Top VPN Services

A VPN can safeguard your information by ensuring your connections are secure and private. While the promises of military-grade security or invisibility may entice you, Consumer Reports Yael Grauer suggests you look for more concrete evidence that a service you are looking at is legitimate.

Start by checking compatibility. The service should work with at the very least the most well-known operating systems, such as Windows, macOS and Linux, Android, and iOS. Also, you should check how many devices the service supports, as well as the number of simultaneous connections it provides. In the end, you’ll need to look at the number of available servers and their locations around the globe. This can help you select one close to your home or one that provides fast speeds when you’re to another country.

Certain services provide specialized features, such as dedicated ‘Netflix servers that do not block geo-restricted websites, or additional security measures, such as RAM-only servers (which erase data each time the service reboots), dark web monitoring and threat protection. Check the ownership structure of the company, and see if it has had any data breaches or privacy scandals in the past.

NordVPN was the best overall service we tested. It has thousands of servers spread across 94 countries. It also offers AES-256 encryption and ChaCha20, a reliable Kill Switch, split tunneling, and encrypted servers. It’s also one of the few providers to publish its detailed no-logs policy and engages PricewaterhouseCoopers for annual audits. The prices aren’t cheap, however, you get a lot for your money. A long-term plan that is generous includes a 30-day guarantee on money back.

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