• October 2, 2023

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The best VPN service in 2021 | Tom's Guide

The best VPN service in 2021 | Tom’s Guide

Best Picks
(Image credit: ExpressVPN)
The best VPN – short for ‘virtual private network’ – is software traditionally used to help keep you anonymous online and virtually change your location. As they’ve become more well-known, though, countless users are discovering there’s more to VPN than just staying private securing your sensitive information and avoiding trackers to circumventing content blocks on Netflix, Amazon Prime, and sports streaming sites, you don’t have to be a hardcore techy to appreciate their potential. Plus, the top providers have apps for just about any device, so even if you’re mobile-first, you can stay secure and stream more with only problem is choosing the best VPN for the job – we’re here to help you find a balance between speed, streaming, security and, of course, value for is a VPN? In its simplest form, the best VPN works by tunneling your connection through its own encrypted servers, which hides your activity from your ISP and anyone else who might be watching – including the government, advertisers and nefarious hackers. This also allows you to access restricted sites, stream a wider range of shows, and avoid network example, if Facebook or YouTube is banned at your school, you’ll be able to access them through your VPN. If you’re traveling to the UAE or China, you can use a VPN to access restricted sites and apps you use daily, like Gmail and WhatsApp. And, if you’re on holiday anywhere outside your home country, you can use the best VPN to access the Netflix shows you love, as they may be unavailable ‘s the best VPN? The competition to be crowned best VPN gets tougher every day, but there’s still a clear winner that’s head and shoulders above the rest – of ExpressVPN’s main assets is that it’s incredibly easy to use on any platform – be it your phone, PC, or even PlayStation. It also performed well in our streaming tests, easily getting around the geo-restrictions of Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime Video – and, because it provides such swift connections, you’ll be able to watch in HD or 4K just like top it off, you’ll also be covered by a 30-day money-back guarantee which means you can effectively test-drive the service and its 3, 000+ servers for a whole month before you buy – you can find out all the details in our full independent ExpressVPN review. 1. ExpressVPN – hands-down the best VPN available
We think ExpressVPN is the best VPN on the market, with great performance in just about every area. Its 30-day money-back guarantee lets you trial the service risk-free, and Tom’s Guide readers can claim three months free – plus 1 year free of backup software Deal2. NordVPN – big name offers serious security
Arguably the biggest name in the VPN industry, it’s quite likely you’ll have heard of NordVPN. Thankfully it’s not all hot air, as Nord delivers a premium service that’s hugely secure and great for streaming – and at just $3. 30 a month plus three months free, it’s decent value, Deal3. Surfshark – best-value VPN on the market
If you’re after a premium service for as little money as possible, Surfshark is perfect. With top streaming performance and intuitive apps on just about every device, it’s the best VPN on a budget at just $2. 49 a month – and its unlimited connections policy will cover all your DealGet an in-depth look at the best VPNs of 2021(Image credit: ExpressVPN)1. ExpressVPN – The very best VPN overall SpecificationsNumber of servers: 3, 000+Speeds: UnlimitedVPN locations: 160 in 94 countriesMaximum devices supported: 524/7 live chat: Yes30 day money back guarantee: YesReasons to buy+Among the fastest VPNs out there+Wide device support+30-day free trial+Ace 24/7 support serviceReasons to avoid-Limit of five simultaneous devicesExpressVPN is simply the best VPN available thanks to its fantastic apps, ease of use, superb speeds, excellent 24/7 customer-service support, and wide compatibility across devices. You can use the service on Mac, Windows, iOS, Android, even Linux or BlackBerry, and you can also install it on your Android TV, games console, or your home a kill switch, split tunneling, DNS leak protection and military-grade encryption as standard, your data will stay secure, plus its no-logging policy assures your anonymity in any situation. And, Express’s stellar 24/7 live chat support will help if anything goes if you’re not interested in all that techy stuff, though, Express is perfect for newbies and experts alike. You’ll be able to change settings if you want to, but you can also get started with a single watching US Netflix when you’re abroad? Express can sort you out with that –plus any other regional library you might be interested it. It’ll also get you stuck into Hulu, BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime Video, HBO Go, Sky Go, and terms of the product, the only thing close to a criticism we have of ExpressVPN is the fact that it’s a little pricier than the competition. However, a Tom’s Guide exclusive is now offering 1 year of cloud backup software Backblaze for free with every 12-month ExpressVPN plan. If that’s something you’re looking for, it offers an excellent alternative to runner-up NordVPN’s NordLocker add-on, and actually works out a little cheaper in the long the sake of impartiality, it’s worth mentioning a couple of notable occurrences in ExpressVPN’s recent timeline. First up, the provider was bought by Kape Technologies, and Kape’s background isn’t the cleanest. However, we’ve seen no evidence that this will impact Express’s privacy policy or day-to-day usage – it’s more likely that Kape’s financial backing will allow the team to develop more useful tools like Lightway. A couple of days later, it was announced that ExpressVPN’s CIO was involved in a hacking scandal (the link will take you to our sister site TechRadar). ExpressVPN defends the hire, stating that having someone onboard with such a history allows them to develop better defences against similar threats. These occurrences haven’t changed our decision to name ExpressVPN the best VPN on the market thanks to its unrivalled performance in most areas, and the low perceived risk of either event. We’ll certainly be paying close attention to any new developments, though. However, if you’re not sure, the 30-day money-back guarantee gives you plenty of time to test so you can make sure it’s right for you. If it isn’t, you’ll be able to get a refund – no questions three months FREE of the very best VPN on the market
Tom’s Guide readers can claim both 1 year of Backblaze and three months free on a 12 month plan with ExpressVPN – that’s 15 months for the price of 12. But if you want to try before you buy, you’ll still be covered by that 30-day money-back guarantee to make sure it’s the right VPN for you.
View Deal2. NordVPN – The best VPN for security features SpecificationsNumber of servers: 5, 400+Server locations: 80+ in 59 countriesMaximum devices supported: 624/7 live chat: Yes30 day money back guarantee: YesReasons to buy+Excellent focus on security+Fresh security audit in mid-2020+NordLynx delivers incredible speeds+Tons of serversReasons to avoid-Mobile apps can be awkwardIf you’re on this page then you probably know about NordVPN – and yes, the security giant you’ve seen on TV is one of the best VPN services around. While it can’t quite match ExpressVPN in terms of all-round excellence, it’s hot on its heels and provides a seriously secure, privacy-focused experience – and you can find out more in our full NordVPN ‘ll be covered by military-grade encryption alongside all the usual extra features we’ve come to expect, like a kill switch and a choice of protocols to let you choose if you want extra speed or safety. You’ll also have a great selection of apps for pretty much any device you want apps do present one of Nord’s downsides though – on desktop and larger screens the map-based interface is quite useful, but on handheld devices it’s much more clumsy than a server list. While you can access one with a swipe, we’d like to see one ‘s a small quibble, though, because otherwise NordVPN provides a great experience. You’ll be able to stream overseas Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu and more, plus its excellent connection speeds won’t leave you was subject to a well-publicised data breach in 2018, but has taken great steps to remedy this, not least a second full independent audit in two years of its internals and no-logs policy. All this comes together to make an excellent VPN service that only misses out on the top spot due to a couple of app issues – and the fact that the competition is so big on NordVPN’s longest plan
If you want to save some money when signing up to Nord, you’re best off going for its longest two-year plan. You’ll get the best price on offer, plus the standard 30-day money-back guarantee that allows you to test the service before you Deal(Image credit: Surfshark)3. Surfshark – The best cheap VPN on the market SpecificationsNumber of servers: 3, 200+Server locations: 100+ in 65 countriesMaximum devices supported: Unlimited24/7 live chat: Yes30 day money back guarantee: YesReasons to buy+Unlimited devices supported+Reliable and quick connections+Longer plans are great value+Great for streamingReasons to avoid-Apps are fairly simpleIn our Surfshark review, we found that the BVI-based VPN delivered a seriously powerful product for less than half the price of some leading competitors. No, you won’t have every single bell and whistle, but for those that just want reliable internet security and speeds good enough to stream with, it’s got all you they’re not incredibly in-depth, Surfshark’s apps look great and are easy to use. All you need to do is tap the quick connect button and you’re off. You’ll also be able to get apps for plenty of devices including Android, iOS, Windows, Mac and that note, with Surfshark you really will be able to protect every device you own, because it offers unlimited simultaneous connections with a single subscription. That means you can cover 10, 20, even 50 devices with one rfshark’s no slouch in the privacy department, with a kill switch, split tunneling and AES-256 encryption. If you want seriously powerful configuration in your VPN then it’s probably not for you, but it’ll keep you secure – it wouldn’t be on this list if it wouldn’ is what makes Surfshark really shine, though. Right now, signing up to a 24-month plan works out at just $2. 49 a month – and you can cover everything you own with one plan. It’s that simple. A thoroughly premium service at a bargain price
Surfshark is a great option for those who want a simple VPN to set and forget. It’s perfect for streaming almost any service, the apps are super simple, and you’ll get a 30-day money-back guarantee as standard so you can test-drive the VPN before you Deal(Image credit: Hotspot Shield)4. Hotspot Shield – The best VPN for top speeds SpecificationsNumber of servers: 3, 200+Server locations: 130+ in 80+ countriesMaximum devices supported: 524/7 live chat: Yes45 day money back guarantee: Yes (Plus limited free version)Reasons to buy+Decent free version+Seriously quick+Servers in China and Russia+Great for streamingReasons to avoid-Some minor session logging-No manual setup on routers it’s probably best-known for its free VPN, our Hotspot Shield review found that its paid-for VPN really delivers the goods. It offers incredibly fast VPN speeds available for a fair price, and it’s pretty easy to use as those maximum speeds come with a few drawbacks – namely the fact that Hotspot’s proprietary protocol Catapult Hydra can’t be manually set up on routers like OpenVPN can – the service has really improved since we last tested it and has now become one of our most highly recommended provements include the addition of a Linux app, a tasty price-cut for the annual plan, and a boost in the number of countries covered (up to over 80, now). You’ll also get some freebies – 1Password being the are still a few issues with logging, but if we’re honest they’re not huge. While more data is collected than with, say, ExpressVPN, there’s still nothing here that could potentially link you to your activity – and that’s a compromise many people will be willing to make for speeds of over, if you’re after seriously fast streaming in just about any service, or want to download torrents in safety as quickly as possible, Hotspot Shield is definitely one to up now on the Hotspot Shield website(Image credit: CyberGhost)5. CyberGhost – The best VPN for torrenting SpecificationsNumber of servers: 6, 100+Server locations: 111 in 90 countriesMaximum devices supported: 724/7 live chat: Yes45 day money back guarantee: YesReasons to buy+Wide server spread+Lots of features+45-day money-back guaranteeReasons to avoid-Struggles to access iPlayer-Interface could be betterCyberGhost has a feature-loaded, user-friendly interface, with convenient buttons in the Windows client software for streaming media, torrenting files, protecting your Wi-Fi transmissions and evading censorship – read our CyberGhost VPN review for more streaming and torrenting features are really useful, as it takes out the trial-and-error of testing individual servers to see if they work with Netflix and the like (although iPlayer still poses a problem). While ExpressVPN’s just always seems to work, individual servers of many other providers can drop Netflix support as they get detected, so CyberGhost makes it super easy to get streaming. And, on that note, there are over 6, 100 CyberGhost servers in around 90 countries worldwide, so there’s always a great selection to choose berGhost is also transparent about its company structure, posting photos and bios on its website of everyone from the CEO to the cleaning person, and privacy fanatics will like that the company is based in Romania rather than in the US. Plus, you don’t need to provide your real name to sign up – all you need is a working email address, and you can pay in Bitcoin to remain nearly CyberGhost’s short plans are amongst the most expensive on the market, it’s one-year plan has recently dropped to a record low of just $1. 99 a berGhost’s performance isn’t quite up there with the best, and the apps are a little fickle at times, but it’s still a top-tier VPN that we strongly up now on the the CyberGhost website(Image credit: Private Internet Access)6. Private Internet Access – Excellent server choice SpecificationsNumber of servers: 32, 000+Server locations: 101 in 78 countriesMaximum devices supported: 1024/7 live chat: Yes30 day money back guarantee: YesReasons to buy+Competitive pricing+Usable on 10 devices at once+Huge amount of servers+Mobile apps are excellentReasons to avoid-WireGuard speeds not up to scratchIn our most recent round of testing, we were seriously impressed with Private Internet Access’s performance, and subsequently it’s earned itself the sixth spot on our best VPN list – check out our Private Internet Access review for all the of the standout features has to be the provider’s vast network of servers – over 32, 000 to be precise. In short, this is the biggest selection of servers available from any consumer VPN provider, and while at the time of writing over 17, 000 of those are in the US alone, it means you’ll have no problem finding a decent connection in the location you ‘s desktop apps have seen a few tweaks to improve privacy and performance, with encryption tightened, alongside Automation Rules to help you safely change networks when reconnecting. We’ve lost a couple of features like having a choice of handshakes, but in reality these were legacy features that introduced vulnerabilities, and we doubt many users actually made the most of mpared to much of the competition, though, PIA’s mobile VPN apps are stellar. they’re much more in-depth than some other options, are smartly engineered, and have recently been certified by the ioXt Alliance, alongside ExpressVPN’s and NordVPN’s ‘s is decent for unblocking US Netflix, but in our testing it couldn’t get access to more ‘niche’ libraries like Japan or Australia. And, while speeds are certainly usable, they’re not a swift as class leaders. Overall, though, PIA has tightened up its game and is now more of a contender than ever – well worth a up now on the PIA website(Image credit: Windscribe)7. Windscribe – The best VPN Chrome extension SpecificationsNumber of servers: 400Server locations: 110 in 63 countriesMaximum devices supported: Unlimited24/7 live chat: No30 day money back guarantee: NoReasons to buy+Affordable+Unlimited connections+Excellent browser extensionsReasons to avoid-Not the fastest -No live chat supportOur Windscribe review found the provider’s free service that gives users 10GB of data a month very useful, but it also offers a fairly-priced paid service that delivers unlimited data and lets you connect as many devices at once as you like. Most other VPN services permit only five to 10 at a dscribe is compatible with many platforms – including routers and Amazon Fire and Kodi TV set-top boxes. The service offers a great variety of connection options, has a wide geographic reach with hundreds of servers, and presents an appealing, if minimal, user interface. It’s also good for watching overseas Netflix, and has dedicated ‘Windflix servers’ to enable service’s Chrome VPN extension is a standout feature. As one of the best on the market, it offers tons of features and can be used without installing the desktop client – great for work computers of other devices you can’t install software on. For those that do install the desktop client, you’ll notice the brand-spanking Windscribe 2. 0 software has tidied up the interface and offers a few nifty ever, Windscribe’s network performance wasn’t quite as impressive, and in our testing it delivered slower connection times than its competitors. It’s still good enough to stream with, but it’s got nothing on the very fastest providers out can pay for a Windscribe subscription with Bitcoin, you don’t even have to provide an email address, and the service is based in Canada, which may appeal to users wary of US authorities. Overall, for those looking to test out a VPN with a free service and then sign up once you know it works, Windscribe is an excellent option. (Image credit: IPVanish)8. IPVanish – The best VPN for short-term plans SpecificationsNumber of servers: 1, 600+Server locations: 75+ in 52 countriesMaximum devices supported: Unlimited24 live chat: Yes30 day money back guarantee: YesReasons to buy+Excellent introductory prices+Live-chat support+Unlimited connectionsReasons to avoid-Still no WireGuard -Can’t unblock Prime, iPlayerUS-based IPVanish is an old hand in the VPN game, and has always been a favorite for more ‘techy’ users. Its green and black interface certainly looks the part, and with a smart map interface (better than NordVPN’s, in our opinion) and more server info than most, it’s still a great choice – read our full IPVanish review for moreIPVanish has recently increased its server count to 1, 600, and a major hardware update saw all of its servers cards upgraded to 25Gbps models – that might not mean much a change for users right now, but it’s certainly daily use you’ll find IPVanish is fairly quick, delivering acceptable speeds across the board. However, it still hasn’t integrated the new WireGuard protocol, and in this respect it’s not quite up to date. We can’t help but imagine this will be the next thing on the provider’s to-do you’re a Netflix binger, you’ll be pleased to hear that IPVanish has no trouble unblocking the US library from abroad, but unfortunately that’s all you’ll get – other geographic libraries proved out of bounds, as did Amazon Prime and BBC terms of value, IPVanish offers some seriously good introductory offers, especially its monthly VPN plan, and all subscriptions come with an excellent unlimited simultaneous connections policy. However, while it’s still definitely in the top tier of providers, in our last round of testing IPVanish fell behind the curve. It hasn’t dropped to eighth in this guide because it’s a poor service – it’s still very capable – it’s because the competition has upped its game while IPVanish has seemingly stood up now on the IPVanish website(Image credit: ProtonVPN)9. ProtonVPN – The best VPN for free users SpecificationsNumber of servers: 800+Server locations: 50+ in 50 countriesMaximum devices supported: 524/7 live support: No30 day money back guarantee: YesReasons to buy+Unblocks streaming services+Audited, high quality apps+Free option worth tryingReasons to avoid-Expensive-No live chatThanks to improvements made that we outline in our ProtonVPN review, the Swiss service has come more and more to the forefront of our attention of late. It’s a good VPN provider with some real pros that make it a tempting of the standouts is how effective it is at unblocking the catalogues of TV streaming services when abroad. Netflix? No problem. Amazon Prime Video? Easy. BBC iPlayer? A doddle. So, if your main reason for being here is to find a good streaming VPN, then Proton is a decent ever, streaming support is only available on the Plus plan which, to be honest, is a little expensive. On its longest-term contract (two years) you’ll be paying about the same as you would be for ExpressVPN, except you won’t get live chat support and you’ll miss out on over 2, 000 servers you’re somebody who’s likely to need an iPhone VPN or Android VPN, then ProtonVPN’s apps are really a joy to use. They’re basically as feature-filled and easy to use as its desktop must say that we expected faster speeds when we tested Proton’s servers around the world, and if this was improved it’d move the service up a little in our estimations. But, we really love the provider’s commitment to privacy, and features like Secure Core and its rock-solid privacy policy are you just want to give it a go before buying, we’d thoroughly recommend its free version. If you like that, there’s not a huge amount of reasons not to up now on the ProtonVPN website(Image credit: VyprVPN)10. VyprVPN – One of the best VPNs for China SpecificationsNumber of servers: 700+Server locations: 63 countriesMaximum devices supported: 524/7 live support: Yes30 day money back guarantee: YesReasons to buy+Excellent privacy policy+Apps for tons of device+Reportedly works in ChinaReasons to avoid-Slightly below-average speeds-Support articles need workVyprVPN is a useful service that has a lot going for it. A standout of our VyprVPN review is its watertight no-logging policy, which has also been publicly audited. This is a great start if you’re after a VPN to keep your info ‘ll also get wide device support, as Vypr offers a a plethora of apps for pretty much any device you could ask for, including QNAP, TVs and BlackPhone, with additional guides for Blackberry phones, OpenWRT, Boxee and others. However, with only 5 simultaneous connections, you might have to pick and you’re after a blazing fast VPN, though, VyprVPN might disappoint a little. In our tests it performed well in the UK, but in the US it didn’t come close to making the most of our ultra-fast line. Still, it does provide usable speeds, and if you don’t have top tier internet you’re unlikely to notice the differenceWith prices starting from as low as $1. 66 a month it’s also incredible value, but as an all-round package, we’d probably recommend spending a a small amount more for a lot in up now on VyprVPN’s website(Image credit: Future)11. StrongVPN – Smart, effective, and cheap SpecificationsNumber of servers: 950+Server locations: 60+ in 36 countriesMaximum devices supported: 1224/7 live support: Yes30 day money back guarantee: YesReasons to buy+Works on 12 devices at once+Bypasses region locks for Netflix+Has own DNS serviceReasons to avoid-Windows app is bare bones-Limited featuresStrongVPN is a solidly performing VPN, perfect for bypassing region locks. However, in our StrongVPN review we found out that it goes beyond the basics, offering some unique extra benefits while missing out on some more obvious others. A really attractive feature is that you can have up to 12 devices running StrongVPN at once, which is more than enough to cover all of your devices and still have some left over. But this is balanced out by a lack of detail in the client, which doesn’t include information in the server browser or DNS a up a little for that is the excellent monthly and annual prices, alongside the free 250GB of SugarSync storage, and as the storage provider is usually pretty expensive, this is a good deal. However, StrongVPN have missed a trick here, as if you visit the homepage you simply won’t see anything about this partnership until you check out the pricing ‘ll get 24/7 customer support, including a phone line with more limited opening times, plus decent speeds in almost every server location, which makes it pretty usable. For those looking for secure storage plus a simple, easy VPN, StrongVPN isn’t a bad up now on the StrongVPN website(Image credit: TunnelBear)12. TunnelBear – The best VPN for simplicity SpecificationsNumber of servers: 1, 000Server locations: 23Maximum devices supported: 524/7 live chat: No30 day money back guarantee: No (but limited free version)Reasons to buy+Extremely user-friendly+Excellent security guarantees+Very secureReasons to avoid-US-owned-Little in the way of featuresFor those who’ve never used a VPN before – and perhaps are a little intimidated by the prospect – TunnelBear could be the perfect choice. You can start off with a limited free plan (which admittedly only gives you 500MB of data a month), or upgrade to the full service which gives access to over 1, 000 servers in around 20 countries. Check out the full TunnelBear review for more twork performance is acceptable and prices are par for the course. However, the biggest draw is its comprehensive privacy policy and regular audits, which will appeal to you if you’re looking for a VPN to genuinely keep your information safe. TunnelBear’s simplicity, though, is also its downfall. While it’s easy to use, so are ExpressVPN and most of the other top-rated providers, but once you get used to using them, you’ll have the choice to explore in-depth options if you want to. No such luck with TunnelBear, though, as there’s a dearth of ‘ve also got no choice but to run TunnelBear’s client software – unless you use Linux – which may concern some privacy-minded users, and there’s no option to set up TunnelBear connections on routers or other devices. Finally, this tiny Canadian firm is now owned by US antivirus giant McAfee, which may mean TunnelBear is subject to US search, if you’re after a VPN to set and forget, TunnelBear’s not a bad up now on the TunnelBear website(Image credit: Future)13. HideMyAss! (HMA) – Old timer still has clout SpecificationsNumber of servers: 1, 100+Server locations: 290+ in 190 countriesMaximum devices supported: 524/7 live support: Yes30 day money back guarantee: YesReasons to buy+The most countries covered we’ve seen+Fresh no-logs security audit+Unblocks NetflixReasons to avoid-No Prime Video, iPlayer, Disney+-A little priceyStarted way back in 2005 by a boy named Jack Cator, HideMyAss (which has recently shed itself of its schoolboy origins by semi-censoring its name to HMA) has become a stalwart of the VPN industry. With servers in 190 countries, HMA boasts the widest network of any VPN on this list, and with apps for plenty of devices you’ll have plenty of options here. However, those servers are spread a little thin, and we’d like to see each location populated with more than just a has recently undertaken a no-logging audit by VerSprite, which has been passed – although we’re not entirely sure of the true scope of this, and the final report isn’t available to the public to inspect. Still, though, that’s good isn’t perfect for streamers, unless you only watch Netflix – Amazon Prime Video, BBC iPlayer, and Disney+ all remain blocked – but P2P is allowed, so torrenting is still on the table. Overall, it’s a good VPN that it might be worth taking a look up now on the HMA website(Image credit: Bitdefender)14. Bitdefender VPN – Antivirus star takes on VPN SpecificationsNumber of servers: 1, 300+Server locations: 30 countriesMaximum devices supported: 1024/7 live support: Yes30 day money back guarantee: YesReasons to buy+Cheap way to get Catapult Hydra +Simple and to the point+Simple P2P auto-protectionReasons to avoid-An absolute bare minimum of features-Reliant on Hotspot ShieldOne of the best antivirus providers Bitdefender has launched a standalone VPN product. Bitdefender VPN used to come bundled with the antivirus package, but now it’s available on its own, and for a very reasonable around Hotspot Shield’s Catapult Hydra protocol, Bitdefender VPN offers some seriously fast speeds, only matched by Hotspot Shield itself, and this is a huge draw for the VPN. However, that reliance on Hotspot Shield does mean Bitdefender doesn’t have much control over its logging policy, and it’s also impossible to manually set up as a router VPN, too. Bitdefender’s app is about as simple as possible – which will be positive or negative depending on what kind of user you are. You’ll get an on/off button, a choice of 30 or so server locations, a nifty checkbox you c an use to make sure you’re protected if you start P2P traffic, and fully-functional kill switch to protect you from drop-outs. That’s we’d prefer to see a bit more configuration available, for newbies or those looking to get access to Catapult Hydra without paying Hotspot Shield’s premium pricing, Bitdefender VPN could look tempting – read more in our full Bitdefender VPN up now on the Bitdefender website(Image credit: Ivacy)15. Ivacy – Cheap, but not quite perfect SpecificationsNumber of servers: 1, 000+Server locations: 75+ locationsMaximum devices supported: 524/7 live support: Yes30 day money back guarantee: YesReasons to buy+Long plans are super cheap+Tons of extra features+Netflix, Prime, iPlayer, Disney+ unblockedReasons to avoid-Poor speeds-A number of bugs in our testingIf you don’t mind signing up for a massive five years, Ivacy is just about the cheapest VPN you can pick up. At just $1. 41 a month it’s incredibly good value, but you do have to ask yourself: will Ivacy have kept up with the competition in five years’ time? Beyond that, Ivacy is a pretty decent VPN overall, and quite unlike Bitdefender, its apps are full to the brim with interesting additions. You can filter your servers for the best ones to use with any particular streaming provider, save your favorites, choose between a number of protocols, and the app even claims to scan downloaded files for viruses. You’ll also get a kill switch and split ever, there are a few usability issues that we weren’t hugely impressed with. Automatic server selection didn’t often give us the server we’d usually choose, and Streaming Mode threw up a host of problems like hidden IP addresses and unswitchable servers. Plus, while we know it’s cheap, we didn’t appreciate being served ads in a commercial product. Overall though, you can’t sniff at that price, and if that’s your only concern, Ivacy might be for up now on the Ivacy website^ Back to the top(Image credit: Anton Shaparenko/Shutterstock)Best VPN FAQHow do I choose the best VPN service? Choosing the best VPN for can be a tricky process – that’s why we’ve put together this comprehensive guide. However, for most people, we’d recommend our #1 VPN ExpressVPN as the best choice.
It works great as a Netflix VPN, a torrenting VPN, and even a China VPN, so whatever you need your VPN to do, it’s got you covered – all the while keeping you protected with its rock-solid encryption.
If you’re after a cheap VPN, we’d also recommend bargain VPN Surfshark as a great option. It’s not as fully-featured a ExpressVPN, but now available for just $2. 49 a month it’s a little more affordable.
As a middle ground, fan-favorite NordVPN is also useful. It offers serious security for a decent price, and has apps for tons of do you test VPNs? When testing VPNs, we check every aspect that might be of concern. To begin with, we look at what personal details a service needs, and any essential features like encryption. Then we consider pricing, and whether money-back guarantees are on offer, and whether it works on other operating systems as a Mac VPN or Linux VPN as well as on Windows.
During the physical testing, we test speeds over a number of servers, check for DNS leaks, test kill switch functionality plus any and all other additional features, and measure connection time and if the apps crash.
Finally, we review how easy the apps are to use, and test the services on desktop and mobile devices. Is it
The best VPN service 2021 | TechRadar

The best VPN service 2021 | TechRadar

A VPN helps to make you more anonymous online, encrypts your internet use and lets you effectively trick your laptop or mobile device into thinking it’s in another location it’s the versatility of the best VPNs that have made them such a game-changing bit of kit for laptops, desktops, tablets, smartphones, streaming devices, smart TVs – even games you’re already in the know about what VPNs are and so, this is the place to discover mini reviews of the best VPNs in 2021 following our most recent round of in-depth testing… 2021’s best VPN services1. ExpressVPN – best VPN service in the world
ExpressVPN just can’t be knocked off its perch at the head of the top VPN table. It ticks all of the boxes: fast server connections, serious security smarts, ridiculously easy to use, ace customer support – even free cloud backup thrown in. It’s the very best around and you can try it for 30-days risk-free.
View Deal2. NordVPN – the biggest name in the business
NordVPN is jam-packed with features, unblocks loads of streaming services and boasts extra privacy perks like ‘Double VPN’ security and an independently audited no-log policy. And despite the quality on offer, the pricing gets really reasonable if you sign up for a multi-year plan.
View Deal3. Surfshark – easy to use VPN that’s great value
If you’re more concerned about grabbing a bargain than going for the all out best above, then Surfshark should be on your shortlist. From just $2. 50 USD/£2/$AU3. 50 per month it’s a fantastic, premium option that’s super simple to use and has become a TechRadar favorite.
View DealWhile if you’re entirely new to the world of VPN services, you’ve come to the right guide. Here, you’ll get a full explainer of what they are, what they do, how they work and why they’re such handy, affordable everyday tools for your computer, smartphones and is a VPN? VPN is short for ‘virtual private network’ and is a piece of software that allows you to use the internet via secure, encrypted many, getting a VPN service will be all about privacy. You may want to use them to help keep your online life completely anonymous from prying eyes of your ISP (handy for keen torrenters) or even your because the best VPNs also let you change your IP address to one in a completely different city or country, these services have taken on a much wider use. VPNs are fantastic for streamers, for example, who want to have access to a whole world of shows and films, or want to watch a sporting event somewhere you ordinarily can’ if you’re on holiday and find your favorite app is banned (think about some of the internet censorship in Cuba, Turkey, China – even Canada), an online VPN will let you use the internet in the way you’ve become you’ll find handy VPN reviews of all the best services on the market – with services like Netflix and states such as Russia getting increasingly aggressive against VPNs, it’s imperative to know which provider is strongest. While further down the page there’s stacks more information about the best VPN services of 2021 in full:(Image credit: ExpressVPN)1. ExpressVPN The outright best VPN service for speed, privacy and unblockingWorks on: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux | Streaming sites unblocked: Netflix, YouTube, Amazon, Hulu | 24/7 support: Yes | Trial period: 30 days | Number of servers: 3, 000+ | Server locations: 160 | Countries: 94 | Maximum devices supported: 5Top marks across the boardEasy to run on almost any platformEnterprise-level encryptionSpeedy VPN servers in 90+ countries Superb 24/7 live customer support Fewer simultaneous connections than someSome recent controversyGet TechRadar’s #1 rated VPN risk-free and with 3 months extra freeWhen we completed our latest round of in-depth VPN reviews this year ExpressVPN once again came out on top of the pile. It impressed in every test we threw at it and the 5-star rating we’ve given the VPN service is testament to the fact it can barely be improved let’s get in to some specifics. It starts well right from the off, as you you’ll immediately note that ExpressVPN gives you the choice of over 3, 000 servers in 160 locations across 94 five simultaneous connections will be more than enough for most subscribers (although most other VPN services on this list to permit more) and in addition to fantastic apps on Windows, Mac, Android, iOS and Linux (and dedicated extensions for Chrome and Firefox), it’s also really easy to use on the likes of Apple TV, Roku, Amazon Fire Stick, smart TVs, PlayStation, Xbox and routers, service already used industry-standard encryption and a choice of various other protocols (including IKEv2, OpenVPN and L2TP/IPsec) to keep your data safe. But perhaps most exciting is that it has now begun rolling out its very own Lightway protocol that seeks to increase speed and reliability even away from the numbers and specifications, it’s in our real-life testing where ExpressVPN really shines. For starters, it’s fast. Really fast, with fantastic connection speeds across servers in multiple countries. And that’s even when we’re using the default OpenVPN protocol in our tests – they get even quicker with the aforementioned Lightway option turned also love just how easy to use this service is. That might seem obvious, but not every VPN provider out there has worked out how to make its tools intuitive, regardless of what device you’re using it on. From desktop and mobile, to TV streamers and browser extensions, ExpressVPN is a doddle to set up and operate for both pros and inexperienced users. For many people looking for a VPN, it all comes down to how good a service is at unblocking banned websites/services and getting around TV streaming hurdles. So we check to see whether they can unblock geo-restrictions that stop you watching services like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, BBC iPlayer and Disney+ from abroad – ExpressVPN unlocks them all without a hint of terms of additional features, ExpressVPN goes above and beyond. Bitcoin payments, P2P support, kill switch, DNS leak protection, solid and reliable performance and a clear no-logging policy that’s been verified by independent auditors. It’s all ’s really worth knowing about this VPN provider’s excellent levels of customer support. Its support website is stuffed with detailed guides and tutorials to get you up and running. And if you do have any trouble, 24/7 live chat support is on hand to answer your questions. It really works, too – we got a helpful response from a knowledgeable support agent within a couple of minutes of posting our ankly, we don’t mask the fact of how highly we rate ExpressVPN. It’s very simple… it is the best VPN you can get in virtually every scenario. That said, it would be remiss of us not to talk about ExpressVPN’s rather exciting few days in August 2021. First, it announced that it had been acquired by Kape Technologies, the company that owns CyberGhost and PIA below and has a somewhat chequered history. Then it was revealed that its CIO had been fined for previous hacking allegations. TechRadar’s initial view is that neither incident feels particularly major – although we can see why they could call the provider’s trustworthiness in to question – but we’ll naturally be keeping a vey close eye on things as/if the stories way, you can always take advantage of ExpressVPN’s quibble-free 30-day money back guarantee that you can use like a free trial – not that we imagine you’d need to use the best overall VPN 2021 with 3 months FREE
Our #1 recommended VPN is the one we use ourselves. And the great news is that TechRadar readers get three extra months free when they sign up for an annual plan, as well as a year’s access of unlimited Backblaze cloud backup (worth $60). Plus, you can also give it a try with a 30-day money back guarantee.
View Deal2. NordVPN The biggest name in VPNs is a very close secondWorks on: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux | Streaming sites unblocked: Netflix, iPlayer, YouTube, Amazon, Hulu | 24/7 support: Yes | Trial period: 30 days | Number of servers: 5, 100+ | Server locations: 80+ | Countries: 59 | Maximum devices supported: 6NordLynx protocol is a game changerUnparalleled security smartsBrilliant at unblockingSome great value subscription optionsUser experience could still be improvedNordVPN’s current product matches or beats virtually all of the competition in just about every area. When it comes to our overall title for the best VPN, ExpressVPN should watch its back! For starters, the levels of security NordVPN has to offer have been impressing us for some time now. While it too offers AES-256 as standard, you also have the option to turn on its Double VPN system where all your internet traffic is encrypted not once, but twice. Handy to know where your internet anonymity is paramount like when you’re on public Wi-Fi or, perhaps, actually bests ExpressVPN on pure server count, cranking things up to an eye-watering 5, 000 (in roughly 60 countries) and it allows for one more simultaneous connection at its main competitor above, other features include strong DNS leak protection, kill switches (application-specific and system wide), proxy extensions for Chrome and Firefox browsers, and payment options that include Bitcoin, PayPal and credit cards. And it is also strong on unblocking Netflix and other services – although Brits abroad do have to resort to a workaround to access steps to take are all explained out in one of NordVPN’s myriad troubleshooting articles. Not only are they plentiful, these guides are also really useful. And there’s always chatbot and excellent live customer support on hand 24/7 if you’re still also have a lot of love for Nord’s dedication to putting the tarnishing news of historic data breaches behind it. It now brings in PricewaterhouseCoopers to carry out a thorough audit of its no-logging policy every year’s introduction of the provider’s custom NordLynx protocol was certainly eye-catching. It has helped to make Nord’s connection speeds even faster and more reliable, even from servers that are further afield. That said, this is one category where Express pips it to the we have one other quibble, it would be with the user experience that NordVPN supplies. Just little things like the destination cities not being listed in alphabetical order or searching through menus for specialist task functions left us wishing for tweaks. That’s especially the case when it comes to its otherwise effective mobile apps. But, these are pretty minor minus points and, as with any reviews you’ll find on the internet, we understand that this ultimately comes down to personal rdVPN has a few options available included monthly subscriptions and an excellent value two-year special offer. If you want to give the service a whirl before you commit, NordVPN provides a 30-day money back guarantee. 3. Surfshark One of the best value swimmers in the ocean of VPN servicesWorks on: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux | Streaming sites unblocked: Netflix, iPlayer, YouTube, Amazon, Hulu | 24/7 support: Yes | Trial period: 30 days | Number of servers: 3, 200 | Server locations: 100+ | Countries: 65 | Maximum devices supported: UnlimitedEye-catching priceUnlimited devices coveredA dream to useExcellent unblockingLacks the speeds of the top threeSome functionality missingSurfshark is a VPN service we really like and with a couple of very attractive ‘ll come on to features, spec and the like in a moment. But there’s no getting away from the fact that the main draw here is Surfshark’s scarcely believable pricing. Sign up to its annual plan and the effective monthly cost comes in at less than $2. 50 USD / £2 GBP / $3. 50 that’s for unlimited connections, too. So if you plan to use your VPN on your laptop, desktop (compatible with Windows, Mac and Linux), tablet, a couple of mobile phones (iOS and Android both covered) and Amazon Fire TV Stick for watching overseas TV, the one account will cover you on all of them simultaneously. And theoretically you could even let friends and family members use your sub, the success of this VPN isn’t exclusively based on cost. We’d also let Surfshark’s laid-back and playful branding take some of the credit, which helps to make a potentially scary sounding bit of software look like a really user-friendly you’re somebody who is easily bamboozled and, ultimately, put off by complicated menus and myriad options, Surfshark – like ExpressVPN above – could be the ideal VPN for you. It keeps its interface completely stripped back and free from complication. All you’ll really see are options for ‘Quick connect’ and ‘All locations’, accompanied by a Settings icon, and nothing else at all really. Whether that level of detail (or lack thereof) is a boon or a drawback entirely depends on your all said, when it comes to keeping you and your online identity secure, Surfshark is all business. It has now added the new protocol in town WireGuard to its OpenVPN UDP and TCP and IKEv2 options. In addition, Surfshark boasts a private DNS and an extra security blanket via a double VPN hop. And we found it successfully gets to grips with unblocking geo-restricted access to Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Disney+ and rfshark offers a 30-day money back guarantee, giving you plenty of time to give it a try before committing for a longer where does it lose marks? Not too many places, but competition is tough these days – especially when Express and Nord have managed to improve their server speeds so substantially, while Surfshark’s have remained merely ‘good’. But it always feels like Surfshark is trying to raise its game, and in May 2021 it let independent security consultants Cure53 complete a security assessment to “to thoroughly examine and evaluate the security posture exposed by the Surfshark server” – it ultimately confirmed that there was “a very solid security premise at Surfshark” we’d certainly say that a place in the top three out of the 200+ VPNs we’ve reviewed isn’t bad going, and the above considerations are unlikely to put off the bargain hunters among you. (Image credit: Hotspot Shield)4. Hotspot Shield Massively improved VPN service that has some of the fastest speedsWorks on: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux | Streaming sites unblocked: Netflix, iPlayer, YouTube, Amazon, Hulu | 24/7 support: Yes | Trial period: 45 days | Number of servers: 1, 800+ | Server locations: 110+ | Countries: 80+ | Maximum devices supported: 5Rapid connection speedsSuper-easy to useBetter and better for streamingExcellent exclusive pricingiPhone app could be improvedWould welcome more privacy peace-of-mindHotspot Shield is a premium package gives you full access to 1, 800+ servers in more than 80 countries, support for connecting up to five devices, 24/7 customer support and, of course, absolutely no ads at all. It’s yet more evidence that taking the plunge and paying just a few dollars a month gets you a far superior VPN experience – especially when you read more below about its exclusive pricing just for TechRadar, some of those specs on paper are fairly unspectacular in the context of what some other providers give. But it’s what our in-depth testing revealed that really stands out – and that’s pure speed. If your main consideration when picking a VPN is speed (perhaps you’re a gamer, streamer or torrenter) then Hotspot should be towards the very top of your rformance was a big highlight in our tests, with Hotspot Shield’s proprietary Catapult Hydra protocol helping to deliver some of the fastest and most consistent download speeds we’ve seen and an average of 360-380Mb when using US or UK servers. Speeds remain high to some of the most distant locations, too. Exclusive price: sign up from just $2. 49 / £2. 29 per monthAs well as being able to run the service on devices where you can use its native Windows, Mac, Android or iOS apps, Hotspot has added functionality to support use on routers, Linux and TV streamers, too. A SmartVPN feature – that let’s you select websites on which the VPN will be bypassed – is another welcome addition, especially if you only really wanted to keep your VPN on when shopping, banking, streaming, just want a VPN to help you stream more and varied content? Then this is another area that Hotspot really impresses. In our testing, we found that this service is pretty much on a par with Express and Nord when it comes to unblocking geo-restricted apps and services. So from watching foreign Netflix catalogs, to accessing HBO Max from outside the US, to using social media apps that your school or office might block, Hotspot Shield is a reliable Hotspot uses 2021 to bring in some independent auditors to verify its logging practices, we’d be happier still. Especially as the provider does admit to logging VPN sessions, bandwidth, domains accessed and IP addresses. All of these are reasoned out on Hotspot’s website, but we’d welcome an auditor’s view on things. There’s also room for improvement on its iOS app, which just doesn’t quite match the high quality desktop or Android bscribe for more than just a month at a time, and Hotspot Shield becomes one of the best priced premium VPNs on the market. And if you try it and still aren’t impressed, then there’s a generous 45-day money back guarantee that will let you get your money back without big with TechRadar’s exclusive pricing
You can try one of our current favorite VPNs for 45 days risk free to discover for yourself why we rate it so highly. The biggest savings kick in if you choose to sign up for three years, as it brings the effective monthly cost down to a mere $2. 49 USD / £2. 29 – a price you won’t find anywhere else on the webu0021
View Deal(Image credit: Private Internet Access)5. Private Internet Access A strong all-round VPN with a huge number of serversWorks on: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux | Streaming sites unblocked: Netflix, YouTube, Hulu, Amazon | 24/7 support: Yes | Trial period: 30 days | Number of servers: 10, 000+ | Server locations: 100 | Countries: 78 | Maximum devices supported: 10So many serversu0021Feature-filled appsGood valueNo security auditWireGuard speeds inconsistent in our testingIt may not be quite the fastest VPN, or the cheapest, or the most powerful, but Private Internet Access (often stylized as simply PIA) is still a likeable VPN provider with more than enough features to justify a place on your most notable claim of recent VPN reviews is a huge increase in PIA’s server count. It took things from a mediocre 2, 000ish to an almost unfathomable 30, 000+. The latest count we’re told is more like 10, 000, which still puts it way ahead of the rest when it comes to pure server sure sounds impressive, but it wouldn’t be worth a thing without the usability and security aspects. Fortunately, PIA offers a healthy mix of privacy features and security protocols (including WireGuard) – this extends to its first rate Chrome extension, which adds in the option to block location access, third-party cookies, website referrers and more. Whether you’re intending to use your VPN mostly on Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux or maybe a mix, they’re all reliable, easy to use, with more features than most. That’s not just us saying that either, as the user reviews on the App Store and Play Store are generally really positive. And there’s support here for up to 10 simultaneous connections, so it’s easy to cover pretty much all of your devices on one reasonable subscription. Speaking frankly, in its current state PIA will never get near featuring on our list of the fastest VPNs. It isn’t the slowest around and won’t significantly hold you up for most ‘normal’ web activity. But for gamers looking for an edge, streamers who hate the merest hint of buffering and torrenters not wanting to hang around, maybe you should go from one of the better/faster options on this PIA still does plenty to stand out from the crowd and the pricing beats a lot of the competition – often throwing in free extra months or additional security licences when you sign up for more than a year. (Image credit: CyberGhost)6. CyberGhost Feature-packed clients and impressive configurabilityWorks on: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux | Streaming sites unblocked: Netflix, YouTube, Amazon, Hulu, iPlayer | 24/7 support: Yes | Trial period: 45 days | Number of servers: 7, 000+ | Server locations: 105+ | Countries: 91 | Maximum devices supported: 7Desktop apps have plenty of featuresExcellent performance levelsTorrents are supportedThe odd streaming hiccupNo auditVPN service CyberGhost has been a firm favorite of ours for some time now, and it’s no surprise that it has a user base of over ten million subscribers. The company covers the basics well, with more than 7, 000 servers spread across 90-odd countries, apps for Windows, Mac, iOS and Android, torrents allowed and speedy live chat you’re somebody who will largely be using your VPN on a Windows desktop or laptop, that’s where CyberGhost really shines. Beneath its clean, easy to follow interface lies a sea of fantastic features and functionality. It will quickly connect you to the right server for you if you’re specifically looking to stream or torrent, for extra touches like its Smart Rules panel shows that the engineers at CyberGhost have really put some thought into the user experience. It allows you to automatically connect to your preferred server launch a particular app (such as your default browser in incognito mode) when you boot up your computer. A genuinely useful added need to spend just a bit of time mentioning the speeds CyberGhost demonstrated in our most recent tests. Even before we jumped on the WireGuard protocol, we witnessed some connection speeds that give the likes of NordVPN and ExpressVPN a run for their money. Although further afield (like in New Zealand), these began lagging behind a unblocking has historically been another string suit of CyberGhost’s, but it has been somewhat patchy in recent times. Yes, it can get around geo-restrictions on certain services like Netflix US and Disney+. But it can’t handle others like BBC iPlayer, nor can it get access to exclusive Netflix content in other regions like Canada and the with a meaty 45-day money back guarantee and fair pricing (especially if you’re willing to commit), CyberGhost is still well worth a closer look. With parent company Kape showing more and more ambition in this cybersecurity field, you should be in capable hands of an organisation that continually seeks to push the envelope. (Image credit: Shutterstock)7. Windscribe Reliable VPN service keeps improvingWorks on: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux | Streaming sites unblocked: Netflix, iPlayer, YouTube, Amazon, Hulu | 24/7 support: No | Trial period: N/A – free version available | Number of servers: 400+ | Server locations: 110 | Countries: 63 | Maximum devices supported: UnlimitedUnlimited device connectionsReliable security featuresSpeedy WireGuard protocol supportedFewer servers than competitionWhere’s the live chat support? Windscribe is a trusted name in the realm of VPNs and it delivers a high quality product with plenty going for it. You get clients for Windows, Mac, Android, iOS and Linux, for instance, as well as slick browser extensions for Chrome, Firefox and Opera extensions. A single subscription covers unlimited devices, too, so you can cover them all with reaming Netflix (in some regions), Amazon Prime Video, BBC iPlayer and YouTube via Windscribe was also possible. That makes the provider a sound option for streamers that want to watch overseas content or their own programming from abroad. While Windscribe seems to have put plenty of effort in to maintaining high VPN server speeds, network has locations in 110 cities spread across more than 60 countries, but its 400-odd servers in total are far fewer than what most other providers have on unfortunately, there’s no 24/7 support, so any questions you have might not get answered for a while. That seems like a big miss these days, with all of the big competition offering an on the spot advisor to pick up queries. Similarly, it’s high time it joined the likes of ExpressVPN and NordVPN and got an independent eye in to verify its privacy dscribe doesn’t tick every available box then, then, but the service does have a lot of interesting features. If you’re looking for a new VPN, use the free plan to find out what Windscribe can do for you. The free plan limits you to ten locations but gives you a generous 2GB-10GB data allowance a month. (Image credit: IPVanish)8. IPVanish A really solid VPN solution – but streamers should look elsewhereWorks on: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux | Streaming sites unblocked: Netflix, YouTube, Hulu | 24/7 support: Yes | Trial period: 30 days | Number of servers: 1, 600+ | Server locations: 75+ | Countries: 50+ | Maximum devices supported: UnlimitedOwns and manages its own serversPowerful, configurable appsReliable security featuresPatchy streaming unblockingBelow average speedsIPVanish has been a reliable performer in our VPN tests for years. The service has some impressive stats: 40, 000+ shared IPs, 1, 600+ VPN servers in 70+ locations, unmetered P2P traffic, unlimited simultaneous connections and 24/7 customer support. On the subject of support, we really like that you can access it directly from your Android or iOS app on ‘s something about IPVanish that just feels immediately comforting when you get started. It’s probably the reassuring graphs and charts in the desktop app that does it. But rest assured, it’s not just about looks as IPVanish has the security smarts (AES-256 encryption, kill switch, DNS and IPv6 leak protection) to fit the bill as a great choice for the privacy the Android and iOS apps don’t seem to get updated or refreshed that often, there’s probably a good reason for that – they function really well. The Android VPN app is a particular feather in IPVanish’s cap, with more settings and options than most of the competition and the ability to really configure it to your ideal set the likes of Nord, Express and Hotspot all rolling out their own proprietary security protocols, IPVanish is beginning to look a little bit left behind in terms of modernisation and speeds as we plough on into the 2020s. It doesn’t even offer WireGuard yet. And our latest round of testing showed struggles to unblock Amazon Prime Video, BBC iPlayer and large swathes of Netflix shows, which makes it hard to wholeheartedly recommend if you’re looking to uncover a new world of content to overall, if you need its unbarred simultaneous connections or the power and configurability of its apps, take the plunge with this VPN service. And if somehow you end up unhappy you’re protected by a 30 day money-back guarantee. (Image credit: ProtonVPN)9. ProtonVPN A VPN that does things a little differentlyWorks on: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux | Streaming sites unblocked: Netflix, iPlayer, YouTube, Amazon, Hulu | 24/7 support: No | Trial period: 30 days | Number of servers: 1, 200+ | Server locations: 55+ | Countries: 55 | Maximum devices supported: 5Loads of featuresFree plan with unlimited bandwidthImproving all the timeNot as fast as mostNo live chat support availableProtonVPN is a VPN service that continues to grow in terms of servers (almost doubling its network in the last year), making notable improvements to its clients and apps, and adding new features and all only adds to our opinion of a VPN provider that does things a little differently. There’s nothing revolutionary here, but the service does have plenty of appealing aspects to help it stand out from the crowd. And it’s even begun auditing its apps to show they comply with today’s rigorous privacy standards. On to your desktop clients next please, ‘s based in Switzerland – already feels safer, right? – and offers really stylish apps that are a joy to use and are enhanced by working kill switches and desktop-like features. Pay by Bitcoin, if you like, and enjoy solid P2P support for torrenting and a range of streaming services has also started to improve its streaming skills, too, becoming a reliable provider for getting around geo-restrictions when you’re abroad. It breezed past BBC iPlayer, aces Amazon Prime Video and netted us access to foreign Netflix catalogs without much trouble at all. Although it should be noted that this is only the case if you have a Plus subscription – you won’t get this kind of quality from its free or Basic all ProtonVPN’s plus points this year, it has begun lagging behind the rest when it comes purely to server speed, and it’s yet to adopt WireGuard to help it compete. And, like Windscribe above, it’s high time it hired a few customer support staff to answer queries readily at all times of the day. We also feel just a little bit irked that the 30-day money back guarantee works on a pro-rata basis – if you use it for 15 days, say, you’ll only get a 50% return. Feels like poor form, although at least Proton has a very useful free VPN if you do want to give it a try without any cost ProtonVPN isn’t perfect. It still doesn’t have that many servers or locations, and it’s quite expensive if you need all the features we’ve described here (though a basic plan costs less than $5 a month). This is a powerful and trustworthy service, though, and if that’s your top priority, we’d recommend you take a look. (Image credit: Future)10. StrongVPN Strong by on: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux | Streaming sites unblocked: Netflix, Amazon Prime, YouTube, Hulu | 24/7 support: Yes | Trial period: 30 days | Number of servers: 950+ | Server locations: 59 | Countries: 30+ | Maximum devices supported: 12Can be used on loads of devicesReally tempting cloud storage freebieWireGuard on all devicesVariable speedsFewer server options than mostWell you can’t accuse StrongVPN of being vague when it comes to its name. Unlike premium services such as CyberGhost and Windscribe, there’s no doubt left in anybody’s mind what StrongVPN is all the similarities with those bigger names doesn’t end there. StrongVPN offers a litany of protocols (L2TP, SSTP, OpenVPN, IPSec and IKEv2) including the super speedy WireGuard on all of its apps, and an impressive roughly 60, 000 VPN IP addresses. Outside sheer brawn, StrongVPN takes something of a minimalist approach, favouring strength over style. But what it does, it does with aplomb. For starters, you have to applaud the decision to include the ability to connect up to 12 of your devices at any one time. So that will cover your desktop, laptop, mobile, tablet, streaming device, a fair few if your primary aim is to find the perfect piece of software to help you stream all your favorite services, we found that StrongVPN easily unblocked streaming sites like Netflix, Disney+ and Amazon Prime Video from overseas (although we had no luck with BBC iPlayer) it comes up short in other areas – read up and down this page and the 900-odd servers, 50-something cities and 30 countries perhaps feels somewhat behind what the others on this list offer. And our latest set of speed tests weren’t overly encouraging either. But see for yourself – StrongVPN still has a lot going for it, as well as that familiar 30-day money back guarantee. And, as an extra added perk, it will throw in 250GB of free secure cloud storage from the reputable SugarSync when you sign up for one of StrongVPN’s already-reasonable annual plans. (Image credit: HMA)11. HideMyAss! (HMA) VPN A quality VPN from antivirus vendor AvastWorks on: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux | Streaming sites unblocked: Netflix, YouTube | 24/7 support: Yes | Trial period: 30 days | Number of servers: 1, 000+ | Server locations: 290+ | Countries: 210+ | Maximum devices supported: 5Huge breadth of server locationsReally handy live supportAudited no-log policyNot the service for streamersOnly basic online supportOf all the VPNs on this list, it’s HideMyAss! that tops the lot when it comes to server location numbers. It’s somehow scouted out servers in around 200 locations across more than 200 countries worldwide. And so while other providers might give you just a handful of locations outside Europe and North America, HideMyAss! manages 14 locations in the Middle East, 50+ in Africa, and more than 55 in Asia course server variation is far from everything (in fact, it’s a fairly minor ‘win’ in the grand scheme of things). but the jocular provider has been around a while now and is owned by reputable cybersecurity company Avast. It clearly takes privacy very seriously, and joins the list of VPN providers that have brought in independent auditors to confirm that it’s firing on all security apps are easy to use and cover the basics very well. You can use Hide
Fast & Free Anonymous Web Proxy - Hidester VPN

Fast & Free Anonymous Web Proxy – Hidester VPN

Using Hidester is easy. Just open up your browser, type in a website address and your connection is instantly encrypted. No need to install software or apps, so you can use it on your mobile device.
Automatic SSL technology protects you against nasty scripts or hackers trying to steal your identity. Even on public Wi-Fi connections. We even add an SSL layer to all connections for non-SSL websites!
Unblock websites at lightning-fast speed, thanks to our free proxy servers across the US and Europe. No annoying buffering.
Enjoy constant connection and access to HD Video content. Hidester is the most reliable free web proxy in the market.
Your web activity is 100% anonymous, guarded with 128-bit encryption. We don’t store or track logs. We’re the only ones who control our servers; there’s no third party IP proxy involvement.
Hidester Web Proxy is free and lets you visit any website, anytime, from anywhere. Bypass blocking by your government, employer or ISP. Say goodbye to “this website is not available in your country” messages forever! For faster speed, more security, and privacy, upgrade to our VPN Service.
Why should I use Hidester Web Proxy?
People use Hidester for many reasons. You may want to avoid being snooped on by governments, multinationals, and cyber criminals. Maybe you want to access blocked content at work? Perhaps you need to view a website from behind a firewall? You might need a tool to unblock a proxy? With Hidester it’s nobody’s business except yours.
Is it free?
This web proxy is free – just like the world wide web should be. No registration, no contract, no advertising. Just type in the website address and away you go.
How does it work?
Hidester is an anonymous web proxy – acting as your broker or “middleman”. First, you make a request through Hidester to view a web page. Then Hidester goes off and finds the web page, encrypting your location (by hiding your IP address – what’s my IP address? ), before delivering the web page to you. The website has no details about you, and you leave no trace anywhere. Want to check it works? Visit some websites through Hidester, and then check your History folder. You’ll see that it appears you never left the site. It’s like you become invisible.
Yes – if you use our proxy list. This enables you to take control and configure your online privacy. Filter by levels of anonymity (elite, anonymous, transparent), location, type (,, SOCKS4, SOCKS5), speed, port, Google proxy. All our listed proxies are fully tested and assessed prior to upload.
Well, it depends on your needs. Proxies do not require any software installation, while VPNs usually do. But proxies their major drawbacks are as following:
Proxies are only conveying data going through your browser. VPNs can protect 100% of your internet traffic, including traffic going through Peer-to-Peer applications, games messaging applications.
Data exchanged between your computer and the websites you are visiting is not encrypted. When not encrypted, data can be caught and analyzed by your hackers, ISP or governments with the right tools.
Hidester propose a VPN solution with a dedicated software running on your Operating System, that encrypts data coming in and out of your computer, through Hidester VPN server network that you can select depending on your activities and location.

Frequently Asked Questions about best online vpn proxy

What is the best VPN Proxy?

Best VPN service of 2021ExpressVPN. Editor’s Choice Award for best VPN: Blazing speeds, proven privacy. See at ExpressVPN.Surfshark. A speed leader, packed with features. See at Surfshark.NordVPN. Best VPN for reliability and security. … ProtonVPN. High security standards at high speeds. … IPVanish. Best VPN choice for beginners.Sep 10, 2021

What is the best free VPN Proxy?

Best Free VPNs — Full Analysis (Updated October 2021)ExpressVPN — Military-Grade Security Features to Protect Your Online Anonymity. … CyberGhost — Superior Security Features to Keep Your Identity Safe. … Avira Phantom VPN — Protect All Your Devices with User-Friendly Apps. … ProtonVPN — No Data Caps for Unlimited Safe Browsing.More items…•Sep 20, 2021

Is a proxy as good as a VPN?

Is VPN better than a proxy? Yes, a VPN is better as it provides privacy and security by routing your traffic through secure servers and encrypts your traffic. A proxy simply passes your traffic through a mediating server but doesn’t necessarily offer any extra protection.

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