This is the brief story of how Generous VPN came to be. Generous VPN is a ‘pay what you want’ VPN service that donates 10% to charity. It:
- Prevents governments from spying on your connection
- Prevents hackers from stealing data from your connection
- Unblocks websites blocked by your school/work/country
Kung fu in China was the start of everything
My name is Mentor Palokaj (stalk me on Linkedin), I am the founder of Generous VPN.
After highschool I took a trip to China, to do Kung Fu in the mountains. I’d saved up money working as a gymnastics teacher and cleaner and was very proud to be able to make this trip on my own money.
As a 19 year old preparing for a trip, you can imagine I overlooked many things. One of those things was the Great Firewall of China. Here’s a little preview of things you can’t access on the China mainland:
- Google services like Youtube and Gmail
Being walled off from my favorite services was the spark that led to the creation of Generous VPN many years later.
Over the years I learned how unsecure the internet is
The majority of people is simply not aware how unsecure technology is in general. Some of my favorite ‘shocking facts’:
- Anyone on the same wifi network as you can see most of what you do
- With physical access to your computer, people can access your files (without password)
- Your phone is constantly sharing the names of all networks it has even been connected to, publically
There is literally a device (called the wifi pineapple) that makes stealing private data over Wifi child’s play.
Not only that, but these inherent unsecure aspects are compounded by things we now think of as normal:
- Governments recording online activity of non-criminals
- Hackers becoming more organised and even professional
- Companies, schools and countries blocking websites
Seeing all this I personally simply can’t stand on the sidelines and watch it happen. This resulted in a number of smaller VPN projects, and ultimately now Generous VPN.
Technology to protect yourself is out there, but…
It’s not that you can’t protect yourself, but most tools suffer from one of two issues:
- They are too complicated
- They are too expensive
Through Generous VPN I’m trying to make the technology easy to use by preparing and preconfiguring as much as possible.
On pricing I’m a big believer that if you let people decide on how much they want to pay, they will pay a fair price.
Maybe I have too much faith in humanity
I believe humans are very capable of trust and being fair. But only if they feel trusted and treated fairly. That’s why I decided to use the ‘pay what you want’ pricing model, and to donate consistently to charities.
Generous VPN is currently a crowdfund which you can view here.