Despite coming packed with powerful encryption, ever wondered what could happen if your VPN connection dropped unexpectedly? To give it to you straight, this can result in your true identity getting exposed to malicious entities, law enforcement agencies, and even online snoopers. That’s where a VPN Kill Switch comes in.
To counter this annoying dilemma, many VPN providers offer a feature called Kill Switch which immediately secures your identity and privacy if your VPN connection abruptly drops.
Sounds handy right?
So in this guide, I will show you how an internet kill switch works, what benefits it offers, and also recommend some of the best VPN with Kill Switch.
Best VPNs that offer kill switch feature
Undoubtedly, finding an appropriate VPN that provides a built-in kill switch feature is a daunting task. You will have to go through different providers in detail to check network lock benefits. For your ease, I have compiled a list of VPN services that delivers VPN with a kill switch attribute by default.
Here is the list of VPN services with a Kill Switch feature in 2021:
1. ExpressVPN – Fastest Kill Switch VPN
The British Virgin Island service has a global presence because it offers 3000+ servers in 90+ countries. Above all, the brand provides an excellent kill switch feature you can find out by the name of “Network Lock” once you have found the ‘General’ option from your app.
This way, you can secure your traffic even when the ExpressVPN app stops working unexpectedly.
Read our exclusive ExpressVPN review for more details.
2. Surfshark – Affordable Kill Switch VPN
What makes Surfshark different from other VPN services is the availability of an impressive kill switch benefit. Moreover, this relatively new privacy brand has 3200+ servers in 65+ countries that allow you to safeguard your digital whereabouts straightaway.
When it comes to preventing yourself from IP leaks issues that arise from VPN disconnections, you should rely on Surfshark. Its also one of the fastest VPN service in the industry.
Read our exclusive Surfshark review for more details.
3. NordVPN – All-round VPN for Kill Switch
NordVPN is currently offering 5200+ servers in more than 59 countries worldwide. This is how you can secure your privacy from any part of the world trouble-free. Above all, it offers an eye-catching automatic kill switch feature that improves your online anonymity to the next level.
Furthermore, you can avail of such attributes on your preferred devices like Windows, Linux, Mac, Android, and iOS.
To learn more about how NordVPN works, view our detailed NordVPN review.
4. PureVPN – Secure VPN with Kill Switch
PureVPN is one of the leading VPN providers in the industry right now. It offers over 6500 servers located across the world and protects your privacy with military-grade encryption and OpenVPN protocol. PureVPN bakes its VPN kill switch feature in apps for Windows, Mac, and Android. View our guide of Android VPN as well.
Overall, PureVPN has good reviews of its internet kill switch feature. It has also resolved certain issues on its Android version, as the latest builds have a new and improved kill switch feature.
To learn more about PureVPN, view our detailed PureVPN review.
5. CyberGhost – Decent VPN with Kill Switch
CyberGhost is another privacy brand delivering its services through 6500+ servers in 90+ countries all around the world. The famous Romania based provider offers an exclusive VPN with kill switch benefits to its users.
You can explore the said feature by the name of “The Ultimate Kill switch” through the app settings.
You can learn about the salient attributes of the service through our CyberGhost review.
6. Private Internet Access – Secure VPN with Kill Switch Option
Private Internet Access is a super-secure VPN service that also comes with a built-in kill switch. In terms of network coverage, PIA currently offers over 12,000+ servers in over 75+ countries worldwide. Not only that, but PIA also offers a lot of security features like powerful encryption and top-notch protocols to keep you totally safe and secure.
In terms of compatibility, you can use PIA with Windows, Linux, Mac, Android, iOS, routers and with a ton of other devices as well.
To learn more about how PIA, view our detailed PIA review.
What is a VPN Kill Switch & How Does it Work?
A VPN kill switch, also known as an internet kill switch, is like a fail-safe device that deploys if your VPN connection drops. What it does is that it instantly stops you from connecting to the internet when you disconnect from the VPN. This prevents third parties or any outsider from identifying your true IP address and location.
Once your VPN service is back up and running, it automatically reconnects your device to the internet. So, how does an internet kill switch work?
A VPN with an internet kill switch constantly monitors your internet connection. It looks for any signs of change, such as drop-in connection or changing the IP address. A kill switch instantly kicks in when it detects such change and halts your internet connection.
Primary causes for frequent disconnections
Unfortunately, frequent VPN disconnections may spoil your fun a great if you are unable to access your desired geo-restricted content. Therefore, you should perform some tweaks to overcome VPN disconnection issues timely.
Here is the list of major reasons that do not allow your VPN services to work properly:
- VPN protocol selection
- Network congestion/ poor signal strength
- Firewall or router settings
VPN protocol selection
Surprisingly, connections seamlessly perform when the network uses the TCP protocol as compared to the default UDP protocol. If your connection is unstable, there is no harm in switching the protocol.
Network congestion / poor signal strength
When numerous people use the same Wi-Fi connection to access the internet, the strength of Wi-Fi connections may decrease to a certain degree. The same goes for VPNs as well. This is because the strength of Wi-Fi connections also influences the performance of VPN services a great deal.
This is the reason VPN connections are disconnected quite often.
Firewall or router settings
At times, firewall or antivirus software may hamper the VPN connection speeds considerably. Therefore, you should disable these features to check the performance of your VPN service. In case your VPN connections become stable once you have disabled the security features, you should not apply these settings on your VPN services.
What is the purpose of a VPN kill switch?
The first and foremost objective of using a network lock feature is to deliver a next-level additional layer of security to users. When you browse the internet through a VPN, the role of the above said benefits becomes crucial.
You can easily filter all VPNs that provide kill switch features by visiting the VPN reviews guide. In addition, you can go through this VPN comparison chart that explains which VPNs offer a kill switch feature.
Types of network lock or kill switch?
Surprisingly, the network lock or kill switch has two types. You may consider these types like active kill switch and passive kill switch. An active kill switch does not send your traffic to unsafe networks. When your VPN provider suddenly stops working, you have disconnected from the internet automatically.
What makes a passive kill switch more effective from its counterpart is its next level security feature. It means a VPN app does not send your internet traffic as soon as it stops receiving a signal from the VPN server.
How do I know if my VPN has a built-in kill switch?
At times, it becomes difficult for newbies to explore network lock feature in their VPN software. This is because every VPN service has mentioned kill switch by its own name. Upon digging deep, you can find the said privacy advantage appropriately.
You might be wondering how you can find internet kill switch hassle-free. In case you are using PureVPN, you can click on advanced options. To find advanced options, you will need to press the menu tab first. Here is the snapshot of the feature:
This way, you are able to find out your desired privacy benefit accordingly. If you are using VPN services other than PureVPN, you may read the FAQs section provided on official sites.
How can I enable a VPN kill switch?
The task of enabling a kill switch is simple and does not any rocket science. Here is how you can do:
- Launch NordVPN Windows app and go to settings>general
- Explore internet kill switch or app kill switch benefit and select your preferred option
- When you select internet kill switch, you can use the internet while connected to VPN only
- In case you opt app kill switch, you will not be able to use the internet when VPN connection drops
This is how you can activate NordVPN kill switch feature on your Windows devices stress-free.
Are kill switches activated by default?
It depends on your VPN service, as different services do not activate the feature by default. You will need to use the app settings first. Once you have opened the app settings, you can enable the privacy advantage accordingly.
The above screenshot demonstrates that Surfshark users will have to activate kill switch benefits from the app settings first. This way, they can secure their internet traffic hassle-free.
Third-party Kill switches
Interestingly, you are free to use other third-party resources like VPNetMon and VPN watcher. VPNetMon allows you to secure your internet connection when your VPN provider suddenly stops working. The said protection tool does not turn off the internet completely.
In fact, it just shuts down the pre-selected program that may expose your IP addresses while using an insecure internet connection. As for VPN watcher, we will describe it in the next heading.
Still, using a VPN service with no network lock?
In case you are still unaware of the impacts of network lock or VPN kill switch, you should subscribe to a VPN service that provides kill switch advantage. By doing so, you can secure your digital whereabouts even when your VPN connection is not working.
VPN kill switch Reddit
Reddit is one of the most sought communities that offer unbiased and updated information about numerous niches instantly. According to the response of one Reddit user, it depends on your VPN provider.
Different VPN services deactivate kill switch when you are disconnected from any server completely. On the other hand, some VPN services do not disable the feature even if you are disconnected.
So now that you know all about kill switch and VPN providers offer this feature, let’s go through some of the most frequently asked questions about VPN kill-switch.
Does VPN stay on all the time?
Generally yes, however, you will need to reconnect to a VPN server once you restart your computer or your smartphone. To always keep your VPN running, you can configure a VPN directly on to your router.
What happens if VPN disconnects?
Well it all depends on what you’re using a VPN for. For instance, if you’re using a VPN to download torrents and your VPN disconnects, you can end up being questioned by your ISP or even by law enforcement agencies depending on the severity of the matter.
Are there any free VPNs with Kill Switch?
Most free VPNs dont offer the kill switch feature in their free plans, as it is only available in their premium plans. And free VPNs that do offer kill switch come with limited functionality. Some of the free VPNs offering kill switch are Hotspot Shield, Speedify, and TunnelBear.
An Internet kill switch is an integral feature that you should look for when selecting a VPN. It adds an extra layer of security and provides a safety net in case your VPN stops functioning. In this post, we have listed five VPN with kill-switch. Each of them has good reviews and has a kill switch feature built-in to their apps.
Likewise, a kill switch has various other applications and can be beneficial if you are a privacy-conscious user. Whether it is torrenting, surfing the web, conducting financial transactions, or any other task, a kill switch will prevent IP leakage and preserve your privacy at all times.
So what are you waiting for? grab yourself a premium VPN service today!
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