Telstra is one of Australia’s biggest telecommunications company, operating with voice, mobile, internet access, subscription television, and more. With the country’s recent changes to internet log policy, the company’s market position has been unstable for the last decade. Affected by numerous management changes, the quality of the service has been questioned by customers and experts alike. Telstra’s own downfalls, such as the 2016 network outages, have contributed to a tainted reputation. Telstra has a history of blocking and throttling services and websites, too, though it has its own official stance on these matters. Thankfully there are ways that Telstra customers can avoid being throttled by the ISP.
Throttling and Blocking
Although no official confirmation has been given by the company, several customers have accused it of throttling their connections. Numerous reports on community forums allege that Telstra specifically slows P2P connections. While denying this accusation, the company also explains that if customers exceed their monthly data allowance or if they fail to pay for their plan, then their connection speed will be reduced. The telecom giant has previously admitted that some customers were sold plans for speeds they wouldn’t be able to attain. This controversial practice has led the ACCC (Australian Competition and Consumer Commission) to threaten to take Telstra and some of its competitors to court.
Despite not officially throttling users’ connections, Telstra has at least contemplated doing just that. Back in 2013, the company trialed peer-to-peer throttling as an attempt to manage congestion issues. The trial was done in Victoria and targeted over 100 customers. The latest controversy around throttling and blocking websites occurred in March 2019, when Telstra blocked access to websites like 4chan, 8chan, Zero Hedge, and Liveleak following the Christchurch mosque shootings. Given all this information, it is clear that although the telecom provider claims it does not mess with its customers’ connections, downloads, or P2P speeds, all the signs point to the opposite and there may even be more than meets the eye.
Best VPN Services for Telstra of 2019
|Editor's Choice 2019|
Using a VPN With Telstra
When using a VPN, the real IP address will be switched and replaced with a fake one in another location. If content is blocked on a Wi-Fi network, for example, a VPN program will try to bypass the network’s firewall and therefore make it available. The connection will be encrypted and online browsing will be secure.
However, ISPs can still see that users are browsing and even though they can’t determine what is being seen, they are still able to throttle the connection. Think of this: if an internet provider can see that a lot of connection requests are happening before a download starts, as is normal in torrenting, then it may be able to guess the activities that the customer is doing online and, based on that, decrease the download speed. With this in mind, there are a lot of VPN services that have specific P2P servers available.
When connecting to a VPN service, it is also important to test for DNS leaks. If there is a leak, then your ISP will be able to detect and monitor your online activity and throttle the connection. There are three reasons why companies would have interest in doing this. First, to manage congestion issues; second, to sell a supposedly better and faster internet package to that same client; and third, to sell personal information to third parties.
Recommended VPN Services
When it comes to choosing a VPN service, it’s extremely important to pick one that gives you maximum protection so that it’s possible to overcome Telstra’s uncertain ways. It is recommended that the chosen VPN provider has strong encryption and protocols, and if P2P sharing or streaming is important then having servers specifically optimized for this is also ideal.
As one of the most compelling VPN services available, CyberGhost has everything you might need to overcome Telstra’s issues. This software comes with untraceable servers and special security settings, and as an added bonus will allow you to connect up to seven devices simultaneously. There are several servers optimized for streaming and torrenting, and thanks to its ease of use it can be used by even the newest VPN user. And even though the free trial is only one-day long, users can opt to buy a short-term license and try the program risk-free given that there’s a 45-day money-back guarantee in place with this VPN provider.
Thanks to its well-thought out features, IPVanish is one of the top VPN providers. It is clear that the company behind the software takes privacy very seriously, too. The company actually owns all the available servers, so connection speeds will not be a problem when using IPVanish. It also provides a feature to test for DNS leaks and a kill switch option so that navigating online can be trustworthy and safe. Even though there’s no free version or trial available, users can subscribe a paid version and benefit from the company’s seven-day money-back guarantee.
AVG Secure VPN
Since 2016 when Avast bought out the company, AVG Secure VPN has been one of the many security solutions available from the internet security giant and has years of experience in protecting internet users. The software has 56 servers all over the world and uses bank-grade encryption to provide the best anonymous browsing experience. Additional network connections for P2P and streaming are available, designed to further increase their customers’ privacy. Users have access to a seven-day free trial without having to sign up for a subscription. After that they can pick one of the available options and, since the company has a 30-day money-back guarantee, AVG Secure VPN can be experienced for an even longer period.