When you torrent, software such as uTorrent, BitTorent, Vuze, Popcorn Time etc does not hide your IP address. For this reason, copyright infringement agencies can monitor torrent swarms and easily obtain IP addresses of torrenters.
As a matter of fact, literally anyone can now access the full list of torrent files downloaded by a specific IP address. I Know What You Download is a huge free database where you can enter an IP address that is of interest to you and get a complete torrenting download history in 1 click! Your friends or relatives could use the website to check which files you download, assuming they know your residential IP address.
Additionally, certain ISPs actively monitor torrent traffic and shut down Internet access for torrenting users.
While having your Internet cut off is surely an inconvenience, it is not a big deal comparing to the hefty fines that some torrenters reported. The fines for illegal downloads range from a few hundred dollars to about $1,000,000. Even fines, however, are not as bleak as some pirates getting arrested, while also facing a felony sentence of up to three years in the federal prison, albeit a small percentage of torrenting users are that unlucky with their illegal downloads.
Anonymous no logs VPN is a perfect tool to hide your IP address from being exposed when you torrent. However, certain VPN services explicitly prohibit torrenting mainly because they start receiving DMCA complaints from their hosting providers. If VPN providers do not comply with the law and don’t stop torrenting on their servers, hosting companies shut down the service. As a result, all the other users connected to the affected servers suffer as well. So while it’s important for a VPN provider to be okay with BitTorrent, of course, it’s critical that they also choose to host their servers with the hosting companies that don’t mind it either.
It is also equally important for the best VPN services to have servers that are specifically optimized for torrenting. Secure torrenting servers offer excellent upload and download speeds, while also providing top-notch performance, security and reliability.
ANNUAL PRICE: 3.49 USD/mo
MONTHLY PRICE: 11.95 USD
ANNUAL PRICE: 2.19 USD/mo
MONTHLY PRICE: 11.95 USD
PIA is a leading no logs VPN provider with a massive amount of servers (over 3,000) that deliver excellent speeds and a very reliable service. PIA VPN does a great job protecting users’ privacy from surveillance, cyber attacks and other online threats. PIA offers an easy to install VPN app for all devices with advanced features that secure VPN connection from unexpected data leaks. For faster streaming and torrenting PIA software offers switching between different connection types and ports. To read a full PIA review click HERE.
ANNUAL PRICE: 1.32 USD/mo
MONTHLY PRICE: 10.95 USD
Hong Kong based PureVPN is a proud owner of a massive 2,000 servers network in over 140 countries with over 60 server locations specifically optimized for torrenting. PureVPN is a fast and reliable VPN provider with exclusive streaming servers to unblock Netflix, Hulu and similar services. PureVPN online gaming VPN servers are dedicated for gamers’ traffic only. Low ping offered by optimized PureVPN servers make it possible for gaming and streaming users to enjoy entertainment with the fastest load time. Secure PureVPN infrastructure is protected behind NAT Firewall. PureVPN offers custom apps for all devices, while desktop apps have a built-in Kill Switch feature that guards the users from unencrypted data leaks when the internet connection drops. To read a full PureVPN review click HERE.
ANNUAL PRICE: 6.67 USD/mo
MONTHLY PRICE: 12.95 USD
ExpressVPN has one of the largest and fastest infrastructures with over 2,000 servers in 94 countries. Ultra fast ExpressVPN network supports gigabit Internet connection which makes it a perfect choice for ultra high speed streaming and torrenting. Besides, ExpressVPN aligns itself as one of the Internet’s leading advocates for net neutrality, for a democratic and open internet. Considering they have a no logs policy, accept Bitcoin and are located on the Caribbean Island, they are a great choice for privacy oriented customers who want to protect their data from surveillance, bypass censorship and access restricted materials. To read a full ExpressVPN review click HERE.
ANNUAL PRICE: 1.99 USD/mo
MONTHLY PRICE: 8.88 USD
Since Trust.Zone is a VPN service launched by one of the largest torrenting websites ExtraTorrent (now shut down), it’s no wonder they are one of the best providers for p2p file sharing. No logs Trust.Zone is a Seychelles based VPN service with user privacy as their foremost priority. Trust.Zone VPN apps have DNS, WebRTC leaks protection and kill switch for maximum torrenting security. To read a full Trust.Zone review click HERE.
ANNUAL PRICE: 2.50 USD/mo
MONTHLY PRICE: 12.99 USD
Romania based CyberGhost is a no logs VPN provider with over 3,500 high speed VPN servers. CyberGhost offers streaming servers to unblock Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer as well as secure torrenting servers. For faster streaming and torrenting CyberGhost VPN allows switching between TCP/UDP protocols. VPN provider offers desktop and mobile apps with built-in advanced security features such as automatic kill switch, DNS & IP leaks, anti-fingerprinting and tracking protection, an ad-blocker and anti-malware. To read a full CyberGhost review click HERE.
ANNUAL PRICE: 4.49 USD/mo [promocode]
MONTHLY PRICE: 8.99 USD
Offering over 3,000 servers in 50 countries, all mainstream protocols and 5 simultaneous connections, TorGuard rightfully earned its place as a top VPN provider. No logs TorGuard offers a reliable, fast and secure VPN connection. Their SOCKS5 proxy is an excellent feature for high speed multimedia streaming and torrenting as it integrates with the main BitTorrent applications. TorGuard native apps offer advanced security features to ensure no data leaks, even when the connection drops. TorGuard’s StealthVPN protocol is an effective tool to bypass strict firewalls and VPN blocking. To read a full TorGuard HERE.
ANNUAL PRICE: 6.49 USD/mo
MONTHLY PRICE: 10 USD
IPVanish is a no logs VPN provider with a global servers infrastructure secured behind NAT Firewall. IPVanish offers native apps for desktop and mobile clients and allows 10 simultaneous connections. IPVanish servers are specifically optimized for streaming and gaming which ensures excellent download speeds and low ping times. IPvanish software protects users from unexpected data leaks and offers a number of advanced features especially useful for torrenting. To read a full IPVanish review click HERE.
ANNUAL PRICE: 4.50 EUR/mo
MONTHLY PRICE: 7 EUR
AirVPN is an Italian VPN provider created by privacy activists whose main goal is data protection. AirVPN has over 200 servers in 23 countries that have Perfect Forward Secrecy through Diffie-Hellman key exchange DHE. Essentially key negotiation is performed every 60 minutes to avoid data breach if the key is compromised. AirVPN offers OpenVPN dynamic port forwarding on 80 TCP/UDP, 443 TCP/UDP and 53 TCP/UDP. Additionally, AirVPN offers OpenVPN over SSH and OpenVPN over SSL that mask OpenVPN and make the use of encryption tools invisible to some of the most advanced firewalls. To read a full AirVPN review click HERE.
ANNUAL PRICE: 4.99 USD/mo
MONTHLY PRICE: 9.95 USD
Based in Malaysia, Hide.me is one the most secure and fastest VPN providers offering ultra fast VPN servers that provide gigabit Internet connection. Hide.Me VPN is extremely reliable and very fast which makes it a perfect choice for security oriented users who would like to enjoy uninterrupted streaming and browsing experience. Hide.Me offers incredibly convenient custom apps for all devices with a number of advanced security features for maximum protection. Hide.me is a no logs company that has custom software with a built-in protection against IP and data leaks, obfuscation tools to bypass strict firewalls, dynamic TCP/UDP port-forwarding (UPnP) and SOCKS5 proxy that is especially useful for torrenting. To read a full Hide.me review click HERE.
ANNUAL PRICE: 1.75 USD/mo
MONTHLY PRICE: 11.99 USD
ZenMate is a no logs privacy oriented VPN provider with a number of built-in security features for advanced protection from cybercrime and various IP leaks. ZenMate has over 1,000 ultra fast VPN servers that are great for streaming (including Netflix), torrenting and gaming since the infrastructure is optimized for low ping times and virtually eliminates lag. ZenMate Premium software for Windows, Mac, iOS and Android is lightweight, efficient and reliable – it takes about 2 seconds to disconnect from one VPN server and connect to another. ZenMate simply never disconnects! To read a full ZenMate review click HERE.
Why You Need VPN for Torrenting
When you torrent, everyone can see your real IP address. VPN encrypts and forwards your traffic through a secure VPN server anywhere in the world. VPN essentially changes your real IP address to a new IP address that belongs to a VPN service. With VPN running, neither your ISP nor piracy trolls can see your true identity.
Additionally, some ISPs selectively throttle torrenting traffic (or ports). Anonymous VPN can bypass speed throttling as well since your ISP can no longer differentiate torrenting traffic from the other kinds of traffic, like normal browsing. As a result, you may get better upload and download speeds comparing to your regular Internet connection.
Which VPN is the Best for Torrenting
The best VPN for torrenting implemented privacy and security features that protect torrenting users’ IP from being exposed, while also offering ultra fast p2p upload and download speeds.
Custom software with DNS leak protection works to protect from accidental IP leaks. DNS leaks are a threat because the VPN may be providing a false sense of security, while your real IP address is leaking and accessible to anti-piracy agencies.
Kill switch is another extremely important feature for torrenting VPN users. Kill switch binds your Internet connection to an anonymous IP address assigned by a VPN server. By actively monitoring and blocking Internet access using your real IP address, kill switch safeguards you from unexpected IP leaks.
For example, it normally takes anywhere from 10 to 30 seconds to switch between VPN servers or to reconnect to a VPN when your VPN connection drops for whatever reason. It is also possible that your VPN may disconnect completely without warning (I mean, shit happens!). During this time frame, your torrenting software continues downloading the file over unencrypted Internet, thereby, exposing your real IP address.
Should the VPN connection drop, the kill switch will immediately shut down your Internet access until VPN is up and running again. Once secure VPN connection reestablishes, kill switch will allow your device to connect to the Internet again and return to a passive monitoring mode. Torrenting clients will automatically resume downloads via secure channels as well.
Which VPN Server to Choose for Torrenting
For some inexplicable reason, certain VPN users suggest that you need to connect to a VPN server that is outside of the hostile jurisdiction towards torrenting. While it may seem like a good idea, it doesn’t really matter, assuming the VPN provider allows torrenting on that server.
The reality is that the best VPN services for torrenting generally have a list of VPN servers where torrenting is allowed. These torrenting VPN servers are also commonly located outside of hostile territories for the reasons we mentioned in the beginning of our article.
So it is best to follow the instructions of a specific VPN service. To achieve the performance and speed, however, we suggest that you pick a torrenting server that is in close proximity to your real location.
Is Torrenting Illegal?
Even though torrenting is most definitely illegal in most parts of the world, it many places it is, nevertheless, possible to torrent safely without legal issues.
However, a number of countries introduced strong anti-piracy laws where torrenting without a VPN may lead to fines, lawsuits and even jail time. We recommend that you use a VPN if you plan on torrenting in the following countries:
- New Zealand
- United Kingdom
- South Africa
- Hong Kong
UK, Europe, Australia and other governments introduced Mandatory Data Retention laws that force Internet Service Providers to collect and store online activity of its users. When subpoenaed, ISPs must disclose IP addresses of the customers who were involved with illegal activities, including torrenting.
While there are countries with more lenient copyright law enforcement agencies, strict copyright enforcement is very common in European countries (France HADOPI law) and the United States (Copyright Alert System). The consequences can range from harmless notices to penalties and lawsuits.
Free VPN for Torrenting
If you are looking to get a torrenting VPN that allows high speed downloads and unlimited data, free VPN is simply not an option. If you are willing to compromise, there are limited free VPN services that throttle the speed and/or cap the amount of data.
Completely free VPN services that run on ads do not allow torrenting on their servers. Completely free VPN providers, additionally, have security risks as well as suffer from IP leaks which defeats the purpose of setting up a VPN in the first place.
We have a whole article dedicated to free VPN for torrenting where we recommend only a few VPN services that can be trusted to provide enough security for safe torrenting. However, the monthly data limit will allow downloading only a few movies per month.
If you are on budget, we recommend purchasing a VPN when the service offers a deal. We regularly track and post active VPN discounts on our Best VPN Deals page.
Port Forwarding VPN to Speed Up Torrenting