Antivirus and anti-malware software maker Malwarebytes has thrown its hat into the VPN ring, announcing the launch of Malwarebytes Privacy (opens in new tab) today (April 23).
Malwarebytes Privacy is available only for Windows (7 and up) for the moment, with Mac, Android, iOS and possibly Chrome OS versions to come "soon."
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Yearly subscriptions cost $59.99, and bundles with Malwarebytes Premium antivirus software cost $89.99 for a "limited time." Both packages will cover up to five devices.
Malwarebytes told us that Privacy will have more than 180 virtual servers in 30 countries, letting customers appear as though they are in those locations. It swears that Privacy won't keep user logs.
Right out of the gate with WireGuard
Most significantly, Malwarebytes Privacy uses a "newer and faster VPN protocol," according to its website. We've confirmed with Malwarebytes that that protocol is WireGuard.
That suddenly changes the game. WireGuard, which is lighter and faster than the OpenVPN and IKEv2/IPsec protocols in wide use, is only now being rolled out by major VPN services to their users. NordVPN added WireGuard (opens in new tab) yesterday (April 22), and Mullvad added WireGuard to its iOS app just last week.
Rival antivirus firms Avast, Bitdefender, Kaspersky, McAfee and Norton already offer VPN services, some having done so for many years. But to our knowledge, none of them offer WireGuard.
The current industry trend is to add non-antivirus features, such as backup software, cloud storage, identity theft protection and password managers, to antivirus suites in an attempt to present customers with fully comprehensive security packages.
Along those lines, Malwarebytes says that its VPN service is "the first offering in an emerging suite of privacy products," so we can probably expect more non-malware-related products from the company in the near future.