+ Thursday June 20th, 2019

It wasn’t that long ago that we were writing about a VPN provider called 4TFY, which promised lifetime VPN access for a one-off fee. Perhaps too good to be true, perhaps something that required some fine print as to what “lifetime” meant, the point is probably moot – 4TFY VPN appears to be no longer.

We received a tip overnight indicating that 4TFY’s website had disappeared, and lo and behold, it has. Not only is the company’s website gone, but we’re told the VPN services purchased by customers no longer work, too.

This is of course disappointing news; when one buys a “lifetime” product, one could reasonably expect that the service might be available for a reasonable amount of time. However, in this commercial reality, we need to bear in mind that a company can only provide services as long as it remains able to pay for the provision of those services.

In the case of 4TFY, selling lots of one-off VPN services may have been a risky idea, because someone’s got to pay ongoing server and traffic costs, and if the money runs out, well those services aren’t going to be provided to 4TFY for free.

We can only speculate, as we don’t know what’s gone on. While the domain name 4tfy.me remains registered, the records for the web server have disappeared, meaning their website cannot be reached. The domain’s email records still exist, suggesting we may be able to get in touch, so we will await comment.

In the meantime, let us know if you’ve subscribed to 4TFY’s VPN services, and let us know if you’ve been in touch with them or heard anything back about what’s going on with the services you’ve paid for.

Update: We’ve not heard back from the last known email addresses we had for 4TFY. We had communication from two people in the past – a “Reed” and “Luke” – though neither email addresses appear to be monitored. We understand “Luke” is Luke Millanta, who was behind the original 4TFY kickstarter campaign.

In a supposed comment given to website VPN Compare, Luke denied any involvement in the business post November 2017 … but that doesn’t explain the draft article he wrote for us as sponsored content which – in the Microsoft Word .docx file – clearly identifies a “Luke Millanta” as the author of the document.

One can only suspect that, given 4TFY’s disappearance, it either (a) went broke due to an unsustainable business model, or (b) was a dodgy scheme from the get go. Just as likely, it could’ve been both.

There’s a warning for all of us in this – those “lifetime” deals are often too good to be true, and should be avoided in favour of reputable providers that have a demonstrated customer commitment.

Chris Rowland   Managing Editor

Chris Rowland

Chris has been at the forefront of smartphone reporting in Australia since smartphones were a thing, and has used mobile phones since they came with giant lead-acid batteries that were "transportable" and were carried in a shoulder bag.

Today, Chris publishes one of Australia's most popular technology websites, Ausdroid. His interests include mobile (of course), as well as connected technology and how it can make all our lives easier.

12
Join the Ausdroid Conversation

avatar
5 Comment threads
7 Thread replies
4 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
5 Comment authors
Chris RowlandLesDarrenyunshi09Derek Huffman Recent comment authors
  Subscribe  
newest oldest most voted
Notify of
Les
Guest
Les

Chris Rowland, you have failed your readers.

Quote: “but that doesn’t explain the draft article he wrote for us as sponsored content

What the? So some of those 4TFY articles were paid advertisements? This is the first time we’ve heard that.

You never labelled those stories clearly as ‘sponsored content’ or ‘advertisement’. Just the opposite. They carried the byline ‘Chris Rowland’ but now it turns out they were written by the scammer himself, using words like “genuine” and “guarantee”.

Darren
Ausdroid Reader
Darren

Don’t be the next Jeni

Les
Guest
Les

Quote “Luke denied any involvement” … [but] “the Microsoft Word .docx file – clearly identifies a “Luke Millanta” as the author of the document.”

There’s your answer as to whether these people are truthful or deliberate deceivers.

Les
Guest
Les

Revealed as a scam. They ran away with everyone’s money.

I’m glad I didn’t join that one. Seemed to good to be true? It was.

yunshi09
Guest
yunshi09

backer 661 here. paid A$ 119 on kickstarter. That “Luke Millanta” played us and disappeared as well…

I pointed out this could be a ponzi scheme on kickstarter when the launched that “affiliate program” in which existing users get $9 for each new user they refer… well it didn’t last long

Derek Huffman
Guest
Derek Huffman

I was a backer for 4TFY’s services and had a lifetime service through it. The only other facts I know are that OpenVPN later acquired its services and allowed 4TFY members to use its services through it. Just recently, I tried to connect through my VPN and found out my account wasn’t recognized, and services were no longer being provided to me. So this means that 4TFY members will now have to purchase a plan under OpenVPN to continue service. Ah, the disappointment…

Check Also

Amazon continues to refresh their Kindle lineup with the all-new Kindle Oasis

Many Australians read consistently and many of them have moved to digital e-readers. Of course …