We tested each service using both the Netflix-operated Fast.com download speed test and the more comprehensive Internet Health Test; the latter measures speeds up and down through multiple interconnection points between Internet providers. We ran each test on the macOS version of each VPN software in its default configuration, with our test computer connected over Gigabit Ethernet to a cable modem with no other traffic running through it. We recorded baseline download rates without a VPN active of nearly 300 mbps, and we checked our non-VPN speeds at random intervals to ensure that our local ISP wasn’t affecting the tests.

The list of available server locations offered by Hide My Ass is particularly noteworthy because it covers regions often ignored by other VPN companies. It has, for example, numerous server locations across the continent of Africa—a rarity among VPN companies. It also maintains servers in China, Russia, and Turkey, which have particularly repressive internet policies.
The list of available server locations offered by Hide My Ass is particularly noteworthy because it covers regions often ignored by other VPN companies. It has, for example, numerous server locations across the continent of Africa—a rarity among VPN companies. It also maintains servers in China, Russia, and Turkey, which have particularly repressive internet policies.
Many streaming video services block the use of VPNs because you can use them to spoof your location and access content licensed for specific regions. BBC's free streaming iPlayer, for instance, is intended only for UK citizens. But if you hop onto a VPN server in London, you may as well be a local resident. In particular, Netflix blocks VPNs very aggressively, as mentioned above.
TunnelBear has some strong supporters among Wirecutter’s staff. The company has a public history of transparency, staff listings, and the clearest privacy policy of any VPN service we’ve found, plus TunnelBear is one of the only VPNs to release a public audit of its system. But the service was one of the least reliable we tried. In four of our 18 connection tests, we managed broadband speeds; in a handful of others TunnelBear was well below the average, and in even more it failed to provide a usable connection at all. As we were writing this guide, security giant McAfee announced that it had acquired TunnelBear. Fans of the service should keep an eye out for changes to its privacy stance and transparency as the US-based firm takes over.

There are many, many VPN providers, and Mozilla can’t recommend any specific service. PC World, however, has reviewed a ton of VPN services and ranked them all. The winner? Currently it’s Sweden-based Mullvad, which doesn’t even keep your email address. Instead, it auto-generates an anonymous account number when you create an account. The service is reportedly fast and ultra secure. Speedy services CyberGhost and TunnelBear also ranked highly, and NordVPN was called out as a great way to watch blocked U.S. Netflix shows and other services while abroad. FoxyProxy, by Mozillian Eric Jung, offers VPN service in more than 68 countries.
Romania-based CyberGhost allows P2P filesharing on any server that isn’t located in the US or Russia. Due to legal pressure, CyberGhost actively blocks BitTorrent traffic in those two countries (presumably by blocking popular ports used by BitTorrent clients, but we haven’t tested this). CyberGhost isn’t wholly adverse to torrenting, though, and even has a “Torrent Anonymously” profile that will connect you to the best torrenting VPN server available.
Not only that, but rather than settling for whichever server gets randomly dished up, they provide the tools needed to speed-test all available servers so you can select the one that suits your needs the most. If you’re downloading a large file, a server that’s slightly slower is okay but if you’re streaming video or a game, you need the quickest server you can get. HMA does log information about your activity: your IP, time logged in and out, and the IP addresses that were used.

I received a nice 'Alleged Copyright Infringement' email from my provider the other day. I have been using utorrent for many years and never had any issues until now (decided to watch if X-men was as bad as the reviews). I've never had any pirating or redistribution notions but since the notice I've decided to start shopping for a VPN service. I noticed a lot of these are also apps and extensions for browsers. In my case would I need a full downloadable program or would a browser based app suffice?


Torrenting is one of the lovable activities I prefer during weekends. But due to strict copyright laws in Connecticut, I was unable to visit torrent sites. Not to forget, ISPs over here send notices even when a flagged site is visited. Considering the situation, this article helped me a lot into bypassing the imposed geo-restrictions and downloading torrents anonymously from within Connecticut.
HMA offers servers in the following countries: Brunei, Costa Rica, Ireland, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Bosnia, Lebanon, United Arab Emirates, Israel, Kenya, Cook Islands, Vietnam, Europe, Cayman Islands, Slovakia, Aland Islands, Palestine, Tokelau, Paraguay, Cote d`Ivoire, Morocco, Mexico, Russia, Qatar, Falkland Islands, British Virgin Islands, Belize, Portugal, Ghana, Chile, Turks and Caicos Islands, Thailand, Estonia, Saudi Arabia, Luxembourg, Grenada, Ecuador, Australia, Rwanda, Dominican Republic, Latvia, Vanuatu, Philippines, Saint Helena, Pitcairn Islands, Suriname, Norway, Haiti, Slovenia, Panama, Greenland, South Korea, Seychelles, Singapore, Finland, Georgia, Uganda, Cuba, Montserrat, Myanmar, Indonesia, Kiribati, Hong Kong, Croatia, Bahrain, Botswana, Poland, France, Bahamas, Niue, Lithuania, Pakistan, Czech Republic, Greece, Switzerland, Denmark, Guatemala, Turkey, Bolivia, Macedonia, Brasil, Saint Lucia, Taiwan, Bermuda, Jordan, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Canada, Honduras, Trinidad and Tobago, Spain, Uruguay, Anguilla, Germany, Iraq, United Kingdom, Burkina Faso, Cyprus, Guinea, Afghanistan, Dominica, Nicaragua, Malta, Saint Pierre and Miquelon, Bulgaria, Christmas Island, Japan, India, Antigua and Barbuda, Norfolk Island, Iceland, Moldova, Faroe Islands, Yemen, Ukraine, Malaysia, Bangladesh, Barbados, Cameroon, , New Caledonia, Netherlands, Benin, Serbia, North America, Syria, Kuwait, Namibia, El Salvador, Palau, Gabon, Colombia, Montenegro, Jamaica, Venezuela, New Zealand, Peru, Nigeria, Italy, Oceania, Oman, Albania, Argentina, United States, Belgium, Romania, China, Aruba, Sweden, Hungary, Austria, Belarus, Guyana, Macau

Windscribe VPN is a Canadian VPN provider that has made a dent in the low-end VPN market. They claim not to keep any logs of activity, and their software is quite good. Windscribe is also one of the last remaining VPNs that works reliably with Netflix without generating the dreaded 'proxy error'. (Hint: NordVPN is another that works flawlessly with Netflix). 

CyberGhost offers a “Torrent Anonymously” profile that lets you connect to P2P compatible servers. The company takes torrenting seriously, and will only connect you to servers that are in locations where it is legal to download. CyberGhost also prioritizes security when it comes to torrenting; it does not keep logs and offers IP and DNS leak protection. While there are only a number of P2P compatible servers to torrent on, the list of servers for general use (over 2,900 in 60+ countries) far
With  multiple clients, rich with different features, it’s no wonder this VPN service handles more than 10 million users. It covers Microsoft’s and Apple’s operating systems, but also iOS and Android. The interface is not the best out there and could definitely use some work, but these disadvantages are easily overshadowed by the awesome features this VPN offers.
Even though Tor is free, we don’t think it’s the best option for most people. If you aren’t familiar with Tor, this handy interactive graphic shows how it protects an Internet connection, and this series goes into more detail about how Tor works. Runa Sandvik, a former researcher with The Tor Project who is now part of the information security team at The New York Times (parent company of Wirecutter), described it as “a tool that allows users to remain anonymous and uncensored.” When we asked expert Alec Muffett about whether he personally used a VPN, he told us he actually spent most of his work time using Tor. But Tor has a reputation for slow connections, can be blocked by some websites, and isn’t suitable for some peer-to-peer applications like BitTorrent.
At a minimum, your ISP keeps track of every IP address it assigned you, often for six to 18 months. ISPs mostly use these records to respond to specific law enforcement requests, often to catch truly awful criminals. But no protections are in place to guarantee that it’s the only way ISPs use these logs. In 2017, the US Department of Justice unsuccessfully demanded that a Web host hand over more than a million IP addresses, namely that of anyone who accessed a website that helped organize protests during the presidential inauguration. Compliance with that demand would have allowed the DOJ to in turn request identifying information from ISPs on anyone who visited the site—including journalists doing research, bored Twitter users clicking a link, or people against the protests who wanted a hate read. A good VPN would spare the innocent the trouble and the invasion of privacy in such a situation.

The solution is also able to bypass firewalls through stealth connections. Additional security is provided through an ad and malware blocker, which can be switched on and off. For those who enjoy torrenting, the software supports such process, with certain servers optimized for P2P networks. This is designed to keep high-speed browsing on other connections. However, the service warns users to keep torrenting activities confined to specific cities around the world.

Our mission is to provide anyone who wants it with access to a safe and private internet connection. We are the only VPN service that exerts full control over its entire infrastructure. From network architecture and customer support, to our physical hardware and software development, every part of IPVanish is owned and operated by us at IPVanish. This independent style of operation enables us to maintain an airtight zero-logging policy. No other VPN service can match that level of security when they’re borrowing network components.
When we tested other aspects of IVPN's performance, it also satisfied our requirements. On the default settings, our real IP address didn't leak out via DNS requests or IPv6 routing, let alone a standard IP address checker. The DNS-requests check indicated that the app was using the company's internal DNS servers and that they were correctly configured. None of the 12 services we tested disclosed our true IP address (though some showed mismatched IPs).
ExpressVPN is also one of the best VPN services available for streaming. Whether you are using a VPN with Kodi or streaming Netflix with a VPN, ExpressVPN offers great apps for streaming devices and high-speed bandwidth for HD videos and downloads. Their customer service is also top-notch, with 24/7 live chat support and a 30 day money-back guarantee with all subscription plans. [Learn more >]
Using a VPN with Netflix will allow you to watch all the content you want wherever you are located in the world. The other thing to keep in mind when streaming content is the potential for copyright violation issues. A VPN can help protect you by anonymizing your online activity, which prevents third parties from snooping your activities or acquiring your IP address. (This is also why it’s important to use a VPN for torrenting.)

This is when the VPN uses a gateway device to connect to the entire network in one location to a network in another location. The majority of site-to-site VPNs that connect over the internet use IPsec. Rather than using the public internet, it is also normal to use career multiprotocol label switching (MPLS) clouds as the main transport for site-to-site VPNs.


Cross platform device support is on offer from VyprVPN, along with a free trial and affordable monthly tariff ($5) for unlimited data and three concurrent connections. Or you might upgrade to their VyprVPN Premium service, at $12.95/month, which offers five simultaneous connections. With desktop and mobile apps, VyprVPN might prove particularly useful to you used in conjunction with OpenELEC/Kodi powered media centers.

We asked TorGuard detailed questions about the company’s internal policies and standards, just as we did with five other top-performing services. TorGuard CEO Benjamin Van Pelt answered all our questions, as he has done for other outlets multiple times since the company launched in 2012. Though TorGuard’s answers weren’t as in-depth as some other companies’ responses, Van Pelt is a public figure who has been willing to talk about TorGuard’s operations at length. In 2013, ArsTechnica got a close look at TorGuard’s engineering and network management skills as the company rebuffed repeated attacks on its servers. Even though the company’s marketing is wrought with overreaching claims about being “anonymous”—an inaccurate boast that makes some experts cringe—the technical and operational standards of the company are focused on protecting customer privacy. In one interview with Freedom Hacker, Van Pelt notes that if there were problems on a server, such as someone using it for spamming, the company couldn’t restrict a single user. “Rules would be implemented in that specific server which would limit actions for everyone connected, not just one user. Since we have an obligation to provide fast, abuse free services, our team handles abuse reports per server – not per single user.”
One way to resolve the issue of trust is to be your own VPN provider, but that’s not a feasible option for most people, and it still requires trust in any company providing the hardware that your VPN would run on, such as Amazon’s cloud services. Multiple projects can help you cheaply turn any old server into a VPN, including Algo, Streisand, and Outline. By encrypting all the traffic from your home or mobile device to a server you manage, you deprive your ISP and a potentially villainous VPN of all your juicy traffic logs. But most people lack the skills, patience, or energy—or some combination of the three—to do this. If you don’t manage servers or work in IT, it may be harder to manage perfect operation and performance better than trustworthy professionals. Lastly, though you remove one threat from the equation by cutting out a VPN service provider, you also lose the extra layer of privacy that comes from your traffic mixing in with that of hundreds or thousands of other customers.
We like that the company offers a connection kill switch feature and, for those who need it, there's an option to get a dedicated IP address. VyprVPN is a standout in their effort to provide privacy, and thwart censorship. When China began its program of deep packet VPN inspection, Golden Frog's VyperVPN service added scrambled OpenVPN packets to keep the traffic flowing. 

Secure remote access provides a safe, secure way to connect users and devices remotely to a corporate network. It includes VPN technology that uses strong ways to authenticate the user or device. VPN technology is available to check whether a device meets certain requirements, also called a device’s posture, before it is allowed to connect remotely.


NordVPN doesn’t keep logs of online activity. This means that your private data, online activity, and browsing history can’t be monitored, gathered, exposed, or intercepted by third parties. Users can also select DNS leak protection to protect their IP address and an automatic kill switch, which either kills all programs or chosen programs if the VPN connection drops. This protects a user’s personal data from being temporarily exposed. There’s also ad-blocking functionality and protection against phishing threats.
That's a bit of a hodgepodge, and I am disappointed that Hide My Ass doesn't provide OpenVPN on all platforms. That said, some of the issue is with the platforms. Apple requires developers to jump through additional hoops if they want to include OpenVPN in an app, but many are beginning to move in that direction. I would like to see Hide My Ass do the same, across the board.

If you like watching live video streaming and downloading torrents, NordVPN is a great one-size-fits-all VPN that secures your connection with powerful tools and blazing speed. Unlike other premium VPNs, you don't have to pay that much to get high speeds and security. NordVPN swears not to keep any logs, to encrypt exchanges in 2048 bits, to have their own DNS servers in order to prevent leakage, and to have a " kill switch" to stop some applications in case of accidental disconnection.      
If you plan on using a VPN while torrenting, consider the ramifications of the Kill Switch. This feature, found in most VPN services, prevents apps from sending data via the internet when the VPN is disconnected. The idea is that it prevents any information from being transmitted in the clear. The avid BitTorrent downloader needs to decide if they want total and complete protection, or would rather not have their download interrupted.
Because few VPN companies offer live support, we appreciate when they at least provide easy-to-follow resources on their websites. Detailed setup guides with step-by-step instructions are available for every platform IVPN supports, and it breaks down troubleshooting advice into language that’s easy to understand. ExpressVPN also has clear, helpful support articles, but other services aren’t as straightforward. It’s harder to find the right information on TorGuard’s support site, and its articles aren’t as novice-friendly. If you need to submit a ticket for a specific problem, you can expect a quick response from all the companies we tested—IVPN and TorGuard both responded to us in minutes, and PIA took the longest at one day. ExpressVPN was the only one of our finalists that offered tech support over live chat. (Other companies provide live chat only for sales and signup support.)
Torrenting media files creates several demands on the VPN being used. Due to large file sizes, maintaining speed is very important. At the same time, however, the nature of file sharing means that there are more security concerns than with casual Internet use, as well. It can be tough to balance these needs with other factors such as price, customer support, and access to deeper features. These 7 VPNs are all great products that will give you a great torrenting experience – the challenge is finding the one that suits your specific needs.

Torrenting media files creates several demands on the VPN being used. Due to large file sizes, maintaining speed is very important. At the same time, however, the nature of file sharing means that there are more security concerns than with casual Internet use, as well. It can be tough to balance these needs with other factors such as price, customer support, and access to deeper features. These 7 VPNs are all great products that will give you a great torrenting experience – the challenge is finding the one that suits your specific needs.
For building applications for mobile macOS and Windows platforms, the OEM VPN Unlimited SDK allows users to build feature-packed custom apps or beef up their existing applications with new functionalities. Meanwhile, VPN Unlimited White Label allows for an easy VPN market entry, as KeepSolid will cover the infrastructure, development, and maintenance while supercharging your network security. Lastly, OEM VPN Unlimited Router API enhances network security by shielding your wireless network on an impregnable router, allowing you to save from purchasing multiple VPN subscriptions and giving your customers peace of mind when engaging with your business.
For one thing, it prevents anyone lurking on your local network from monitoring or intercepting your activity. While the airport or coffee shop Wi-Fi network looks safe (it might even be password-protected) it's not really safe unless you're using a VPN. For another thing, a VPN can prevent your Internet Service Provider (ISP) from gathering information about your online activities so it can sell anonymized user data to the highest bidder.
Other actions from Washington, namely the FCC decision to roll back net neutrality rules, have sparked an interest in VPNs. For those who are unaware, net neutrality is the idea that ISPs must treat all web content equally. Without it, ISPs could charge companies or consumers an extra fee to get faster connections. They could potentially create a system where consumers must sign up for specific plans to access web services like Netflix or Twitter. VPNs may restore net neutrality somewhat, but it will depend on how ISPs respond to the latest stint of deregulation.
Modern encryption algorithms work on this principle, with the second step being very complex and worthy of doctoral- level research. What you need to look for is your data being encrypted with the AES algorithm of at least 128 bits. Many of the top VPNs out there go a step above that and offer AES-256 encryption, including ExpressVPN (review), NordVPN (review), and Buffered (review). If you’re interested, you can learn more about AES encryption.
×