Hotspot Shield Elite

Maintain your privacy on a VPN when using public WiFi

7.4

2130 Votes

  • Category Network security
  • License Full version
  • Version v5.2.1
  • Size 13.43 MB
  • Works under Windows 8.1 / Windows 8 / Windows 7 / Windows Vista / Windows XP
  • Language English
  • Program by Anchorfree, Inc.

Hotspot Shield Elite creates a virtual private network or VPN that lets you access restricted websites from your computer.

Companies like Netflix and Hulu let you watch all your favorite television shows and films after you pay a monthly subscription fee. While those sites feature thousands of videos, the content that you can watch depends on where you live. “Scream,” the hit MTV show based off the film franchise of the same name, only arrived on American Netflix months after the current season aired and months after Canadian customers gained access to that show. The licensing deals that those companies have with production companies determines what videos are available in specific areas.

Other websites will restrict your access based on the IP address of your computer, which provides digital information about where you live. Hotspot Shield Elite creates a VPN that it assigns to your computer. When the program runs, it will then link your computer to an internet gateway that makes it look like you are in a completely different city, state, or even country. You can connect and disconnect with just a few mouse clicks.

The way this program works is pretty simple too. Once you create an account and sign into your account, it will show you that your computer is protected. The program also shows you the amount of secured data entering and leaving your computer. Other buttons let you pause the program to access other sites, and a drop down menu helps you easily change your current location. Though there is a paid version available, you can also try a free version. Paid users will see a notification each time they open the program that tells them when their subscription runs out.

The latest version of Hotspot Shield Elite also comes with protection against malware and viruses. If you attempt to load a website that features any type of malware, the program will automatically keep you from loading that page. It will then give you some basic information about why that site is dangerous and let you decide whether to proceed.

Free users will find that the program tends to crash and comes with a banner ad across the top that can get in their way. There is also a risk that the program will slow down your browser speed. If you want access to the best features, you need the full paid version of Hotspot Shield Elite.

Pros:

  • Creates a VPN that lets you access restricted websites
  • Works with popular free and paid sites
  • Comes with a free version that lets you try out the program
  • Lets you surf the web anonymously
  • Gives you full access to shows and films protected in your current area

Cons:

  • Free version comes with an annoying banner ad
  • Free version suffers from frequent crashes
  • Will slow down your web speed
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