5 Best VPNs for Indonesia - Best Providers & Servers to Use

We've been reviewing VPNs since 2013, so if you want to use a VPN in Indonesia, we can help you find the perfect service. Indonesia blocks a lot of websites, including VPNs so you need to look around.

The best VPN for Indonesia

  1. NordVPN - This VPN has excellent security features including obfuscated servers, Tor over VPN and it doesn't keep any logs. NordVPN also unblocks most streaming services, including US Netflix,  and costs only $2.29 per month.
  2. CyberGhost - This is an easy to use VPN, great for anyone new to VPNs. CyberGhost also has the security features you need to bypass restrictions safely.
  3. Ivacy - This is the cheapest VPN on our list at only $1.33 per month. As well as being affordable, Ivacy often features as one of the fastest VPNs in our weekly speed tests.
  4. PrivateVPN - This VPN has fantastic security features, and is great for streaming. PrivateVPN also offer a 7 day free trial! 
  5. ExpressVPN - This is a long-standing VPN that offers their customer high speed servers and great security features. 
  6. Free alternative - ProtonVPN - If you are looking for a VPN but you can't afford to pay a monthly subscription, then try ProtonVPN.

Best Indonesia VPNs - Summaries

1. NordVPN

NordVPN is undoubtedly a very fully-featured service. The fact that it is based in Panama and keeps no logs at all is also a big draw for those who care about privacy. Its software looks good, and works well. Speed performance is now impressive.

And a three-day free trial, plus a 30-day money-back guarantee give you plenty of opportunity to ensure that everything works for you as it should.

NordVPN permits torrenting, works with all major streaming services (including US Netflix and BBC iPlayer), and has servers in 62 countries. It even throws in a full smart DNS service for free! What you get with NordVPN is a very fully featured, privacy-friendly VPN service that is also very fast.

NordVPN runs four servers in Indonesia itself, plus other in many locations throughout South East Asia. this includes Hong Kong, which i noted for the freedom of its internet access.

2. CyberGhost

This excellent VPN provider from Romania is fantastic for use in Indonesia. It has a large choice of servers worldwide that all provide lightning fast speeds. This makes it perfect for streaming content from around the globe. The VPN is secure thanks to strong encryption, and it keeps zero logs.

The software is easy to use and is available for all platforms. It also implements all the advanced VPN features you are likely to need, including a killswitch. We think this VPN is outstanding and because of its 30-day money back guarantee you can test the service risk-free!

3. Ivacy

A bargain VPN with the features you need to bypass restrictions

This is the cheapest VPN in our best VPNs for Indonesia list, but it has everything you need to bypass internet blocks in the country. Ivacy consistently performs well in our weekly speed tests, which means it is a great service for unblocking streaming services from around the globe. 

Ivacy has servers in 50 countries including 2 in Malaysia and 5 in Australia. They also have a several servers in the USA and United Kingdom. 

This VPN also has some fantastic security features including a killswitch (this will stop you leaking data if the connection drops out), strong OpenVPN encryption and a zero logs policy. 

You can try this VPN service out risk free by using their 30 day money back guarantee, pluse get a free year subscription to sticky password manager for free!

4. PrivateVPN

PrivateVPN is an amazing service from Sweden that users praise regularly. It is a superb choice for use in Indonesia. It is fast, efficient, easy to use, and extremely reliable. It also provides lightning fast speeds for streaming in HD. PrivateVPN truly is a pleasure to use and has all the important security features you might need. It also has servers in over 50 countries.

Encryption is military grade OpenVPN and this VPN keeps zero logs. Amazingly, this fantastic VPN is also super cheap. Why not try the 30-day money-back guarantee to see why this VPN is proving so popular?

5. ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN has great speeds and can get past the regional restrictions of just about any streaming service in the world, including Netflix. ExpressVPN consistently slips through the Great Firewall of China, so it will get past the authorities in Indonesia. The VPN has its own encrypted DNS service and has servers in 94 countries, including Indonesia, Australia, Malaysia, Singapore, and the Philippines. ExpressVPN is based in the British Virgin Islands and keeps no activity logs. The customer support team is available via live chat 24/7.

6. ProtonVPN

A free Indonesian VPN service!

ProtonVPN is based in switzerland, they offer a free VPN so you can bypass blocks in Indonesia. Free proton users get access to servers in three countries (Netherlands, Japan, and the US). 

The only downside to this is that servers can be slow due to the amount of users on the the free servers. However, ProtonVPN give users a 7 day trial of their premium service when you sign up for free.

Internet blocks in Indonesia

Violent clashes between government troops and protestors have broken out in Indonesia following the Presidential elections. The Indonesian government has forced ISPs to temporarily block WhatsApp, Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. For anybody who wants to unblock these services in Indonesia, you can use a VPN. VPNs stop the government, your ISP, hackers, etc. from seeing the sites that you visit by encrypting your internet traffic. This makes inspection of the contents of your communications impossible.

A 2017 study by the Open Observatory of Network Interference, called The State of Internet Censorship in Indonesia discovered that Indonesia blocks some VPNs' websites. This shows that the Indonesian authorities are taking steps to a block this category of privacy software. 

Not all VPNs are equal and you need to be careful about which you choose. To make your selection of a VPN easier, ProPrivacy.com has researched the field to produce a list of VPNs that have cast iron security combined with stealth technology in our list of the best VPNs for Indonesia.

How the Indonesian government imposes internet restrictions

The Indonesian government created a policy of access filtering that placed the implementation of internet restriction in the hands of ISPs. Therefore, the controls on the internet have a two-layer structure. Government departments define a list of addresses and keywords to ban, while ISPs block those sites.

However, the complexities of multi-lingual content filtering encourage Indonesian ISPs to block entire sites through the Domain Name System (DNS). Those site bans can remain in place for years.

DNS is the first call for your browser when you enter a web address (URL). URLs are not recognized by routers - they need an IP address instead. DNS servers cross-reference tables between URLs and IP addresses. Once the browser has the IP address for the site you type in, it sends out a request to the IP address it got from the DNS service.

Your ISP controls which DNS service your computer accesses. If it wants to block a site, it simply replaces the real IP address, which corresponds to the website's URL, for the address of a warning page on its own server.

If the government orders a block on a site, then subsequently lifts the ban, some ISPs may continue to implement the block. 

For example, Reddit and Vimeo were banned by the Indonesian government in May 2014. These sanctions were lifted in November 2014. However, the OONI tests showed that some ISPs were still blocking those sites in 2017.

Punishments in Indonesia can be severe. The government has a tendency to arrest first and bend a law to provide justification later. This means that ISPs err on the side of over-restricting web access, just to be safe.

Essential features for an Indonesian VPN

Each of our five best VPNs supplies its own DNS server. The VPN client software on your computer acts as a gatekeeper to your internet connection. It captures any request that goes out from your apps, including your web browser. It then diverts DNS requests to its own service. The request for an IP address is encrypted before it goes out of the computer and through the ISP.

By supplying their own DNS servers, VPNs also bypass another security trick that the Indonesian authorities practice. Indonesia uses a piece of software, called Remote Control System, produced by Italian spyware producer, Hacking Team. This program uses the DNS cross-reference phase to force web browsers seeking a connection over the secured HTTPS protocol to switch to the unencrypted HTTP protocol. This enables government snoopers to read the contents of a connection.

If you want to gain access to overseas TV streaming services while you're in Indonesia, you have several hurdles to overcome. First, you'd better hope that your ISP hasn't rigged the DNS entry for the website that you want to visit. If you can connect to the streaming server, your next challenge is that the company that runs it won't let you watch its content from abroad. This is because of its contractual obligations with the videos' copyright holders. Those contracts limit the right of the streaming service to only showing entertainment in a specific country.

How a VPN can unblock websites in Indonesia 

A VPN can get you around these regional restrictions. It presents your request for a video on your behalf, from its own location. Streaming services detect the source of a request by looking at its return address. As such, if you select a VPN server in the country that the streaming service allows access from, you'll get to watch the video. The VPN server forwards the video stream to you once it has gained access.

One further problem is that streaming services examine requests to detect and block VPN traffic. This means you need a VPN that can disguise its identity. As the Indonesian government now seems to be trying to block VPNs, the ability of your chosen VPN to cloak its identity is hugely important.

Conclusion

As you can see from the explanations above, the work of a VPN is becoming increasingly complicated. Only the best VPNs, which want to stay in the market over the long term, invest enough time, effort, and money into keeping ahead of VPN detection systems. All the VPNs in our list have their own DNS servers and can evade detection by Netflix and by the Indonesian authorities. They will all give you unrestricted web access. However, still be careful what comments you post online, because a VPN cannot mask words that you make publicly available on social media sites, comments sections, or in political news and blog sites.


Image Credit: fzd.it/Shutterstock.com

Written by: Ray Walsh

Digital privacy expert with 4+ years experience testing and reviewing VPNs. He's been quoted in The Express, Barrons, the Scottish Herald, ThreatPost, CNET & many more. Ray is currently rated number 1 VPN authority by Agilience.com.

9 Comments

  1. Dave

    on December 5, 2017
    Reply

    Hi, Really interesting and helpful article as I'm looking for a VPN. I'm in Indonesia and just started using an IPTV streaming service. Not sure where its servers are based but since I started using it 24 hours ago I have been experiencing quite a lot of buffering. My Internet speed is constantly above 20mbps and the administrator feels that the buffering is caused by the long hops to Indonesia. He says that using a VPN could help resolve the issue but suggests I select a server in Europe. Is he correct? Can using a VPN help overcome the long hops? And should I be choosing a server based in Europe as he suggests or one close to or in Indonesia? Thanks

    1. Douglas Crawford replied to Dave

      on December 5, 2017
      Reply

      Hi Dave, - Distance between you and the content will always slow down how fast you can stream it. If you are streaming from servers in Europe or the US (for example), then a 20mbps connection in Indonesia is likely to struggle whatever you do. - In most situations, a VPN will slow down your connection, as the encryption requires processing power, and the data is doing an extra leg to its journey. This slowdown can be minimized by connecting to a VPN server located somewhere as close as possible (Indonesia ideally for you, but Hong Kong with its uncensored internet is always a popular choice in SE Asia). Connecting to a VPN server in Europe from Indonesia is a terrible idea in terms of improving your connection speeds. - Using a VPN may speed up your connection if your ISP is deliberately throttling your streaming traffic, as it will hide what this traffic is. To be honest, this probably isn't happening, but it could be. - So 1) If possible, try to connect to IPTV servers located as close to Indonesia as possible, and 2) by all means go ahead and try a fast VPN service. But connect to servers as close to Indonesia as possible, and take advantage of any free trials and/or money guarantees to test if does what you want before handing over your hard earned cash.

  2. Ross

    on October 15, 2017
    Reply

    I want to be able to use a VPN. To a lay person the volume of articles written on VPNs is virtually overwhelming. I finally selected NordVPN because it showed servers in Indonesia. And had a UK PCWorld recommendation. Yesterday 14/10/17, when I signed up, it showed Indonesian Server 1 & Server 2 Within 12 hours Server 1 had vanished and Server 3 appeared. Speeds seem to be very low. Your comments on Indonesian regulatory structure or very knowledgeable. May I ask why NordVPN did not appear in your VPN comparison ? Kind Regards.. I look forward to your reply

    1. Stephen Cooper replied to Ross

      on October 18, 2017
      Reply

      Hi, Ross, Thank you for your comments. NordVPN is a very good VPN service, and is one of the top ten in the world, in my opinion. The company had big issues with speed in the past and we often criticized them for it, but over the last few months, we have seen a huge improvement in their performance. Maybe their system upgrades haven't yet rolled out to Indonesia. When selecting the five best for Indonesia, I took account of the government's interest in the systems of internet control used by China. China is the most repressive country in the world for internet access, so users in Indonesia need to know about VPNs that already work well in China so that they can be protected as the government there introduces more sophisticated controls. The five I ended up with are all excellent services for China and they pushed NordVPN out of the top five. Indonesia is an exceptional country in many ways. It's landmasses are scattered over a very large area of the globe and so the country has an unusual Internet infrastructure. Each area has better connections to the internet through neighboring countries than across country. So, when I looked at the best VPNs for Indonesia, I focused on companies that had servers in surrounding countries. In some parts of Indonesia you will get a better connection if you route through a VPN in the Philippines, and in other areas, you would be better off routing through Malaysia or Singapore. If you want a VPN to get into Indonesia to get access to their TV, then you are a little stuck, because the performance of your connection will depend on the route that gets you to the VPN server.

  3. Campbell S.

    on March 16, 2017
    Reply

    Anyone who used Astrill in Indonesia? It is part of my Asean tour on December so I am wondering if anyone has tried it. Thanks in advance.

  4. Salman

    on May 5, 2016
    Reply

    What do you think about TunnelBear? I'm in Indonesia and currently using it because it offers 500 mb per month for free. It has servers in Singapore and Hongkong and Japan too.

    1. Douglas Crawford replied to Salman

      on May 6, 2016
      Reply

      Hi Salman, Please check out our TunnelBear Review.

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