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Compare Top VPNs of 2021 With Tools and Chart

In the VPN industry, the list of VPN providers claiming to be the best is constantly increasing. But, how do you know which one to choose?

When every VPN advertises the same features, it can be extremely confusing to pick the right VPN. Every VPN provider is different from another and possesses an edge over a particular domain such as streaming, torrenting, online gaming, and more.

That being said, at VPNRanks, we took a different approach and performed a VPN comparison based on twenty (20) different factors. This includes jurisdictions, servers network, logging policy, unblocking capabilities, speeds, and so much more, which you can find in our comparison chart.

Compare VPN Providers

VPN Comparison Chart 2021 (Examined on 20 Key Factors)

The colors in the chart represent the following:

Green Generally good

YellowSomething negative

Pink Something bad that is of major concern

Blue Undefined

It took me more than 72+ hours to gather the authentic information regarding these 60+ VPN providers so that you can make the best decision for yourself.

Here is the best VPN services comparison chart you’ve been waiting for. Check it out:

This VPN comparison table consists of what we believe to be the most critical parameters that determine the level of privacy and security a VPN can offer to you.

If you don’t see a factor that you think we should consider or want us to include a specific VPN brand that we may have overlooked, please feel free to mention it in the comments section of this guide.

This blog culminated all the hard work and research we performed over two weeks, generating the above chart.

But this article won’t analyze each specific VPN in detail. Instead, for an in-depth evaluation of VPNs, you’ll have to see our unbiased VPN reviews.


VPNRank’s VPN Provider’s Comparison Criteria

Comparing products is a painstaking process. First, you have to make sure your unconscious biases don’t influence your judgment. After all, meeting consumer expectations is what separates a good product from a poor one.

We use a variety of factors to compare VPNs. However, we mainly consider streaming, online gaming, unblocking, privacy, jurisdiction, and logging. Below is a list of some of the most important factors we consider in our comparisons.

If you find any term confusing, don’t worry. You can find a glossary of all the terms you might find difficult to understand in this blog.

  • Speed – Which VPN offers the fastest connection speeds?
  • Privacy Policy – Which VPN follows a zero-log policy and logs no user data?
  • Jurisdiction – Which VPNs are headquartered in safe jurisdiction?
  • Pricing – Which VPN offers the most value for money and cheaper subscription plans?
  • Server Network – How many servers and server locations do VPN providers offer?
  • Customer Support – Which VPN offers better customer support and help?
  • Torrenting – Which VPN offers P2P support and is safe for torrenting?
  • Netflix – Which VPN can unblock various Netflix libraries from anywhere in the world?
  • Privacy and Security – Which VPN offers the best security and encryption features such as AES-256-Bit, Double VPN, and more for maximum privacy and anonymity.


Quick Overview: VPN Comparison of Top 10 VPNs in November 2021

1. ExpressVPN The best overall VPN provider with excellent security, ultra-fast speeds, and a great user experience. It offers 3000+ servers in 94, AES-256-Bit encryption, Private DNS, and TrustedServer network. Supporting 5 simultaneous connection and available for just $6.67/mo (Save 49% and get 3 extra months FREE with 12-month plan this Black Friday) with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

2. Surfshark– The most budget-friendly VPN with various low-cost subscriptions. It offers 3000+ servers in 94 countries, Multi-Hop, Clean Web, and military-grade AES-256-Bit encryption. Supporting unlimited simultaneous connections for just $2.21/mo and comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

3. NordVPN– The most secure VPN with unique security features. It offers 5100+ servers in 60 countries, Double VPN, CyberSec, Onion Over VPN, AES-256-Bit encryption and secure DNS. Supports 6 simultaneous connections on premium account for just $3.29/mo (Save 72% on 2-year-plan Holiday Season Offer) with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

4. CyberGhost– User-friendly VPN with purpose-specific modes. It offers 7000+ servers in 90, AES-256-Bit encryption, customized modes for streaming, torrenting, and online gaming. Equipped with 7 simultaneous connections, it costs $2.17/mo and comes with a 45-day money-back guarantee.

5.Private Internet AccessVPN provider with the largest server network that offers a great torrenting experience. It offers 35500+ servers in 78, Port Forwarding, SOCKS5, and zero-log VPN for optimized torrenting. Offers 10 simultaneous connections for just $2.08/mo and comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

6. PrivateVPNVPN provider focused preferred for high-performing service. It offers 200+ servers in 68 countries, 2048-bit encryption, kill switch, port forwarding, IPv6 leak protection, application guard, obfuscation, and more. Available for 6 simultaneous connections for just $2.07/mo with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

7. VyprVPNVPN provider concentrated for fast, versatile, and perfect for small businesses. It offers 700+ servers in 70+ countries, AES-256-Bit encryption, internet kill switch, NAT firewall, and VyprVPN Cloud. Offering 30 simultaneous connections for just $2.50/mo with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

8.IPVanishVPN provider serving as a solid solution for VOIP purposes. It offers 1900+ servers in 75, AES-256-Bit encryption, Wi-Fi protection, internet kill switch, and DNS/IPv6 leak protection. It comes with unlimited simultaneous connections for just $3.96/mo with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

9. ProtonVPNVPN provider with a balanced relationship between security and streaming needs. It offers 1,200+ servers in 55 countries, AES-256-Bit encryption, kill switch, ad-blocker (NetShield), split tunneling, secure core VPN, and DNS leak protection. Available for 10 simultaneous connections at $4/mo with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

10. WindscribeVPN provider that is easy-to-use, affordable, and quite exceptional for multiple online purposes. Offering servers in 63 countries and 110 cities, AES-256-Bit encryption, zero-log VPN, proxy gateway, and time warp. Protecting unlimited simultaneous connections at a price of just $4.08/mo with a 30-day money-back guarantee.


Top VPNs Comparison (Detailed Analysis – November 2021)

We’ve tested many VPN providers, so we decided to compare them on the same factors shared above to see which came out on top.

Here are the VPN industry’s top VPNs going head-to-head:

1. ExpressVPN Compared to Other VPNs

ExpressVpn-Comparisons-Banner

 

ExpressVPN is one of the top-rated VPN in the industry with high-end security features. It even has a high Trustpilot rating of 4.6/5.0. In addition, ExpressVPN is the most admired service on Reddit. Seriously, there’s no contest when it comes to this VPN and what Redditors think about it. The provider is widely considered the best VPN outside 14 eyes states than other providers on the VPN ranking list.

ExpressVPN offers more than 3000+ servers in 94 countries. It provides fast speed and obfuscation to help you access restricted content, including geo-restricted sites from across the world. Its other features include AES-256 bit encryption, kill switch, split tunneling, zero-knowledge DNS, and more.

ExpressVPN also uses RAM volatile servers and a built-in speed-test tool to provide you with the most optimized server for maximum speed. Unfortunately, only a handful of VPN providers are currently using these two advanced technologies. So it shouldn’t come as a surprise that ExpressVPN was the pioneer who introduced them to the world.

While some providers excel in any one particular aspect, the great thing about ExpressVPN, which separates it from the rest of the providers, is that “this provider will never let you down regardless of the nature of user purpose“.

ExpressVPN also offers fast connection speeds as compared to other VPNs. The only negative of this provider is that when compared to Surfshark, NordVPN, or other VPNs, ExpressVPN only supports 5 simultaneous connections with one subscription. However, it makes up for it with its feature-rich apps and high-end security protocols.

Let’s take a quick look at the ExpressVPN comparison table with other VPN providers: 

VPNsExpressVPNSurfsharkCyberGhostNordVPNPIA
Average Speed75.34 Mbps65.81 Mbps70.34 Mbps73.34 Mbps79.46 Mbps
JurisdictionThe British Virgin IslandsThe British Virgin IslandsRomaniaPanamaUSA
Encryption256-bit AES with Lightway Protocol256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES
Simultaneous Connections5Unlimited7610
Money-Back Guarantee30 days30 days45 days30 days30 days

Still not convinced? Check out our in-depth ExpressVPN review for 2021.

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2. Surfshark Compared to Other VPNs

SurfShark-Comparisons-Banner

 

Unlike most VPN services, Surfshark has achieved the right balance between price and features. It has some impressive features while being easy on the pocket. At a low price of just $2.21/mo , you get access to premium features, Check more lowest price VPNs. Surfshark has a 4.3/5.0 star Trustpilot rating. In addition, Surfshark provides 3200+ servers in 65 countries, and it even works in highly censored countries like China, Iran, and Saudi Arabia.

Some of the premium features offered by Surfshark include DNS leak protection, internet kill switch, Multi-hop, CleanWeb, WhiteLister (split tunneling), and 256-bit encryption. In addition, it is one of the few VPNs that come with an in-built ad blocker, so you don’t have to worry about annoying and intrusive ads when surfing the web.

While this provider may be new to the industry, its budget-friendly subscription prices have caught everyone’s attention. Most of the VPN providers from our list couldn’t match Surfshark’s ability to maintain such affordable prices and provide an easy-to-use and comfortable user experience. You can also check our detailed VPN price comparison to see how Surfshark performs against other budget-friendly VPN services.

The most promising feature that sets Surfshark apart from other VPN providers from this list is its ability to support unlimited simultaneous connections on a single subscription. Meaning, with Surfshark, you can protect all your devices at the same time. Not even the top-tier VPN providers can match this astonishing feature.

Let’s take a quick look at Surfshark comparison with other VPN providers: 

VPNsSurfsharkExpressVPNNordVPNPrivateVPNVyprVPN
Average Speed65.81 Mbps75.34 Mbps70.34 Mbps79.54 Mbps65.78 Mbps
JurisdictionThe British Virgin IslandsThe British Virgin IslandsPanamaSwedenSwitzerland
Encryption256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES
Simultaneous  ConnectionsUnlimited56105
Money-Back Guarantee30 days30 days45 days30 days30 days

It’s also a perfect option for gaming on PC, Xbox & PS4. To know more about this VPN in detail, check out our Surfshark review for 2021.

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3. NordVPN Compared to Other VPNs

Nord-Comparisons-Banner

 

NordVPN is one of the most popular encrypted VPNs globally and is highly recommended for users concerned about their online privacy. NordVPN offers around 5100+ servers in 60 countries. NordVPN also follows a strict no-logs policy that ensures complete online privacy and anonymity as your internet traffic won’t be stored and shared with anyone.

NordVPN offers tons of features, including strong encryption, kill switch, CyberSec, Onion Over VPN, Obfuscation, dedicated IP address, and more. It also supports tons of major platforms such as Mac, Windows, Android, iOS, Linux, Roku, Firestick, and more. With one NordVPN subscription, you can secure up to 6 devices at the same time.

Only the 6 devices simultaneous connection feature is enough to keep NordVPN at the top because about 70% of the VPNs offer 5 or fewer simultaneous connections.

What really makes NordVPN stand out from the rest of the VPN providers on this list is its ability to take basic VPN services to the next level with extra layers of functionality, additional web security services, and outstanding usability.

In addition, its advanced security features such as double encryption and DNS leak resolver are not available with any other provider in this list. NordVPN is a powerhouse. However, with a Trustpilot rating of 4.0/5.0, some users have developed trust issues with the VPN.

Let’s take a quick look at the NordVPN comparison table with other VPN providers: 

VPNsNordVPNExpressVPNSurfsharkWindscribe
Average Speed70.34 Mbps75.34 Mbps65.81 Mbps69.87 Mbps76.15 Mbps
JurisdictionPanamaThe British Virgin IslandsThe British Virgin IslandsUSACanada
Encryption256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES
Simultaneous Device Connections65UnlimitedUnlimited5
Money-Back Guarantee30 days30 days30 days30 days30 days

Find out more about this VPN in our detailed NordVPN review.

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4. CyberGhost Compared to Other VPNs

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CyberGhost is a recognized brand in the VPN industry. It offers 7000+ servers in 90 countries. Aside from the massive server network, Cyberghost has excellent online reviews and an impressive Trustpilot rating of 4.8/5.0.

Its features include 256-bit encryption, automatic kill switch, adblocker, malware blocker, optimized servers for streaming, torrenting, gaming, and more. It also follows a strict no-logs policy, so your online anonymity and privacy are safe with this VPN. It is also quite affordable and lets you connect 7 devices at the same time.

Unlike many providers on this list, the CyberGhost application gives a clean and organized look for all the features it has to offer. What makes CyberGhost unique from other providers is “the customized modes for streaming, torrenting, and online gaming that it offers.”

CyberGhost also allows you to have complete control over the apps and browser’s behavior in conjunction with the VPN connection. These features really make CyberGhost stand out and compels users to give it a chance over the others.

Despite all these amazing features, there have been some complaints from Reddit users about poor customer service. However, our experience hasn’t been that bad with CyberGhost. Reddit users have also complained that CyberGhost is facing issues unblocking some streaming sites like Netflix US.

Let’s take a quick look at CyberGhost comparison with other VPN providers: 

VPNsCyberGhostExpressVPNSurfsharkWindscribe
Average Speed73.34 Mbps75.34 Mbps65.81 Mbps69.87 Mbps76.15 Mbps
JurisdictionRomaniaThe British Virgin IslandsThe British Virgin IslandsUSACanada
Encryption256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES
Simultaneous Device Connections75UnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
Money-Back Guarantee45 days30 days30 days30 days30 days

To know more about its features and plans, you can also check out our CyberGhost review.

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5. Private Internet Access (PIA) Compared to Other VPNs

PIA-Comparisons-Banner

 

PIA has one of the largest server networks among other VPN providers, with more than 35500+ servers in 78 countries. Moreover, with so many servers worldwide, you will certainly have no issues unblocking geo-restricted content from anywhere in the world. As a result, this US-based VPN service is one of the most popular VPNs in the Five Eyes jurisdiction.

Some of the features offered by PIA include ad and malware blocker, automatic kill switch, split tunneling, SOCKS5 Proxy, Multiple VPN Gateway, and more. You get all these features at a low price, and it also offers a 30-day money-back guarantee and allows 10 simultaneous connections.

It should come as no surprise that PIA takes an edge over 90% of VPN providers in the industry simply because it has one of the largest server networks. However, that is not all; the reason it has continued to surpass many top VPN providers is due to its ability to offer a robust VPN service, an excellent new app interface, and overall a solid VPN service at an affordable price of $2.08/mo .

If you’re looking for a trustworthy provider that values user privacy and offers strong security, adblocking, and anonymous torrenting, PIA is a good option for you.

PIA is a VPN service with as many fans on Reddit as there are haters. Literally, any thread on Reddit you can find on this service is sharply divided between the naysayers and those with a positive experience.

Let’s take a quick look at the PIA VPN comparison with other VPN providers: 

VPNsPIAExpressVPNSurfsharkPrivateVPN
Average Speed79.46 Mbps75.34 Mbps65.81 Mbps68.56 Mbps79.54 Mbps
JurisdictionUSAThe British Virgin IslandsThe British Virgin IslandsSwitzerlandSweden
Encryption256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES
Simultaneous Device Connections105Unlimited1010
Money-Back Guarantee30 days30 days30 days30 days30 days

To know more about this VPN, check out our latest PIA VPN review.

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6. PrivateVPN Compared to Other VPNs

Private-Comparisons-Banner

 

This Swedish-based VPN service offers only 200+ servers compared to other VPN providers in 68 countries. As compared to other VPNs on this list, this number is quite low. However, it sure does make up for it with its high speeds and security features. Owing to these features, it has a high Trustpilot rating of 4.8/5.0 stars.

PrivateVPN comes with 2048-bit encryption, kill switch, port forwarding, IPv6 leak protection, application guard, obfuscation, and more. With one PrivateVPN subscription, you can connect up to 6 devices at the same time. It also offers apps for various devices and can be manually configured on routers, Smart TVs, and more.

While this provider seems pretty much average from above, when you take a close look, you’d realized what makes it superior to everyone else. Even though PrivateVPN doesn’t offer anything special, its ability to utilize the available features to offer a high-performing service for its client definitely deserves recognition and praise. 

PrivateVPN is quite popular among Reddit users, and there are hardly any complaints against this provider if you search through VPN-related subreddits. In fact, it is one of the top VPN recommendations in the community.

Let’s take a quick look at the Private VPN comparison with other VPN providers: 

VPNsPrivateVPNExpressVPNSurfsharkVyprVPN
Average Speed79.54 Mbps75.34 Mbps65.81 Mbps68.56 Mbps65.78 Mbps
JurisdictionSwedenThe British Virgin IslandsThe British Virgin IslandsSwitzerlandSwitzerland
Encryption256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES
Simultaneous Device Connections105Unlimited105
Money-Back Guarantee30 days30 days30 days30 days30 days

To know more about this VPN in detail, you can also check out our PrivateVPN review.

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7. VyprVPN Compared to Other VPNs

VyprVPN-Comparisons-Banner

 

Next up, we have VyprVPN, which offers some pretty cool features despite its low Trustpilot ratings. Compared to other VPNs like ExpressVPN, NordVPN, and PIA, this VPN offers few servers, approximately 700+ servers across North America, South America, Asia, Oceania, and Africa. However, it is quite affordable as compared to other VPNs on this list.

Some of its dedicated features include high-end encryption, kill switch, NAT firewall, and VyprVPN Cloud. It also has an audited no-logs policy, and it doesn’t keep any user logs whatsoever.

Two features that definitely have a deep impact on VyprVPN reputation and dominance over other providers include 30 simultaneous connections on a single VyprVPN subscription and VyprVPN Cloud – a user-friendly VPN server-deployment solution that gives you an added layer of security whenever you’re accessing your cloud servers. It is also easily compatible with cloud services such as DigitalOcean, Amazon Web Services (AWS), and VirtualBox.

Redditors seem to have many issues with VyprVPN, but its security and user interface simplicity are well-appreciated. However, some users have complained about VyprVPN not being able to unblock Netflix US from abroad.

Let’s take a quick look at VyprVPN comparison with other VPN providers: 

VPNsVyprVPNExpressVPNSurfsharkCyberGhostNordVPN
Average Speed65.78 Mbps75.34 Mbps65.81 Mbps70.34 Mbps73.34 Mbps
JurisdictionSwitzerlandThe British Virgin IslandsThe British Virgin IslandsRomaniaPanama
Encryption256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES
Simultaneous Connections55Unlimited76
Money-Back Guarantee30 days30 days30 days45 days30 days

Learn about this VPN in our VyprVPN review.

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8. IPVanish Compared to Other VPNs

IPVanish-Comparisons-Banner

 

IPVanish is another renowned and most trusted VPN service. It offers its users around 1900+ servers in 75 locations, which is quite expensive compared to other VPNs on this list. Its other premium features include 256-bit AES encryption, kill switch, zero log policy, and SOCKS5 web proxy. It also uses a Scramble feature for obfuscation.

What’s impressive is that IPVanish also provides its users with a powerful password generator feature for maximum privacy and security. It also comes with IPv6, DNS, and WebRTC leak protection.

IPVanish is one of those 5% VPN providers that offer data storage with their subscription as well. While it does cost a little extra, this feature lets you sync and secure 500 GB of data to access important files from any device, paired with VPN protection.

Also, what makes it superior to others is a feature called “Remote Device Wiping” – an ability to delete any sensitive data from your synced device should it ever be comprised by loss or theft.

It also allows 30 simultaneous connections and also offers a 30-day money-back guarantee. Unfortunately, many users can be seen complaining about IPVanish performance on Reddit periodically.

Let’s take a quick look at IPVanish comparison with other VPN providers: 

VPNsPIAExpressVPNPrivateVPN
Average Speed69.87 Mbps79.46 Mbps75.34 Mbps68.56 Mbps79.54 Mbps
JurisdictionUSAUSAThe British Virgin IslandsSwitzerlandSweden
Encryption256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES
Simultaneous Device ConnectionsUnlimited1051010
Money-Back Guarantee30 days30 days30 days30 days30 days

To know about this VPN in detail, read our in-depth IPVanish review.

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9. ProtonVPN Compared to Other VPNs

ProtonVPN-Comparisons-Banner

 

ProtonVPN is another top-ranking VPN in the industry with a decent server network of 1,200+ servers in 55 countries. It also follows a strict no-logs policy. Furthermore, it offers 4 types of subscriptions: free, basic, plus, and visionary, so you can easily opt-out of the best ProtonVPN package according to your purpose.

Some of the features you get with ProtonVPN include 256-bit encryption, kill switch, ad-blocker (NetShield), split tunneling, secure core VPN, DNS leak protection, and the list go on.

It also comes with excellent unblocking capabilities and works with major streaming platforms like Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, and more.

Few features that give an extra advantage to ProtonVPN over other providers include Tor over VPN and streaming service support – that allows you to bypass various streaming service geo-restrictions, 10 simultaneous devices connection, and a P2P/BitTorrent support for secure, fast, and anonymous torrenting.

Let’s take a quick look at the ProtonVPN comparison table with other VPN providers: 

VPNsExpressVPNSurfsharkNordVPNPIA
Average Speed68.56 Mbps75.34 Mbps65.81 Mbps70.34 Mbps79.46 Mbps
JurisdictionSwitzerlandThe British Virgin IslandsThe British Virgin IslandsPanamaUSA
Encryption256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES
Simultaneous Connections105Unlimited610
Money-Back Guarantee30 days30 days30 days30 days30 days

To know more about this VPN, you can also check out our ProtonVPN review.

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10. Windscribe Compared to Other VPNs

Windscribe-Comparisons-Banner

 

This Canadian-based VPN offers the best value for money. Windscribe VPN has over servers in 63 countries and 110 cities and offers excellent security features. Its features include an internet kill switch, double hop, port forwarding, ad-blocker, and more.

With one Windscribe subscription, you can connect unlimited devices simultaneously, and it also comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee. Furthermore, it does not keep any activity logs or meta logs, so you are safe with this VPN.

While Windscribe seems like any other general VPN provider, it does have some features that make it stand out from the rest. These include Proxy Gateway – it creates a secure HTTP or SOCKS5 proxy server right on your Windows or Mac computer and Time Warp, which will fake the configured timezone on your computer to match that of the location you’re connected to.

Windscribe has a lot of criticism on Reddit. Several users have reported issues with bad servers, resulting in frequent disconnections. But, we have never experienced any connectivity issues with Windscribe.

Let’s take a quick look at Windscribe comparison with other VPN providers: 

VPNsWindscribeExpressVPNSurfsharkNordVPNPIA
Average Speed76.15 Mbps75.34 Mbps65.81 Mbps70.34 Mbps79.46 Mbps
JurisdictionCanadaThe British Virgin IslandsThe British Virgin IslandsPanamaUSA
Encryption256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES256-bit AES
Simultaneous ConnectionsUnlimited5Unlimited610
Money-Back Guarantee30 days30 days30 days30 days30 days

Find out more about this VPN in our Windscribe review.

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Comparison Criteria

Following are the criteria on which we compared the VPN providers available in the spreadsheet we talked about earlier.

Speed

All VPN services in our VPN comparison chart at the start are qualified as either “Fast,” “Average,” or “Slow.” You can also check the VPN speed test comparison table provided in the VPN provider descriptions to see which VPN service tops the list. Below is a criterion for grading the speeds of any particular VPN:

  • Fast – VPNs with less than or equal to 30% drop compared to the base connection speed.
  • Average – VPNs with higher than 30% but less than 50% drop compared to the base connection speed.
  • Slow – VPNs with a higher than 50% drop compared to the base connection speed.

Privacy and Security

VPNs are used for protecting online privacy and security. Here are some of the factors we took into consideration when comparing VPNs for privacy and security.

Jurisdiction

jurisdiction refers to the laws of a country that a VPN is obligated to follow. Generally, this is the country where a VPN’s headquarter is registered. So, for instance, if a VPN is headquartered in the US, it will have to keep some logs and comply with the local laws. However, a VPN headquartered in Panama or the British Virgin Islands is not obligated to keep logs.

Five Eyes Alliance

The Five Eyes Alliance includes the US, UK, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia. The Snowden documents disclosed these Five Eyes countries, highlighting their involvement in conducting mass surveillance programs on the citizens of each other’s countries.

The implications of such alliances are dangerous and antagonistic to the privacy of citizens. As such, if you use a VPN service located in these Five Eyes countries, then your activities on the web can be easily traced, and agencies can acquire your data.

Nine Eyes Alliance

The Nine Eyes extends Five Eyes and includes four more countries, including the five countries mentioned before. The 9 Eyes countries include France, Norway, Netherlands, and Denmark, collaborating with the Five Eyes in intelligence-sharing and gathering.

Fourteen Eyes

The Fourteen Eyes further expands this growing list of nosy countries interested in collecting citizens’ data. The 14 Eyes countries include all the nine eyes and Sweden, Germany, Spain, Italy, and Belgium.

To learn more about the role of these countries in performing invasive surveillance on people, you can read our detailed article on the 5, 9, and 14-Eyes alliance.

Privacy Policy

We have read the privacy policy of each VPN in detail to see what kind of user data they log. It is essential to choose a VPN that doesn’t log any user information. In fact, most of the premium VPN services on this list only keep necessary user information like an email address to manage the account and billing. Therefore, VPNs that keep timestamps, traffic logs, IP addresses, and more are ranked lower in the best VPN comparison chart. You can find more detail about such providers in our VPN comparison table at the top.

  • Traffic logging

Traffic logging means keeping a log of your browsing and other activities on the web. These are the most intrusive kind of VPN logs. If someone wishes to track what you’re doing online, they can easily do that with the help of traffic logs or activity logs. That’s why VPNs that do keep traffic logs often sell them to third parties.

  • Bandwidth logging

Keeping a record of download and upload bandwidth you have consumed over a given period. These types of logs are less intrusive. Bandwidth logs are mainly kept to ensure the quality of service and fair usage. However, some VPN keep bandwidth logs for throttling purposes. Speaking of throttling, you may find our bypass ISP throttling guide useful.

  • Timestamp logging

Keep a log of the time and date of your connection, disconnection, and any other event you performed while using the VPN service. This, along with IP address logging, seriously poses a threat to your privacy, as it can facilitate a hacker or agency to trace your identity and even your physical location.

  • IP address logging

Keeping a log of your original IP address and/or the VPN IP address longer than your session duration. These logs can be used to trace a user. Think of an IP address as your home address. It is unique and can easily identify where you’re actually located in the world.


DNS, IP, and WebRTC Leak Tests

DNS logging refers to storing logs of DNS requests made from a user’s computers/device. This information can reveal your location. Unfortunately, DNS logs can also allow someone to launch attacks against you through methods like data theft, denial-of-service, and command-and-control.

IP leaks refer to an incident when your IP address starts leaking despite being connected to a VPN. This is why renowned VPNs come with built-in leak protection to prevent IP, DNS, and WebRTC from leaking. The ability of a VPN to prevent IP addresses and DNS of the user (client) from leaking to the web. This is tested via ipleak.net.

As you can see in the two screenshots below, ExpressVPN easily managed to conceal our original DNS, IP, and WebRTC entries. The DNS and IP address are from its New York server. Also, in the WebRTC test, our original public IP address isn’t exposed, and the test shows ExpressVPN’s server details.

IPv6 and WebRTC leak test results of ExpressVPN


Features

We have checked VPNs to ensure they have all the essential features to offer you maximum privacy and security.

Kill Switch

Kill switch is an essential security feature built into VPNs that can cut off your internet if your VPN connection experiences a temporary loss. This ensures your security is kept intact and your IP doesn’t leak on the web. Top-tier VPNs offer different levels of this technology ranging from system-wide kill switch to application kill switch.

expressvpn-kill-switch

 

ExpressVPNs Kill Switch called “Network Lock.”

Torrenting

Most people use VPNs for torrenting safely. However, not all VPNs allow users to access various file-sharing sites like The Pirate Bay. Therefore, we test these VPNs to see which ones allow torrenting.

Netflix

Just like Torrenting, not all VPNs work with Netflix because Netflix blocks most VPN services. Meaning, you will not be able to unblock any Netflix library with those VPNs. Therefore, we have tested which VPNs unblock Netflix, as discussed in the VPN comparison table at the top.

expressvpn-netflix

 

Split Tunneling

We prefer VPNs that allow you to reroute some online traffic through your ISP connection and some through the VPN server for faster speeds. However, not all VPNs have a split tunneling feature. Some popular VPN providers that possess this feature include ExpressVPN, Surfshark, NordVPN, CyberGhost, IPVanish, PIA, and PrivateVPN.

expressvpn-split-tunnellingEncryption

The current industry standard is AES-256-Bit encryption that encrypts online traffic for maximum security and anonymity. VPNs using 128-bit encryption are not the best choice for privacy and security. You can also check the VPN comparison table at the start to see which VPN is more secure.

Multi-Hop

The multi-hop feature encrypts online traffic through multiple server locations for the ultimate level of privacy and anonymity. It definitely gives VPNs an edge over the others. Sadly not all VPN providers offer this cool feature. The list of providers that offer this feature is small and features popular providers like NordVPN and Surfshark.

surfshark-multihop-feature-for-ios-connected-to-united-kingdom-and-france-server

Surfshark’s Multihop feature 

IP Addresses

VPNs that refresh their IP addresses are preferred over those that use black-listed IP addresses, usually blocked by most websites. Some VPNs also offer dedicated IP addresses like NordVPN, which offers dedicated IP of France, Germany, Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

Pricing

This criterion will help users make a better-informed decision about the provider after knowing whether the service seems equally valuable for the price they are asking and are there any budget-friendly subscription plans available with the service. Also, VPN providers that offer huge discounts, such as ExpressVPN’s 49% and Surfshark’s 81% discounts, are preferred in the users’ eyes.

Server Network

The number of servers and the locations are very crucial factors that help you decide on the purchase. Having a large server network with thousands of servers in multiple countries is ideal for accessing all sorts of content online. However, we have also seen providers with a comparatively low number of servers gaining more trust.

Customer Support

A reliable, efficient, and 24/7 customer support gives peace of mind knowing that someone can help you out whenever you are in trouble regarding the service. It also heavily impacts the user’s decision to purchase the service.

Simultaneous Connections

If you can secure multiple devices with just one subscription, then your VPN supports simultaneous connections. Renowned VPNs offer anywhere between five (5) to unlimited simultaneous connections.


VPN Comparison Of Providers: FAQs

ExpressVPN is the best VPN service of 2021. The provider operates from the British Virgin Islands outside the clutches of 5,9, 0r 14-Eyes alliance and offers exemplary privacy, security, data protection, and unblocking capabilities in any network environment. It also offers 5 simultaneous connections with its “12 months + 3 months free” subscription that comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

No, using a VPN isn’t illegal. While the technology itself isn’t illegal, the online activities considered illegal, such as copyright infringement, will remain illegal even if you are connected with a VPN. However, in few countries such as China, Russia, and Syria, VPN is considered illegal.


Wrapping up

As you can tell from our extensive VPN comparisons guide, choosing VPNs is not an easy task. Just check out our VPN comparison spreadsheet at the start of this blog. It took us 70+ hours to compile it. But you have to admit it; it’s beneficial when deciding which VPN to go for.

There are thousands of VPN providers in the market, but only with the best VPN such as ExpressVPN can you guarantee ultimate security, privacy, data protection, anonymity, and unblocking.

If you hurry now, you can avail yourself of ExpressVPN’s “12 months + 3 months free” that comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee as well.

If you have any suggestions or questions, let us know in the comments.