Fastest VPNs

Reviewed by Jayden Andrews
December 17, 2019

A VPN is a critical component in the fight for online security and privacy these days. Whether you’re streaming videos or filling up online forms, you don’t want other people to be spying on you or getting access to your information. Hence, the rise of the VPNs.

However, using a VPN generally slows down your internet connection to some degree. This is because of all the security layers the VPN adds to your internet traffic to keep you secure. There are VPNs that are frustratingly slow, but there are those that perform well when it comes to raw speed.

The trick to choosing a good VPN is finding the balance between security and speed. How can you enjoy the benefits of a VPN if the movie you’re watching keeps buffering every few seconds or your downloads take forever? So we’ve come up with this list of the fastest VPNs today to help you make the right decision.

Factors to Consider When Choosing the Fastest VPN

Here are some of the factors we looked at when reviewing the VPNs to be included in this list:

#1 NordVPN

TOP Rank 9.8

When it comes to speed, NordVPN is among the fastest VPNs in the industry today. With a mere 6% speed drop, you’ll hardly notice the difference in your internet connection with or without a VPN. The speed drop is so negligible that you can go about streaming HD videos without getting annoyed by the constant buffering. This is an amazing feat considering NordVPN has a Double VPN feature that redirects the traffic via two servers instead of one.

And in terms of torrenting speed, NordVPN has a 0% speed drop, which means that the torrenting speed using your regular internet connection is the same as when NordVPN is on.

NordVPN uses the military-grade AES-256 encryption to protect the user’s data. It also relies on the modern and fast protocols, OpenVPN and IKEv2, which contribute to the minimal drop in speed. NordVPN has more than 5100 servers located in 59 countries around the world, so users have plenty to choose from.

NordVPN has the best connection speed so far compared to other VPNs we’ve tested. And the security features are nothing to scoff at either. NordVPN is leak-free, has a no-logs policy, and is equipped with a kill switch for extra protection

Price from: $3.49/mo
Refunds: 30 days
9.8
Connection speed Excellent
Torrenting speed Excellent
Encryption: AES-256
5100+ servers
59 countries
Pros
Over 5000 super-fast servers to choose from
Military-grade encryption and no-logs policy protect your privacy perfectly
Optimized for streaming on Netflix, Hulu, Disney+
Supports up to 6 simultaneous device connections: Desktop, Mobile, Smart TV, etc.
30-day money-back guarantee – get your money back if not satisfied, no questions asked
Cons
Pricy subscription plans
No phone line for customer support
Price from: $3.49/mo
Refunds: 30 days
9.8
Connection speed Excellent
Torrenting speed Excellent
Encryption: AES-256
5100+ servers
59 countries

#2 HideMyAss

TOP Rank 8.2

Even though HideMyAss has a 28% drop in the average speed drop tests, this VPN made up for it in the torrenting speed tests with only a 6% drop. This means that when you use HideMyAss VPN, you’ll notice a slight difference in speed compared to when you’re using your regular internet connection, which makes it worthy of being the runner up in this list.

HideMyAss encrypts its user’s internet traffic using the AES-256 encryption technology that is known to be used by intelligence agencies. HideMyAss also uses the most secure protocol, OpenVPN, to connect to its more than 600 servers spread across 290 countries worldwide.

HideMyAss has pretty good speeds, but it is a bit lacking in terms of security. It keeps logs of users’ activities for 30 days and is based in the UK, which is known for its strict GDPR law. This means that the government can force HideMyAss to give up the users’ logs in the name of cybersecurity.

Price from: $1.99/mo
Refunds: 30 days
8.2
Connection speed Good
Torrenting speed Excellent
Encryption: AES-256
900+ servers
290 countries
Pros
Lots of servers and server locations
Fast speeds
5 simultaneous connections
Beautiful and information rich interface
Option to randomize IP addresses
Cons
Not stable streaming on Netflix
Unresponsive customer service (no live chat)
We needed to ask several times for the subscription to be cancelled
The apps logs user details for 30 days
Price from: $1.99/mo
Refunds: 30 days
8.2
Connection speed Good
Torrenting speed Excellent
Encryption: AES-256
900+ servers
290 countries

#3 Private Internet Access

TOP Rank 8.9

PrivateInternetAccess also performed well during our speed tests, revealing a 16% drop in average speed and a 42% drop in torrenting speed. When you’re browsing the internet or watching some videos online, you won’t notice that much of a difference in your internet connection. You can still go on with your bandwidth-heavy activities even with PrivateInternetAccess turned on. You might experience slower download speeds when torrenting though.

PrivateInternetAccess also has a good balance between speed and security. It uses the hard-to-crack AES-256 encryption technology and several modern protocols, including PPTP, IPSec, and OpenVPN. PrivateInternetAccess also has a Port-Forwarding feature and supports SOCKS5 Proxy connection for added protection.

PrivateInternetAccess is based in the UK, which is part of the 5 Eyes alliance, but it implements a strict no-logging policy so the government has no data to collect in the first place. Its more than 3300 servers are located in 32 countries, giving users more server options to choose from.

Price from: $2.91/mo
Refunds: 7 days
8.9
Connection speed Good
Torrenting speed Bad
Encryption: AES-256
3300+ servers
32 countries
Pros
Strong security-military-grade encryptions
Lots of servers in prime locations (Western Europe, Japan, Australia...)
Strict no logs policy
10 simultaneous connections
Reasonably priced
Cons
Sticky desktop interface
Streaming error on Netflix
Very few locations (32 countries)
Price from: $2.91/mo
Refunds: 7 days
8.9
Connection speed Good
Torrenting speed Bad
Encryption: AES-256
3300+ servers
32 countries

#4 Surfshark

TOP Rank 9.6

SurfShark offers a balance between good internet speeds and strong security features. As per the speed tests conducted using multiple servers, using SurfShark results in a 29% drop in the average internet speed and a 33% drop in torrenting speed, which are both within the tolerable range.

But if you’re low on bandwidth and want to increase your internet connection speed, you can use the Whitelister feature and exclude some websites or apps from connecting via VPN. If you’re just
browsing the internet and not doing something that involves sensitive information, you can opt to use your regular internet connection for these activities.

On top of having good connection speeds, SurfShark provides robust protection against snooping and online attacks using the AES-256 encryption technology. SurfShark also uses the most advanced and secure protocols, including OpenVPN, IKEv2, and IPSec to connect to its network of servers. And if you’re a bit paranoid and want to ensure your anonymity, the MultiHop feature allows you to connect using multiple servers at once, making it impossible for others to track your real IP address. Users can connect to SurfShark’s network of more than 1040 servers spread across 61 locations all over the world.

Price from: $1.99/mo
Refunds: 30 days
9.6
Connection speed Good
Torrenting speed Good
Encryption: AES-256
1040+ servers
61 countries
Pros
1040+ fast servers across 61 countries
Unlimited device connections
Beautiful desktop and mobile interfaces
Strict no-logs policy
Special security features: NoBorders and camouflage modes
Cons
The NoBorders mode limits the number of servers to a dozen
Pricey at $11 a month
Price from: $1.99/mo
Refunds: 30 days
9.6
Connection speed Good
Torrenting speed Good
Encryption: AES-256
1040+ servers
61 countries

#5 CyberGhost

TOP Rank 8.9

The last one on this list of the fastest VPNs is CyberGhost. In terms of average speed tests, the results show just an 8% drop compared to the normal speed (without VPN). This speed drop is only a bit higher than the first one on this list – NordVPN with a 6% drop. However, when it comes to torrenting. CyberGhost is extremely slow in downloading torrent files. The torrenting speed tests reveal an 84% drop in the internet speed, which is way above the average drop among other VPNs.

CyberGhost also uses the industry-wide AES-256 standard, while using IKEv2, L2TP, and OpenVPN protocols for its connections. CyberGhost has every security feature the best VPNs have, including a kill switch, no-logs policy, leak-free, a diverse network of servers made up of more than 4800 servers in 58 different countries.

Overall, CyberGhost is good for most of your online activities, except for torrenting. So if you use torrenting sites heavily, you should consider using a different VPN or invest in an internet plan with better speed.

Price from: $2.75/mo
Refunds: 45 days
8.9
Connection speed Excellent
Torrenting speed Bad
Encryption: AES-256
4 800+ servers
58 countries
Pros
AES-256-CBC military grade encryption
Over 4000 servers to choose from
Fully optimized for watching Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, + Disney.
7 Simultaneous connection on all plans
Available on multiple platforms i.e. Android, Windows, MacOS, TV, router, and browser add-ons
Cons
Poor customer service
Streaming error on Netflix
The payment system was problematic
The app takes too long to connect
Price from: $2.75/mo
Refunds: 45 days
8.9
Connection speed Excellent
Torrenting speed Bad
Encryption: AES-256
4 800+ servers
58 countries