A VPN (virtual private network) hides your browsing activity and protects your data from hackers. But with hundreds of VPN providers out there, it can be hard to choose which one is right for you. Since you can’t install all of them, we have picked out the best VPN providers for your needs. If you want to know more about the benefits of a VPN, check out our previous guide here.
The Best VPN Services
If you regularly handle sensitive data, or you just want to protect your anonymity online, then it’s a good idea to invest in a trustworthy VPN. Below are some of the top paid VPNs on the market today:
Disclaimer: Speed ranges are based on general download speeds. Your speeds may differ depending on your network connection and the server you choose to connect to.
Considered to be the best VPN service today, ExpressVPN has several types of security protocols to choose from. It utilizes a split tunneling feature, which gives you the option to route some of your networked devices through a VPN and others through your public internet connection.
Express VPN is compatible with most operating systems and accommodates up to five devices simultaneously without compromising your speed, which makes it great for streaming and downloading. It also has a kill switch with a double layer for safe browsing. Most importantly, Express VPN offers excellent user privacy and logs zero user data.
The only downside to ExpressVPN is that it comes with a hefty price tag. But if you want top-notch security without slowing down your devices, you’ll get your money’s worth with ExpressVPN.
VyprVPN: Best affordable VPN with exceptional security and privacy
No user logs
Stealth feature for extra security
700 servers in 70+ locations
Speed range: 50+ Mbps – 75 Mbps
Based in Switzerland, a country with stringent privacy laws, VyprVPN is a huge advocate of user privacy. In fact, they implement a “zero log” policy. On top of that, they have a stealth feature called the Chameleon Protocol. And, with over 200,000 global IPs, you can easily access geo-restricted content. Unlike other VPN companies, VyprVPN owns and manages all of its servers.
They also have a service call VyprVPN Cloud that lets users set up and manage their own cloud servers. One account can accommodate 3 to 5 devices at a time. While VyperVPN has impressive speed tests, some server locations may be a bit slow.
NordVPN secures your data with a 256-bit encryption algorithm that has a 2048-bit DH key. The application is quite user-friendly, especially for Windows users. NordVPN is compatible with most operating systems and offers proxy extensions for Chrome, Firefox, and several payment gateways, so your IP address is sure to be protected at all times.
And you can feel safe on any device because it’s available for desktop, mobile, and other platforms, and it can accommodate up to 6 devices simultaneously. You don’t have to worry about bandwidth limits, because it doesn’t have any. So you can stream or surf the net to your heart’s content.
However, some users do notice slow server connections from time to time.
CyberGhost: A top VPN with tons of features & servers
Tons of unique security features
Offers a decent enough speed
Connect up to 7 devices simultaneously
4,000+ optimized servers in 65+ locations
Speed range: 5+ Mbps – 500 Mbps
CyberGhost protects your browsing data with forced https, online track blocking, ad blocking, virus protection, and DNS & IP leak protection. It even has a built-in automatic kill switch.
On top of that, it’s customizable and utilizes 256-bit AES encryption and strong security protocols. CyberGhost doesn’t log your connection data, and it’s compatible with most operating systems. And if you can’t decide right away, you can get a 7-day free trial, and a 45-day money-back guarantee for 6-month subscriptions.
It has a few drawbacks, though. The user interface is not so user-friendly, and the monthly plan can be a bit pricey. You might experience sharp speed fluctuations from time to time. Plus, you can’t turn off the built-in kill switch.
The Best Free VPNs
VPNs have free and paid versions. The list below features the benefits and disadvantages of the free versions. Unfortunately, as with anything that’s free, they have their limitations.
Hotspot Shield has a user-friendly interface, both for desktop and mobile devices. And although there are only 25 countries to connect to, it is still a sweet deal for something that’s free.
However, it does come with ads, and your connection may turn sluggish at times. And, oh yeah, you need to sign up with your credit card and try their 7-day trial of the premium version before you can opt for the free version.
Windscribe: Excellent user privacy and generous data
Windscribe doesn’t store your browsing history, connection logs, or IP stamps, so you don’t have to worry about your data being sold to the highest bidder. However, you can only connect to 10 server locations, and the Android version can be choppy at times. Also, you only get the free 10GB data if you provide an email address when you sign up.
You can use the free version of TunnelBear for as long as you want, but you only get 500MB a month. It has top security protocols, so you can browse anonymously. It also has a unique stealth mode called GhostBear that camouflages your VPN connection, so websites and pages won’t know you’re even using a VPN at all.
However, TunnelBear has been acquired by the security company McAfee, which could be subject to US search warrants. So there is a chance that they will share user data with the government, albeit under duress.
Speedify: Great for streaming, but not with Netflix
Turbocharging tech for speed
Full access to all its servers
Has over 50 server locations
Zero user data logs
Speedify is available for both desktop and mobile devices. It offers great security and privacy while you’re online. However, it can only support one computer or device per account, and it only offers 5GB of data every month, which may even decrease in the coming months. Also, it can’t bypass the geo-restrictions on streaming websites, including Netflix.
ProtonVPN works with any operating system, on either desktop or mobile. It’s also super easy to sign up, and it doesn’t even ask for an email.
However, the free version only supports one device at a time, and you can only connect to three server locations. Anyone using the free version gets lower priority on the bandwidth wagon, so using it during peak hours may slow down your internet connection.
Installing a VPN on your smartphone will help you secure your data, especially if you’re using your phone to access or transfer work files. But which VPN should you get for your mobile device? Below are some of the top choices you can check out.
NordVPN offers great encryption for mobile devices, with more than 5,000+ servers to choose from. It’s reliable and has excellent speed, and a kill switch to boot. Plus, it has a nifty free trial, which can help you decide whether to get it or not. On top of that, it’s pretty affordable compared to other VPNs with the same security features.
One of the top choices for iPhone and Android users
ExpressVPN offers excellent speed and incredible security since it protects your data while you connect to any public Wi-Fi network. Its app is super easy to install and use with more than 3,000 servers in 160 locations. On top of that, it has an extra feature that gives your phone the ability to switch protocols. One downside, though, is that it doesn’t have a kill switch, unlike its desktop version. And for a mobile VPN, it may be a little on the expensive side.
Offers rock-solid security features for iPhone users
Hotspot Shield has strong encryption and server authentication protocols. It also has a built-in ad-blocker and a handy kill switch feature. And, most importantly, it won’t slow your smartphone’s internet connection down. However, the app is known to log some of your browser data.
PrivateVPN offers unlimited bandwidth with speedy servers in over 50 countries around the globe. It can also accommodate up to 6 devices at a time with a cool 30-day money-back guarantee, in case you’re unhappy with it later.
Why Should You Get a VPN?
Even if you’re not running a big tech company or an important government agency handling sensitive secrets, it’s good to be cautious these days. In this digital age, data integrity and security, as well as online privacy, are things you certainly can’t do without. And a robust and reliable VPN can help you with those. After all, your online activity shouldn’t be anyone else’s business but yours.
But which VPN should you get? Well, it all depends on what you consider to be important. Do you value download speed or the strict “no data logs” policy? Or perhaps affordability is the top factor for you? Remember, most VPNs have free or trial versions, so you might as well try them out before you buy them.
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