Free VPN with Microsoft Edge, learn how to activate it

According to a Microsoft support page, the company is adding a free built-in virtual private network (VPN) service to its Edge browser in order to boost security and privacy.

Microsoft is presently testing the Cloudflare-powered VPN service, dubbed “Edge Secure Network,” and says it will roll it out to the public as part of a security upgrade.

When enabled, Edge Secure Network should encrypt users’ online traffic so that internet service providers are unable to acquire browsing data that you’d prefer to keep private, such as health-related searches or simply weird questions.

Users will be able to mask their location by browsing the web using a fake IP address, according to the new capability. This also means that users will be able to access content that is restricted in their countries, such as Netflix or Hulu programmes.

However, there is a catch to this free service. Users must enrol up to a Microsoft account in order for the corporation to track their consumption, which unfortunately is restricted to 1GB per month.

While Cloudflare will collect support and diagnostic data from the service, Microsoft says that the data will be fully deleted every 25 hours.

While the functionality is still under development and not yet accessible for early testing, Microsoft has provided instructions on how people can get a sneak peek. This means that it will first be released to one of the Microsoft Edge Insider channels, which users may join and download here.

When it does, open Edge, go to Settings and More and then click on Secure Network to try out the preview version.

Users will be requested to sign in or create a Microsoft Account at that point. A solid shield icon will display in the browser frame after this, indicating that Microsoft’s Edge Secure Network is now enabled. When the user closes the browser, it will switch off.

Many browsers, including Microsoft’s, provide some form of VPN service. Although Opera has a free VPN, most popular browsers such as Mozilla and Google Chrome only provide a commercial VPN service, potentially increasing Edge’s value proposition.