Last Sunday, we got an email from a reader asking us about good VPN protection for her web browser.
We quickly replied that pretty much all of the best VPNs offer extensions for all popular browsers that will protect her privacy online. The problem, however, is how to choose the right VPN for your needs. That’s what this article is all about…
The elements of the best VPN
VPNs are used for different use cases, and you’ll want to make sure that the VPN you get fits all of them. Even if you don’t need some of the use cases now, you may need them at a later date. Here are those use cases we think a VPN should help you with:
You’ll want to know how a VPN handles torrenting. Are there servers dedicated to such (P2P) traffic or are all servers in the network up for the task? Both approaches work as far as we’re concerned; it’s just that in the former case, we’d like to see P2P-dedicated servers clearly marked on the list.
As one of the most popular use cases for using a VPN, this is fairly important. So, you’ll want to get a VPN that can stream from all the popular services. Can you get a buffer-free experience from different servers and physical locations? Can a streaming service detect that you’re using a VPN? Are there servers dedicated to streaming?
Can you use a VPN to bypass your ISP’s restrictions? What about when connecting to the Internet from a university campus? You’ll want a service that can “get the job done” without IT admins knowing your web whereabouts. That’s a relatively simple firewall and a good VPN should be able to handle it with ease.
Somewhat related to the previous point – can you use a VPN in high-censorship countries such as China, UAE, Iran, Saudi Arabia, etc.? The infamous Great Firewall of China is arguably the hardest to bypass, but the best VPNs are up for the task – and we love ’em for that.
Speed & reliability
Last but not least, you’ll want to get a VPN that is both fast and reliable. After all, if the experience is too slow, you won’t be accessing YouTube despite it being possible. On the other hand, you also want a VPN that can deliver consistent download and upload speeds you can rely on every single time. In some cases, reliability is more important than speed.
Yes, there are free VPNs, but…
We DO NOT suggest using them.
You see, it takes a lot of money to build a solid server network and offer a reliable VPN service. Free services can only do this if they sell your data. And then – what’s the point of getting a VPN in the first place?
Instead, you should go for a rock-solid VPN with a proven track record of working from all places around the world. And that’s why we’ve created our list of Best of the Best VPNs.
Speaking of free, you’ll want to know that most VPNs offer money-back guarantees, which we take to be as good as free trials. After all, if you don’t like what you’re getting, you can always ask for a refund. Heck, we encourage you to do so if you find that a service you bought doesn’t get the job done.
Get a VPN for your browser and everything else!
As noted above, we think you (all of us) need a VPN for many things that could change over time. In that sense, a good VPN will:
- Protect your privacy from the government and big corporations
- Bypass restrictions imposed by the government or various organizations
- Change your IP address, so you get unrestricted access to different streaming services
- Encrypt and protect private data from cybercriminals
- Download files with BitTorrent anonymously
If you still haven’t found a VPN solution for you, hop over to the earlier mentioned page listing Best of the Best VPNs and take it from there. You can always thank us later. 😉