Many recent cybersecurity surveys show that online users are well aware that the internet is full of threats. This is good news – but the bad news is that most of the people still believe that computer viruses are the main online threat. Identity theft and phishing now top the list of online threats with viruses lagging far behind in severity.
Using a public wifi without utilizing protection by a VPN puts you at risk of someone stealing your online identity or tricking you into a phishing scam scheme. Mobile online browsing is witnessing steady growth in vulnerabilities, while internet usage on mobile is already exceeding desktop usage.
Sadly, many people do not understand that their online safety starts at the browser level and having an antivirus program does not protect them against the most severe online threats. These threats include phishing, identity theft, financial fraud or fraudulent browser extensions that use your browser to mine for cryptocurrencies.
And while developers of popular browsers such as Firefox, Chrome, Edge or Opera do try to patch their software on a regular basis, browsing the Internet without a firewall and VPN is becoming increasingly dangerous.
This article aims to explain why using a VPN is always a good move when your online security and privacy are concerned. We’ll be looking at which is the best VPN for Opera, a browser that makes it to the top five and which enjoys great popularity on mobile devices.
Opera browser vulnerabilities explained
Let’s start by saying that Opera is considered a relatively safe browser. On the other hand, there are security and privacy concerns related to the closed nature of the browser’s source code. This means you can only guess how the browser behaves, what personal info the app is collecting, and how it addresses known cyber threats.
It is worth mentioning that the Opera browser did not participate in the Pwn2Own competition in 2017 and 2018. Pwn2Own is a cyber-security event where hackers demonstrate working exploits for different applications.
Last year, hackers were able to take down all the peer Opera browsers such as Firefox, Safari and Microsoft’s Edge. Hacks for Google’s Chrome were also demonstrated but Opera is noticeably missing from these hacking contests, which in turn raises a question or two about the browser’s security features.
Opera is the only browser that boasts a free and built-in VPN functionality
To be honest, Opera is the only browser that boasts a free and built-in VPN functionality. Nevertheless, there are a few possible issues with this Opera VPN feature as well.
Their built-in VPN protects only activities inside the browser, leaving all email actions, torrents and other apps largely unprotected. Users can choose between VPN locations that include only whole regions such as “Europe,” “Asia” and “Americas,” which greatly limits your abilities to unblock censored or restricted websites and content.
Actually, their VPN for Opera browsers is just a relatively secure yet basic proxy service. A full-fledged VPN encrypts all the data you transfer in and out, which is not the case with the Opera VPN.
This is not good news for any Opera user as the company’s VPN servers are located in Canada, USA, China and Norway. What this means is that your data will go through servers in countries that are well known for monitoring online data traffic and for their online surveillance practices.
Opera says they are checking webpage visit request against a database of known phishing and malware websites
Also, Opera says they are checking webpage visit request against a database of known phishing and malware websites, but at the same time, no one knows from where they exactly route your traffic. Furthermore, Opera now supports only a basic browser, called Opera Touch, for Android and iOS devices that does not support a VPN feature.
That said, you definitely need a fully-functioning VPN service if you are to protect your privacy and spot security threats in advance. But what VPN features should you look for?
Features you should look for in the best VPN for Opera
Once you decide to opt for better security and privacy with Opera, your first major choice is whether you are going to use a free or paid VPN. Although many free VPNs are on the market, most of them offer limited options and features when compared to paid VPN services.
In any case, any best VPN for Opera should have at least the following:
- numerous servers located all over the world
- secure encryption
- secure tunneling protocols
- no limits regarding connection speed and bandwidth
- OpenVPN compatibility
- user-friendly interface, easy installation and configuration
- incorporation in a location with relaxed data retention legislation
- policies to not share your data with third-parties
- a strict no-logs policy
- availability on Windows, MacOS, Linux, Android and iOS
- 24/7 support
- a free trial version and money back guarantee
In fact, a good number of reliable VPN service providers meet all or almost all of the above requirements. Nonetheless, a privacy-conscious user would ask for all of the requirements to be met by a VPN app in order to be considered the best VPN for Opera.
Privacy-conscious user would ask for all of the requirements to be met by a VPN app in order to be considered the best VPN for Opera
So, we have tested and examined numerous VPN services to offer you a list of those which meet all or almost all of the above criteria for a reliable VPN for the Opera browser.
Our list also does not include VPNs that are located in the so-called “14 Eyes” countries and territories. These are countries that participate in international surveillance alliances, which for their part collaborate on collecting and sharing mass surveillance data.
The 14 Eyes countries include Australia, Canada, New Zealand, United Kingdom, United States, Denmark, France, Netherlands, Norway, Germany, Belgium, Italy, Sweden and Spain.
What are the best paid VPNs for Opera?
This is a well-known name in the VPN industry, boasting over 5,000 servers all over the world. They offer unlimited speed and bandwidth and allow for multiple VPN connections on up to 6 devices running simultaneously. Thus, you can protect all your home and mobile devices at once.
Their SmartPlay feature enables you to unblock streaming services, and they also have a kill switch function that blocks unsecure internet access in case your VPN connection drops. They apply a no-logs policy as they are located outside the 14 Eyes in Panama, where no data retention requirements are in force.
NordVPN’s connection uses AES-256 encryption and IKEv2/IPsec protocol that should be secure enough even for advanced users. Furthermore, they have a feature called Double VPN, which encrypts your online traffic twice.
NordVPN maintains a live chat for contacting their support issues. Their VPN app is available for all desktop and mobile operating systems.
With prices starting at $2.99 a month for a three-year contract, free trial and a 30-day money back guarantee, NordVPN is an option you should definitely put on your list of best VPNs for Opera.
Read our full NordVPN review
CyberGhost is widely known for their affordability, but at the same time they meet most of the criteria for the best VPN for Opera.
They operate over 3,000 servers in 59 countries all over the globe while you can have simultaneous connections on up to 7 devices under a single account. You will enjoy unlimited traffic and bandwidth using 256-bit AES Encryption.
An automatic kill switch is available as well as DNS and IP Leak Protection. They claim to apply a strict no-logs policy while providing support for the OpenVPN protocol.
CyberGhost’s app is available for Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Linux and routers while users may ask technical questions through a live chat support option.
The prices start at $2.5 a month for a three-year contract, which makes this service the cheapest VPN for Opera by a reputable VPN service provider. The money back guarantee extends to an impressive 45 days.
Read our full Cyberghost review
On the VPN market since 1994, VyprVPN owns and operates more than 700 servers in over 70 locations across the world. You have no limits on your connection speed and no caps on downloads on their secure VPN connection.
They support OpenVPN and also offer a proprietary VPN technology called Chameleon that helps you avoid blocking your VPN by state agencies or any other third party. A firewall provides an extra layer of security.
A no-logs policy is in place and their app is available for Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, TVs and routers. Their plans start from $3.75 a month. Support is available 24/7 via live chat.
Read our full VyprVPN review
ExpressVPN is another established player on the global market for VPN services. Their more than 2,000 servers are placed in nearly 150 locations all over the world. They apply no restrictions on your VPN connection speed and downloads.
Their VPN app is available for Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Linux and routers. Their no-logs policy is in force and the company is located in the British Virgin Islands where no data retention legislation is in place.
Their annual plan is on offer for $8.32 a month with a 30-day money back guarantee. Support is available 24/7 via live chat and email.
Read our full review here: ExpressVPN Review
Perfect Privacy has been developing their VPN service since 2008, and they are one of the services you should consider as the best VPN for Opera in terms of security and privacy protection options. This is more suitable for power users, but the average Opera user would also benefit from their extended VPN functionality after spending some time playing with their software.
They offer an unlimited number of simultaneous encrypted connections using OpenVPN (AES 256 bit) and IPSec security protocols and provide you with up to 1,000 Mbps bandwidth.
Perfect Privacy’s routing feature called NeuroRouting uses an AI algorithm for best results and their TrackStop feature protects you against phishing attacks and unwanted ads.
Perfect Privacy has even more advanced security features such as configurable port forwarding, cascading of multiple VPN servers, SSH and proxies.
All this comes at a price, though, with their subscription starting at about $8.95 a month for a 2-year contract. They offer a 7-day money back guarantee.
Read our full Perfect Privacy VPN review
What about Opera VPN?
It would make sense to include Opera VPN as one of the best VPNs for the Opera browser, right?
Well, not exactly. And that’s for one big reason:
Opera VPN isn’t really a VPN at all. It’s a proxy.
It’s a proxy service with nice AES-256 encryption, that’s true, but it’s a proxy service nonetheless. Even worse, it uses the very unimpressive SurfEasy VPN (which it bought back in 2015) servers, which is bad because of its terrible performance. Opera VPN only works for Windows, MacOS and Linux, as it doesn’t support iOS and Android versions. Beyond that, Opera VPN only encrypts traffic on your Opera browser, leaving the rest of your traffic unencrypted and your IP exposed.
For those reason, we can’t really recommend it at all.
Free VPNs for Opera
We strongly recommend you avoid using free VPN services with your Opera browser. Most free VPNs are financing their business activities by servicing ads to you or by selling your personal data to third parties.
We strongly recommend you avoid using free VPN services with your Opera browser
Nonetheless, if you are willing to exchange some privacy for a free VPN service, you can explore a number of free services that are not known for sharing excessive personal details or selling data about you and your browsing habits in bulk.
Windscribe is a viable free VPN for Opera that offers 10GB of monthly data and access to video streaming services such as Netflix. You can also use all of their tools, but unlimited data is available only with paid plans that start at $4.08 a month with an annual plan.
Another free VPN for Opera you might consider is the Swiss-based ProtonVPN that’s also known for their encrypted ProtonMail email service. They offer you servers in three countries, on one device and with low speeds for free. If you want to unlock all ProtonVPN servers with high speed on 2 devices, you need to switch to a paid plan that costs $4 a month, paid yearly.
Check also Hide.Me, which is located in Malaysia where legislation does not ask for storing any user logs. The free version allows for 2 GB of data a month at 3 Mbps download rates. You have access to 3 server locations and one connection at a time. Their paid plans start from $4.99 a month for 75 GB of data transfer.
Whatever VPN service you choose, you should take your time to explore their specific features and terms in more detail. Some Opera VPNs are more suitable for streaming video while others offer extended capabilities to avoid censorship.
You definitely should use a firewall and a reliable antivirus, but one of the best VPNs for Opera will add an extra layer of protection and privacy
You definitely should use a firewall and a reliable antivirus, but one of the best VPNs for Opera will add an extra layer of protection and privacy, especially for users that browse a lot. Also, always bear in mind that the cybersecurity conversation is less about viruses now but about threats targeting your personal data and online identity.
A reliable VPN offers the means to protect yourself against rising cyber threats such as identity theft, financial fraud and phishing while enabling you to unblock certain online services.