We’ve all been tempted to download a torrent file at some point in our lives. Even though torrenting seems like a pretty straight forward task, it can have serious repercussions.
These concerns are the reason why more and more people are considering opting the best VPN for torrenting to keep their identities hidden law enforcement agencies, ISPs, and copyright owners.
Keeping this in mind, I have reviewed over 150+ VPNs and shortlisted 5 super secure torrent-friendly VPNs which we’ll look into in this blog.
But before we begin, below is a list of my 5 step testing criteria:
- Torrenting policy – Whether torrenting is allowed by a VPN provider on their servers?
- Jurisdiction – Is the VPN provider located in safe and data retention free jurisdiction?
- Logging Policy – What types of data are logged by the VPN?
- IP leaks – Does it leak a user’s real IP address?
- Speed – Is it the fastest VPN torrenting?
Best VPN Services For Torrenting
I recommend ExpressVPN as the best VPN for torrenting because of its faster speed and impressive privacy and security features for torrenting / P2P sharing.
Before we go all in-depth, here is a list of other best VPNs for torrenting we’ll be discussing today:
- ExpressVPN – Best VPN provider for torrenting. Does not log users’ P2P activities.
- Surfshark – Cheapest VPN for torrenting. Best pricing packages for torrent users.
- NordVPN – Dedicated VPN servers for P2P sharing. Most number of servers for secure torrenting.
- PureVPN – Best Optimized servers for P2P sharing. Does not leak DNS or WebRTC.
- CyberGhost – P2P friendly VPN with a 45-day refund policy.
Note: The below-mentioned VPNs for torrenting are tested much more rigorously on a wider range of parameters in our dedicated guide on the best VPNs.
1. ExpressVPN – Does Not Log Users’ P2P Activities
ExpressVPN is perhaps the best VPN for downloading torrents in the market right now. It covers all the bases that you should expect from a top-rated premium VPN and supports torrenting on all of their 3000+ servers.
To keep it short and simple, ExpressVPN is completely P2P compatible and works with uTorrent, BitTorrent and other clients.
The provider supports torrenting on all its servers and is compatible with all popular P2P (peer-to-peer) clients.
Is ExpressVPN Safe for Torrenting?
Yes! ExpressVPN is totally safe for torrenting. Let me tell you why…
In terms of jurisdiction, ExpressVPN lies the British Virgin Islands (BVI), which is a state favored by privacy advocates for their lack of mandatory data retention laws.
Not only that, ExpressVPN’s zero-knowledge DNS feature and ultimate leak protection is unlike any other VPN service in the industry.
P2P Performance & Speed
As far as raw performance is concerned, ExpressVPN is equipped with powerful features to deliver blazing fast speeds every time.
Their robust server park managed to deliver consistent 25 Mbps speeds on my 30 Mbps connection.
Best VPN Provider for Torrenting!
ExpressVPN is my ultimate recommendation for torrenting because of its sophisticated online privacy tool and blazing fast speed. The excellent combination of a privacy-friendly jurisdiction, great logging policy, IP leak protection, and fast speeds establishes this VPN as the best there is for the purpose of torrenting.
- For complete feature list including pros and cons, checkout out ExpressVPN review for all the details.
2. Surfshark – Cheapest Pricing Packages For Torrent Users
Surfshark is an excellent choice for secure and private torrenting on a budget. If you’re the kind of person who’s looking for an ultra-affordable best VPN to torrent with, Surfshark has you covered.
Is Surfshark Safe for Torrenting?
Yes! Since most Surfshark VPN servers support P2P sharing/torrenting, you have nothing to worry about.
Not only that, since Surfshark is headquartered in the BVI, they’re free from any law mandating them to keep user data logs.
Similar to ExpressVPN, Surfshark does not collect logs of any data that can be used to compromise your privacy.
In addition, Surfshark leak protection is quite capable of consolidating your privacy further by preventing IP leaks.
P2P Performance & Speed
The Windows, Mac, and iOS apps of Surfshark have a kill switch that can prevent your data from falling through the digital cracks.
In terms of speeds, Surfshark manages to deliver decent downloading speeds. Considering affordability, Surfshark is probably the best VPN service for torrenting.
Cheapest VPN For Torrenting!
Surfshark is an excellent all-around VPN service that has all the important security, privacy, and speed factors that any reliable torrent VPN should have.
Ad-blocker (CleanWeb), split-tunneling (WhiteLister), and VPN chaining (MultiHop), powerful encryption, kill switch and tons of other featrues are all available in Surfshark by default.
What’s more, it is currently available at the cheapest industry rate of $1.99/month.
- Find out what makes this VPN service for torrenting so good in our detailed Surfshark review.
3. NordVPN – Highest Number Of Servers For Secure Torrenting
When it comes to downloading or sharing torrents, NordVPN is one of the best VPN for P2P out there. Not only is it affordable and secure, but they also offer one of the largest server parks in the industry.
Is NordVPN Safe For Torrenting?
Absolutely. In fact, NordVPN P2P policy actually permits torrenting on all of their 5600+ servers. The provider even offers a server recommendation page for you to choose the most optimized NordVPN uTorrent compatible server.
Aside from that, since they’re based under the jurisdiction of Panama, means that they actually respect the online privacy of users.
With no obligation to retain user data, the company can truly follow a zero-logging policy without any pressure from government authorities.
With a combination of safe jurisdiction and no logs policy, NordVPN is also equipped with powerful leak protection which is a testament to the quality of this VPN.
P2P Performance & Speed
If we talk about performance, NordVPN is a class apart. NordVPN’s kill switch technology is perfect for securing your privacy, and their 5600+ servers are capable of delivering fast speeds with consistency.
Dedicated VPN Servers for P2P Sharing!
NordVPN offers the highest number of dedicated VPN servers for torrenting or P2P activities. In addition to its outstanding core capabilities, it also includes a lot of other valuable features. Some of these extra features include Double VPN and Socks5 Proxy for added privacy.
Best of all, their 3-year plan is selling for just $2.99/month, which is just insane.
- Learn more about this VPN’s strengths and weaknesses in our NordVPN review.
4. PureVPN – Optimized Servers For P2P Sharing
If we shortlist top VPN for torrents, the list wouldn’t be complete without PureVPN. In fact, PureVPN service has made enough improvements over the years to make into this list of best torrenting VPN.
Is PureVPN Safe For Torrenting?
Well, considering that PureVPN supports P2P filesharing on a wide range of servers, it is perfect for securely downloading torrents.
Even more impressively, PureVPN is based out of Hong Kong, which exempts this provider from any obligations to retain user information of any kind.
PureVPN is also free from VPN leaks, making it a perfect torrent VPN.
P2P Performance & Speed
Moving on to performance and PureVPN is an absolute pleasure to use. For instance, the Windows app has a built-in Internet Kill Switch to prevent your IP address from leaking.
Taking a look at speeds and PureVPN managed to deliver exceptional download speeds with slightly compromised upload speeds.
Best Optimized Servers For P2P Sharing!
PureVPN made it to our top 5 VPNs list because of its stable P2P compatible servers. Moreover, it doesn’t leave much to complain about, especially for Windows platforms which includes features like a kill switch and built-in ad-blocker.
You can avail this VPN to protect yourself while torrenting at only $2.95/month for a whole year. That is way cheaper than most alternatives.
- More well-rounded coverage of this VPN is available in our PureVPN review.
5. CyberGhost – P2P VPN With Dedicated Servers For Torrenting
CyberGhost has been around for almost a decade and is among the very few reputed services out there to perform P2P activities.
Is CyberGhost Safe For Torrenting?
As I said, CyberGhost is among the very few safe torrenting VPNs out there.
In fact, calling it the best VPN for torrents wouldn’t be an overstatement. If you want to torrent safely, go and grab yourself a subscription plan of CyberGhost today.
Not only is CyberGhost fully BitTorrent compatible, but it also offers dedicated P2P server. Even more impressively, CyberGhost has an entire mode selection feature to help you torrent anonymously.
Moving on to jurisdiction and CyberGhost is located in Romanian which is a country free from the clutches of data retention law.
If you still have any doubts about CyberGhost, or wondering if CyberGhost is safe for torrenting, you can breathe a sigh of relief thanks to their zero logs policy.
Aside from that, CyberGhost boasts strong IPv4, IPv6, and DNS leak protection built into its apps which is always nice to have.
P2P Performance & Speed
The speeds usually delivered by CyberGhost are noticeably slower than its competitors, but it’s still not too bad. In fact, the speeds are sufficient for performing tasks like streaming and torrenting.
P2P Friendly VPN With A 45-day Refund Policy!
CyberGhost is a capable VPN service that has earned a slot in the top 5 VPNs for torrenting courtesy of its ideal jurisdiction, no logs policy, protective features, and robust 45-day money-back gaurantee.
- Read our in-depth CyberGhost review.
Do You Really Need A VPN For Torrenting?
Yes, you definitely need a VPN for your torrenting activities!
Although most of you know what is torrenting and all the risks associated with it, however, I’m still going to briefly discuss the need for a torrent VPN.
Since getting caught downloading torrents red-handed can have repercussions far worse than simply receiving legal notices. Some individuals have been penalized with hefty fines in the USA as well as other countries for downloading torrents without the use of a torrent VPN.
Using a Virtual Private Network routes all your traffic to a remote server owned by the provider which is ideally based under a data retention free jurisdiction. In order to provide users access to torrenting, VPN providers use virtual servers in countries with few or no restrictions on torrenting.
By opting the best VPN software for torrenting, you can literally hide all you torrenting traffic. So if a third-parties try to hack or track your activities, they won’t be able to pinpoint your exact location or your real identity.
If you’re new and don’t know how to torrent with VPN, or how to use a VPN for torrenting, you might find our torrent guide useful.
Note: We strictly discourage any activity involving copyright infringement and urge readers to ONLY download legal torrents.
Copyright Infringement Penalties Around The World
The legal penalties for copyright infringement via torrents or any other digital means vary for each country. Countries like Switzerland is considered one of the best VPN location for torrenting.
Let’s see some recent legal cases relating to torrenting and the laws that apply to some of the countries that are the worst places to be download torrents in without a torrent VPN.
Is torrenting illegal in the US?
Well in the United States, copyright infringement is penalized by law. Anyone found guilty of downloading copyrighted material without the permission of the authors can be jailed for up to five years and/or fined a maximum sum of $150,000 per file [Source].
Last year, more than 1,000 lawsuits were filed against people in the United States against users suspected of downloading copyrighted material via torrents.
Copyright enforcement in the US is considered the strictest in the world for this reason. Hence knowing how to torrent anonymously is absolutely crucial.
The United Kingdom enacted the Digital Economy Act which increased the maximum prison sentence for copyright infringement from two years to 10 years.
Although it is unlikely that you, the average user, downloading movies or songs through torrents will face such a harsh penalty, even a day in prison isn’t a risk worth taking.
All popular torrent websites are blocked in the UK, so you can’t even access these without a VPN.
But a VPN that grants you access to torrent sites isn’t necessarily secure enough to hide your identity and prevent receiving dreaded legal notices.
The Copyright Modernization Act (aka “Bill C-11”) passed in 2012 requires ISPs and even VPN providers in the Canadian jurisdiction to forward legal notices to their subscribers downloading torrents.
The providers will face a fine of up to $10,000 for failure to comply with this requirement.
What’s worse, the law demands VPNs to retain logs of subscribers for a minimum of six months, which is another reason why it is a bad idea to use a VPN service that is within the jurisdiction of Canada.
For copyright infringement for non-commercial purposes (which is the case for most people downloading torrents), a copyright owner can press for charges between $100 to $5,000s.
The maker of the Hollywood film Dallas Buyers Club reported identifying 4,726 IP addresses who illegally downloaded the film, many of whom were Australians.
The case was dropped by the filmmakers, but if they had pursued, a lot of Australians would have been in trouble for it and would have had to pay some fine.
Since the Australian government is on the verge of completely banning torrenting, it makes all the sense in the world to use a VPN. If you’re like me and hate restrictions, you might find our best VPN for Australia guide useful.
Online piracy is prohibited in Germany, with first-time offenders legally required to pay $200 in fines, with the maximum penalty being $1,300 for an individual, non-commercially motivated pirates.
However, the country is much harsher for operators of online piracy and torrenting sites, as when it sentenced the owner of torrent.to to 3 years and 10 months in prison.
All these instances show that piracy is taken very seriously in most leading nations of the world and the repercussions of getting caught can be severe.
This is the ultimate case for why it is important to use a VPN service for torrenting.
Is Torrenting Safe With A VPN?
Torrenting is totally safe as long as you mask your IP address with a high-quality VPN.
Let me explain why…
You see, to protect the ownership right of content creators, the US enacted the DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) in 1998.
Under this law, if you’re the owner of an IP that is being distributed on the web through torrents or any other filesharing method, then you can send a DMCA notice to the concerned parties and ask for a cessation of the activity and removal of the content.
For instance, here’s a user who got a notice from their ISP for torrenting the movie Justice League:
This user’s tenant got a similar notice for downloading certain files via torrents:
But if you use a VPN to mask your IP, you can potentially avoid DMCA notices. Again, I don’t encourage pirating copyrighted material.
Which VPNs Support Torrenting?
Aside from the VPNs discussed above, I have listed a few other VPN services with p2p support.
To make it easier for you, I have compiled a simple chart below to help you decide for yourself if the VPN you’re using deserves to be labeled as the best torrent VPN.
Note: You may also like to see our detailed VPN comparison table for 2019.
Does VPNs Slow Down Torrenting Speeds?
To be honest, yes! Since VPNs use overhead encryption, your torrenting speeds are going to suffer.
Even though VPN and BitTorrent go hand in hand, these technologies can sometimes impact each other in negative ways.
Slow speeds while torrenting can occur because of many different factors.
However, before delving down into the reasons, it is important that you first check your promised bandwidth to make sure you are getting what you paid for.
Online tools like speedtest.net should help you conduct a thorough evaluation.
Now that we have gotten that out of the way, it is time to discuss the reasons.
Limitations Of A Wi-Fi Connection
Plugin LAN connections are always going to be faster than Wi-Fi connections even though they might be using the same network connection. This is because direct connections do not require any sort of routing, which can substantially enhance the performance of your internet connection.
Another reason why your internet speeds suffer over the Wi-Fi connection is due to many physical obstructions for example distance from the router will also cause speeds to fluctuate drastically. Besides that, physical hindrances like walls and other furniture can also impose a negative impact not to mention interference from radio waves emitted by so many electronic devices in your vicinity.
Poor Seed Ratio
Torrent speeds heavily rely on the number of seeds, the higher the number of seeds a torrent file has the faster it is going to download. Since seeding refers to the number of people sharing the file for other torrenters. If a torrent file has a low ratio of seeders then your downloading speed is definitely going to suffer regardless of how fast your internet connection is.
Have you ever encountered bandwidth fluctuations of more than half of your allocated speeds? Surprise surprise welcomes to the world of bandwidth throttling. ISPs around the world have ridden their hands in this nasty business all in the name of providing good service.
Bandwidth throttling occurs when ISPs detect you of consuming too much of your allocated bandwidth. Torrenting, streaming or downloading large files can set off red flags for ISPs.
Whether you like it or not bandwidth, throttling is a reality, and torrenting has to suffer because of it.
Fortunately, opting a good VPN for torrenting can be a major lifesaver, as it encrypts your entire network connection making it impossible for ISPs to throttle your bandwidth.
Unadjusted Upload Speeds
Downloading torrents involve peers since it is different from traditional file downloading. Whenever you are downloading a torrent file through the BitTorrent protocol you are also uploading (seeding) the same amount for other peers.
When you leave your upload speed unadjusted, you are essentially negatively affecting your downloading speeds. This issue can be easily negated by first identifying your allocated upload speed and then adjusting the upload speed of your torrenting client. Generally, you should limit your upload speed to about 80% of your actual bandwidth.
Finally, it also helps to understand how a VPN basically works because the very action of VPN tunneling and encryption leads to an unavoidable loss in speed.
But a good VPN will usually be fast enough to work comfortably for your torrenting needs.
Is It Safe To Use A Free VPN For Torrenting?
Even though using a VPN is the best way to download torrents, but opting for free VPN is not recommended.
It is inconceivable that any company could bear the cost of servers, customer support, and the bandwidth to serve a large number of customers without charging any money.
So, what many VPNs with a “free VPN for torrenting” tag do is that they sell your private information which they gather through the VPN app along with advertisements.
This could be especially dangerous if your primary purpose for getting a free torrent VPN is to indulge in a legally ambiguous activity like torrenting.
In short, free p2p VPNs aren’t actually free.
This is exactly why I always recommend avoiding free torrenting VPN and opting only top VPN for torrenting apps to truly secure your P2P experience.
Nonetheless, there are some reputable free p2p VPNs that work transparently on the “freemium” business model.
We have covered a few free uTorrent VPNs in our free VPN for torrenting guide.
Best VPN For Torrenting Reddit
As I said earlier, torrenting without a VPN can be seriously risky. In fact, here’s one torrent user who has received a “cease and desist or else letter” for downloading torrents:
Even though I’ve suggested ExpressVPN as the number one VPN for torrenting, Surprisingly enough, most Reddit users have suggested NordVPN, or Surfshark as the best VPN for torrenting.
If we talk about the best free VPN for torrenting on Reddit, most torrent users have suggested not to gamble with free VPNs, and only purchasing premium P2P compatible VPNs.
From the comment above, it is obvious that free VPNs are incapable of delivering unlimited bandwidth. Not only that, if you opt for free P2P VPNs, you can’t expect uninterrupted speeds or anonymous connections.
Therefore, I highly suggest you opt for one of the best VPN for torrenting suggested earlier in this blog post.
The penalties and enforcement against online piracy have gradually gotten stricter over the past two decades.
Although, every copyrights owner has the right to sue an individual who accesses their material for free without their permission, the aggressiveness of certain countries towards anyone who downloads torrents can often spill over to those cases where the downloaded file may actually NOT be illegal.
With the best VPN for torrenting, you enable yourself to keep such eventualities at bay and download legal torrents with the assurance that you are beyond the vigilant eyes of authorities.
I hope you found this blog informative. Do let me know if I should add more VPNs to my list.