5 Best VPNs for Russia

Do you want to unblock censored websites and access geo-restricted content from around the world? A VPN for Russia will provide privacy while also letting you unblock websites and online services.

Sadly, since October 2017, Russia has also begun to restrict access to VPNs. ISPs now block access to VPN and proxy websites. This means that finding a VPN that still works in Russia can be tricky. Fear not, however, as we have done the work for you and found the best five VPNs guaranteed to work in Russia today.

The Best VPN for Russia 2019

Below we have listed the best VPNs for Russia. Click through to the provider's website for more information or check out our detailed VPN reviews which we have linked to below.

  • Pricing

    From  $1.94 - $11.95
  • Available on

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Linux
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer

Surfshark is an awesome VPN that can be purchased for as little as $1.99 US per month. That is surprisingly cheap considering that this VPN has servers in 63 countries worldwide. Despite being a zero logs VPN, Surfshark is one of the few VPN that continues to provide a server in Russia.


Whether you trust it to keep your data out of Putin’s hands is really up to you, but this is the same for every VPN in this list. We were impressed with this VPN's ability to unblock streaming services such as Netflix, Hulu, and BBC iPlayer - and we love that it lets subscribers install and use the VPN on an unlimited number of devices. It is well worth taking for a test run using its 30-day money-back guarantee.

  • Pricing

    From  $2.50 - $12.95
  • Available on

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Linux
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer

VyprVPN is a provider based in Switzerland - a location generally accepted as the best base of operations in the EU for a VPN (or any privacy service). VyprVPN has a zero logs policy, and despite Russian Yarovaya laws that insist on mandatory data retention practices, Vypr continues to provide a server in Russia.


What’s more, VyprVPN is one of the few providers that has proven its no logs infrastructure with a full third party audit of its services. We love that VyprVPN provides access to geo-restricted content worldwide, and because this VPN runs on a proprietary network (that belongs to Golden Frog) it can provide lightning fast speeds. A great all round VPN that can be used on 5 devices simultaneously. Try it thanks to its 30-day money-back guarantee.

  • Pricing

    From  $2.75 - $12.99
  • Available on

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Linux
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer

CyberGhost VPN is an excellent VPN for Russia. Servers are located in 60 countries around the world. Encryption is strong military-grade OpenVPN, and setting up the service is super easy. CyberGhost’s user-friendly apps are available for all the popular platforms.


No usage logs are kept, and this VPN has an excellent privacy policy. What’s more, CyberGhost is based in Romania, which is well out of reach of invasive governments like the UK and US. The VPN is fully featured with DNS leak protection and kill switch.


Finally, the VPN provides super fast speeds for streaming in HD, and provides a 30-day money-back guarantee to test the service.

  • Pricing

    From  $1.50 - $7.50
  • Available on

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Linux
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer

Ivacy VPN is a fairly new VPN that is based in Singapore. It is a super-cheap VPN service that has servers in 50 countries - including IP addresses in Russia. With Ivacy you get apps for all platforms that are extremely easy to use. For those who like streaming, this VPN can access services like Netflix US and BBC iPlayer.


Despite its low cost, Ivacy has important VPN features such as a kill switch and DNS leak protection. We think this VPN is fantastic for users in Russia, and it is suitable for people with a lot of devices because it can be installed and used on up to 5 devices simultaneously. Why not give it a test run using its 30-day money-back guarantee?

  • Pricing

    From  $2.99 - $9.90
  • Available on

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Linux
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer

VPNArea is an excellent VPN provider from Bulgaria that continues to provide IP addresses in Russia. This VPN provides value for money without scrimping on any important features, which is great. VPNArea has servers in over 60 countries and those servers are lightning-fast for doing data-intensive tasks like streaming in HD, video conferencing, or downloading via BitTorrent.


We love that this VPN has a zero logs policy, and that it provides robust military-grade OpenVPN encryption. It also has essential VPN features such as a kill switch, DNS leak protection, and obfuscated servers. You can give it a try using its 30-day money-back guarantee.

Why use a VPN in Russia?

In Russia, the government is highly invasive and imposes an iron will on its people. Mandatory data retention and censorship are common and there is pressure on firms to store all data about Russian citizens on servers located within the country.

A huge numbers of foreign websites are also blacklisted for many reasons. Foreign news is often subjected to blackouts - as are foreign services such as Google. Ukrainian sites are blocked due to the ongoing conflict, and other websites that are critical of the Russian government (or that the Kremlin decide are incompatible morally and religiously) are also censored. Pornography, for example, is heavily restricted.

The government also places citizens under high levels of surveillance. This is due to get even worse this year thanks to the introduction of new Yarovaya laws - a VPN is the only way to ensure both internet freedom and digital privacy within the country.

Blogging Restrictions

In 2014, the Russian government passed a law requiring all bloggers with more than 3,000 daily readers to follow the same regulations as large-scale media outlets. This includes having to write using their real name and official registration with Koskomnadzor, the nation’s media regulator.

Expressing dissenting political views can result in imprisonment within Russia. Any support of "terrorism" (mainly defined as anti-government rhetoric) within the nation can also result in a seven-year prison sentence. Since the ‘law on bloggers’ came into effect, many Russians have begun to take their privacy more seriously. As a result, the use of VPNs in the country has vastly increased.

Russia Bans Telegram Messenger

On Friday 19 April 2019, a Moscow court authorized Roskomnadzor, the Russian communications, and technology watchdog, to block the popular Telegram Messenger app.

The move follows demands from the Federal Security Service (FSB) that Telegram hand over its encryption keys to the secretive KGB successor after claiming that it is widely used by terrorists. Telegram refused.

The good news, however, is that Telegram can still be freely accessed in Russia using a VPN. This is because a VPN hides the fact that you are connecting to the Telegram network from your internet and/or mobile provider (and therefore the Roskomnadzor).

For more information on this story please see our full Russia Bans Telegram Messenger article.

Using VPN for privacy in Russia

A Virtual Private Network for Russia overcomes all government-imposed censorship. Once connected to a VPN, users are free to look at any blog or news source that they wish, without fear of being flagged up as someone with dissenting opinions and views.

A VPN also bypasses geo-restrictions so that people can access content and services from overseas. A VPN will also allow users to overcome network restrictions imposed by local administrators such as employers and landlords.

In addition, reliable Russian VPN apps encrypt all web traffic. By scrambling data with military-grade encryption, a VPN for Russia stops ISPs from collecting web browsing data on behalf of the government. With this in mind, a VPN app is the best digital privacy tool available.

A VPN also conceals the user's real location. This stops the websites that they visit from being able to track their real IP address. This is good for privacy but also means that VPN users can pretend to be in a different country. By connecting to a VPN server in a foreign country - users can overcome both censorship and geo-restrictions.

Using a VPN for Security in Russia

Whether you are at home or on public WiFi, a VPN can help you stay secure. Using public WiFi on a regular basis opens you up to the possibility of being hacked. Even at home, your IP address can give hackers a way to pinpoint cyberattacks at you. With a VPN your IP address is securely concealed.

In addition, VPN encryption protects all your data from hackers by scrambling it. This protects your passwords, credit card details - and other sensitive data - from being snooped on by hackers, IPS, and the government. It also protects your data from being hacked by anybody exploiting the KRACK vulnerability found in many routers.

In October 2017, Putin's government banned VPNs. However, the law doesn't actually make it illegal to use a VPN for personal or business reasons. As such, it is legal to use a VPN in Russia. However, since Russia started banning VPNs, getting hold of a reliable one has become much more difficult. Thankfully, once you do manage to get a VPN installed - it is legal to use it.

Russian VPN Laws

At the end of October 2019, the law banning VPNs came into force. It forces ISPs in Russia to block all websites that sell VPN services.  It is possible that some of the VPNs in this article are blocked. That may put you in the unusual position of needing a VPN, or proxy service, in order to access the VPN that you want. If the VPN app you want to subscribe to is blocked in Russia, please inform us by leaving a message at the end of this article. We will help you to resolve the issue.

VPN in Russia

Because the Russian government forces Russian-based servers to hand over data to the government, some VPNs are unwilling to run servers within the country. Even when VPNs have Russian servers, on the whole, it is better to use a server located elsewhere. By using a VPN server in a country with strong data protection laws, you guarantee that your online activities are better protected from Russia's invasive government.

A VPN for Russia should also have a strong privacy policy, advanced VPN features, and well-implemented military-grade encryption. This will allow you to have confidence in the protection provided by your VPN. Many VPNs are outdated - or make revenue from their user's data. Those VPNs should be avoided.

All the VPNs in this article have been carefully selected because they have important features such as a kill switch, DNS leak protection, VPN cloaking technology, auto-connect, and OpenVPN encryption. Our recommended VPNs have strong privacy policies that never store logs about what their users do online.

Russian VPN for Android

The VPNs in this article provide software for all platforms. That means you can use the VPN on three simultaneous devices (or more - depending on the VPN). That includes Windows, iOS, and Android devices.

What Can I Do with a VPN in Russia?

A Russia VPN is extremely useful. Not only can you overcome government censorship and regain access to blacklisted websites, but you can also access geo-restricted websites too. With a VPN, you can unblock and watch British TV channels like ITV Hub and BBC iPlayer.

You can also watch foreign sports such as football, Formula 1 or UFC fighting a lot cheaper. You can even subscribe to US cable on Sling TV and watch the world's best shows the moment they come out. A VPN truly unlocks the whole internet, allowing you to visit any website or use any service.

Connect to VPN Servers in Russia

If you are outside of Russia and want to use Russian websites such as Vkontakte (VK.com), the search engine Yandex, Mail.ru, and Odnoklassniki (OK.ru) - you will need to connect to a VPN server in Russia. Many Russian speakers in Ukraine, for example, must use a VPN with a Russian server in order to use Russia's version of Facebook (VK.com).

No matter where you are, you can use a VPN server to pretend to be in Russia if that is what you wish. However, on the whole, we recommend using servers located outside of Russia whenever possible: as this will be better for your privacy.

Written by: Ray Walsh

Digital privacy expert with 5 years experience testing and reviewing VPNs. He's been quoted in The Express, The Times, The Washington Post, The Register, CNET & many more. 

5 Comments

Poøllemås
on April 12, 2020
Reply
please update this article with new information, PIA and NordVPN does not support Russia anymore. Dont know abou the other mentioned VPN's.
https://cdn.proprivacy.com/storage/images/proprivacy/02/member-dougjpg-avatar-image-default-1png-avatar-image-default-minpng-avatar_image-small.png
Douglas Crawford replied to Poøllemås
on April 14, 2020
Reply
Hi Poøllemås. Ray is looking into this and will update the article as required. Thanks.
Sam
on May 30, 2017
Reply
Visiting next month! I'll let you know how ExpressVPN works!
Robert replied to Sam
on August 23, 2017
Reply
So, Sam, how did it do for you?
https://cdn.proprivacy.com/storage/images/proprivacy/02/member-dougjpg-avatar-image-default-1png-avatar-image-default-minpng-avatar_image-small.png
Douglas Crawford replied to Sam
on May 31, 2017
Reply
Hi Sam. Please do! :)
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