Irrespective of why you use a VPN service, which can be anything from unblocking streaming services, communicating online securely, downloading torrents, business to simple routine browsing the important question remains, which is the safest VPN?

With over a hundred VPN providers promising security, online privacy and anonymity, the primary concern of VPN being safest gets shrouded behind the very clever marketing jargon. In the following sections we will answer crucial questions like which brand is the safest VPN provider, the safest VPN for torrenting & the safest free VPN providers.


The Safest VPN Review 2017


The dawn of the New Year marks the growth & development of new privacy issues for ordinary netizens around the world. For instance, British internet users’ ask which brand is the safest VPN to protect them against surveillance or Canadians who demand the safest VPN provider against ISP monitoring.

After careful review we have put together our list of the 5 safest VPN services of 2017:

5.0 / 5.0
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3.5 / 5.0
4.5 / 5.0
4.0 / 5.0
3.0 / 5.0


Which is the Safest VPN Provider?


Determining the safest VPN provider requires patience and proper testing before you can commit to a service in the long run. Since there are varying uses one particular test will not necessarily give you an ideal measure of how safe your VPN is.

To determine the safest VPN there are certain aspects subscribers and even prospect users’ must consider. These include:


  1. Determining the base of operations of the safest VPN providers

To determine the safest VPN provider it is essential to research and know where the service is based. There are some countries that have defined data retention & surveillance laws that demand all tech providers (VPN included) provide back doors to their software logs &access to users’ data.

Although there is defined list but providers based in USA, UK, Australia, China, Canada, New Zealand, Argentina, Brazil, Germany, Czech Republic, Austria, Bulgaria, Denmark, Estonia, France, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Malta, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Norway and Romania are not the safest VPN services around.


2. Studying the Privacy Policies & Terms of Use of VPN providers

It is essential that even beginners study these very crucial policies usually available on all VPN provider websites. In case a provider offers no privacy policy & terms of use it is best to avoid such providers, even if they are free to use.


purevpn safest policy

Excerpt from PureVPN’s Privacy Policy – One of the safest VPN policies currently available

The Privacy Policies of the best & safest VPN providers will establish that they don’t retain your personal information, online activities, IP address, location plus other personally identifiable information. Some information including email & name can be retained for service delivery purposes, and the policy should mention this.


3. Testing the VPN service with various DNS Leak Tests

Never trust your VPN provider’s claims of 100% anonymity unless you have tested this very bold claim by yourself. The first measure to determine if your VPN is safest is to check if leaks your IP address while unblocking websites, downloading torrents and communicating over VoIP services.

To test if your VPN is leaking your IP address & location, connect to one of the safest VPN locations (Netherlands, Panama, Hong Kong, and Switzerland)and query your information on one or more of the following:


#1 Safest VPN for Torrenting – “PureVPN”


Torrent users’ would be keen to find out about the safest VPN available to securely download their favorite music, movies, TV shows, games etc. Remember that every time you download &seed torrents all your network information is available through the torrent client when not safely behind Torrent VPN.


safe vpn for torrenting is purevpn

Notice how utorrent displays the IP & information of all users seeding the file while I’m downloading

The safest VPN for torrenting as it happens isn’t the one with the fastest servers, or the best apps. Copyright laws, ISP monitoring, notices and penalties are all making life difficult for torrent fans, hence demands robust security features rather than speed, apps etc.

For enthusiasts who love downloading & seeding torrents, a great option is to go for Hong Kong based PureVPN. During review & testing we observed that the provider offers over 50 torrent optimized servers for located especially in countries without copyright laws &data retention rules.

For that matter, PureVPN also offers a special DNS leak protection feature to ensure your devices never revert to the custom Google & ISP DNS servers. PureVPN also enhances user anonymity by offering its internet Kill Switch feature, ensuring that in case of a connection failure none of your internet traffic is ever revealed to the ISP or any other entity monitoring your network.


Safest VPN for Public Wi-Fi – “ExpressVPN”


The growth of smart mobile & tablet devices has triggered a great response promoting mobile computing & faster Wi-Fi networks. Already with more than 4.5 billion smartphone users’ in the world, it was estimated that some 1.8 billion new smart phones will be sold in 2017.

But let’s talk numbers most of these smart mobile devices will be out the very next day connecting to available public Wi-Fi networks available to them. Forget what you know about the integrity & security of these public networks, because honestly there is none.

With threats like Network Sniffing, 3rd party data collection and malicious access points becoming a common occurrence it is essential to use the best & safest VPN available on all your smart devices. We tested ExpressVPN for their claims of securing users’ over public Wi-Fi, so I had to keep the Express VPN Android app on for 12 hours while I was out at a library, a school, my office and a coffee shop.

The amazing fact that I noticed was that never during the 12 hours of service did ExpressVPN disconnect unless I did it manually. Express VPN won the trophy when it kept on even on my phone’s4G network. It is my recommendation as the safest VPN to use over public Wi-Fi networks.


Safest VPN for Surveillance & Data Retention – “NordVPN”


As illegal surveillance & data retention become the norms through state sanctioned legislation, the need for the safest VPN has certainly quadrupled amongst privacy conscious netizens. One of the most essential attributes of the best & safest VPN providers is their ability to locate their business and servers far from countries that spy on tech providers.

Since the UK, USA, EU, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and many other countries around the world now have sanctioned legislature to spy on their people, having a VPN can be massively worthwhile. Would you want people in the neighborhood listening to your personal conversations, or looking at you while you shower?

Your answer to the above would obviously be, NO, hence why wouldn’t this principle apply to your online activities. Based out of Panama (no data retention laws), NordVPN, powers your online devices with the highest standards of online security. Nord is our recommendation & one of the safest VPN providers in terms of countering data retention. NordVPN offers three superb features that ensure your online privacy remains uncompromised:

  1. 2048 bit SSL authentication
  2. Double Data encryption feature
  3. TOR over VPN feature
  4. Automatic Internet Kill Switch


Which Is The Safest VPN Protocol?


After the Chinese government & NSA compromised the PPTP tunneling protocol it was inevitable that new tech would soon take its place. Currently, there are still only a handful of tunneling protocols available to VPN users.

While OpenVPN tunneling remains the safest VPN protocol to work with, there are newer technologies like iKEV2 that are rapidly gaining fame amongst VPN users. Have look at the Pros & Cons of 4 top tunneling protocols in use today:

which is the safest vpn protocol?


In contrast OpenVPN &iKEV2 both come up as the safest VPN protocols to use when torrenting, unblocking websites, sending email, transferring files and when connected to public Wi-Fi.

When asked to choose between the two our recommendation will be the iKEV2 protocol for two important aspects. First, iKEV2 is more stable than OpenVPN, and second they are easier to setup. The only downsides of using iKEV2 are that it is not open source while OpenVPN is free for all and can be modified to enhance security.


Safest Countries For Using VPN


Some countries are just plain & simple, terrible, when it comes to online privacy. Not only do these countries crack down on freedom of speech & journalism, but, also restrict the internet while blocking advanced tools like VPN. Most of these countries are located across one big belt in the Middle East, and include:

  1. Saudi Arabia
  2. Qatar
  3. Kuwait
  4. UAE
  5. Iran
  6. Syria
  7. Bahrain
  8. North Korea
  9. China
  10. Russia
  11. Turkmenistan

Now onto the safest VPN countries & regions, there are some excellent cyber laws in the Netherlands, Panama, Hong Kong, South Korea, British Virgin Isles, Luxemburg and Switzerland. Not only are these the safest VPN locations, you can also unblock great entertainment, music and sports websites from these regions.


Safest VPN Server For P2P File Sharing


Possibly the most argued topic amongst file sharing users, this one has boggled everyone including us. There is no safest VPN provider in particular that works the same for all regions. While speed suffers in some regions, connectivity has become an increasing issue for when using P2P VPN.

As mentioned above, a torrent client releases critical user information including IP address, location, app & version leading the ISP straight to your doorstep with a copyright notice. The safest server such as Luxumberg servers usually ensure neither the ISP nor other entities can spy on your connection while downloading torrents.


Safest VPN Locations


The primary attribute of the secure vpn is one that provides you with the safest VPN locations to download/browse through. A VPN provider that claims downloading/browsing through a USA location probably doesn’t know what a copyright notice is or is simply in bed with copyright trolls.

You can browse through provider privacy policies and contact VPN providers support services to know more about locations/regions with a particular service provider.


Free Safest VPN Is A Myth?


The idea of “the safest VPN for free” is quite absurd given these free providers are already betting on you giving them your personal information and cookies data. There are certain safeguards that you must take with VPN and that is to completely disregard free VPN providers unless you are constrained for some reason.

There are a number of safest VPN available for freethat you should give a try, but do keep in mind the risk is all yours. Our list of top 3 free safest VPN includes:

  1. Betternet VPN – full features with free service in this betternet review.
  2. CyberGhost VPN –ads, limited features with free service
  3. Tunnel Bear VPN –limited features with free service

The reason we recommend these three services is because they offer defined Privacy Policies and allow torrents on selected servers.  Do remember never to download torrents when connected through a US, UK, Australian and Canadian VPN server.


In a Nutshell


We hope our article gives you a clearer idea about the safest VPN providers in 2017. Research the top 10 safest VPN providers and compare them using our on site comparison tool and access latest safest VPN reviews to better know which VPN are actually safest when online.

Ameer Abbas

Ameer Abbas is a senior editor and a most viewed writer on Quora in Internet Privacy, Cyber Security, VPN and Torrents. He has continued work as a privacy advocate with Best VPN Provider and is working towards becoming an established privacy & security author online. Ameer takes a keen interest in technology, geo-political affairs and international cyber laws. Ameer loves outdoor sports including cricket, swimming, athletics, and football.
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