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Yes, VPNs are legal to use in many countries, but not all countries support VPNs. Countries like China, Russia, and Iran discourage the use of VPNs and have banned them in their countries.

You must be wondering why do some countries ban VPNs? Well, it’s true that VPNs add a layer of security and encrypts all data flowing to and fro from a user’s device on the internet. VPNs also keep users protected by keeping them anonymous by spoofing their IP addresses and offering them the ultimate security features that combine to provide the best privacy package.

But the services of a VPN are often abused by users. Users often use VPNs to associate themselves with illegal online activities. Online activities like hacking, theft, cyberstalking, or using the dark web are certainly not permissible with or without a VPN.

Which VPNs are legal to use?

Most VPNs are legal to use in a country if the country has labeled them as legal. But you cannot use just any VPN for your devices. Many VPNs, like free VPNs, are risky to use and put users at a lot of risks.

Many free VPNs are dangerous online businesses that cheat and scam users when you sign up for the service. They tend to collect user data and sell it to third parties. They might also offer few servers and limited bandwidth.

Instead of trusting these VPNs, let’s go through all the best VPNs that are legal to use in most countries. They are:

JurisdictionBritish Virgin IslandsBritish Virgin IslandsPanamaHongKongRomaniaUSA
SecurityAES 256 BitAES 256 BitAES 256 BitAES 256-BitAES 256-bitAES 256-bit
Servers3,000+ in 94 Countries3,200+ in 63+ Countries5,500+ in 59 Countries6,500+ in 140+ Countries6,600+ in 90 Countries23,000+ in 77+ Locations
Speed27.17 Mbps average27.91 Mbps average20.15 Mbps average26.01 Mbps average17.10 Mbps average18.71 Mbps average
StreamingNetflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and MoreNetflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and MoreNetflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and MoreNetflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and MoreNetflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and MoreNetflix, BBC iPlayer,  and More
CompatibilityWindows, Mac, Android, iOS, routersWindows, Mac, Android, iOS, routersWindows, Mac, Android, iOS, routersWindows, Mac, Android, iOS, routersWindows, Mac, Android, iOS, routersWindows, Mac, Android, iOS, routers
Trustpilot4.8/5 – Reviews 9,9864.3/5 – Reviews 4,7124.4/5 – Reviews 4,0294.7/5 – Reviews 5,1484.8/5 – Reviews 10,1344.7/5 – Reviews 819
Best ForOverall Best VPNFastest VPN ServiceBest for Geo-UnblockingBest for General PurposesBest for Private BrowsingBest for Torrenting
More InfoExpressVPN ReviewSurfshark ReviewNordVPN ReviewPureVPN ReviewCyberGhost ReviewPIA Review
Visit SiteVisit SiteVisit SiteVisit SiteVisit SiteVisit Site

What are some legitimate uses of a VPN?

There are some genuine reasons to use a VPN instead of just considering it as a service for illegal activities. These are:

1. VPNs are used to stay anonymous over the internet and maintain online privacy and security. A VPN prevents all your original data from leaking to third parties. It also keeps you away from government monitoring and your Internet Service Provider’s (ISP) eyes.

2. Best streaming VPNs allow you to access geo-restricted content. This means that you can enjoy geo-restricted streaming services or social media apps easily. For example, if you live in China, then you can unblock American Netflix in China or you can unblock and use Instagram in China easily through a VPN.

3. A VPN should be prioritized while using public wifi. Public wifis are usually monitored and make you more vulnerable to cyberattacks and hacking. VPNs are used to prevent this and secure your data over the internet.

4. Best encrypted VPNs are significantly used in organizations because of their ability to encrypt all data and prevent cyberattacks. VPNs are set on corporate networks at large to protect all their sensitive data from any breach.

5. VPNs prevent all kinds of internet monitoring. Your messages and calls are completely encrypted, and no one can snoop in and monitor them if your VPN is turned on.

Can I use a VPN in restrictive areas?

It depends on the country, honestly. Many restrictive countries have imposed partial and complete bans on VPNs. These countries include:

1. China: The Chinese government has banned most VPN sites within the country, so you cannot download its app using the official website, but the above-mentioned VPNs work in China.

2. Russia: The Russian authority has also banned VPNs in the country to maintain internet censorship.

3. Turkey: While using the most popular VPNs for Turkey is entirely legal, the Turkish government has blocked some VPN sites along with some social media websites as well.

4. Iran: VPNs allowed to be used in Iran are licensed by the government. This means that these VPNs comply with the government’s policies and have disregarded their purpose altogether.

5. Iraq: Iraq is another country that has banned VPNs completely to track ISIS, costing the citizens their privacy.

The restrictive countries aren’t limited to these. The list also includes Oman, UAE, Belarus, etc.

While VPNs try to offer services even in countries with strict internet censorship, they struggle with it. VPN providers are forced to comply with the government’s terms in countries like these. They try to operate in countries where these compliance rules are weak or not present to avoid forcefully complying with these rules.

The governments of these restrictive countries try to combat VPN usage by:

1. Banning the IP address of the VPN.

2. Fining or giving jail times to VPN users.

3. Asking VPN providers for user logs to check all activities.

What are some of your fundamental rights around VPNs?

Your fundamental rights towards a VPN depend on the terms and conditions of your opted VPN service and the country you reside in.

It’s highly recommended to learn all about your chosen VPN before signing up for it. This should include going through the terms of service, its features, privacy policy, etc. Sign up for the service only if you’re satisfied with what it offers.

For example, here are some snippets of ExpressVPN’s privacy policy:


While offering the following advantages, ExpressVPN also makes users clear about what they shouldn’t do while using this service:


One final thing is to make sure that the country you’re going to the VPN in hasn’t banned or restricted VPNs. If it has, then disables the VPN on your device until you go back.


Will I be in trouble for using a VPN?

You will not be in trouble for using a VPN in countries where VPN usage is legal. Whereas, in countries like Russia, Iran, or China, where VPN services are banned, you might get into some trouble if you’re caught.

Can I get caught pirating with a VPN?

Yes, pirating is an illegal act itself, and while VPNs make your internet activity anonymous, it’s not impossible to get caught. This is easier if you’re using a free VPN. Free VPNs compromise user privacy and will make it easy for you to be tracked for this act.

Is using a VPN for streaming Netflix illegal?

No, it’s not illegal in any way to use a VPN for watching Netflix and would not result in any punishment. But, in countries where the VPN services themselves are banned, like China, a user would want to rethink its decision about using a VPN to bypass geo-restrictions.

When should I not use a VPN?

You should use a VPN all the time. A VPN masks your IP address and hides your internet activity from the government’s snooping, keeping your privacy and security is check all the time. But if you feel a lag in your internet connection while using a VPN, then you should switch it off once you’re done using it.

Can my Internet provider know that I’m using a VPN?<

Yes, your Internet Service Provider might know that you’ve chosen a secure server for yourself, but after that, he’d be unable to track your activity. This means that your ISP wouldn’t know what you’re using a VPN for at all.


There, we have it. A VPN service is entirely legal to use if you don’t live in any countries with strict internet censorship. You can enjoy a VPN service in many ways. One of them is unblocking geo-restricted streaming services like Netflix in your country. But, if you live in a country with strict internet regulations like China, then you need the best VPN for China to use within the country.

We highly recommend ExpressVPN. While being the top VPN in the world, this VPN offers fantastic security features to keep you anonymous on the internet. You can enjoy a 3-month free subscription on its annual plan. If not, then you can just opt for the best free VPN for China or any other country you live in.