10 Best VPNs for Torrenting 2020 | Fast & Secure Torrent & P2P Friendly VPNs

Torrenting can cause all kinds of headaches depending on the content you’re downloading, from your internet service provider cutting off your plan to lengthy legal battles that can result in a fine or jail time. By simply using a virtual private network (VPN) when torrenting, you can avoid all these risks and then some.

But, it's important to pick the right VPN if you intend on using it for torrenting. Not every VPN supports P2P file sharing, and some of those that do might not have the best track record at standing up for their users when copyright holders coming knocking. It really can be a minefield.

To make picking the right torrent VPN for you, we have outlined the best VPNs for torrenting. All these services will help protect your privacy when downloading torrents and greatly reduce the risk of you being caught.

What are the Best VPNs for Torrenting?

If you're short on time, we have listed our top 5 torrenting VPN recommendations below. If you require more information, or want to see some alternatives, click here.

  1. Private Internet Access - One of the most secure VPNs for torrenting. PIA has proven its no logs claim in court & is loaded with privacy features.
  2. CyberGhost VPN - A great torrent VPN choice with split tunneling for targeted protection and a super-generous 45-day money-back guarantee.
  3. ExpressVPN - This premium VPN is torrent friendly and an exemplary all-round VPN service. Ideal for torrenting with excellent speeds & privacy.
  4. Surfshark - A cheap VPN for torrenting. From $1.94 you get a zero logs policy, excellent speeds & an impressive server network.
  5. IPVanish - A consistently fast VPN for torrenting. Offers great speeds through a proprietary network of servers, which is excellent for privacy.

Before we recommend a VPN can be safely used for torrenting, we first check:

Only VPNs that can offer all the above are considered for our best VPN for torrenting list. So, now you know what we're looking for, let's take a closer look at our recommendations.

The Best VPNs for Torrenting (P2P Downloading) - In-depth Analysis

In the list below, we take an in-depth look at our top VPN picks for torrenting. They all allow P2P on their networks, but they can differ in terms of speeds and feature sets.

PIA is our #1 VPN for torrenting pick. It's the only service on this list to have proven its no logs claim in court & it has built a solid reputation for being secure, so you're in safe hands.

  • Pricing

    From  $2.69 - $11.95
  • Speeds

    • 43.36 Mbps
  • Kill switch?

    • Yes
  • Port forwarding?

    • Yes

Unlike many US-based companies, Private Internet Access (PIA) fully allows torrenting on all its 3,295 servers in 29 countries. And torrenters can take heart in the fact that PIA is almost unique among VPN providers in having its no logs claims proven in court!


PIA Linux client


Linux users will be chuffed to note that PIA offers a full Linux GUI client offering all the functionality users on other platforms enjoy - including a kill switch. Indeed, the fact that PIA offers kill switches in all its custom VPN apps (Windows, Mac, Android, Linux, and iOS) is dandy for torrenters, as is its support for port forwarding through its NAT firewall, which can improve download times. 


Torrenters might also appreciate the SOCKS5 proxy offered by PIA which can provide “double-protection” for your BitTorrent downloads, or can be used to protect only BitTorrent app (similar to split tunneling). 


Customer support is not quite as 24/7 as advertised, but PIA offers a robust 7-day money guarantee. 

CyberGhost is a great VPN for downloading torrents because it's cheap, easy to use and definitely secure. A great choice if you torrent on multiple different devices.

  • Pricing

    From  $2.75 - $12.99
  • Speeds

    • 50.46 Mbps
  • Kill switch?

    • Yes
  • Port forwarding?

    • No

CyberGhost permits torrenting on most of its servers, although not in the United States or Canada due to very hostile copyright environments in both. North Americans can still download P2P using European servers, however. In addition, it runs special P2P-optimized servers in 90 countries throughout the world.    


cyberghost vpn for torrenting


A feature that may be of particular interest to torrenters is “App Protection,” which allows you to specify that only certain apps are protected by the VPN. Such as your BitTorrent app! This is also known as split-tunneling.


Torrenters will also appreciate kill switches baked into (and enabled by default) both CyberGhost’s Windows and macOS apps. CyberGhost offers 24/7 live chat support if you need it, plus it has a very generous 45-day money-back guarantee. You can even try the service out gratis for 24-hours before needing to supply any payment details, which is plenty of time to download some test torrents! 


The final thing for torrenters to note is that this Romanian company keeps no logs that can be handed over to rights holders, no matter how much pressure they apply.

ExpressVPN featuring on our best VPNs for torrenting list should come as no surprise. With this VPN you get some of the best speeds you will find in a VPN, and security features to match.

  • Pricing

    From  $6.67 - $12.95
  • Speeds

    • 60.46 Mbps
  • Kill switch?

    • Yes
  • Port forwarding?

    • No

ExpressVPN is one of the most respected names in the VPN industry. It allows torrenting on all its 160 server locations in 94 countries around the world, although it prefers (quite understandably) to keep low key about this.


expressvpn for torrenting


Torrenters will also appreciate the fact that ExpressVPN’s Windows and Mac apps have good kill switches.  And being based in the British Virgin Islands allows ExpressVPN to implement a robust no-logs policy, ensuring that it keeps no records to be handed over to copyright enforcers.


If you encounter any problems, then ExpresVPN’s 24/7 live chat support team is friendly and highly knowledgeable. A 30-day “no-quibbles” money-back guarantee also helps to ensure peace of mind.

Surfshark is a cheap VPN for torrenting. A new comer in the market, but is proving itself excellent for torrenting with great speeds & security features.

  • Pricing

    From  $1.99 - $11.95
  • Speeds

    • 65.64 Mbps
  • Kill switch?

    • Yes
  • Port forwarding?

    • No

Surfshark is a service based in the British Virgin Islands that permits Bittorrenting on a huge choice of servers. This provider has a tier-1 network of servers in over 60 countries, which means you can get privacy and good speeds for downloading no matter where you live. With privacy assured thanks to its zero-logs policy, you can use Surfshark to download on any Torrent client and thanks to its kill switch you never have to worry about leaking data to your ISP should the VPN connection fail for some reason.


SurfShark VPN client


This VPN will unblock restricted torrent sites like the Pirate Bay, and it has software for all platforms to help you torrent safely on any device. In addition to torrenting, this VPN unblocks streams and international services such as Netflix US and Hulu. Considering the price, this VPN is truly mind-blowing, which is why it has such an exceptional reputation with consumers.


It can be used on an unlimited number of devices simultaneously, and you can test it risk-free thanks to its 30-day money-back guarantee. 

IPVanish is another no logs torrent VPN. Running mostly on a proprietary network, your download speeds will remain fast and consistent when connected to this service.

  • Pricing

    From  $6.49 - $10.00
  • Speeds

    • 59.81 Mbps
  • Kill switch?

    • Yes
  • Port forwarding?

    • No

IPVanish is a US based VPN that implements a strong no logs policy and OpenVPN encryption. This means that you can access any restricted torrent site and perform downloading securely inside the private VPN tunnel. With IPVanish, you get apps for all platforms, and you can use the VPN on up to 10 devices simultaneously. This is very generous and means that you can use the VPN on several devices; even while it is downloading content on a torrent client.


IPVanish VPN client


IPVanish has a kill switch to ensure you don’t accidentally leak data to your ISP, this ensures that you can torrent without a second thought. And IPVanish can also unblock sought after services such as Netflix US. Finally, IPVanish primarily runs on a proprietary network, which means that it provides excellent speeds for torrenting or streaming in HD. Worth comparing to other services using its 30-day money-back guarantee.

Hide.me is an excellent choice if you want a VPN for torrenting. This Malaysian based VPN is packed full of high-end VPN features and a zero logs policy.

  • Pricing

    From  $2.43 - $12.95
  • Speeds

    • 61.59 Mbps
  • Kill switch?

    • Yes
  • Port forwarding?

    • Yes

Hide.me VPN is a service that always impresses during tests. The VPN has software for all platforms, and those apps are both easy to use but also jam-packed with premium features. With Hide.me you get a kill switch, DNS leak protection, a choice of encryption, obfuscated servers, port forwarding, and split tunneling. This makes the VPN perfect for downloading via BitTorrent. Plus Hide.me has a zero-logs policy, which means it never has any records of what its users do while connected.


hide.me vpn client


Hide.me is a VPN that is heavily weighted towards privacy, however, it will easily allow you to unblock any blocked torrent repositories. And you can use this VPN while using any Torrent client or even apps like Popcorn Time or Flixtor. We love that you can use this VPN on up to simultaneous devices. And with average download speeds of just under 80 Mbps, you will have no problems downloading content. Test it risk-free, with its 30-day money-back guarantee.

NordVPN is a great VPN for torrenting on all platforms. Their slick smartphone apps mean you can expect the same great security and speed on Android & iOS that you get on Windows & Mac.

  • Pricing

    From  $3.49 - $11.95
  • Speeds

    • 82.44 Mbps
  • Kill switch?

    • Yes
  • Port forwarding?

    • No

NordVPN is a well-known VPN service that is perfect for anybody who wants a lot of advanced VPN privacy features. It is a zero logs provider based in Panama, which makes it great in terms of data privacy. The VPN has a killswitch, DNS leak protection, obfuscation, OpenVPN encryption, double-hop routing, VPN into Tor, and split tunnelling. This makes it a great option for torrenting.


Unfortunately, NordVPN does not have port forwarding - which may leave some users wanting. However, for the vast majority of people NordVPN will permit torrenting without issues. With servers in over 60 countries, you can easily bypass blocks to access torrent repositories and websites in places where they are restricted. And, with Nord you can download anything you want without fear of being tracked down by copyright holders. Plus, NordVPN will protect your IP address from the swarm to ensure you aren’t victimized by malicious peers.


Finally, you can trial the service risk-free using its 30-day money back guarantee. A lightning fast VPN that is well worth testing.

Ivacy is the cheapest VPN for torrenting on our list. Starting at just $1.50 this budget VPN is secure, has decent speeds and servers in over 50 countries.

  • Pricing

    From  $1.50 - $7.50
  • Speeds

    • 71.24 Mbps
  • Kill switch?

    • Yes
  • Port forwarding?

    • Yes

Ivacy VPN is a service based in Singapore that provides excellent apps and outstanding value for money. The VPN has apps for all platforms, and it has everything you need to torrent safely. Ivacy is a no logs service, which means you never have to worry about it having logs about what you downloaded Peer to Peer. And, because it provides DNS leak protection and strong encryption - your ISP will never be able to track your downloads.


With Ivacy you get servers in over 50 countries, which means you can easily unblock torrent sites in countries where they are blocked. And Ivacy is one of the few VPNs that has port forwarding - an advanced VPN feature that will come in very handy for torrenters who want to seed and leech regularly.  We love that in addition to helping subscribers torrent safely, this VPN can unblock Netflix US, BBC iPlayer, and other streaming services. Admittedly, this VPN might not be as fast as some of our other recommendations, but it does cope with HD video without issues.


Well worth testing using its 30-day money back guarantee.

PrivateVPN is a reliable, torrent friendly VPN from Sweden. It has excellent apps for all platforms - including Android and iOS - and fast speeds thanks to an impressive feature set.

  • Pricing

    From  $1.89 - $10.95
  • Speeds

    • 57.59 Mbps
  • Kill switch?

    • Yes
  • Port forwarding?

    • Yes

PrivateVPN is a provider based in Sweden that is perfect for gaining digital privacy online. It is a no logs service that never has any records about what you do online. This makes it great for gaining online privacy to engage in torrenting or other sensitive tasks.


With PrivateVPN you get a killswitch and Port Forwarding which makes it an excellent option for anybody who wants to download content P2P. And this VPN has obfuscation for bypassing VPN firewalls. We love that PrivateVPN has apps for all platforms, and because it has servers in over 50 countries you can always access torrents no matter where you live.


PrivateVPN is surprisingly fast considering the relatively low cost of a subscription. And, it is highly versatile due to its ability to unblock sought after services like Netflix US and iPlayer. We enjoy using PrivateVPN on all platforms, and consider this one of the world’s best VPNs for torrenting.


You can test it using its 30-day money back guarantee.

VyprVPN is the perfect for the privacy conscious torrenter. Their service is zero logs - which has been fully audited - and they operate on fast and secure proprietary servers, which are situated globally.

  • Pricing

    From  $2.50 - $12.95
  • Speeds

    • 28.73 Mbps
  • Kill switch?

    • Yes
  • Port forwarding?

    • Yes

VyprVPN allows P2P torrenting on all its server locations in over 50 countries. It is now based in Switzerland and has gone 100% no logs, a claim which has been verified by the most far-ranging third-party audit yet performed in the VPN industry. So, no handing over details it doesn't have to copyright owners!


Although torrenting is now technically illegal in Switzerland thanks to its uploading element, the country remains amongst the liberal in the world when it comes to copyright enforcement (the right to download movies and music for personal use is protected in law!).


VyprVPN offers 24/7 live chat support in case you have any problems and a refund up to 30-days after purchase.

Which is the Fastest VPN for Torrenting?

To help you understand which of our VPNs for torrenting is the fastest, we run 3 speed tests a day on each of the services, and display the average in the table below.

Place Provider Average Speed Max Speed Visit Site
1. 82.44 Mbit/s 192.27 Mbit/s Visit Site
2. 71.24 Mbit/s 130.16 Mbit/s Visit Site
3. 65.64 Mbit/s 112.14 Mbit/s Visit Site
4. 61.59 Mbit/s 136.44 Mbit/s Visit Site
5. 60.46 Mbit/s 115.9 Mbit/s Visit Site
6. 59.81 Mbit/s 112.98 Mbit/s Visit Site
7. 57.59 Mbit/s 139.7 Mbit/s Visit Site
8. 50.46 Mbit/s 120.12 Mbit/s Visit Site
9. 43.36 Mbit/s 73.95 Mbit/s Visit Site
10. 28.73 Mbit/s 35.87 Mbit/s Visit Site

Will a VPN improve my download speeds?

No, this is a common misconception about VPNs. In fact, with many VPNs, you can typically expect a very slight reduction in your speeds. However, thanks to the servers used by our picks, this discrepancy won't be noticeable.

The one circumstance where a VPN might improve your speeds is if your ISP is actively throttling P2P traffic on your network. If you believe this might be happening to you, resulting in poor download speeds, then a VPN might be the answer.

Why are these the best VPNs for downloading torrents?

Privacy and security should be your number one priority when picking a VPN if you intend to use it for torrenting. However, to avoid frustratingly long download times, speed comes in at a close second. 

Below we list the criteria we look for when deciding which VPNs you should use to torrent. This should give you some insight into why we have picked these VPNs over the hundreds of others on the market.

Why do I need a VPN for torrenting?

Nearly all internet users can benefit from using a Virtual Private Network (VPN), but if your download torrents you should consider them absolutely essential. 

There is, of course, nothing illegal about torrenting, per se. It’s just a protocol, and one used for perfectly legitimate reasons, such as downloading Linux distros. But anyone that reads this article knows what torrenting is usually used for, and copyright holders don’t like it one bit.

Using a VPN protects you when torrenting in two key ways:

How do I access blocked torrent sites?

Besides the protections listed above, VPNs are also very useful for torrenters because they unblock torrent sites.

It is common practice in many parts of the world for ISPs to block access to torrent websites. But just as VPN tech prevents anyone on the internet from seeing your real IP address, it also works the other way round and prevents your ISP from seeing what you get up to on the internet.

And what your ISP can’t see, it can’t block. So accessing blocked torrent sites is as easy as connecting to a server located somewhere that doesn’t block them. 

How a torrent VPN works

This is just a very brief overview of VPN technology - for a more detailed look, check out our what is a VPN? Non-technical beginner's guide

How to use a VPN for torrenting

Setting up and using a VPN for torrenting is much like setting up a VPN for anything else. However, depending on what you intend to torrent, there are a few tests that we recommend you perform before you begin downloading.

To set up, just follow these steps:

  1. Select a VPN service from the list above & subscribe to it using the links provided
  2. Download the VPN software and install it using the installation wizard
  3. Open the VPN app and go into the settings to ensure you have your kill switch turned on.
  4. Pick a server and connect to it
  5. Test to see if your VPN is working.
  6. Start downloading from your favorite torrent sites.

Following these steps will get you up and running in minutes with your VPN. But, setting up a VPN so that it works optimally when you're torrenting is far more nuanced that a six-step process. If you would like to take the setup of your VPN further, check out our step-by-step guide to setting up and using a VPN for torrenting.

How to test your VPN is working

As stated at the top of this guide, your number one concern when deciding which VPN to use when torrenting should be privacy and security. That's why before using a VPN to torrent with, you should always check it is working properly.

To do this simply:

  1. Confirm your VPN isn't leaking any information about you. to do this, visit our leak test tool and follow the steps.
  2. Test that your kill switch is working properly. For this you will need to enable your kill switch, connect to a server, visit a website, disconnect from the VPN. If your internet connection stops, your kill switch is working. 

If you would like to know more about improving your privacy when torrenting, check out our how to torrent safely guide for more tips.

Other VPNs that allow file sharing

This short list does not cover all VPNs which allow torrenting. In fact, most (but certainly not all - see below) reputable paid-for services allow torrenting these days. These include: 

Feel free to try any of them, most have money-back guarantees, so you can do so without risk.

VPNs to avoid if you want to file-share (P2P)

The providers below are known to either not allow torrenting, or are not recommended to use when torrenting. Please note that this list is not in any way exhaustive.

  • Opera VPN - Despite its name, this is a proxy that only affects the Opera browser, not a service. You can’t use it to protect your torrenting sessions.
  • Hola - This P2P service uses other Hola users’ devices as VPN exit nodes. It is unclear if torrenting is actually banned on Hola, but doing so could get other users into deep trouble (and their torrenting could land you in hot water).
  • VPNGate - Whether torrenting is permissible on this volunteer-run network seems something of a gray area. The system allows it, but tech-savvy node operators can block P2P using third party software. Torrenting using servers where P2P downloading is illegal could get the volunteers in trouble and, therefore, seems very rude.
  • TurboVPN - Torrenting is explicitly banned,  under threat of having your account blocked.
  • BitDefender - Even though it leverages the Hotspot Shield VPN server network (HSS permits torrenting), BitDefender prohibits torrenting on its service.
  • ProtonVPN Free - Paying customers can torrent to their heart's content on dedicated torrent servers, but the BitTorrent protocol is blocked on ProtonVPN’s free servers.

What about free VPNs for torrenting?

Running a VPN service is a major operation. And an expensive one. No-one, and we mean no-one, will do this for free. 

There are free services around, but the more reputable of these offer free plans that are severely limited in various ways - such as restricted speeds or strict download limits. They then hope these free plans will entice you into paying for a premium subscription.

These, at least, are transparent about how they monetize their free services. Less reputable providers have been known to spy on users’ information and sell it to the highest bidder or to steal and sell your bandwidth.

And almost no free VPN services permit P2P, anyway! Dealing with the hassle of DMCA notices and the like simply isn’t worth it for non-paying customers!

Can I download a cracked VPN from torrent sites?

If you pirate everything else, you might be wondering whether you can torrent a VPN? 

There are an increasing number of VPN apps appearing on torrent sites, complete with cracks, but downloading one is a terrible idea for several reasons:

  • All reputable services work on a subscription model. Functionality is, therefore, tied to your account, not whether you are using “activated” software or suchlike. So “cracking” the software is pointless.
  • This means the so-called “cracks” bundled with apps on torrent sites are invariably malware. Make sure to avoid, avoid, avoid!
  • It is also possible to torrent “free” VPN apps. Apart from the fact that these are readily available anyway, many of them are scams that monetize their service by stealing your browser history and/or bandwidth (see the section above).

FAQs

Conclusion

Now we have covered all the important aspects of torrenting with a VPN and how to do it safely, let's review our top picks:

  1. Private Internet Access - One of the most secure VPNs for torrenting. PIA has proven its no logs claim in court & is loaded with privacy features.
  2. CyberGhost VPN - A great torrent VPN choice with split tunneling for targeted protection and a super-generous 45-day money-back guarantee.
  3. ExpressVPN - This premium VPN is torrent friendly and an exemplary all-round VPN service. Ideal for torrenting with excellent speeds & privacy.
  4. Surfshark - A cheap VPN for torrenting. From $1.94 you get a zero logs policy, excellent speeds & an impressive server network.
  5. IPVanish - A consistently fast VPN for torrenting. Offers great speeds through a proprietary network of servers, which is excellent for privacy.

Written by: Douglas Crawford

Has worked for almost six years as senior staff writer and resident tech and VPN industry expert at ProPrivacy.com. Widely quoted on issues relating cybersecurity and digital privacy in the UK national press (The Independent & Daily Mail Online) and international technology publications such as Ars Technica.

16 Comments

Filip
on July 11, 2020
Reply
Hello. How can you recommend services to torrents without port forwarding if you write in another article how important port forwarding is for torrenting. Only ExpressVPN and PIA from the list offer port forwarding but probably others have paid a lot for the recommendation. This approach misleads potential users. Maybe these companies are great but not for torrents. Best Regards, Filip
https://cdn.proprivacy.com/storage/images/proprivacy/02/ray-walshjpeg-avatar-image-default-1png-avatar-ima-7df05c2bafe5e85cb7cb582cd8351a9bpng-avatar-image-default-minpng-avatar_image-small.png
Ray Walsh replied to Filip
on July 20, 2020
Reply
Few VPNs have port forwarding so this is a specialist VPN feature - and while it is important to some people who torrent it is not strictly needed by most users. If you do need port forwarding, stick to those providers that have it - but for most people who just want to download some torrents safely without their ISP tracking them - the other options are also fine.
Louis Coleman
on July 17, 2018
Reply
Hi thanks for sharing this. I think all that you said are correct. But just to add up, if you'd like to save money, we can also use some other free VPNs from playstore. I am using VPN FREE for several years now and i can say that it's great and safe.
Xiang replied to Louis Coleman
on February 12, 2019
Reply
Thanks for the article, I enjoyed reading it. I have a follow-up question. If I do use a VPN for torrenting, will my ISP see that I am using all their bandwidth resources and I am connected to a VPN server and all they see are encrypted codes? ISPs aren't stupid either. Over time, it will still draw suspicion on me. Is my concern valid?
https://cdn.proprivacy.com/storage/images/proprivacy/02/member-dougjpg-avatar-image-default-1png-avatar-image-default-minpng-avatar_image-small.png
douglas replied to Xiang
on April 5, 2019
Reply
Hi Xiang, Yes - your ISP can see how much data you are using, but in today's world of HD Netflix streaming there is nothing noteworthy about this.
Johnny replied to Louis Coleman
on December 8, 2018
Reply
A free VPN must be as safe as facebook privacy.
dude
on June 30, 2018
Reply
Just started using PIA... and in the first week got a little copyright infringement letter. wouldnt recommend them at all.
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 dude
on July 2, 2018
Reply
Hi dude, Ouch! I must say that I'm surprised. PIA has a good reputation for protecting its customers.
Manny
on May 25, 2018
Reply
Any reviews on privateinternetaccess?
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 Manny
on May 25, 2018
Reply
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