The situation with Internet freedom is declining in India due to the spread of fake news, disinformation, and the subsequent blackouts of internet in the country. With the internet penetration rate of 29.6%, the situation certainly needs to improve in the country.
As such, the need for VPNs is on the rise among users that want to protect their right to free speech and while maintaining their privacy online.
PureVPN is the #1 recommendation as best India VPN owing to its affordable pricing, outstanding unblocking ability for streaming, torrenting, and other sites, and a true zero-logging policy.
5 Best VPNs for India
The following services are some of the premium VPNs that work perfectly in India. The services we’ve chosen are fully capable of boosting your online privacy while giving access to all restricted websites in the country:
Having of a large network of 2,000 servers spread over 140 countries, 9 of which are in Chennai, India. As such, local Indian content is always accessible via PureVPN if you are Indian expatriate or traveling abroad. You can access Voot and Hotstar easily with PureVPN’s Indian servers.
PureVPN is headquartered in Hong Kong, which is far away from the surveillance of 14 eyes and from mandatory data retention laws. This makes it favorable for Indians that want to trust their privacy to a reliable VPN provider.
The provider is also fully capable of getting past bans imposed on social media, which tends to happen in India from time to time.
Other than that, the service delivers privacy-boosting servers such as split-tunneling, killswitch, 5 simultaneous connections, AES-256 bit encryption, and a money-back guarantee for 30 days at the impressive price of $1.65/mo . For these reasons, PureVPN gets a lot of credit by reviewers.
It is easily one of the cheapest VPN service with inexpensive prices as well as great features.
Surfshark consists of 1,000 servers in 60+ countries including India. These servers are highly efficient for unblocking streaming services like US Netflix, as well as general websites within India. The Indian servers efficient work with local Indian streaming services like Hotstar and Voot for expatriates living abroad.
Surfshark is based in British Virgin Islands. In line with the privacy-focused laws of the country, Surfshark is committed to protecting user privacy by refraining from storing any kinds of logs, which is important for the privacy-conscious Indian citizens.
Additionally, Surfshark has unlimited simultaneous connections and privacy features such as MultiHop and CleanWeb along with the military-grade AES-256 bit encryption. Users in India concerned with their privacy can take advantage of these Surfshark features for their benefit. It is also a VPN with highest speeds in 2019.
For more information, check out this Surfshark review.
NordVPN operates a network of 5,500+ servers in 60+ countries out of which 26 are in India. This makes this VPN a powerful solution for local residents in India as well as travelers to access censored social media and geo-restricted content with ease.
NordVPN is a Panama-based VPN service, which is another excellent jurisdiction from the privacy standpoint. The laws of the country allow you the company to ensure a log-free experience. So, if you need to manage your online privacy in India in a better way, you can count on NordVPN, which why users give positive reviews for this VPN.
In addition, NordVPN is a safe choice for users who want to unblock torrents in India with foolproof security. Users also get a lot of extra features for taking their privacy to even higher levels such as DoubleVPN, Onion over VPN, and CyberSec.
It is relatively expensive, costing $3.49/month. However, with the 30-day money-back guarantee and 6 simultaneous connections NordVPN is one of the best VPN for India.
ExpressVPN contains over 3,000 servers+ in 94 countries including India. With these servers, it becomes possible for Indians to not only censored social media content, but download torrents with strong identity-protection against authorities as well. Its compatibility with streaming apps like BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and ESPC also makes it one of the best VPN service for streaming.
ExpressVPN is also based in British Virgin Islands. With the privacy-affirming laws of the country, there’s an important benefit for Indian users who don’t want themselves being logged.
ExpressVPN is one of the higher priced VPNs in the industry with the cost of $8.32/month. However, with a 30-day money back guarantee and 5 simultaneous connections, it is an excellent choice as an India VPN. It is one of the few VPNs with almost universally positive reviews from experts and users alike.
CyberGhost has an impressively large network of 5,500+ servers spread in over 90 countries, including 19 of these in Mumbia, India. So if you’re looking for a VPN that offers a sizable pool of India IP address to access geo-restricted local sites abroad, CyberGhost is a decent choice.
CyberGhost is based in Romania which is another country that doesn’t enforce any mandatory data logging on ISPs/VPNs. For this reason, users in India can use CyberGhost is an evasion tactic against local surveillance.
Free VPNs Options
Free VPN services come in several forms. You can find free services as apps, browser extensions, or as proxy services and none of these are generally safe.
Most free VPN providers are actually data harvesting companies that can unscrupulously violate your privacy with complete disregard to your consent.
Nonetheless, many users rely on free Chrome VPN extensions to get an Indian IP address. Another common method is to use a free proxy service, which can be easily found in India with a simple Google search.
However, it is best to avoid using these services, since your privacy is too precious to be handed over to shady apps such as these.
Some reliable VPN apps that are available for free you can try are:
To learn more about what you can expect from free tools, see this article on free VPN services.
However, none of these VPNs have servers in India. In fact, there are hardly any VPNs that will offer servers in developing countries like India for free. Urban VPN is one of the very few free VPNs that offer a server in India, but we don’t recommend it if you want strong privacy controls. Since this VPN works in a P2P configuration (which is far from secure), it is best to avoid it.
Nonetheless, if you aren’t bothered about keeping your privacy protected and only need a free VPN with server in India, you can certainly give Urban VPN a try.
Why you need a VPN in India?
India suffers from some privacy, geo-restrictions, and censorship issues which make it important for troubled users to use a VPN. Some of the reasons for using VPNs in India include:
- Censorship: India faces various restrictions over the internet. Indian internet users are not allowed to access certain websites, including social media content, that are routinely banned due to religious and ethical grounds,
- Surveillance: Concerns have increased about India’s authorization of federal agencies to perform surveillance over unsuspecting citizens over the internet. This move has been made under the pretext of “national security” but is obviously a violation of the basic right to privacy. Furthermore, the Aaadhaar card biometric system is riddled with privacy concerns. VPNs, specifically those that keep no logs, can safeguard users from such privacy-violating measures.
- Unblocking geo-restricted websites: VPNs come in real handy if you need to unblock websites or streaming services that are inaccessible from your region. Connecting to VPN server locations other than your country helps you get past these restrictions.
- Staying safe over public Wi-Fi: VPNs also ensure that your online activity is encrypted and private, invisible for any potential hackers or cybercriminals that may me be lurking around on an unprotected public Wi-Fi in places such as cafes, malls, or hotels.
PUBG Ban in India
PUBG has been banned in India multiple times in the past, but these bans aren’t permanent. However, you never know when the next ban might come out of nowhere. You don’t want to it to be around the time when you want to play it the most.
It is fairly simple to bypass the PUBG ban in India and play whichever version of the game you prefer to play including PUBG Mobile Lite and PUBG PC Lite.
Here’s how you can bypass the PUBG ban with a VPN in India:
- Subscribe to one of the VPN services listed above.
- Download and install the VPN app on your phone/PC.
- Launch the VPN and enter your login credentials.
- Choose a server location where PUBG isn’t banned such as the US or UK.
- Launch PUBG and now you can once again enjoy playing participating in nail-biting matches with your friends.
Get Indian IP Address with a VPN
If you are located abroad, some websites will be inaccessible to you unless you have an Indian IP address. These are websites that are locally available in India, such as local banks and school portals, as well as streaming websites.
The easiest way to get an Indian IP is through the use of a VPN. Simply connect your VPN to an Indian server in order to obtain the local IP address and gain access to geo-restricted websites abroad. This is especially useful for expatriates or travelers that are moving away from India for a while but still need some way of accessing local websites back home.
Using VPNs to Unblock Indian Channels Abroad
Indian TV channels are insanely popular in the country as almost everyone in India is a cinema and TV enthusiast. Expatriates, unfortunately, have a hard time accessing these services because they are bound by geo-restrictions.
Hotstar is one of the most popular online streaming services that offers shows from Indian channels like Star Plus, Star Vijay etc. However, it is only available in the US, Canada, and India. In fact, the free content is exclusively offered within India. Thankfully, you can access the Indian version of Hotstar anywhere in the world using a VPN having Indian servers. That’s the simplest way to get free Hotstar video content without purchasing a subscription.
Similarly, Voot is a free streaming service with a lot of Indian drama serials and TV show content. Unfortunately, it is also geo-restricted and inaccessible outside India. You can apply the same trick mentioned above i.e. use a VPN having Indian servers in order to unblock Voot abroad and watch all available content for free.
Best Indian VPN: Final Thoughts
PureVPN is the best VPN choice for India for countering state-sponsored threatening the privacy of internet users. It will also allow you to gain access to geo-restricted services from all over the globe. With rising conservatism and extremist elements in the Indian political landscape, the importance of VPNs is only likely to increase as a tool promote critical voices without fear of censorship and surveillance.