We won't mess around, there is a lot of ground to cover. If you want to stay safe and secure on the net, whilst protecting your privacy, a virtual private network, or a VPN, is a must have.
VPNs allow you to send and receive information safely and securely that cannot, in theory, be intercepted by anyone else. These services are the safest mainstream method of browsing the web privately but not always completely anonymously.
Like anything else in life, VPNs are only as secure as their weakest link so if your device has already been compromised by malware, a VPN won't really help you much.
The following are in no particular order.
[Image Source: Pixabay]
TechRadar rate this the best VPN for torrent use and another P2P trafficking. IPVanish provided the fastest speeds during their testing.
IPVanish provides three service options ranging from monthly, quarterly or annual subscriptions. As you'd expect, signing up for longer in one go works out cheaper per month. If you decide to sign up you get a 7-day money-back guarantee, which is nice.
Annually = $4.87 a month or just over $58 a year
Quarterly = $6.74 a month or just over $80 a year
Monthly = $7.5o a month or $90 a year
[Image Source: IPVanish]
VyprVPN has 700+ servers and provides 70+ server locations around the world. This lets them supply over 200,000 IP addresses. Each subscription supports between 3 and 5 devices. Reports seem to indicate it works well in China too.
This provider is based in Switzerland which has great privacy laws, which is nice to know. This one has been rated as the best VPN for performance and security.
Basic plan, 1-year - $60
Basic plan, 1-month - $9.95
Premium plan, 1-year - $80
Premium plan, 1-month - $12.95
ExpressVPN offers the best offshore VPN for privacy and unblocking. It has over 1000 servers in 136 locations with no limited on IP addresses.
If you choose this one, it can support up to 3 devices across all platforms from Windows to iOS and even Blackberry.
Subscription options include:-
15-month - $99.95
6-month - $59.95
1-month - $12.95
NordVPN has been rated the best ultra-secure VPN provider by TechRadar. You can support up to six devices but it isn't the cheapest VPN provider.
This VPN is based in central America but don't let this fool you. Its current products match or beat the competition.
2-year - $79
12-month - $69
6-month - $42
1-month - $11.95
[Image Source: NordVPN]
This one has been one of our favorites for a few years now. It is easy-to-use and you'll quickly fall in love with the bear. TunnelBear has around 1000 servers across 20+ locations and can support up to 5 devices.
TunnelBear is based in Canada and all of its products are pretty much jargon free. You can use their free service but you'll need to deal with usage limits if 500MB. You can increase this by recommending their services on Twitter for example.
12-month - $59.88
1-month - $9.99
Windscribe offers the user unlimited connections from over 40 server locations. You also get an unlimited number of supported devices.
It has a free plan that offers a monthly 10GB data usage limit but is not supported on Android. The company has made rumblings that this will come in the future.
12-month - $45
1-month - $4.50
7. Hotspot Shield
According to TechRadar, Hotspot Shield is the best VPN for browsing online privately. Hotspot Shield Elite manages to provide all the necessary VPN features at an attractive price with the option of getting a lifetime license.
It performs well and has great download speeds.
Forever - $139.99
1-year - $47.88
6-month - $29.94
1-month - $11.99
[Image Source: Hotspot Shield]
ZenMate is another great user-friendly VPN. It is aimed at novice users and like TunnelBaer, tends to steer away from jargon filled sales stuff.
It is easy-to-use and highly streamlined to maximize the user experience. You can't choose your own security protocol or a particular city but you can choose the country.
12-month - $38.40
6-month - $42.50
1-month - $7.70
PureVPN is one of the better VPNs out there for maximum speeds. It has a huge choice of servers but doesn't offer a free trial.
It does log your use time and bandwidth use but otherwise doesn't log where you visit or what you download.
24-month - $70.80
6-month - $53.70
1-month - $10.95
10. Buffered VPN
TechRadar rate this one as the best for responsive browsing and low latency. It also comes with a generous refund policy but is one of the more expensive services.
Buffered VPN also doesn't offer mobile clients. Apart from this, its core strengths include privacy and performance, clear terms of service and no logs are kept.
12-month - $99.00
6-month - $59.94
1-month - $12.99
[Image Source: Buffered VPN]
PureVPN has shown outstanding speed test results from various review sites including PC Mag. This makes it the fastest virtual private network some have tested.
PureVPN does suffer from not having a quick start option and it only provides ad-blocking in Chrome. It also seems to have issues with Netflix.
12-month - $35.4 but 2-year signup
6-month - $54
1-month - $11
12. Private Internet Access VPN
Private Internet Access offers an incomparable number of VPN servers as well as ad-blocking and other advanced features. It is reasonably priced but is far from the prettiest one out there.
PIA supports multiple platforms and supports P2P and BitTorrent. It does have a rather "spartan" interface and can have issues with Netflix.
12-month - $39.95
6-month - $35.95
1-month - $6.95
13. KeepSolid VPN Unlimited
KeepSolid is affordable with flexible pricing. It has solid speed test performances, browser extensions, and advanced features, KeepSolid VPN Unlimited has it all, apparently.
It is pretty inexpensive and offers flexible pricing from 7 days to 100 years. There is no free version and again, it has difficulties with Netflix.
12-month - $39.99 (three years for $89.99)
3-month - $16.99
1-month - $8.99
7 days - $3.99
[Image Source: KeepSolid]
If you're looking for a good VPN for BitTorrent seeding or are a leecher after secure web traffic, this is probably a good choice. Well, it is in the name.
Torguard is packed with great features that will appeal to those seeking security. It is a little clunky at times, apparently, so beware. This one also lacks free trials and specialized servers, but that's not a deal breaker.
12-month - $59.99 (three years for $198.98)
6-month - $29.99
3-month - $19.99
1-month - $9.99
15. Hide My Ass
Well, with a name like that how could you go wrong really? Hide My Ass has great web-traffic protection. It has a friendly and simple interface but you do pay for the privilege.
This VPN only offers two licenses per subscription and doesn't really have any advanced features per se. It lacks ad blocking and there is no free trial version, sadly.
12-month - $78.66
6-month - $49.99
1-month - $11.52
[Image Source: Hide My Ass]
CyberGhost has great high speed streaming from over 800 servers worldwide. You can register up to 5 devices per subscription and it has no logs policy. This guarantees security and encryption.
CyberGhost does offer a trial or free version and you can get a 30-day money-back guarantee, which is always nice.
12-month - $109.92 or $10.99 monthly
1-month - $5.83
Based in the Seychelles, Trust.Zone takes advantage of the laws of that country to their advantage. Like other VPNs on our list, the offer VPN services using AES-256 encryption by default.
Also, like others on our list, they don't log your activity on either their servers or, well, anywhere to be honest. You do need an email address registered to start using it but they don't collect any other information.
12-month - $39.95
3-month - $14.85
1-month - $6.99
[Image Source: Trust.Zone]
Opera is a free VPN and is built for use on Windows, Linux and macOS. It also has a mobile app for Android and iOS. Opera is technically a proxy service routed via HTTPS rather than a true VPN but it's well worth considering.
This is handy for region-locked content, but you may want to download outside of your intended country of use. Opera provides an extra layer of security when browsing, so you can't use for FTP transfers or torrenting.
Forever - Free!!!
19. Private Tunnel
Private Tunnel is a US-based VPN that has recently completely restructured its pricing policy. This makes them more in line with most of their competitors and it's pretty cheap, to be honest.
Although the US currently lacks mandatory data retention laws, law enforcement agencies are able to request information at any time, so beware. They state that they do log performance data for service monitoring purposes only, bear that in mind.
12-month - $35 times number of devices
1-month - $6 times number of devices
All prices have a 7 day trial period.
20. Avast Secureline
Avast differs from others on the list as it requires a separate subscription per platform you wish to use it on. That is less than convenient, to say the least. Subscriptions do support up to 5 devices.
You can get discount versions of the mobile apps when you buy the Windows or MacOS licenses, however.
12-month - $59.99 per desktop platform
1-month - $19.99 per mobile platform
[Image Source: Avast]
21. Steganos Online Shield
Steganos is a no-frills but very useful, though limited example. It has a limited selection of end-points but a very simple interface. It opts for the fastest connection by default, which is nice.
Steganos is based out of Germany, which requires ISPs not VPNs to retain traffic metadata for up to 10 weeks. Steganos has no data logging policy that also applies to Russian end-points.
Pricing varies depending on the product you want.
Hidden24 tunnels your traffic through its UK based server farm using the operating system's very own VPN capability. It will, therefore, work on any device you are using, which is nice.
It is very easy to use but lacks an app or interface that might be more appealing to novices. This is a serious solution for anyone who craves anonymity. It is also one of the cheapest, which is neat.
12-month - $59.88
3-month - $16.47
1-month - $5.99
StrongVPN is a no-nonsense, fast service with a great Android interface. Like others here, it doesn't log traffic or use data but is based in the US which might put some users off.
This is another one not suitable for novices and can be a little confusing to use. It does, however, offer plenty of features for VPN veterans who are willing to plow through online docs to understand the service's technicals. Also, its pricing plan, apart from annually are whole numbers, we like that.
12-month - $69.96
3-month - $8
1-month - $10
[Image Source: StrongVPN]
Getflix primarily focusses on unblocking streaming services, hence the name. User reviews show that it works pretty well too, but it's not foolproof.
It is very competitive and for general use, it provides a pretty speedy service. There is no front-end software to install at all and you configure it entirely within your OS. This will likely put off less experienced users.
12-month - $39.90
6-month - $22.95
3-month - $12.95
1-month - $4.95
Anonymizer is another one that doesn't log traffic, ever. They don't allow you to match an IP-address and time stamp a user of their service.
They are based in the US but does have servers in the Netherlands. It isn't the cheapest though.
2-month - $79.99
Free trial - Um, free, well for 14 days
You'll have probably noticed that it's pretty difficult to pin down the "best" VPN service as they all offer solutions for different needs and levels of user expertise.
Mullvad offers a good all-rounder, its interface is less than fancy but the company works hard to protect your privacy. Mullvad doesn't ask for any information and you can pay in cash if necessary. It's not the fastest but it's a good one.
1-month - $5 - A nice round number, did we mention we like that? You can pay in Bitcoin, bank wire or the usual ways.
[Image Source: Mullvad]
SaferVPN has a great user interface with cross platform support. It also includes a free Chrome extension. It offers automatic Wi-Fi security to block those pesky snoopers and hackers, making it very secure.
You get unlimited location switching, bandwidth and speed and global internet access, which is nice. It isn't cheap though and does have a logging policy, so beware.
12-month - $71.90 (two years for $83.77)
1-month - $8.99
HidelPVPN is another one with a good UI that apparently hides your IP address with "Ninja Power". We can't attest to that, and we're not even sure how you'd measure that, but it's a nice sales pitch.
It offers very good speeds in Germany but lacks "Ninja Power" in other countries. It is also not entirely clear who is running the service.
Prices depend on whether you want Ninja Power at $9.99 a month or $69.99 a year or their location specific services.
Speedify works on all platforms to speed up and encrypt your internet traffic. You can only use it on two devices at any one time, however. You can use it for free if you wish without making an account, which is nice. Obviously, there is a limit, 1 GB.
One cool feature is that if you have high data transfer speeds, say 150 Mbps, Speedify can match it. Not many do.
12-month - $49.99
1-month - $8.99
Or free, of course.
[Image Source: Speedify]
30. Norton WiFi Privacy
Norton, the anti-virus guys? Yup, just the same. Norton, like others, doesn't track or store your internet security and also provides bank-level encryption.
It can be used on five or ten devices at the same time, but this is dependent on how you choose to pay. All platforms are supported, well except Linux.
12-month - $39.99
1-month - $7.99
Cryptostorm is an interesting one and well worth considering. It works with a token based authentication system. This decouples payment information from access. In other words, the VPN access software doesn't know who you are.
This could be revolutionary to the industry. This one does come with some concerns over who operates it, you have been warned.
Prices vary depending on how long you want to use it for and how many connections you need.
VikingVPN is self-described as being the most secure and fastest service out there. They have a mixture of clustered and dedicated servers that can provide up to 1GB connections.
They are not one of the cheapest, however.
"We start the connection with a 4096 bit RSA encrypted handshake. The tunnel is impenetrable and impossible to intercept, alter, or observe because it is protected with AES 256 CBC bit encryption." - VikingVPN
12-month - $119.88
6-month - $71.70
1-month - $14.95
PerfectPrivacy is very fast and reliable with multi-hop VPN chains on up to 4 servers. These chaps don't keep logs of your activity and there are no bandwidth or connection limits.
They have an excellent reputation and have been in operations since 2008. PerfectPrivacy is not the cheapest on our list and the full VPN manager is not available on MacOS.
12-month - $124.92
6-month - $65.94
6-month - $35.94
1-month - $13.49
[Image Source: PerfectPrivacy]
VPNArea is not the biggest player on our list but has received some glowing reviews. It is based in Bulgaria and passes all privacy tests with flying colors.
They further protect customer data with a strict no logs policy, Bulgaria jurisdiction, and server hosting (for business operations) in Switzerland. It does lack advanced features like others on the list.
12-month - $59.00 (with current discount)
6-month - $50.00
1-month - $9.90
This bad boy is another smaller, low-profile provider with excellent overall quality. They focus on security and performance, which is nice to know. VPN.ac was founded by a team of network security professionals who wanted to focus on strong encryption and overall quality. Apparently, it works in China too.
It is a lower priced service with some great features. It does "suffer" from minimal connection logs that are erased every day. But none of that is a deal breaker really.
12-month - $58.00 (with current discount)
6-month - $36.00
3-month - $24.00
1-month - $9.00
Here's another smaller supplier that is packed with features to give you a high degree of online anonymity. They have high-end server networks that allow creating multi-hop VPN chains if desired. You can build up to 4 hops.
Sadly, Zorro, doesn't offer any of its own applications. You'll be left needing to use third party ones like Viscosity or other open source alternatives. Setup can be a little complex, but it's not too taxing. They, of course, offer technical support through email, Skype, chat and TeamViewer.
12-month - $120.00 (with current discount)
6-month - $68.00 (with current discount)
3-month - $36.00 (with current discount)
1-month - $15.00
[Image Source: ZorroVPN]
Here's one from Italy for you to consider. This is a mixed bag, it seems, according to reviews. It uses an app, called Eddie, that isn't that user-friendly, especially for novice users. Speeds can also be hit and miss on servers across Europe.
AirVPN does offer great privacy and security but suffers in other areas. Being based in Italy, it is also not in a good privacy jurisdiction, Italy is a member of the 14 Eyes surveillance alliance, for example. You only get 3 connections with your subscription.
12-month - 54.00 €
6-month - 30.00 €
3-month - 15.00 €
1-month - 7.00 €
Bolehvpn is based in Malaysia and offers a pretty slick service. Their service selectively routes traffic through the VPN whilst using traffic obfuscation technology to protect anonymity. They are situated in an offshore jurisdiction outside of the prying eyes of FVEY.
Their servers are decentralized with PKI Infrasturautes. It comes packed with features and accepts payments with Bitcoin as well as other cryptocurrencies.
12-month - $79.99
6-month - $44.99
3-month - $16.99
1-month - $9.99
IVPN is based in Gibraltar so it's not the best jurisdiction compared to others. Gibraltar, being a British Overseas Territory falls under the FVEY countries. They offer a pretty decent service and have a good reputation, which is always good.
Reviews seem to show that it provides a reliable and consistent service with polished and decent UI.
12-month - $100
6-month - $40
1-month - $15
[Image Source: IVPN]
Last but by no means least, VPN.HT. If you want to use a VPN and still have reliable use of Netflix and Hulu, this might be worth a consideration.
It's easy to setup and offers no restrictions on bandwidth. It has 100% anonymous signup so they never know your name. During use, they also don't keep logs of your activity. You can connect up to 3 devices per account and its P2P friendly.
12-month - $39.99
1-month - $1 first month then $4.99 thereafter
The final word
So there you go. Our list of 40 great VPN providers. This list has covered a wide range of providers of widely varying sizes and price ranges. Whether you are looking for complete anonymity or ease-of-use, we hope some of the above will give you what you are looking for. As always please feel free to add your suggestions or even critiques of some of these.
Sources: TechRadar, CNet, PCMag, TechAdvisor, ExpertReviews, TorrentFreak, PCWorld, LifeWire, RestorePrivacy