I had a feeling this story wasn’t done. People need to know the truth.
WARNING: IS NORDVPN A HONEYPOT?
We’ve covered both the fact by fact analysis of how NordVPN is operated out of Lithuania, and how the CEO of ProtonVPN, NordVPN, and Tesonet is the same guy–Darius Bereika. NordVPN and ProtonVPN have denied all these claims, but without proving sufficient explanation or even official responses on any of their websites.
Now, we’ve had another anonymous Reddit user post a meticulous examination of how NordVPN, ProtonVPN, Tesonet, and HolaVPN are somehow connected in a data-mining organization. This might just be one of the biggest VPN news stories ever, and it will impact how customers view NordVPN, ProtonVPN, and Tesonet. Can you trust these companies with your data?
The chart is a big confusing, but we will break it down for you here from the beginning. We will explain each connection. How exactly are Tesonet, ProtonVPN, NordVPN, and HolaVPN related, and why does that matter?
If you want the TL;DR, you should probably get as far far away from NordVPN and Proton companies and HolaVPN ASAP.
Who is Tesonet, and are They a Data Mining Company?
Tesonet is a data mining company that is HUGE. They own a lot of companies. NordVPN and ProtonVPN’s first idea that they want to spread is that they aren’t really part of Tesonet. They’ve claimed in fact they aren’t involved at ALL, then they backtrack and say that Tesonet handles “some of their HR” and other details like shared office space.
Secondly, Nord and Proton companies don’t want to admit Tesonet is a data mining company. But if you read and decipher how Tesonet defines their company, it’s easy to see that Tesonet is indeed a data mining company.
“Over time, a growing demand for collecting business leads across various resources sprouted another project. Here, a smart machine learning algorithm matches the ideal client for one’s business needs.In order to make the so-called “Artificial Intelligence for Sales,” we have worked a lot with analysts and business intelligence to achieve the best possible match. Ultimately, we employ many different technologies to structure the data and offer it as a short and sweet result.”
As you can see, taking this direct quote from their site, they use technology to structure data, and give it to other companies in the form of useful data. They collect leads from data, and this is what a data mining company does. They collect data from users, organize it, and then sell it. This is the definition of a data mining company, no questions asked.
Not only that, but a current employee in charge of Business Development of Tesonet, named Vytautas Savickas, posted to Twitter in the past that “For the past half year, I am working oxylabs.io and we help companies to gather business intelligence data for competitive advantage. If by any chance you need anything related to #datamining or #scraping, let me know!“
So wouldn’t it make sense for a data mining company to hire employees with experience in data mining? I think so! But it’s funny since this post is deleted. Tesonet has been on a rampage trying to clear any talk of data mining on Twitter accounts and on their website.
So now that we’ve established Tesonet is a company built upon extracting data and formulating it into leads, and that they are indeed a data mining company, you can understand therefore why it would be bad for it to be connected to privacy and anonymity companies built on protecting VPN user data–right?
How is NordVPN Connected to Tesonet?
So first, we can examine how NordVPN is connected to Tesonet. Firstly, let’s establish that Datasec Holding, Ltd is the IP owner of Tesonet. Already, you can find a connection with Datasec Holding with NordVPN, since their NordVPN app signature is signed by them. Another clear line of connection is that the owner of NordVPN is listed as “firstname.lastname@example.org”, or with the name, Sandra Gina Esparon. So the owner of NordVPN has a Tesonet email? Not only that, but Sandra Gina Esparon is also listed as the owner of Tefincom. NordVPN therefore lists Tefinkom as the developer of NordVPN, and that they own the NordVPN trademark, and that Tefincom.org itself actually redirects to NordVPN.com.
Now that we’ve established that the listed owner of NordVPN is connected to Tesonet, and that she also owns Tefincom, which operates NordVPN, it’s already starting to look very suspicious. But now we need to take a look at “CloudVPN” which NordVPN and Proton claim is just a payment processor for NordVPN. Infact, both Symposium, Ltd and CloudVPN are listed as payment processors for NordVPN.
But who do you think is the “Director of CloudVPN“? That just happens to be Tomas Okmanas, who also happens to be the Co-Founder of Tesonet. Not only that, but Darius Bereika is listed as the Director of CloudVPN as well, and he is the CEO of Tesonet itself. He is also the director of Symposium Ltd, which as you remember, is one of the payment processors for NordVPN.
So as you can see from this examination, the owner of NordVPN is Sandra Esparon, who has clear ties to Tesonet. Then we can clearly see that the payment processing companies used by NordVPN, are owned by the CEOs who own Tesonet itself. That means that the very CEO’s of Tesonet, therefore have CLEAR ties and involvement with NordVPN.
How is ProtonVPN and ProtonMail Connected to Tesonet?
The original IP owner, Datasec Holding, Ltd, is listed as the network for the domain “protonmail.com”. So already, we can almost just prove that the same company that owns the IP of Tesonet, is involved with ProtonVPN and Protonmail. But the Android Developer for ProtonMail, being Algirdas Pundzius, signed the ProtonVPN apps by Tesonet. Proton responded to this allegation by saying “that was an error made during the time Tesonet was during our HR which we are attempting to correct.”
However, they changed the story to admit it was done by Algirdas Pundzius because he was at the time, an employee of Tesonet, but odd enough, there isn’t even a mention of that online. Algirdas does have mention of working for ProtonMail in his job history, but he doesn’t mention Tesonet in his Linkedin profile besides it showing up in his job interests. Sketchy, right?
So now that we’ve showed clear links between the IP owner of Tesonet, that being Datasec Holding, Ltd, which is related to Proton, we can now also show that Dairus Bereika, the very owner of Tesonet, is actually listed as the Director of ProtonVPN LT, UAB. So Dereika owns Tesonet, NordVPN, and ProtonMail/ProtonVPN.
How is HolaVPN Connected to Tesonet?
So everything so far, we’ve actually covered on this site already, in terms of the past blog posts outlining each step in more detail. However, the chart provides a great organizational visual layout to show the connectes between Tesonet, NordVPN, and Proton companies.
But now, things get even worse.
So Darius Bereika, I guess not content with owning three large companies, also has HUGE ties with Oxylabs.io, and Oxydata, UAB. Bereika is the CEO is Oxydata, UAB, and Oxylabs.io is owned by Tesonet. And remember good old Vytautas Savickas, the man who has data mining experience posted on Twitter that somehow got deleted? Well, we’ve already introduced he is in charge of Business Development for Tesonet, but he also works for the Oxylabs company that is owned by Tesonet.
So if you were unaware, HolaVPN is infamous for being a free VPN provider that made a huge botnet of it’s userbase. Taken from Digital Trends, it’s EASY to see why no one trusts HolaVPN. “The subject came to light when 8chan message board operator Frederick Brennan claimed that Hola users’ computers — through Luminati — unknowingly attacked, and temporarily shut down, his website. “An attacker used the Luminati network to send thousands of legitimate-looking [requests to 8chan] in 30 seconds, representing a 100x spike over peak traffic,” he said in a note.
The site’s founder Ofer Vilenski said that Hola has “always made it clear” that the “idle resources,” or bandwidth, of free Hola users is subject to be sold. And, as devious as the ploy seems, it is clearly written in Hola’s FAQ. It’s worth noting, though, that accordingly to TorrentFreak, these explanations concerning Luminati have only recently been added.”
So it wouldn’t be good if Tesonet and HolaVPN has a business relationship, right? Well unfortunately, they do.
HolaVPN and NordVPN Partners in Bot Network? (Here is lawsuit).
“Between November 2015, and June 2018, Hola has a business relationship with Tesonet related to HolaVPN and Tesonet’s VPN service called NordVPN.” This text is included the complaint agaisnt patent infringement agaisnt UAB Tesonet filed in Lumintati Networks Ltd vs UAB Tesonet.
Not only does this formal legal complaint prove Tesonet owns NordVPN, but it also proves that NordVPN and Tesonet could be involved in the same dirty business that Hola got caught for, selling user data or user bandwidth for their own profit. And if you remember, from the beginning, we explained how Tesonet is a data mining company, so this relationship makes perfect sense.
The document explains that “Luminati alledges that Tesonet is infringing upon their patents for “large-scale web data extraction products and services with residential proxy network” with Oxylabs and Oxydata companies. And remember, those companies are directed and owned by Tesonet and Darius Bereika?
The best part is the section that says they have had a business for 3 years, and it’s RECENT too.
Oh boy. Not looking good for NordVPN or Proton companies. Ironic that NordVPN claims “The NordVPN name was inspired by Nordic ideals of confidence, trust, and innovation”, when in fact, all they have done up until this point is create a web of lies, as illustrated by beautifully in this chart by Reddit user Menowyou10.
Proton Claims Information is Invalid due to PIA Smear Campaign?
So what do you think?
ProtonVPN has long been explaining all of these allegations away by claiming the entire thing is “smear campaign being run against us by Private Internet Access since ProtonVPN is competing with them.” This is a clear scapegoat tactic. Take the blame away, and counter-smear another VPN. Want to know whats funny? ProtonVPN has been caught smearing PIA in an OFFICAL blog post.
See the quote below:
“For example, VyprVPN uses a Swiss shell corporation, but is actually based in Austin, Texas, USA. Private Internet Access is operated by a company known as London Trust Media, which sounds like it is based in Europe, but it is actually based in the US (one of the Five Eye countries) and could be legally compelled to spy on users.” – As taken from the Protonmail blog.
NordVPN And PIA No Where to Be Seen on Reddit?
Want to know what a guilty company would do to make the bad news go away? They’d blame someone else. And that’s exactly what Tesonet is doing!
Proton/Nord, haven’t released any official information regarding the entire issue about being owned by Tesonet. I think they were hoping the entire issue would be swept under the rug. From what I’ve found, they’ve just been blaming competitors for spreading “false information”. I guess that’s why this chart came along, to prove once and for all that these companies are lying.
However, Proton/Nord can’t deny the facts, regardless of where the information is coming from. In this case, it’s an anonymous Reddit user. The original news was posted on HackerNews by PIA CEO Andrew Lee. But so what if PIA is smearing Proton and Nord. Proton and NordVPN companies still run by Tesonet, and they are still partnering with one of the worst VPNs in the biz–being HolaVPN, (and being sued by them now). It’s also proven now that Tesonet owns NordVPN.
I also find it odd that Proton is so active on Reddit, whereas NordVPN is nowhere to be seen. It’s also a bit odd that PIA doesn’t officially come out on Reddit and dismiss the claims that they are smearing competitors. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter who’s smearing who. You only can look at the facts presented.
As the chart says “these companies have made this world a more dangerous place to live in, just to turn a profit.” Whatever the case, it’s getting ugly out there. But people have to know what’s going on right? Do your duty and spread this news along to save the privacy of your fellow users.