"If people knew how the Internet truly works, I believe they all would use a VPN," says Krystian Kolondra, SVP of Opera browser for computers. "By making our browser VPN free and easy to use, we hope to make it an essential tool, just as the lock and key is to your house."
When turned on, Opera's VPN creates a secure connection to one of Opera's five server locations around the world. The VPN lets people choose where to appear on the Internet, giving their online privacy and security a boost while making content easier to access.
People can also let the Opera browser intelligently select the optimal server location based on factors such as network speed, latency, location and server capacity. When in automatic location mode, browsing through the VPN is always at the maximum available speed.
The VPN feature - powered by Opera subsidiary SurfEasy - utilises a secure 256-bit AES encrypted connection to the VPN virtual locations and is a no-log service, which means neither Opera nor SurfEasy will store any information about a user's browsing history.
"We know that people are concerned about their privacy online and that the interest for VPN is increasing," Kolondra said. "However, two major obstacles are blocking people from using it: VPNs are too complicated to use, and they require a monthly subscription. Opera resolves both issues by introducing its free and easy-to-use service right into the browser."
Watch the video introducing the VPN feature in the Opera browser
The VPN feature can be enabled by going to Settings or Preferences in the software, then toggling the 'Privacy & Security' option on. An icon labeled "VPN" will appear in the browser to the left of the address field, from which users can activate the VPN and choose their preferred location. Download the Opera browser