Virtual Private Networks (VPN) are one of the greatest tools available to protect your privacy and security on the internet. When you connect to the internet, you leave trails of data that can be used to figure out who you are, where you're located, what sites you visit, etc. A VPN encrypts all your traffic so that nobody can decipher it and see what you're doing. If you connect to a VPN server in another country, for example, all your traffic will appear to come from that country - even if you're in the US.
Let's look at several of the best VPNs available for Windows and discuss how each one can help you get more secure online.
Paid VPNs are trustworthy and reliable. When you use a free service, your internet traffic is in the hands of an unknown third party. You can never be sure that they will protect your data or not sell it to advertisers. Paid VPN providers have a strong incentive to keep their customers' online activity private.
The second huge benefit of paid VPNs is that they are the only ones that can provide stable connections. When you use free services, you have to put up with all sorts of annoyances, including slow servers, unreliable performance, bandwidth limits, and ads in your browser. Paid VPNs don't throttle your speed or impose other restrictions on their users.
The third reason to opt for a paid VPN is that they have more servers and IP addresses than a free VPN. In addition, paid services make an effort to provide as many as possible from different locations, which increases the number of things you can do with your VPN.
ExpressVPN has servers in 94 countries and in over 145 locations worldwide. It also offers unlimited speed and bandwidth, which means that you can download files as fast as your internet connection allows. Furthermore, ExpressVPN The company has a no-logs policy. You are completely anonymous when using their servers. And for even more protection, they provide their users with an Internet kill switch that halts all web traffic in case of a lost connection.
Everything works out of the box, and ExpressVPN provides its customers with straightforward guides on how to set up the service on Windows, Android, iPhone, Linux (Ubuntu), and even routers. The desktop software is extremely easy to use - it automatically connects to the best server location and secures your internet connection with just one click.
However, ExpressVPN also has some drawbacks: It's based in the British Virgin Islands, which means that it can't offer its customers legal protection in case the US government comes knocking. And its 30-day money-back guarantee only kicks in if you haven't used more than 9GB of bandwidth, which isn't very generous.
You can download ExpressVPN here.
NordVPN offers an affordable and low-cost solution for Windows users who are looking for advanced online security without breaking the bank. It has servers in 60 countries around the world, which is less than ExpressVPN but still great coverage. Their service is highly reliable and stable. NordVPN has over 5,200 servers in its network, which can handle more than 30TB of data every day without any throttling or blocking. It also provides you with unlimited bandwidth and speed so that you can stream Hulu and BBC iPlayer as much as you want.
NordVPN offers apps for many devices and operating systems, including Windows. It uses standard OpenVPN encryption with perfect forward secrecy and a 4096-bit key. NordVPN also offers obfuscation for its OpenVPN traffic so that it can't be recognized through deep packet inspection, which means your VPN connection is even more secure.
NordVPN has a strict no-logs policy, meaning that the company doesn't monitor or track your internet activity or record your IP address. The VPN has a kill switch for Windows. It will automatically block all traffic if your connection drops. And lastly, NordVPN is a Panama-based provider that doesn't fall under the 5/9/14 Eyes jurisdictions and provides its users with a very generous 30-day money-back guarantee.
You can download NordVPN here.
Surfshark is a relative newcomer to the world of VPNs. However, it's one to watch as its fast speeds, and broad platform compatibility makes it ideal for Windows users. Surfshark has over 3,200 servers in more than 65 countries. It also offers unlimited speed and bandwidth.
Surfshark has apps available for Android and iOS, but also provides setup instructions for Windows and macOS. It supports OpenVPN and offers 256-bit AES encryption along with perfect forward secrecy.
Surfshark is based in the British Virgin Islands, which puts it out of the reach of both US authorities and copyright. It has a no-logs policy to ensure you're completely anonymous when you use their servers. And for even more protection, they provide users with an Internet kill switch that halts all web traffic in case of a lost connection.
You can download Surfshark here.
Hotspot Shield is another popular provider that offers its services to Windows users. It's known for its free version, which is supported by ads, but you can upgrade to the Elite version without ads and get more features like malware protection and tracker blocking.
Hotspot Shield has over 2,500 servers in 80 countries. However, most of these are virtual servers that act as proxies for your traffic to cover up your true location. The company is based in the US, which may be a deal-breaker for you if you're looking for strict privacy and anonymity. Hotspot Shield doesn't encrypt your data or use perfect forward secrecy.
Hotspot Shield has apps available for Windows, Android and iOS, but you can also use their extension for Chrome or Firefox. It supports L2TP/IPSec, PPTP, and OpenVPN encryption protocols, which means that both beginners and more seasoned users will be able to set up this VPN on Windows with no issues.
You can download Hotspot Shield here.
IPVanish is a popular VPN provider that's known for its fast speeds and excellent customer support. It has over 1,900 servers in more than 75 countries and provides unlimited bandwidth and speed.
IPVanish offers apps for Android and iOS devices, but you can also use it on Windows through an app. It supports OpenVPN and IKEv2 protocols, but not PPTP or L2TP/IPSec. In addition, they provide manual tutorials on how to set it up with many different devices and operating systems, including Windows.
IPVanish implements OpenVPN encryption protocols that use 256-bit AES encryption and perfect forward secrecy. This VPN provider is based in the US, which may be an issue if you're looking for strict privacy and anonymity. It does not use perfect forward secrecy or any form of DNS leak protection. However, it does provide users with a kill switch that halts all traffic once your connection drops.
You can download IPVanish here.
Private Internet Access (PIA) is another popular provider that offers its services to Windows users. It's well known for its low prices and has a strict no-logging policy.
Private Internet Access is a leading VPN provider with over 29,000+ servers in 78 different countries. It also doesn't store any traffic logs or monitor your activity. PIA supports OpenVPN, PPTP, and L2TP/IPSec protocols. They use 256-bit encryption along with perfect forward secrecy.
Private Internet Access has apps available for Android and iOS devices but also provides setup instructions for Windows, macOS, Linux, and Android TV. Unfortunately, it doesn't provide manual tutorials on installing it on Windows devices. Still, instructions are available in the FAQ section of their website. Private Internet Access has a kill switch, and it will automatically disconnect your connection if there is no network activity every 10 minutes.
VyprVPN is also known as "Golden Frog." And much like the name suggests, it offers extremely reliable server networks that are strategically deployed in all parts of the world. It has over 700 servers available, which cover over 70 locations across the globe. So if you're looking for a VPN provider with many servers, VyprVPN is an excellent choice.
VyprVPN provides all of its customers with unlimited speed and bandwidth. They also offer perfect forward secrecy coupled with strong OpenVPN encryption that comes at 256-bit.
Their service is fast and stable, but it also has a couple of limitations: VyprVPN would be a good choice for users who want to protect their privacy while torrenting, but it doesn't offer dedicated Windows software which could make the process a bit complicated for some users.
You can download VyperVPN here.
Windscribe is a newer VPN provider that's been rapidly gaining in popularity. They have servers available in 63 countries and apps for Android, iOS (coming soon), Windows (desktop version only) and macOS (beta).
It uses 128-bit encryption and provides OpenVPN with UDP and TCP protocols. Windscribe offers a unique feature that allows its users to earn up to 10GB of additional data monthly by inviting friends. The VPN service also has a built-in firewall that blocks ads and trackers. It doesn't have the kill switch feature. Still, Windscribe uses a built-in NAT Firewall, which blocks all IPv4 and IPv6 communications when your device loses a VPN connection.
Windscribe is a great choice if you're looking for a free VPN to protect your online privacy. They provide unlimited bandwidth, speed, and server switches. You can use it on multiple devices without any restrictions or download caps. The downside is that they don't have many servers compared to other providers.
You can download WindScribe here.
CyberGhost is a powerful VPN that's headquartered in Romania. It currently operates almost 7,200+ servers that are spread across the globe, including the US, UK, Germany, and more.
They have an excellent no-logging policy which means they'll never track or monitor your online activity unless you use one of their specific streaming servers.
They use AES-256 encryption which is coupled with 2,048-bit RSA keys and MD5 HMAC authentication for perfect forward secrecy. They also provide DNS leak protection and a built-in kill switch feature. CyberGhost is easy to use, and it's available on all the popular platforms, but it could be a bit slower because of its relatively small server network.
You can download Cyberghost here.
PrivateVPN is a small VPN provider that's been around for less than two years, but it already offers a user-friendly VPN client that allows you to access 200+ servers. They offer servers in 63 countries which means you can enjoy unlimited streaming from anywhere in the world.
Note that laws concerning the use of this software vary from country to country. We do not encourage or condone the use of this program if it is in violation of these laws. The regulation about the use of VPN services varies per country; If the Law of your country forbids or limits its usage, don’t download. Any unlawful behaviour of this software is not permitted. You are solely responsible for any use of the service.
PrivateVPN uses 256-bit encryption that comes with perfect forward secrecy and a reliable no-logging policy. They also provide DNS leak protection, a kill switch feature, and a set of additional security features to protect users from malware, viruses, spyware, and trackers.
They're a great solution for those looking for online privacy and security, but it doesn't offer the same range of features that you get with larger VPN providers. Furthermore, they don't allow torrents, and their customer support team could be more helpful.
All of the ten options provided above are valid choices for your Windows-friendly VPN, but there are three that outshine the rest in specific categories.
NordVPN is our pick for speed, and few VPNs deliver speeds like NordVPN. When testing with other VPNs, you experience a decrease in connection speed but not when using NordVPN. It's incredible how fast it runs!
The next up on our list is CyberGhost VPN. It didn't take us long to find a winner for this low-budget pick, and we can tell you that it will definitely exceed your expectations as far as budget options go. You'll be amazed at how much Cyberghost has improved its service recently, making the entire experience something remarkable for any Windows user out there.
And finally, ExpressVPN. This VPN is one of the most popular choices among Windows users worldwide. It's not only incredibly fast and stable, but extremely responsive in customer support requests. You'll feel like you're getting an instant response via chat or phone within minutes. It's no wonder why Expressvpn is one of our top choices, and we highly recommend it for any Windows user.