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Mullvad VPN
Desktop client
DeveloperMullvad VPN AB[1]
TypeVirtual private network
Launch dateMarch 2009; 14 years ago (2009-03)
Platform(s)Android, iOS, Linux, macOS, Windows (official app) Edit this at Wikidata

Mullvad is a commercial VPN service based in Sweden. Launched in March 2009, Mullvad operates using the WireGuard and OpenVPN protocols. It also supports ShadowSocks as a bridge protocol for censorship circumvention.


Mullvad was launched in March 2009 by Amagicom AB.[2] Its name is Swedish for mole.

Mullvad began supporting connections via the OpenVPN protocol in 2009.[3] Mullvad was an early adopter and supporter of the WireGuard protocol, announcing the availability of the new VPN protocol in March 2017[4] and making a "generous donation" supporting WireGuard development between July and December 2017.[5]

In September 2018, the cybersecurity firm Cure53 performed a penetration test on Mullvad's macOS, Windows and Linux applications.[6] Seven issues were found which were addressed by Mullvad.[7] Cure53 tested only the applications and supporting functions. No assessment was made on the Mullvad server side and back end. [6]

In October 2019, Mullvad partnered with Mozilla.[8] Mozilla's VPN service, Mozilla VPN, utilizes Mullvad's WireGuard servers.[9][10]

In April 2020, Mullvad partnered with Malwarebytes and provided WireGuard servers for their VPN service, Malwarebytes Privacy.[11]

In May 2022, Mullvad started officially accepting Monero.[12]

On 18 April 2023, Mullvad's head office in Gothenburg was visited by officers from the National Operations Department of the Swedish Police, who had a search warrant to seize computers containing customer data. Mullvad demonstrated that, in accordance with their policies, no such data existed on their systems. After consulting with the prosecutor, the officers left without seizing any equipment or obtaining customer information. Mullvad shared this information in a blog post two days later making the incident public knowledge and mentioning this was the first time their offices had been visited with a search warrant.[13] In a letter sent to Mullvad 9 days after the search the Swedish Police stated they conducted the search at the request of Germany for an ongoing investigation. The investigation involved a blackmail attack that hit several institutions in the state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania which uncovered IP addresses that led back to the Mullvad VPN service.[14]

On 29 May 2023 Mullvad announced that they would be removing support for port forwarding, effective on 1 July 2023. This was done due to malicious use from users leading to law enforcement involvement, Mullvad IP addresses getting blacklisted, and hosting providers cancelling their services.[15]


A TechRadar review noted 2019 that "Mullvad's core service is powerful, up-to-date, and absolutely stuffed with high-end technologies."[16] Complementing its use of the open-source OpenVPN and WireGuard protocols, Mullvad includes "industrial strength" encryption (employing AES-256 GCM methodology), 4096-bit RSA certificates with SHA-512 for server authentication, perfect forward secrecy, "multiple layers" of DNS leak protection, IPv6 leak protection, "multiple stealth options" to help bypass government or corporate VPN blocking, and built-in support for port forwarding.[16]

Mullvad provides VPN client applications for computers running under Windows, macOS and Linux operating systems. As of April 2020, native iOS and Android Mullvad VPN clients using the WireGuard protocol are available. iOS and Android mobile operating system users can also configure and use built-in VPN clients or the OpenVPN or WireGuard apps to access Mullvad's service.[17]


No email address or other identifying information is requested during Mullvad's registration process. Rather, a unique 16-digit account number is anonymously generated for each new user. This account number is henceforth used to log in to the Mullvad service.[18]

To help ensure the privacy of its users, Mullvad accepts the anonymous payment methods of cash, Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash and Monero. (Payment for the service can also be made via bank wire transfer, credit card, PayPal, and Swish).[16][19] In June 2022, the service announced that it will no longer offer new recurring subscriptions, as this would further reduce the amount of personal information that will have to be stored.[20]

Mullvad's no-logging policy precludes logging of VPN users' IP addresses, the VPN IP address used, browsing activity, bandwidth, connections, session duration, timestamps, and DNS requests.[16][18]

Mullvad has been actively campaigning against the EU's Regulation to Prevent and Combat Child Sexual Abuse, which would require service providers to scan all users' online communications, even encrypted services.[21][22]


While Mullvad has been noted for taking a strong approach to privacy and maintaining good connection speeds, the VPN client setup and interface has been noted as being more onerous and technically involved than some other VPN providers especially on some client platforms.[23] However, a follow-up review by the same source in October 2018 notes, "Mullvad has a much improved, modern Windows client (and one for Mac, too)." A PC World review, also from October 2018, concludes, "With its commitment to privacy, anonymity (as close as you can realistically get online), and performance Mullvad remains our top recommendation for a VPN service."[17]

In November 2018, TechRadar noted Mullvad as one of five VPN providers to answer to a set of trustworthiness questions posed by the Center for Democracy and Technology.[24][25] In March 2019, a TechRadar review noted slightly substandard speeds.[19] However, a more recent and more thorough TechRadar review dated June 11, 2019 stated that "speeds are excellent."[16] While the latter review notes a shortcoming for mobile users in that Mullvad provided no mobile VPN client apps.[16] There is now a mobile app for both Android and iOS available.

The non-profit Freedom of the Press Foundation, in their "Choosing a VPN" guide, lists Mullvad amongst the five VPNs that meet their recommended settings and features for VPN use as a tool for protecting online activity.[26]


On April 3, 2023, the Mullvad browser was released, built by the Tor Project team and distributed by Mullvad. It has similar safety levels as the Tor Browser, but works independently of the Tor network and is meant to be used with a VPN service instead.[27] The Mullvad browser has been designed to minimize the threat of tracking and fingerprinting.[28][29]

Search Engine[edit]

On 20 June 2023 Mullvad announced their search engine Mullvad Leta. Mullvad Leta uses the Google Search API as a proxy and caches each search. The service is only accessible to paid Mullvad VPN accounts.[30] When a user searches something the service first checks if it has a cache of the search, which can be up to 30 days old, before making a call to the Google search API.[31]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Doing the corporate shuffle (Updated)". Mullvad VPN. 3 February 2020. Retrieved 5 February 2020.
  2. ^ "What is privacy?". Mullvad VPN. Archived from the original on 6 December 2019. Retrieved 7 December 2019.
  3. ^ "Services". Archived from the original on 25 September 2009.
  4. ^ "Test WireGuard with Mullvad". Mullvad. 27 June 2019. Retrieved 27 June 2019.
  5. ^ "Donations". Silver company donors. Archived from the original on 24 June 2019. Retrieved 24 June 2019.
  6. ^ a b
  7. ^ "Read results of security audit on Mullvad app - Blog". Mullvad VPN.
  8. ^ "Partnerships and Resellers". Mullvad. Archived from the original on 4 December 2019.
  9. ^ "We test Mozilla's new Wireguard-based $5/mo VPN service". Ars Technica. 22 July 2020. Retrieved 18 December 2021.
  10. ^ "Firefox Private Network". Mozilla Foundation. Archived from the original on 4 December 2019.
  11. ^ Labs, Malwarebytes (23 April 2020). "Introducing Malwarebytes Privacy". Malwarebytes Labs. Retrieved 29 September 2020.
  12. ^ "We now accept Monero - Blog". Mullvad VPN. Retrieved 5 May 2022.
  13. ^ "Mullvad VPN was subject to a search warrant. Customer data not compromised". Mullvad VPN. 20 April 2023. Archived from the original on 17 June 2023.
  14. ^ "Update: The Swedish authorities answered our protocol request". Mullvad VPN. 2 May 2023. Archived from the original on 26 June 2023. Retrieved 29 June 2023.
  15. ^ "Removing the support for forwarded ports". Mullvad VPN. 29 May 2023. Archived from the original on 23 June 2023. Retrieved 29 June 2023.
  16. ^ a b c d e f Utilities, Mike Williams 2019-06-11T18:58:52Z. "Mullvad VPN review". Archived from the original on 13 June 2019. Retrieved 7 December 2019.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  17. ^ a b "Mullvad 2018 review: A fantastic VPN has a great new look". PC World. 17 October 2018. Archived from the original on 9 December 2019. Retrieved 9 December 2019.
  18. ^ a b "Mullvad review: A VPN that's all about privacy". 28 August 2019. Archived from the original on 14 September 2019. Retrieved 14 December 2019.
  19. ^ a b Athow, Desire (19 March 2019). "The best Linux VPN 2019". Archived from the original on 27 June 2019. Retrieved 27 June 2019.
  20. ^ Castro, Chiara (22 June 2022). "Mullvad VPN axes recurring subscriptions in the name of privacy". Retrieved 22 June 2022.
  21. ^ Nasi, Michele (7 March 2023). "Scansione delle chat degli utenti: l'Europa potrebbe spiare i contenuti personali". (in Italian). Retrieved 10 March 2023.
  22. ^ Claburn, Thomas. "German Digital Committee heaps scorn on Chat Control". The Register. Retrieved 20 April 2023.
  23. ^ Paul, Ian (19 June 2017). "Mullvad review: The VPN that doesn't want to get to know you". PC World. Archived from the original on 22 December 2017.
  24. ^ Li, Harold. "Use this checklist to find a VPN you can trust". Archived from the original on 3 November 2018. Retrieved 27 June 2019.
  25. ^ "Unedited Answers: Signals of Trustworthy VPNs". Center for Democracy and Technology. 7 March 2019. Archived from the original on 18 April 2019. Retrieved 27 June 2019.
  26. ^ "An in-depth guide to choosing a VPN". 15 February 2022. Retrieved 11 April 2023.
  27. ^ "We've Teamed Up With Mullvad VPN to Launch the Mullvad Browser". The Tor Project. 3 April 2023. Retrieved 6 April 2023.
  28. ^ Rudra, Sourav (4 April 2023). "Mullvad VPN and Tor Project Unite to Create a New Browser That Puts Privacy First". It's FOSS. Retrieved 6 April 2023.
  29. ^ Clark, Mitchell (3 April 2023). "The Mullvad browser protects privacy using standard VPNs". The Verge. Retrieved 6 April 2023.
  30. ^ "Introducing Mullvad Leta: a search engine used in the Mullvad Browser". Mullvad VPN. 20 June 2023. Archived from the original on 29 June 2023. Retrieved 29 June 2023.
  31. ^ "Mullvad Leta FAQ". Mullvad Leta. Archived from the original on 26 June 2023. Retrieved 29 June 2023.

External links[edit]