QAL VPN review. When even quantum computers are not afraid
The current encryption algorithms that are used in popular applications are sufficiently protected from brute force cracking. However, quantum computers can easily cope with this task.
For example, quantum computers can use the Shor algorithm to crack RSA and Diffie-Hellman, which are now widely used to protect data on the network. To protect against such a hack, the use of quantum-resistant encryption algorithms is required, which are based on other principles and cannot be hacked using the Shor algorithm. Some of these algorithms have already been developed, but their application in practice is not yet widespread. Although…
What is the feature of QAL VPN
QAL VPN is the first and perhaps the only VPN service that uses quantum-resistant encryption algorithms.
Under the hood, all this works on the already well-known OpenVPN. And on top of it all sprinkled with post-quantum cryptography (PQC). PQC is based on mathematical problems that are difficult for classical and quantum computers, making them safe.
QAL was created by Dylan J. Dance, who dropped out of physics graduate school to pursue the development of quantum-resistant cryptography. His background is a Bachelor's degree in Physics (with a minor in Mathematics) from the University of Swinburne.
The co-founders of QAL are Sachit Adhikari and Sunil Songman. Sachita has a bachelor's degree in information technology and software engineering from London Metropolitan University. Sunil is an expert in cybersecurity. He also has a bachelor's degree in information technology and software engineering from London Metropolitan University, and experience in the team that won the GCSS 2018 hackathon competition.
Unfortunately, the developers do not provide any other proofs that QAL is really resistant to the Shor algorithm. And you can't check it yourself. Therefore, let's imagine that this is all true, and go directly to the review.
Installation and setup
The QAL VPN distribution is available for Windows, macOS, and Linux. Installation is no different from any other application, and at the end you will find a completely familiar interface.
The settings button at the bottom is a pure snag. When you try to go to the settings, you will be asked to log in to the service. If you don't have an account, you can easily create one. Despite the free seven-day trial, it will not be possible to activate it without linking your card. And there are no more settings in the application.
About 10 servers around the world are available for connection. Russia is not among them. But you can add your server. In this case, the application will ask you to give it the OpenVPN config file. You can also automatically connect to the fastest server.
When you select a preinstalled server, you will be asked to log in again, this time in the application itself. In my case, the connection took about a minute.
After that, the application displays brief information about the server, uptime, and traffic. And also proudly flaunts an inscription about active post-quantum encryption algorithms.
To access the network, I use a Yota router, that is, in fact, I'm sitting through 4G. This is the speed the router gives out without VPN:
And here is one with a VPN from servers in California, USA:
With the connection to the custom server, there were some difficulties with authorization, but eventually, I was able to successfully stick to it. At the same time, PQC remained active.
On the other hand, with this approach, you can easily raise your VPN and access it with PQC encryption.
As I wrote above, there are seven days of QAL VPN free trial. In addition, there is a 30-day money-back guarantee. But you will have to link your card right away.
The cost is $10 per month or $46 per year. There are no restrictions on the type of traffic or the number of devices on the site.
As a VPN service exactly, QAL VPN is no better than your regular service. Probably even worse, because of fewer servers, settings (like Kill Switch), traffic sharing and all that. We are not even talking about the absence of logs.
The only reason to use QAL VPN is if you believe that it really has post-quantum encryption, and for some reason this is important to you. Other than that, you can continue to use your current VPN provider.
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