited number of servers compared to the competition.
Frequently Asked Questions
What devices is Mozilla VPN compatible with?
Mozilla’s VPN will work with nearly all modern operating systems, including Windows 10/11 (64bit only), Mac OS 10.14, Android 8, IOS 12, and Linux Ubuntu 18.04.
All systems are listed with the minimum version update required to run Firefox VPN, but it will also work with all the more recent iterations as well.
Is a VPN enough to protect my online activity?
Downloading a VPN is a great first step towards improving your privacy and security while browsing online. That’s said they aren’t perfect and it can help to have other protection measures in place should your VPN unexpectedly fail.
Password managers will help you to come up with unique passwords that are significantly more difficult for hackers to discover.
You should write all your passwords in a small book or on a piece of paper rather than storing them on your computer, as this offers even less opportunity for third parties to crack them.
It is also a good idea to have independent anti-virus software installed for protection against harmful files or programs that you may encounter while browsing.