21 Best VPN Services For Privacy Protection (Free Options Included – 2020)

TLDR: IPVanish VPN is the best overall VPN service for privacy protection. Owning 95% of the hardware they use, they provide unparalleled privacy protection for a reasonable price. Founded in 2013 by J2 Global, a publicly traded company, IPVanish has deep pockets to invest in data centers, cables and fibre. I highly recommend them for those who want a robust, reliable and stable VPN.   

Data is the currency of our generation and as it becomes more valuable we become more vulnerable to data theft. For example:

Online privacy is becoming a bigger and bigger issue these days. The good thing is you can protect yourself and your data using a VPN.

What Is A VPN?

A VPN (Virtual Private Network) is a piece of software that anonymises your data when you are browsing the internet.

It’s best illustrated with an example – say you are searching for shows in Netflix from the UK.

If you use a VPN, you can modify your IP address to any location you wish to.

If you put this location as the US, when you log onto Netflix you will be able to access shows that wouldn’t have shown up had you searched in the UK.

VPN’s allow you to encrypt your position, location and browsing data so that you aren’t targeted with ads and can browse the web safely and securely.

You don’t need to worry about sensitive information leaking out and can bypass country wide content censorships.

These are just a few of the advantages of using VPNs.

What Are The Best VPN Services?

Choosing the best VPN’s can be a difficult task – there are hundreds of free and paid solutions out there on the market.

Some online reviews can also be biased so it’s difficult to get a perspective of how well they really work.

I’ve curated a list of the top VPN’s so you can make an informed decision about which service is best for you.

When assessing the best VPN services, I’ve looked at these features:

  • Pricing
  • Connection quality and quantity
  • Ease of use
  • Torrenting
  • Security and privacy
  • Download speeds
  • Geographic content censorship bypassing (e.g. Netflix)
  • Support speed and quality

As always, be sure to do your own independent research if a VPN service really interests you.

In the worst case scenario, most have free trials so you can try it without buying it.

Without further ado, let’s get started.

Disclaimer: I may receive affiliate compensation for some of the links below. This is at no extra cost to you – you will be simply helping me put out more helpful content. However, these are the best VPN tools that I recommend. You can read our full affiliate disclosure here in our privacy policy.

1. IPVanish VPN

IPVanish is a US-based VPN provider with emphasis on speed, security and privacy. Founded back in 2013 and currently owned by J2 Global, the commercial Virtual Private Network (VPN) checks all the boxes when it comes to the standard features necessary for a reliable VPN.

IPVanish is one of the biggest names in the VPN business and comes highly recommended for its fast speeds and privacy.

It is popular with Kodi users, torrent users and unblocks Netflix.

IPVanish stands out from other VPN providers because the company owns 95% of their hardware.

They run their own data centers, cables, fiber and servers as well as other key components.

This allows them control over user experience and helps optimize both security and speed. 

The fact that no other entity has access to their infrastructure is what inspires confidence in IPVanish.

Moreover, IPVanish is owned by a large, public company which guarantees the financial records and services are audited.

All things considered, IPVanish is a great VPN service that is easy to use and offers multiple simultaneous connections, apps for major device platforms, no logging, good speed and strong security. You also get many servers to pick from. IPv6 and DNS leak protection, kill switch and traffic obfuscation are built into the service.

Key Features

  • Multi Platform supports
  • 40,000+ shared IPs
  • 1,500+ VPN servers
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • 256-bit AES encryption
  • SOCKS5 web proxy
  • Unmetered connections

Pros

  • Multi simultaneous device connection with one subscription
  • No traffic logs
  • Fast speed
  • Torrenting is allowed
  • Strong encryption
  • Some servers unblock Netflix
  • TOR compatibility

Cons

  • US-based
  • Expensive
  • No live chat

Pricing

IPVanish VPN has three pricing options:

Standard Plan: $10.00/month

3 Month Plan: Billed every three months at $26.99

1-Year Plan: Billed annually at $77.99

There is No Free Trial but you enjoy a 30-day money back guarantee. All plans include the same features.  

Try IPVanish VPN

2. NordVPN 

NordVPN is a secure, fast and easy to use VPN and probably one of the best VPNs in 2020.

By default, the app uses industry standard 256-bit AES encryption and OpenVPN tunneling protocol.

NordVPN provides a powerful customizable Kill Switch that enables you to select the apps to kill in the event the VPN drops-out.

This guarantees network data never leaks outside the secure VPN tunnel when connection fails.

One of the best things about NordVPN is that they have a large server park with more than 5200 servers spread across 59 countries.

It is this diversity that guarantees fast speeds. You can find and connect to a server that is closest to you so as to enjoy fast speeds. 

NordVPN further supports P2P and torrenting on all its servers and you can unblock Netflix streaming in more than 90% of the servers.

You also get Onion Over VPN feature which provides the ultimate anonymity and privacy. It is also good to note that NordVPN doesn’t collect logs.

NordVPN operates from Panama where there are no data retention laws.

All things considered, NordVPN is a great VPN with 24/7 customer service support. It allows unlimited torrenting, server switching and has no data caps.

The only limit is that you can only run 6 devices simultaneously on a single subscription.

Key Features

  • Kill switch to guarantee total data protection
  • Strict no-logs policy
  • Multiplatform support
  • P2P and Torrenting support
  • Onion Over VPN
  • Ads and Malware blocking with CyberSec
  • Browser extensions
  • Worldwide access
  • 24/7 support
  • 5,200+ servers in 59 countries

Pros

  • Multiple device connection with one subscription
  • Unrestricted Netflix Access
  • Fast servers
  • Great for gaming
  • No IP/DNS leaks
  • Double data encryption
  • Easy to use interface

Cons

  • Apple iTunes/App Store purchase get no refund
  • Discount only available for longer subscriptions

Pricing

NordVPN has tiered pricing which depends on the length of plan you want to commit to.

One-Month Plan: $11.95/month

6-Month Plan: $9.00/month billed every 6 months

1-Year Plan: $4.08/month billed for the first year.

You enjoy a 30-day money-back guarantee on all packages. If you are not satisfied, you can cancel anytime and get your money back.

Try NordVPN

3. Express VPN

Express VPN is a user-friendly, fast and secure VPN currently owned by Express VPN Ltd. It can be set up on any device including iOS, Windows, Linux, Mac, Android and routers.

The app comes with advanced features that allow you the freedom to stream videos in HD, and download anything you want without any restrictions while at the same time enjoy guaranteed security with no logs retention. It works in China.

The best feature on Express VPN is its enterprise security. The app uses 4096-bit CA-based encryption to secure all your data and files from hackers while at the same time hide behind random IP addresses.

To boost speed, Express VPN offers over 145 VPN locations in 94 countries.

You also enjoy a built-in feature that protects you from censorship and surveillance. A Kill Switch feature is available to stop traffic automatically if VPN is disconnected.

You should also note that Express VPN has Zero-Knowledge DNS which means there is no other party involved in the running of operations.

Thanks to the advanced security features, you never have to worry about your security when connecting to a public Wi-Fi.

Express VPN keeps you safe from being monitored and tracked. You get to complete all your activities online anonymously.

Key Features

  • Supports all platforms
  • Onion Over VPN
  • Zero-logs policy
  • Internet kill switch
  • 24/7 live support
  • Worldwide access
  • 256-bit AES encryption
  • Allows P2P/Torrenting

Pros

  • Friendly user-interface
  • Unrestricted Netflix access
  • Firmware for Wi-Fi routers
  • Multiuser feature (up to 5 devices)
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Fast VPN servers
  • No IP or DNS leaks
  • Fast setup process

Cons

  • Expensive
  • No dedicated IP address

Pricing

Express VPN offers three purchase options.

Monthly Plan: $12.95/month

6-Month Plan: $9.99/month billed every 6 months.

Annual Plan: $8.32/month billed annually.

With all three plans, you get Express VPN apps, 24/7 customer support, unlimited bandwidth and a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Try Express VPN

4. CyberGhost VPN

CyberGhost is a German- and Romanian-based privacy giant that offers comprehensive VPN services to over 10 million users.

The VPN has over 7,100 servers in more than 89 countries. It is a fast and reliable VPN that is budget friendly and comes with a powerful windows client.

The app is also packed with powerful features and a very intuitive user interface.

The best thing about CyberGhost VPN is that it includes several bundled extras.

For starters, the app is able to block malicious websites, ads as well as trackers. It also has an automated HTTPS redirection which guarantees you get a secure connection to every website including the blocked ones.

There is also an optional data compression that helps reduce bandwidth to save you money on mobile data.

The app moreover helps you connect up to 7 devices simultaneously.

Simply put, CyberGhost VPN is a good choice for streaming. T

he app offers a wide range of optimized servers which have been configured specially to unblock over 35 streaming services. These sites include Amazon Prime, Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, HBO Max, ESPN, Kodi, Disney+ and niche options such as Yle and Crunchyroll. CyberGhost is the best alternative to Nord VPN and Express VPN.

Key Features

  • Zero-logs policy
  • 256-AES protection
  • Integrated firewall
  • Built-in kill switch
  • OpenVPN support
  • 5700+ servers in 90 countries and 112 locations
  • Multiplatform support
  • 24/7 customer support
  • P2P torrenting

Pros

  • Multiple simultaneous connection
  • Unblocks streaming services
  • Simple user-interface
  • Supports torrenting
  • Fast servers
  • DNS and IP leak protection
  • Play region-locked games
  • Strong security and privacy measures

Cons

  • Slow to establish a connection
  • Broken ad blocker for HTTPS sites

Pricing

CyberGhost offers three payment plans:

Monthly Plan: $12.99/month

6-Months Plan: $7.99/month billed every 6 months

18-Months Plan: $2.75/month billed for the first 18 months and yearly thereafter.

There is No Free Trial. With all three payment plans you get a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Try CyberGhost VPN

5. StrongVPN

StrongVPN is a versatile service ideal for beginners. It unblocks many streaming services, evades China’s firewall and provides the anonymity and security required in torrenting.

While it is not as good as the likes of NordVPN and Express VPN, it is a solid all-rounder for the price. StrongVPN is also among the few VPNs that support Wireguard protocol. It also offers 250GB of free SugarSync cloud backup.  

Launched in 2005, StrongVPN has been around longer than most VPNs. Headquartered in Winter Park, Florida, the VPN service has more than 950 servers spread across 24 countries and in 46 different cities.

While StrongVPN does not offer most of the advanced features you would expect in a VPN that costs this much and has been around this long, it is a good choice for rookies.

The main problem with StrongVPN is that it is based in the United States which means it is part of the Five Eyes, Nine Eyes and 14 Eyes International surveillance alliances. This means the company can be forced to hand over your data to the government.

All in all, this might not be a major issue after all since StrongVPN has a very strict no-logging policy. It doesn’t track your web traffic.

Key Features

  • OpenVPN support
  • Split tunnelling
  • 256-bit Advanced Encryption Standard
  • SugarSync backup
  • Wireguard protocol
  • Kill switch on desktop
  • Multiplatform support
  • Smart DNS service
  • 24/7 customer support

Pros

  • 12 simultaneous device connection
  • Fast servers
  • Unblocks China’s Great Firewall
  • No logs
  • Ample security
  • Simple user interface
  • Torrenting allowed
  • Works with Netflix

Cons

  • Few server locations
  • Slow speeds outside North America
  • Overpriced
  • Located in the U.S. jurisdiction

Pricing

StrongVPN offers two payment plans.

1-Month Plan: $10.00/month

12 Months Plan: $5.83/month billed annually

With each plan you enjoy 250GB of Free SugarSync Secure Storage and a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Try StrongVPN

6. PureVPN

Started in 2007 by GZ Systems and based in Hong Kong, PureVPN is one of the oldest VPNs around.

It offers the perfect blend of affordable subscriptions and impressive features.

It also boasts more than 2,000 servers across more than 140 countries. You can connect to the one closest to you for maximum speed.

The key benefit of using PureVPN is that the provider offers dedicated streaming servers and dedicated P2P (torrenting) servers.

Every server you connect to guarantees all methods of security including L2TP/IPSec, IKEv2, PPTP, OpenVPN and SSTP.

The second thing is the VPN uses specialized servers for the most popular websites.

If you have a specific website you want to unblock, you can look it up in the server-selection page and get a list of the servers that unblocks it. 

PureVPN streaming profile optimizes your connection for high-speed streaming but in doing so uses a weaker encryption protocol.

This is because the stronger encryption protocols will end up slowing down the connection.

All in all, the VPN unblocks several streaming services including Netflix.

The general features on PureVPN makes it a great pick from the long list of VPNs on the market today.

Key Features

  • Kill switch
  • 300,000+ IPs
  • Unlimited server switching
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Multiplatform support
  • Supports all major protocols
  • 256-bit encryption
  • 24/7 customer support

Pros

  • 10 simultaneous devices
  • Split tunnelling option
  • Affordable
  • Simple and easy to use
  • Unrestricted torrenting
  • ‘No-Log’ certified

Cons

  • Slow speeds
  • Weak encryption

Pricing

PureVPN allows you to purchase their service using several payment methods including PayPal, BitCoin, Skrill and Credit card. There are three payment plans to pick from:

7-Day Trial: $0.99. After the trial period you automatically get subscribed to the 1-Year Plan at $77.88.

1-Month Plan: $10.95/month

6-Months Plan: $8.33/month billed every 6 months

You also enjoy a 31-Day Money-Back Guarantee on all plans. You can cancel the 7-Day Trial at any time.

Try PureVPN

7. Norton Secure VPN

Norton Secure VPN is owned by NortonLifeLock Inc; a big name in the antivirus market.

The VPN is included in Norton’s 360 antivirus products which gives you a top-tier antivirus paired with a fast and reliable VPN.

Norton Secure VPN has its servers in 31 countries.  

The main advantage Norton Secure VPN has over other VPN providers is that it is made by a well-known and reliable company.

Second is the fact that it is one of the fastest VPNs you will ever use. Even with longer-distance connections you still enjoy great speeds.

The app works on Windows, Apple MacOS, iOS and Android.

While Norton is a huge name in the cybersecurity realm, their VPN has a couple of shortcomings. For starters, Norton’s VPN has fewer features than those on most standalone VPNs.

Norton Secure VPN doesn’t allow you to download torrents (P2P) and its lack of security and obfuscation tools make it less likely to work in China.

Lack of server choice further means it is easy to be blocked by Netflix and other streaming sites.

All in all, if you can live with those limitations, this is an affordable VPN you can bet on.

Key Features

  • OpenVPN support
  • Ad Blockers
  • Multiplatform support
  • AES-128 encryption
  • 24/7 customer support

Pros

  • Fast servers
  • No-logs policy
  • Flexible pricing plans
  • Ad blocker and tracker
  • Simultaneous device connection
  • User friendly
  • Unblocks streaming services

Cons

  • Small server network
  • No VPN Kill Switch
  • No torrent support
  • Offers only one connection protocol

Pricing

The price of Norton Secure VPN depends on how long you subscribe and how many devices you want to use. You also enjoy money-back guarantee.

1-Month Plan for 1 Device: $4.99/month

1-Month Plan for 5 Devices: $7.99/month

1-Month Plan for 10 Devices: $9.99/month

You can also get Norton 360 antivirus plus Norton Secure VPN which includes 30-Days Free Trial

Norton 360 Standard: $34.99/year. License for one device.

Norton 360 Deluxe: $39.99/year. License for 5 devices

Norton 360 Select: $99.98/year. License for 5 devices plus LifeLock Identity Alert System.

Try Norton Secure VPN

8. Surfshark VPN

Surfshark VPN is a well-rounded VPN service with a wide range of features and a surprisingly small price on the two-year plan.

The VPN currently has more than 1,700 servers that are spread out across 160 locations in 63 countries.

The service supports Windows, Mac, iOS, Linux and Android as well as extensions for Firefox and Chrome.

You will get a website-unblocking Smart DNS system for gaming consoles and TVs too.

Surfshark VPN stands out from other VPNs in many ways.

For one, there is no limit on the number of devices you can connect simultaneously. You can install and run the app on as many devices as you want.

Second, you get advanced technical essentials such as AES-256-GCM encryption, IKEv2 support, OpenVPN, strict no-logs policy as well as a Kill Switch to protect your data whenever a connection drops.

Surfshark VPN provides VPN chaining where you use two servers for one hop for enhanced security.

Two-factor authentication support is available to further heighten security.

All things considered, Surfshark is a powerful VPN with some features that are more powerful than those on giants like ExpressVPN, NordVPN and CyberGhost.

While it has its share of shortcomings, this is one of the best VPN services you can use.

Key Features

  • OpenVPN support
  • Whitelister
  • Ad blockers
  • Works with all devices
  • AES-256 encryption
  • Private DNS
  • Automatic kill switch
  • IKEv2 Support
  • 24/7 customer support
  • Supports torrenting (P2P)
  • Multihop and split-tunneling tools

Pros

  • Unlimited simultaneous connections
  • Supports torrenting (P2P)
  • User-friendly interface
  • Unblocks streaming services
  • Zero-logs policy
  • Secure and anonymous browsing

Cons

  • Limited P2P servers
  • High price
  • Trial is for Macs and mobile apps only

Pricing

Surfshark VPN has three billing options:

1-Month Plan: $11.95/month

12-Months Plan: $5.99/month billed annually.

24-Months Plan: $1.99/month billed every 24 months.

You can pay with a Credit Card, PayPal, Google Pay, Amazon Pay or Crypto currency. A 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee is offered on all three payment plans.

Try Surfshark VPN

9. UltraVPN

UltraVPN is a UK-based VPN provider started in 2006 and currently has 1,000+ servers in over 55 locations.

The VPN has apps for Mac, iOS, Windows and Android. You will get all the important features on the desktop VPN including DNS leak protection, Kill Switch and a powerful OpenVPN encryption.

Mobile apps are a bit basic; they only offer a choice of servers. You get up to 3 simultaneous connections with a single subscription.

The best feature on UltraVPN is probably the server speeds. These speeds are comparable to those of NordVPN, CyberGhost and ExpressVPN.

The VPN also promises unlimited bandwidth as well as no throttling. This makes it a good choice for anyone interested in streaming multimedia and unblocking Netflix. Connections get 256-bit encryption.

As a user you will also be able to toggle connection protocol between TCP and UDP and also select your preferred outgoing port.  

While UltraVPN is a great VPN that competes well against giants like ExpressVPN, being owned by Network Protect Limited which is a US and UK incorporated company is its biggest drawback. The double-country jurisdiction results in limited data protection.

This is because the US and UK have obligatory data retention laws. While UltraVPN has a no-logs policy, it still shares some VPN-attributed data with trusted third parties.

Key Features

  • Port selection
  • Router support
  • Strong IKEv2 encryption
  • OpenVPN support
  • Kill switch
  • DNS leak protection
  • Multiplatform support
  • P2P dedicated servers
  • 24/7 live chat support

Pros

  • Unblocks streaming services
  • Effective firewall
  • Unrestricted torrenting
  • Easy to use
  • Fast servers
  • Unlimited VPN access

Cons

  • Limited server locations
  • Problematic mobile app
  • Only 3 simultaneous connections
  • Doesn’t work in China
  • Expensive

Pricing

Just like most VPNs, UltraVPN can be purchased in 3 subscriptions:

Monthly Plan: $7.99/month

6-Months Plan: $5.99/month billed every 6 months

Yearly Plan: $3.75/month billed annually

With each plan you enjoy a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Try UltraVPN

10. Hotspot Shield

With over 650 million users, Hotspot Shield is a pretty popular VPN.

The VPN is owned by AnchorFree and is divided into free VPN which is more of a proxy with bandwidth caps and Premium VPN.

The VPN has been around since 2005 and has servers in 115 locations.

The most unique feature on Hotspot Shield is the Catapult Hydra Protocol. This is a unique feature that maximizes speed without sacrificing security.

The VPN delivers some of the best server speeds and unblocks most streaming services including Netflix US, Amazon Prime, BBC iPlayer and Hulu.

The service also hides your P2P activity from ISPs and allows torrenting on all its servers.

While it is based in the US, Hotspot Shield does not collect usage logs for online activities.

However, according to their privacy policy, they collect other information including hardware model, unique mobile ID, ‘Network information’, email address, real IP address (deleted at the end of each session), operating system version and language.

With the free version, your information can be shared with third-party advertisers.

Key Features

  • Multiplatform support
  • 256-bit AES GCM encryption
  • Kill switch
  • P2P support
  • Malware protection
  • Identity theft protection
  • Spam call blocking
  • Password management

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Prevents IP leak
  • Quick setup
  • Fast server speed
  • Multiple simultaneous device connections
  • Works in China
  • Allows torrenting

Cons

  • Ads on the free version
  • Based in the U.S
  • No IPv6 / WebRTC leak protection
  • Kill switch for Windows only

Pricing

Hotspot Shield allows you to choose from three subscription plans:

Free Version: $0. This is supported by ads, and only gives access to US virtual locations. You have a limit of 500MBs per day and a 2MBps maximum speed.

Premium Family Plan: $11.99/month paid annually or $19.99/month paid monthly. Supports up to 25 devices, 5 for each family member account, fast speed, and unlimited bandwidth.

Premium Plan: $7.99/month paid annually or $12.99/month paid monthly. You get 5 devices and everything in Premium Family plan plus Identity Guard for identity protection, password management and spam call blocking with Robo Shield.

All paid subscriptions come with 45-days money-back guarantee.

Try Hotspot Shield

11. Private Internet Access VPN

Started in 2010 by London Media Trust, Private Internet Access VPN is an affordable VPN service with great speeds, strong security and can unblock streaming sites like Netflix US.

Private Internet Access VPN  has more than 2081 servers in 46 countries.

While being in the US jurisdiction might seem like a drawback, Private Internet Access VPN is verified as a no-logs provider.

The VPN has a great track record when it comes to privacy. This makes it one of the best budget options for video streaming, torrenting and online anonymity.

Thanks to AES-256 cipher, OpenVPN and Perfect Forward Secrecy, Private Internet Access VPN manages to live up to its name. The heightened security makes this VPN a good choice for streaming.

The best thing is that it works consistently with geo-blocked services including Hulu, Netflix, BBC iPlayer and Disney+.

Extra features include a built-in ad blocker, malicious website protection, SOCKS5 proxy for extra speed, ability to select your preferred encryption, port forwarding support, and handshaking methods.

While it is not as powerful as the likes of ExpressVPN, Private Internet Access VPN is a likeable VPN offering plenty of value for your money.

Its wide range of features, useful expert-level tweaks and a decent-sized network of servers make it the perfect alternative to other higher priced VPNs.

Key Features

  • Block ads, malware and trackers
  • Strong encryption
  • TOR compatibility
  • Multiplatform support
  • P2P support
  • Multiple VPN gateways
  • SOCKS5 proxy
  • 24/7 customer support

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Fast servers
  • 10 simultaneous connections
  • Verified no-logs privacy policy
  • Allows torrenting
  • Advanced and customizable encryption
  • Anonymous payment options

Cons

  • Does not work in China
  • U.S based

Pricing

Private Internet Access VPN has three payment plans:

Monthly Plan: $9.95/month.

Yearly Plan: $3.33/month billed annually.

Two Year Plan: $2.69/month billed every 2 years.

Each plan has a risk free 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee. There are also several payment options to choose from including cryptocurrency.

Try Private Internet Access VPN

12. HideMyAss (HMA VPN)

Founded in 2005, HideMyAss is now owned by Avast and is referred to as HMA VPN.

The VPN has more than 1100 VPN servers spread across 190 countries and in more than 320 server locations.

Thanks to its robust features and being owned by a renowned security company, HMA VPN currently serves 400 million customers.

One of the ways HideMyAss distinguishes itself from other VPNs is by having the largest number of available countries.

Offering IP addresses in 190 countries is more than twice what CyberGhost VPN (90 countries) and ExpressVPN (94 countries) offers. 

IP Shuffle is yet another unique feature on HMA VPN that makes it possible to automatically change virtual IP addresses.

HideMyAss also includes an expanded Kill Switch on Windows. You can use it to block all apps when a VPN connection drops or block traffic for selected apps.

HMA VPN is available on Android and Windows. Apple devices only get IKEv2.

HideMyAss is a good choice if you want to browse and stream securely. It unblocks several streaming services, offers decent speeds and it doesn’t keep logs.

Key Features

  • Kill switch
  • 1100 servers in 190 countries
  • Multiplatform support
  • 256-bit AES
  • No-logs policy
  • OpenVPN, L2TP, PPTP and IPSec support
  • Allows torrenting
  • 24/7 customer support

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • 5 simultaneous connections
  • Over 320 server locations
  • Fast servers
  • Unblocks most streaming services
  • Strong encryption
  • Allows P2P

Cons

  • Does not work in China
  • Kill Switch is only for Windows

Pricing

The prices of HideMyAss are similar to most of the best VPNs on the market. There are three plans to choose from.

7 Day Free Trial: $0

12 Months Plan: $4.99/month billed annually

36 Months Plan: $3.99/month billed every three years

With each plan you enjoy a 30-day money-back guarantee provided you are under the 10GB bandwidth limit.

Try HMA VPN

13. TunnelBear VPN

Founded in 2011, TunnelBear is a popular VPN located in Toronto, Canada with a genuine free plan.

The VPN has 900 servers in 23 countries and is supported on all operating systems.

The VPN offers 256-bit encryption and includes OpenVPN on all operating systems except iOS. On iOS you get IKEv2 VPN protocols. While Canada is a member of Five Eyes, the provider promises a zero-logs policy.

The best thing about TunnelBear is that it offers a truly free VPN service. Although the amount of traffic on the free service is 500MBs per month, all the servers are available on the free plan.

The second unique feature is the user-friendly animated app. The animations depict a bear digging a tunnel from your location to your selected location. There are also many bear-related terminologies. These animations make the app very easy and fun to use.

It is also important to note that TunnelBear has a Kill Switch known as VigilantBear available on Mac, Windows and Android. On Android you even get split tunneling.

The main downside, however, is that TunnelBear does not support streaming. This means you will not be able to unblock geo-restricted streaming services like Netflix. The VPN does not bypass China’s great firewall either.

Key Features

  • OpenVPN and IKEv2 support
  • Kill switch
  • SHA256 and AES-256 encryption
  • VPN browser extensions
  • Supports torrenting
  • Standalone ad blocker
  • Multiplatform support 

Pros

  • 5 simultaneous device connections
  • Easy to use
  • Includes a Free Plan
  • Annual independent security audits
  • No-logging policy
  • Good server speed

Cons

  • Small server network
  • Doesn’t support streaming
  • 500MBs/month limit on the Free versions
  • No refunds

Pricing

TunnelBear has

three payment plans:

Free Plan: $0. Access all the features with a 500MB monthly limit

Unlimited Plan: $3.33/month. 5 connected devices, unlimited secure browsing and priority customer support.

Teams Plan: $5.75/user per month. You get everything in the Unlimited Plan plus dedicated account manager and centralized team billing and management. A 7-day trial is available.

While there is no money-back guarantee, TunnelBear makes up for it by offering a truly Free version.

Try TunnelBear VPN

14. VyprVPN

VyprVPN is a popular VPN service and part of the Swiss company GoldenFrog.

The VPN offers over 200,000 IP addresses, more than 700 servers and over 70 locations across the globe. The provider allows up to 5 simultaneous device connections.

They have apps for Windows, iOS, MacOS, Android and Amazon Fire TV. VyprVPN also unblocks major streaming services including Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, Disney+, HBO Now and more.

The best thing about VyprVPN is that the company manages its own hardware, software and networks. This means no third-party interference.

The VPN owns every server in their network which leads to complete control over speeds and security. The VPN furthers uses 256-bit AES encryption to protect users and zero-knowledge DNS which ensures their systems don’t retain any logs of what you are doing online.

You also enjoy a variety of encryption protocols including L2TP/IPsec, OpenVPN and Chameleon. VyprVPN adds an extra layer of protection with their NAT Firewall.

VyprVPN and GoldenFrog are based in Switzerland.

This enables them to offer the best privacy because their data and any customer data is protected by the Swiss data laws.

Switzerland does not belong to Five Eyes or 14 eyes surveillance.

All things considered, VyprVPN is a great VPN online anonymity and unblocking streaming services.  

Key Features

  • Multiplatform support
  • Zero-logs policy
  • Worldwide server network
  • Kill switch
  • Multiple encryption protocols
  • NAT Firewall
  • WireGuard
  • P2P/torrenting allowed
  • 24/7 customer support

Pros

  • User friendly
  • Fast server speeds
  • Free service add-ons like cloud storage
  • No throttling
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Unblocks streaming sites
  • No third-party servers
  • Zero-knowledge DNS
  • 5 simultaneous device connections

Cons

  • Small server network
  • No anonymous payment option

Pricing

VyprVPN offers three payment options:

1-Month Plan: $12.95/month

12-Month Plan: $3.75/month billed annually

24-Month Plan: $2.50/month billed every 24 months

There is No Free Trial. Instead you get a Risk-Free 30-day money-back guarantee with each payment option. You can cancel your subscription at any time.  

15. Buffered VPN

Founded in 2013 and officially launched in 2016, Buffered VPN is now Encrypt.me. This is after two companies merged to form Encrypt.me.

The service is based in Hungary and maintains a small network of 40 servers. Buffered supports UDP and TCP but uses UDP as default.

The service has apps for Android, MacOS, Windows, iOS and some Wi-Fi routers.

One of the best features on BufferedVPN is the ‘Firewall Test’ feature. This scans both UDP and TCP ports to show you the ports that are available for you to connect from.

This is a very unique feature if you want to bypass firewalls and other restricted networks. It helps you pick the best ports so that you enjoy the best performance.

What is more is that the VPN offers unlimited bandwidth, unrestricted P2P support and UDP/TCP switching.

BufferedVPN is ideal for a group of friends, family or a small office. This is thanks to their unlimited bandwidth and support for 5 simultaneous device connections.

There are also many payment plans to pick from. The main downsides are the VPN keeps logs and there are no mobile apps.

Key Features

  • TCP/UDP switching
  • OpenVPN protocol
  • Firewall Test
  • P2P support
  • 128-bit AES SSL algorithm
  • DNS leak protection
  • Supports all major operating systems
  • Online support center

Pros

  • User friendly
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Fast servers
  • 5 simultaneous device connections
  • Geo-restrictions bypassing
  • Allows torrenting

Cons

  • No Kill Switch
  • Small server network
  • Keeps logs
  • Only supports OpenVPN

Pricing

BufferedVPN has five payment options:

Weekly Pass: $3.99 per pass for a week

Subscriptions: $9.99/month or $99.99/year. The plan is perfect for business and travel.  

Families: $12.99/month or $149.99/year. Secure up to 5 family members with unlimited devices and data.

Team: Starting at 2 members at $7.99; $15.98/month. Centrally manage accounts and billing.

BufferedVPN has a 2 weeks Free Trial, no credit card needed. You also get a 30-day money-back guarantee.  

Try Encrypt.Me/Buffered VPN

16. TorGuard VPN

TorGuard VPN has built a name for itself as one of the most reliable VPNs on the market. The VPN currently has more than 3,000 servers located in over 50 countries.

They offer a strong encryption, unblocks websites and bypasses censorship. TorGuard VPN has apps for Windows, Linux, Mac, iOS and Android. You also get browser extensions for Firefox and Chrome.

One of the best features on TorGuard VPN is the client’s location picker. When searching for the most reliable server, you can filter the list of servers by continent, distance from you or how often you have used the location.

The second unique feature is the Stealth Mode (‘sTunnel’ in Windows client) which reroutes traffic through other usual ports.

This is the feature that enables TorGuard VPN to overcome geo-location restrictions better than most VPNs.

You will also enjoy customizable encryption which ranges from no-encryption so you enjoy fast speeds to AES-256-bit encryption. This enables you to balance your need for speed and security whenever you want.

While it is not the oldest VPNs around, TorGuard VPN has many great features that enable it to compete well with giants like Express VPN and CyberGhost VPN. It works great in maintaining online anonymity, torrenting, and unblocking streaming services.

Key Features

  • Port selection and forwarding
  • 3,000 servers in 50 countries
  • Router support
  • Kill Switch
  • 256-bit AES
  • Steal mode (‘sTunnel’ in Windows client)
  • Browser extension
  • OpenVPN support
  • Multiplatform support
  • Allows torrenting

Pros

  • 5 simultaneous device connections
  • Zero-logs policy
  • Decent server speed
  • Large server network
  • Expert-level configurability
  • Unblocks streaming services

Cons

  • Based in the US
  • Clumsy user interface 

Pricing

TorGuard VPN has three paid plans and one Free anonymous email plan:

Anonymous VPN: $9.99/month. You get x8 connections allowed, OpenConnect SSL based VPN and TorGuard Stealth proxy.

Business VPN: $69.99/month. The unique feature is a dedicated account manager, IP management and White Label TG software.

Streaming Bundle: $21.98/month. The unique feature is anonymous VPN access, anonymous Proxy access, and x2 streaming IPs.

With all paid plans you enjoy Risk Free Money-Back Guarantee.

Try TorGuard VPN

17. Overplay VPN

Overplay VPN is not as popular but it is a decent VPN worth giving a try. It was founded in 2004 in the UK.

Currently, the VPN has apps for virtually all mainstream devices and works great with Netflix.

While it only has 650+ servers in 70+ locations and 50+ countries, it makes up for this with decent speeds.

The most unique feature on Overplay VPN is that it offers two packages: SmartDNS as a standalone and SmartDNS + VPN.

SmartDNS helps outskirt censorship without hiding your IP or encrypting your connection. No encryption means faster speeds.

SmartDNS + VPN, on the other hand, bypasses censorship, hides your IP address, provides military grade encryption, anonymous browsing and unlimited P2P traffic.

This means if you want to enjoy the benefits of bypassing geo-restrictions alone without sacrificing on speed, SmartDNS is what you should go with.

Whether you are searching for a high level of encryption or just want to enjoy online freedom, Overplay will certainly handle that for you.

To better protect your privacy, the VPN does not keep logs.

The three major limitations on this VPN are that it lacks a Kill Switch, doesn’t support tunneling and you can only connect one device per subscription.

Other than that, the VPN is quite reliable.

Key Features

  • OpenVPN, L2TP and PPTP protocols
  • AES encryption
  • P2P allowed
  • SmartDNS
  • Multiplatform support
  • 24/7 customer support

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • 3 simultaneous connections
  • Fast server speed
  • Unblocks streaming services
  • Unlimited P2P traffic
  • Zero logs
  • Unlimited server switching
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Military-grade encryption
  • Multiple VPN protocols

Cons

  • Only one simultaneous connection
  • No Kill Switch 

Pricing

Overplay offers two payment plans:

SmartDNS: $4.95/month or $49.95/year. You enjoy unrestricted web browsing and parental controls.

SmartDNS + VPN: $9.95/month or $99.95/year. The package includes no ISP throttling, high speed connections and easy setup for up to 3 devices.

With both plans, you get a 5-day money-back guarantee.

Try Overplay VPN

18. Mullvad VPN

Mullvad is a truly privacy oriented VPN provider based in Sweden. While the VPN only has 600+ servers in 58 locations and 36 countries, it manages to offer the best in browsing freedom and anonymity.

The company has its own client for Linux, Windows, Mac, Android and iOS.

Mullvad is one of the few VPNs on the market that makes anonymity and privacy a top priority.

They require minimal information from you. You don’t need to enter your email address or provide a password. The company generates a unique code to use as your username. 

This is also the only VPN provider to accept payments in cash. The best thing about anonymous signup is that nothing is logged that can be connected to a specific account.

The app is also packed with high-end technologies including industrial grade encryption and multiple layers of DNS as well as IPv6 leak protection.

The app also offers multiple options for you to bypass geo-restrictions.

Mullvad does a lot of things correctly. Their privacy policy is more transparent than that of other VPNs and the VPN has a good stance on consumer security and privacy.

Despite the small server network, the VPN offers decent speeds and high quality privacy tools.

Key Features

  • OpenVPN support
  • P2P torrenting allowed
  • Port forwarding and selection
  • SOCKS5 proxy connections
  • Wire Guard support
  • Private DNS servers
  • Multi-hop VPN
  • 256-AES encryption
  • Obfsproxy and Shadowsock bridges
  • Kill Switch
  • SSL and SSH tunneling

Pros

  • Easy to register
  • 5 simultaneous device connections
  • Decent server speed
  • Anonymous signup
  • Zero logs
  • Great privacy policy
  • Strong encryption
  • Works in China

Cons

  • Cramped desktop interface
  • Small server network
  • Limited preferences and features
  • Not optimized for streaming

Pricing

Mullvad offers one flat rate of $5.50/month so you pay as you go. You can pay using multiple payment options including PayPal, credit card, Bitcoin and Bitcoin cash. You also get a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Try Mullvad VPN

19. Windscribe VPN

Windscribe VPN is popular for its free version which offers a 10GB monthly data limit. The VPN is based in Ontario, Canada and offers more than 500 servers in over 60 countries.

While Canada is part of Five Eyes, Windscribe has a non-intrusive logging policy. The only data the company keeps is your username, password, email and payment method. They never store your original IP address or the websites you have visited.  

The most unique feature on Windscribe is the security suite known as R.O.B.E.R.T. This is a customizable blocker that keeps you safe from a wide range of invasive and harmful content.

With this feature, you can select a variety of content to block including malware trackers, crypto-miners and advertisements.

Blocking these features on the web further helps improve speed and keeps you safer online. R.O.B.E.R.T can also be used to block things like gambling sites, sexually explicit content as well as social networks.

Windscribe is also able to bypass China’s Great Firewall. The stealth VPN mode masks your OpenVPN traffic by hiding inside a secure TLS tunnel.

Overall, the VPN has so much to offer. You can stream Netflix US from anywhere in the world, torrent as much as you want and enjoy the many privacy features that come with the VPN.

Key Features

  • R.O.B.E.R.T.
  • Multiplatform support
  • Torrenting/P2P allowed
  • OpenVPN
  • Kill Switch available
  • 256-bit AES encryption
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Ad Blocker
  • Extensions for Firefox and Chrome
  • DNS leak protection
  • 24/7 customer support

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Bypasses Netflix restrictions
  • Works in China
  • No identifying logs
  • Strong VPN protocols and encryption
  • Unlimited simultaneous connections

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Based in Canada
  • Unfair refund policy

Pricing

Windscribe has three payment options:

Monthly Plan: $9.00/month

Yearly Plan: $49.00/year

Build a Plan: You get billed for the servers you select. The option is ideal if you are on a tight budget.

Windscribe further offers a Free version. You only have 3-days to request a refund.

Try Windscribe VPN

20. ProtonVPN

ProtonVPN was started as a service to improve the security of ProtonMail. It currently has more than 1,000 servers spread across 54 countries in 1,229 locations.

The service is also available on MacOS, Windows, Linux, iOS and Android.

The best thing is ProtonVPN is managed and operated by Proton Technologies AG which is based out of Switzerland.

One of the things that make ProtonVPN stand out is that it offers the best encryption and protocols for the device you are using.

Windows applications only support OpenVPN (both UDP and TCP). Mobile devices, on the other hand, only support IKEv2.

The encryption AES-256 and key exchanges are achieved with 4096-bit RSA. Message authentication is through HMAC with SHA384. This is one of the highest levels of security you can get on a VPN.

All things considered, ProtonVPN has a robust range of features to protect you online.

The VPN also supports torrenting, has a strict no-logs policy and bypasses China’s Great Firewall.

ProtonVPN has most of the advanced features you need to stay safe and anonymous online.

Key Features

  • OpenVPN and IKEv2
  • 256-bit AES encryption
  • Kill Switch
  • Split Tunneling
  • Multiplatform support
  • DNS leak protection
  • Torrenting/P2P support
  • TOR support
  • Unlimited bandwidth

Pros

  • Easy to install and use
  • 10 simultaneous device connections
  • Apps are open source and audited
  • No log files
  • Unblocks Netflix US
  • Industry standard protocol and encryption
  • Free version available
  • Decent server speed
  • Works in China

Cons

  • Only offers email support tickets
  • No ad blocker

Pricing

ProtonVPN offers three payment plans and a Free plan.

Free: €0/month. 1 VPN connection and servers in 3 countries. No logs and no ads.

Basic Plan: €4.00/month. 2 VPN connections, servers in 50 countries, P2P/BitTorrent support and no logs/no ads.

Plus Plan: €8.00/month. You get all Basic Plan features and 5 VPN connections, secure core VPN, TOR over VPN and access to blocked content.

Visionary Plan: €24.00/month. You get all plus plan features plus 10 VPN connections and ProtonMail Visionary account.  

You also get a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Try ProtonVPN

21. VPN Unlimited

Headquartered in New York, VPN Unlimited currently has more than 500 servers spread across 80+ locations.

While being US based might not thrill you, the VPN is rated among the best providers in the world. It competes well with top rated VPNs like CyberGhost, ExpressVPN and NordVPN.

KeepSolid Wise is the most unique feature on VPN Unlimited. This is a special extension to OpenVPN tunneling protocol which makes it close to impossible to detect.

The feature enables you to slip though government firewalls by making traffic look like any other standard connection.

The KeepSolid Wise is available on iOS, Mac, Windows, Linux and Android.

KeepSolid VPN Lite is available too. This is a free app offering access to 10 global servers. Moreover, VPN Unlimited offers some of the highest levels of encryption protocols through OpenVPN on Linux, Windows and Android and L2TP/IPsec and PPTP on Mac and iOS.

VPN Unlimited unblocks and offers reliable streaming of Netflix US and Canada. They also have 5 servers dedicated for torrenting. All things considered, this is a VPN worth trying. You also get a 7-day free trial.

Key Features

  • KeepSolid Wise
  • OpenVPN, L2TP/IPsec and PPTP
  • P2P allowed
  • AES 256-bit encryption
  • Multiplatform support
  • DNS firewall
  • Compatible with TOR
  • 24/7 live chat support

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • 10 simultaneous device connections
  • Free KeepSolid VPN Lite
  • Zero-logs policy
  • Unblocks streaming services
  • Unlimited traffic and connection speed
  • Military-grade encryption
  • Decent server speeds
  • Lifetime subscription is available

Cons

  • US-based
  • Limited torrenting capabilities 

Pricing

VPN Unlimited offers multiple subscription plans.

1 Month Plan: $9.99/month for 5 devices or $14.99/month for 10 devices

1 Year Plan: $5.00/month for 5 devices or $7.50/month for 10 devices. Billed annually.

3 Years Plan: $2.78/month for 5 devices or $4.17/month for 10 devices. Billed once for 3 years.

Lifetime Plan: $299.99. One-time payment.  

You also enjoy a 7-day Free Trial and 30-day money-back guarantee.

Try VPN Unlimited

How Does A VPN Work?

VPN’s mask your device’s online activity by routing your internet connection through the VPN service’s private server.

This means that for all intents and purposes, your footprint and activity is anonymized as your IP address is hidden.

You can think of VPN’s as a middleman that allow you to access information in a fully encrypted fashion while masking your identity.

The good thing is – even if your data is intercepted and tracked, it is unreadable to the hackers.

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Source: NameCheap

What Are The Advantages Of Using A VPN? 

VPN’s offer numerous advantages beyond just keeping your information and data safe from hackers. Here is a non exhaustive list of benefits.

Access restricted content

We’ve all been in that spot where we wanted to watch a specific video but the dreaded message “Content Not Available In Your Country” shows up.

Using VPN’s we can effectively bypass this block by masking our location.

We simply pick the server we want to browse from and we should be able to access the restricted content.

Increased security

VPN’s protect your information and data from the eyes of hackers.

VPNs act as a middlemen that prevent your IP address from being located.

Typically internet service providers (ISP) can view sensitive assets such as personal information and passwords – with VPNs this data is encrypted so it is unreadable by the ISPs.

Relatively cheap

Compared to other alternatives such as dedicated private proxy servers, VPNs are typically much cheaper.

There is also a wide spectrum of different features and price points for VPNs so even if you are tight on cash there is bound to be a solution to suit your needs.

There are even some free providers due to the intense competition in the space.

Multiple locations and devices

Most VPN providers have servers located in multiple countries.

Furthermore, some VPNs are entirely browser or extension based which means that they can be used on multiple operating systems and devices.

This makes it easy to use any server on any device with just the press of a button.

Malware protection

VPN’s protect you from invasive malware programs that attempt to take over your computer.

They do this by masking your identity and location ensuring that you can browse the web safely without fear of your computer getting hijacked.

Summary

Data breaches are becoming more and more common – it’s important to make sure you secure personal information and protect it. VPN’s provide a cost-effective and easy way of doing this.

Beyond just providing you access to restricted content, they also give you peace of mind through anonymity.

Selecting the right VPN protects your network and your web host from malicious attackers, the government and of course unwanted listeners.

I hope that this list has given you more clarity on what the best VPN service is for your needs.

Let me know in the comments what you went with in the end. 

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Eddie

About Eddie

I launched this blog in 2020 to share my knowledge and experience on online businesses.

My business software reviews are based on personal experience and come from a real person not a faceless brand.

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