GhostBear: Fight censorship and restrictive networks

GhostBear makes your encrypted data less detectable to governments, businesses and internet service providers. It does this by scrambling your VPN communications which makes them harder to detect and block.

GhostBear is currently available on our Mac OS X, Windows and Android apps. Unfortunately it’s not yet available for our iOS app due to restrictions in the way in which iOS is designed. Since Apple controls iOS design, we have no control over this at this time.


Should I use GhostBear?
If you’re already able to connect and can use TunnelBear without GhostBear, we recommend that you leave this feature disabled as it can make your connection a little slower. You’ll still be protected by the latest and greatest encryption technologies and leaving it off doesn’t make you less secure.

If you’re not able to connect or find that your bear can’t maintain a connection, it’s possible that the internet provider is detecting the use of a encrypted communication and is subsequently blocking or throttling the connection. In these cases we recommend that you try enabling GhostBear.


How do I use GhostBear?
If you're using GhostBear on one of our desktop apps, click the cog shaped button in the bottom right corner of the app and select "Settings." Then check off "GhostBear."

If you want to use GhostBear on Android, click on the "Menu" icon in the top left corner (looks like three horizontal stripes). Then select "Options." Check off the "GhostBear" box.

Troubleshooting issues with GhostBear

My connection is noticeably slower when GhostBear is enabled
Some speed loss is expected when GhostBear is enabled. This is caused by the extra ‘scrambling’ needed to further obscure your encrypted connection. To ensure that you get the best performance possible when using GhostBear, check out some of the tips in this article.

The GhostBear option is ‘greyed out’ and I can’t select it!
There are a couple of reasons the GhostBear feature might be unavailable:
  • TunnelBear is already on - If TunnelBear is already connected, you won't be able to enable GhostBear. Turn TunnelBear off and try again.
  • Other custom proxies are present - TunnelBear will not allow you to enable GhostBear if your computer is running a custom proxy. Sometimes software similar to TunnelBear can be responsible for making these kinds of changes. Please ensure all other TunnelBear type services are uninstalled or disabled before trying again.
    • IMPORTANT: On some networks a custom proxy if required to access the internet (without TunnelBear) so please double check with your network administrator or ISP before disabling or changing any custom proxy settings if you’re not sure where they came from!
    • For more information on how to check your current proxy settings, see the following:

Something else is using port 45578 or 3389 - GhostBear uses port 45578 and 3389 on your computer. Only one application at a time can use these ports. If you’re not able to activate the GhostBear feature it’s possible that another application on your computer is already using one of these two ports.

Examples of applications that we’ve seen cause conflicts:
  • Remote desktop applications
  • Remote webcam streaming applications
  • Microsoft terminal services