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Best VPNs to Protect Yourself From Hackers

To fortify your online defenses and protect yourself from hackers, choosing the right VPN is crucial.

Not every VPN can provide the level of security needed to safeguard online activities. You require a VPN that excels in both security and performance, ensuring you’re protected from ever more sophisticated cyber threats.

While many VPNs claim to offer top-notch security, most don’t deliver on their promises. To help you make an informed choice without the need for exhaustive testing, we’ve conducted extensive tests and identified the best VPNs to protect yourself from hackers:

  1. ExpressVPN - The No. 1 VPN against hackers. With over 3,000 secure servers globally and industry-best privacy features, you’re guaranteed protection from hackers.
  2. TIP

    In our testing we checked that all ExpressVPN plans work for Netflix. The one year plan is the best value: three months free and a 30 day risk-free trial.

  3. Surfshark - The best budget VPN. Use it on unlimited devices, and enjoy open, secure, private internet.
  4. NordVPN - Offers airtight security, easy-to-use apps, low-cost plans, enhanced privacy, and fast connections.
  5. CyberGhost VPN - The most beginner-friendly VPN – but just as fast, secure, and versatile as the rest. Easy-to-use apps and a vast network of global servers.
  6. IPVanish - Simple apps across unlimited devices, fast speeds, and airtight security combine for a reliable VPN.

EXPLORE EXPRESSVPN: 30 DAYS RISK-FREE

ExpressVPN is extending a complete 30-day trial for those who register here. Delve into the best-in-class privacy VPN with zero restrictions for a month, ideal for those eager to try the best VPN to protect yourself from hackers.

Straightforward policies—get in touch within 30 days if you choose to opt-out and claim a full refund. Start your ExpressVPN trial now.

 

In case you're wondering how we picked these VPNs, here’s a quick breakdown of the criteria we used (more on this further down in the guide):

We’ll delve into more detail on each aspect in this guide, and how each VPN performed. You can also scroll to the bottom to find a summary of our testing methodology for additional insights.

TEST WINNER ExpressVPN Surfshark NordVPN CyberGhost VPN IPVanish
Website ExpressVPN Surfshark NordVPN CyberGhost VPN IPVanish
Ranking for hacker protection 1 2 3 4 5
Performance 10
9
9
7
7
Reliability 9
8
8
7
7
Free trial
Total servers 3000
3200
6200
11625
2000
Payment PayPal
Visa/MasterCard
Amex
Cryptocurrency
PayPal
Visa/MasterCard
Amex
Cryptocurrency
PayPal
Visa/MasterCard
Amex
Cryptocurrency
PayPal
Visa/MasterCard
Amex
Cryptocurrency
PayPal
Visa/MasterCard
Amex
Cryptocurrency
Unblocks: Netflix
iPlayer
Disney+
Amazon Prime
Hulu
Netflix
iPlayer
Disney+
Amazon Prime
Hulu
Netflix
iPlayer
Disney+
Amazon Prime
Hulu
Netflix
iPlayer
Disney+
Amazon Prime
Hulu
Netflix
iPlayer
Disney+
Amazon Prime
Hulu
Supported platforms Windows
macOS
iOS
Android
Windows
macOS
iOS
Android
Windows
macOS
iOS
Android
Windows
macOS
iOS
Android
Windows
macOS
iOS
Android

Best VPNs to protect yourself from hackers

Now that you know how we chose these VPNs, let's take a closer look at each one. 

By the time you finish reading, you’ll have a good idea of which VPN is best to protect yourself from hackers, based on how well they perform, the security they provide, and other important features.

1. ExpressVPN
Editor's Choice | June 2024

ExpressVPN is the best VPN to protect yourself from hackers, delivering high speeds and incredible security.

  • Pricing

    • 12 months + 3 months FREE + Backblaze backup: $6.67/mth
      49% OFF
    • 6 months: $9.99/mth
    • 1 month: $12.95/mth
  • Pros

    • The fastest VPN in the world
    • 3,000+ servers in over 94 countries
    • Industry-best security
    • Works in China and UAE
    • Independently audited with apps that have been thoroughly reviewed by Cure53, PwC, KPMG, and others
  • Cons

    • Premium price tag
    • Streaming servers aren’t labeled
  • Available on

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

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Amazon Prime
    • Hulu
  • Website

ExpressVPN Demo

ExpressVPN Demo ExpressVPN Demo


We thoroughly tested ExpressVPN security features by bouncing between servers across the globe, streaming content in HD, and downloading large video files onto numerous devices. It not only ensured secure connections but also consistently fast ones, without any detection!


ExpressVPN’s security credentials are seriously impressive. 


The automatic kill-switch immediately disconnects your internet if the VPN connection drops, so your data is never exposed. It also uses a variety of encryption protocols, including 4,096-bit RSA keys, SHA256 authentication, and 256-bit AES encryption. These make it very difficult for hackers to decrypt your data. The DNS and IP leak protection also worked flawlessly.


ExpressVPN is priced at a premium level, which may not fit everyone's budget. Although it offers great value for money, there are also several other cheaper excellent options on this list.


ExpressVPN allows up to 8 simultaneous connections and offers a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.

Surfshark is the best budget VPN on this list, with unlimited device connections and easy-to-use apps.

  • Pricing

    • 24 months + 3 months FREE: $2.19/mth
      86% OFF
    • 12 months + 3 months FREE: $2.79/mth
      82% OFF
    • 1 month: $15.45/mth
  • Pros

    • Unlimited devices
    • Highly secure
    • Large global server presence
    • Keeps no logs whatsoever
  • Cons

    • Occasional slow server
    • Erratic P2P behavior
    • No port forwarding
  • Available on

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

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Amazon Prime
    • Hulu
  • Website

Surfshark Demo

Surfshark Demo Surfshark Demo


Surfshark's affordability doesn’t compromise its quality, providing robust and unrestricted online security against hackers.


The provider offers more than the basic security tools commonly found in top VPNs. Surfshark includes features like ad blockers, anti-tracking tools, an “IP Address Rotator”, malware protection, a strict “no-logs policy,” and more. These not only allow you to change your online location but also boost your privacy, effectively defending you against a range of internet threats.


We tested Surfshark’s global server network (over 3,200 servers in over 100 countries worldwide), and it consistently delivered fast and secure internet connections, bypassing geo-restricted websites to give us access to premium content and safeguarding our online activities from various locations worldwide.


With unlimited device connections and easy-to-use apps, Surfshark is great for securing your household. Plus, there's a 30-day money-back guarantee for added peace of mind.

NordVPN, an excellent VPN to protect yourself from hackers, consistently excels in key aspects: speed, privacy, security, and unrestricted internet access.

  • Pricing

    • 24 months + 3 months FREE: $3.69/mth
      70% OFF
    • 12 months: $4.99/mth
      59% OFF
    • 1 month: $11.99/mth
  • Pros

    • Zero logs policy
    • Strong security protocols (NordLynx, IKEv2/IPSec, OpenVPN)
    • Solid, independently audited security features
  • Cons

    • You can only pick servers based on location, not a specific need (i.e., streaming or P2P)
    • Doesn’t work well for torrenting
    • No router app
  • Available on

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

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Amazon Prime
    • Hulu
  • Website


Nord Demo

Nord Demo Nord Demo


NordVPN runs more than  6,200 servers in over 111 countries around the globe. This extensive network enhances your online security, protecting you from hackers, regardless of your location.


The provider offers a range of security features and tools designed with your safety in mind. Its custom VPN protocol, NordLynx, balances ultra-modern security with lightweight code for speed. It also offers a cybersecurity suite (Threat Protection), which blocks ads, malware, and online nuisances, ensuring a secure online experience.


NordVPN is user-friendly and compatible with various devices, including iOS, Android, macOS, Windows, smart TVs, gaming consoles, and select routers. And if you ever encounter any issues, their 24/7 live chat support is available for assistance.


New NordVPN users receive a 30-day money-back guarantee on all plans.

CyberGhost is the most user-friendly VPN on this list, offering excellent security features that protect you from hackers.

  • Pricing

    • 24 months + 3 months FREE: $2.11/mth
      83% OFF
    • 6 months: $6.99/mth
      42% OFF
    • 1 month: $11.99/mth
  • Pros

    • Fast, streaming-optimized servers
    • WireGuard protocol
    • Kill-switch on all apps and keeps no logs
    • Accepts cryptocurrency payments
  • Cons

    • No obfuscation
    • Limited torrenting support
    • No option to allow local networking
  • Available on

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

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Amazon Prime
    • Hulu
  • Website

CyberGhost Demo

CyberGhost Demo CyberGhost Demo


With over 11,625 servers distributed across 100 countries worldwide, CyberGhost ensures secure access to online content while prioritizing your online security. It supports various operating systems, including Linux, and offers browser extensions for Chrome and Firefox, as well as apps for smart TVs and gaming consoles.


CyberGhost places strong emphasis on security and privacy, strictly following a no-logs policy. It offers advanced features like automatic kill-switches and 256-AES encryption for resilient security. However, it lacks obfuscation, which may lead to VPN detection, potentially causing connection issues.


CyberGhost excels at remarkable speeds, making it a top choice for safeguarding against potential hackers and enhancing online security. You can test it with a 45-day money-back guarantee.

IPVanish stands as a reliable VPN, offering fast speeds, airtight security measures, and user-friendly apps on unlimited devices.

  • Pricing

    • 24 months: $3.33/mth
      75% OFF
    • 12 months: $3.99/mth
      70% OFF
    • 1 month: $12.99/mth
  • Pros

    • Servers in 75+ countries
    • Unlimited simultaneous device connections
    • Fast enough to stream in 4K HD
    • P2P and torrent-friendly
  • Cons

    • Doesn’t work with some popular streamers
    • Slow support
    • No servers in Africa
  • Available on

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

    • Netflix
    • Amazon Prime
    • Hulu
  • Website

IPVanish Demo

IPVanish Demo IPVanish Demo


IPVanish, a veteran VPN since 2012, places a premium on security and privacy, although some of its features may require updates.


With a widespread network featuring over 2,000 servers spanning 75 worldwide locations, IPVanish ensures swift and reliable connections while fortifying digital defenses against potential hacker threats.


You can install IPVanish on your router, or connect unlimited devices for comprehensive protection against potential hacker threats across all devices in your household.


While IPVanish is based in the US, which may raise data privacy concerns due to the US’s membership in the Five Eyes Alliance, its transparent privacy policies guarantee that none of your personal or sensitive data is logged. Additionally, IPVanish’s servers automatically erase all your data once your VPN session ends.


Every IPVanish plan comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

PrivateVPN, boasting roughly 200 worldwide servers, provides great value by offering essential features to protect yourself from hackers.

  • Pricing

    • 36 months: $2/mth
      84% OFF
    • 3 months: $6/mth
      50% OFF
    • 1 month: $9.99/mth
      17% OFF
  • Pros

    • Up to 10 simultaneous device connections
    • Good value plans
    • Beginner-friendly
    • Easy-to-use apps
  • Cons

    • Not as many server locations as NordVPN and Surfshark
    • Not as customizable as the VPNs above
    • Could be faster
  • Available on

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

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Amazon Prime
    • Hulu
  • Website

PrivateVPN Demo

PrivateVPN Demo PrivateVPN Demo


Although PrivateVPN's server network is smaller compared to other top VPNs, our testing revealed impressive connection speeds. These speeds ensure sturdy online protection from potential hacker threats.


PrivateVPN exhibited strong performance in our security evaluations, employing 256-bit AES encryption, DNS and IPv6 leak protection, and automatic kill-switch features to safeguard our data and identities.


Although PrivateVPN is based in Sweden, which may raise privacy concerns, we trust its no-logs policy and data retention regulations, which ensure that your browsing history and data remain beyond the reach of your internet service provider, government authorities, or any other entities.


Plus, new users enjoy a 30-day money-back guarantee, adding an extra layer of assurance to your online security.

How we tested the best VPNs for hacker protection

The right VPN is your all-encompassing solution for a seamless online experience and enhanced online security, protecting you from potential hackers.

Here’s what you should look for when picking one:

These are just a few factors we assess before endorsing a VPN. Explore our comprehensive VPN review process for a full list to guide your choice for enhanced online security and protection from hackers.

How to setup a VPN to enhance online security

Once you've chosen a VPN from our recommended list, securing yourself from potential hackers is straightforward. VPNs might seem complex, but their usage is remarkably user-friendly.

You can bolster your online security against hackers by following these simple steps: 

  1. Pick a VPN. We recommend ExpressVPN.
  2. Download the VPN app onto your device(s).
  3. Open the VPN app and follow the basic setup instructions.
  4. Open the VPN’s settings and ensure the WireGuard protocol is turned on.

That’s it!

For added security, clear your browser’s cache and cookies. This will help remove your initial IP address from the servers and websites you’ve recently visited, making the VPN more effective in protecting you from hackers.

Can I use a free VPN to protect myself from hackers?

Most free VPNs raise significant security concerns.

Free VPNs have limited server networks that are easily detected by restricted platforms and websites. Even if you find a VPN with a large server network, it might still throttle your connection, leaving you exposed and potentially blocked.

However, there are also serious safety risks when using a free VPN.

Because free VPNs don’t charge a subscription fee, they often resort to less honest methods to generate profit. We’ve witnessed free VPNs:

  • Harvest your data and sell it to advertisers, data brokers, and hackers.
  • Insert ads into your browser. Sometimes the ads are for the VPN’s paid plans, and other times they’re for completely random products you’ll never buy.
  • Host hackers and tracking software on their servers for a fee.

There are plenty of excellent cheap VPNs that don’t compromise your safety or deliver a terrible experience. Use them instead of a free VPN and save yourself a lot of headaches.

Conclusion

VPNs offer the easiest and most secure means to access online content, enhance overall privacy, and bypass restrictions. However, it's important to keep in mind that many online platforms actively attempt to block VPNs, and using one might violate their terms.

You can test the best VPNs without risk thanks to their money-back guarantees. Once you find the right fit, you'll enjoy enhanced security and privacy, ensuring your online activities remain protected, regardless of your location.

From $6.67/month

The No. 1 VPN against hackers. With over 3,000 secure servers globally and industry-best privacy features, you’re guaranteed protection from hackers.

ProPrivacy TrustScore:
10 out of 10
Simultaneous connections
8
Server locations
160
Free trial
No

From $2.19/month

The best budget VPN. Use it on unlimited devices, and enjoy open, secure, private internet.

ProPrivacy TrustScore:
9.9 out of 10
Simultaneous connections
Unlimited
Server locations
140
Free trial
Yes

From $3.69/month

Offers airtight security, easy-to-use apps, low-cost plans, enhanced privacy, and fast connections.

ProPrivacy TrustScore:
9.8 out of 10
Simultaneous connections
10
Free trial
No
Server locations
135

From $2.11/month

The most beginner-friendly VPN – but just as fast, secure, and versatile as the rest. Easy-to-use apps and a vast network of global servers.

ProPrivacy TrustScore:
9.7 out of 10
Simultaneous connections
7
Free trial
Yes
Server locations
126

From $3.33/month

Simple apps across unlimited devices, fast speeds, and airtight security combine for a reliable VPN.

ProPrivacy TrustScore:
9.6 out of 10
Simultaneous connections
Unlimited
Server locations
75
Free trial
No

VPNs to protect yourself from hackers FAQs

Written by: Conor Walsh

Conor is a tech writer with professional paranoia. He's passionate about privacy, and when not writing about it, can be found trying to get far away from his phone and any other technology, enjoying some live music, outdoorsy stuff, or a good (physical) book.

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