PrivateVPN Review: Is It Any Good? [Complete Report 2024]

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PrivateVPN Review

PrivateVPN Review: Is It Any Good? [Complete Report 2024]

PrivateVPN has good security and privacy features, is easy to use, and provides fast speeds for streaming and torrenting. It has a small server network (only 200+ servers), but I like how the servers are evenly distributed across the world, which prevents overcrowding and provides good speeds on both nearby and distant servers.

PrivateVPN is one of the best VPNs for watching streaming services and also for use in restrictive regions. It works with all popular streaming sites (Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney+, etc.), and its customer support team confirmed that it works in countries with heavy internet restrictions like China and Indonesia.

Torrenting SupportSuccessfully tested with major torrent clients (BitTorrent, Deluge, Vuze) for seamless downloading.
Tor SupportOffers added security by masking your IP address when browsing .onion sites using the Tor browser.
Leak ProtectionIncludes DNS and IPv6 leak protection, but lacks WebRTC protection.

PrivateVPN is a good VPN, but I wish it included more “extra” features that some top VPNs include — it doesn’t have split-tunneling, double VPN, or an ad blocker. PrivateVPN’s iOS app also doesn’t have a kill switch, which is a possible security risk. And I’d like to see PrivateVPN add troubleshooting guides, so users could find answers to their questions on their own instead of having to contact support.

PrivateVPN lets you connect up to 10 devices at the same time, and it has a 1-month, 3-month, and 3-year plan, which are all backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee.

🏅 Overall Rank#6 out of 105 VPNs
🌍 Servers200+
📱 Number of Devices10
💸 Starting PriceINR170
🎁 Free Plan
💰 Money-Back Guarantee30 days

I spent a few weeks studying and testing PrivateVPN to determine if it had adequate security, quick speeds, and user-friendly interfaces. I also compared PrivateVPN to other top VPNs to determine whether it provides excellent value.

PrivateVPN lacks the “extra” features that other VPNs offer, and it has a smaller server network than other competitors. However, it has decent privacy protections, performed admirably in all speed, streaming, and torrenting testing, and is extremely simple to use across all apps. Furthermore, it is less expensive than many other VPNs.

  • 256-bit AES encryption. This type of encryption has never been cracked and it’s used by banks and militaries around the world to protect sensitive data.
  • No-logs policy. PrivateVPN doesn’t log your online traffic or personal information.
  • Kill switch. This feature shuts down your internet access if your VPN connection accidentally drops, preventing any possible traffic and data leaks. The kill switch is available on Android, Windows, and macOS.

PrivateVPN has some cool features. If the VPN connection drops, it can automatically close certain apps to keep your info safe. It supports different VPN protocols, like OpenVPN and WireGuard, which is super fast and secure. However, setting up WireGuard can be a hassle compared to other VPNs that offer it built-in.

One neat thing about PrivateVPN is it changes encryption keys for each session, which makes it harder for hackers to spy on you. But unlike some competitors, it doesn’t use servers that wipe data completely when they restart.

It protects against IPv6 and DNS leaks, but not against WebRTC leaks, which could reveal your identity. Although, in tests, no leaks were found.

PrivateVPN doesn’t offer some extra features like ad and malware blockers or split-tunneling. Other VPNs like NordVPN and Private Internet Access have blockers that remove online ads and protect against harmful websites. Split-tunneling lets you decide which apps use the VPN and which ones don’t.

However, PrivateVPN does have some extra security features like Stealth VPN, which hides VPN traffic, and Tor support, which adds another layer of privacy.

Stealth VPN is a special feature in PrivateVPN that hides your VPN usage from your internet provider and others. Normally, when you use a VPN, your provider knows you’re using it, but not what you’re doing. With Stealth VPN, it looks like you’re not using a VPN at all, which helps bypass internet restrictions.

PrivateVPN’s support team says Stealth VPN works well in places like China, Iran, and Indonesia where internet use is restricted. But using Stealth VPN can make your internet slower because it adds extra security. In my tests, it took a few seconds longer to load videos, but once they started, there was no buffering.

Other VPNs like ExpressVPN and TunnelBear also have similar tools to hide VPN usage. They’re all good, but ExpressVPN is the fastest in my opinion.

Overall, PrivateVPN’s Stealth VPN is a reliable way to keep your VPN use private from others.

Your IP address is hidden and your online activity is encrypted when you connect to Tor using PrivateVPN. Since a VPN hides your actual IP address from Tor’s origin, using Tor with one is safer.

PrivateVPN makes using Tor easy. To begin browsing, just launch the Tor browser, establish a connection to a PrivateVPN server, and begin. It was a little slower because of additional security measures, but throughout my tests, accessing.onion sites worked without a hitch.

More practical methods of using Tor, including as browsing.onion websites in standard web browsers, are provided by some rivals, such as ProtonVPN. Nevertheless, if you want more anonymity when using Tor, PrivateVPN’s Tor functionality is helpful.

PrivateVPN has a transparent no-logs policy. Its Privacy Policy claims that it only records your email address (for communication purposes) and payment information (to process refunds and for accounting purposes). But if you want to protect your identity even more, you can pay in cryptocurrency.

PrivateVPN is headquartered in Sweden, which is part of the 5/9/14 Eyes Alliances (an intelligence-sharing agreement between various countries). Sweden also has mandatory data retention laws, but those laws only apply to ISPs — PrivateVPN isn’t legally required to keep or share any user data with the authorities.

One drawback of PrivateVPN’s no-logs policy is that it hasn’t been audited. I’d really like to see PrivateVPN conduct an independent audit of its no-logs policy to prove that it doesn’t keep logs (especially since it’s in a country that is a member of the 5/9/14 Eyes Alliances) — top competitors like ExpressVPN, Private Internet Access, and CyberGhost VPN all had their no-logs policies independently audited and proven true.

Overall, PrivateVPN has a transparent and strict no-logs policy (that hasn’t been audited), but it’s headquartered in a country that’s part of the 5/9/14 Eyes Alliances. However, PrivateVPN doesn’t store users’ personal information or internet traffic, so it wouldn’t have any data to hand over to the government.

I ran speed tests in all 63 countries where PrivateVPN has a server to determine its average internet VPN speed. The average decrease in download speed from my baseline speed was about 40%, which is pretty good — I maintained good speeds for torrenting and gaming on nearly every server.

PrivateVPN offered the fastest speeds when I used a local server (Romania), but the speeds were also good with a remote server (in the US). I only experienced some slowdown while using very distant servers (in Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, South Africa, etc.).

I started my tests by checking my original speeds (without using a PrivateVPN server). That let me establish a baseline for my speeds:

Next, I connected to a VPN server in my own country (Romania). My ping (how long it takes the internet signal to travel from my device to the PrivateVPN server) actually went down, which is great! Although there was a 42% slowdown with my download speed, it was barely noticeable when I browsed the internet and watched videos in 1080p on YouTube. Also, Netflix TV shows and movies in 4K instantly loaded on my PS4 and played without any buffering.

I then tested a US server. My download speed was reduced by 56%, but it hardly affected my internet speed — most websites only took 1-2 seconds to load and I was still able to play online games without lag.

Finally, I tested a Japanese server. The slowdown was more noticeable as websites took an extra 5-6 seconds to load, and I experienced a little bit of buffering while watching videos in HD.

My country (Romania) has very fast internet speeds, so I asked my colleague from the US to run some speed tests. Before he tested PrivateVPN speeds, my colleague first ran a speed test connected to his local network.

When my colleague connected to a PrivateVPN server in New York, he had the same internet experience as me using a local server. His browsing, streaming, and torrenting speeds didn’t slow down much.

Then, he tried a server in Germany. His download speed dropped by 30%, which is pretty good. He could still play video games without problems, but websites took 1-2 seconds longer to load.

My colleague then connected to a server in Japan, and he experienced more slowdown (46% on download speed) than when he was connected to the German server — websites took 5-6 seconds to load and he had minor buffering while watching content on YouTube.

Overall, PrivateVPN is pretty fast — during my tests, connection speeds were excellent when I was connected to local servers, and my speed didn’t drop that much even on distant servers.

PrivateVPN has 200+ servers in 63 countries. The server count is smaller than most top VPNs like ExpressVPN (servers in 105 countries). But I like how PrivateVPN has servers located in more countries than TunnelBear (47 countries), allowing you to easily find a nearby server for fast speed.

One thing I really like is that PrivateVPN allows P2P traffic on all of its servers. Some VPNs limit you to torrenting on dedicated P2P servers, which sometimes makes it hard to find a nearby location (to get fast speeds). PrivateVPN also supports obfuscation on any server.

I also like how PrivateVPN displays each server’s ping, which represents how long it takes for your device to communicate with the VPN server — this metric helps you connect to the fastest servers. What’s more, the provider rates the ping with a simple color code: green (good), yellow (average), and red (bad). In my tests, I always had the fastest speeds when using servers with low (green) ping.

PrivateVPN also offers free dynamic dedicated IPs (IP addresses that are only assigned to you). While many VPNs have dedicated IPs, no other VPN offers them for free — so this is a big plus for PrivateVPN.

Overall, PrivateVPN’s server network is good. It has fewer servers than most top VPNs, but all servers support P2P traffic and obfuscation, most servers are physical, and you can even get a free dedicated IP address.

PrivateVPN is one of the best streaming VPNs on the market since it consistently works with 20+ streaming sites. Streaming is supported on all of its servers, which is very convenient. Even so, I think other top competitors provide better variety — for example, ExpressVPN works with 100+ streaming apps.

The provider has really good Netflix support — our team of international testers confirmed that it works with 10+ Netflix libraries, including Netflix US, UK, and Japan.

On top of that, PrivateVPN is also compatible with other popular streaming services, such as Amazon Prime, Disney+, HBO Max, and BBC iPlayer. Plus, it also works with smaller streaming platforms, including ABC, Sling TV, VRV, and Crunchyroll. But I think it’s a shame that the provider doesn’t list all the streaming apps it’s compatible with on its site (like ExpressVPN and Proton VPN do) — that’d be more convenient than asking the live chat reps if the VPN works with a streaming service you’re interested in.

PrivateVPN doesn’t have a smart DNS feature, which is useful for devices like gaming consoles that can’t run VPN apps. But you can set up PrivateVPN on your router manually, so all your devices, even ones without VPN support, can use the VPN for streaming safely. The setup process is easy with their tutorials, taking about 12-13 minutes.

PrivateVPN is good for streaming. It works well with Netflix and over 20 other popular streaming sites like HBO Max, BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime, and Disney+.

PrivateVPN is one of the best torrenting VPNs in 2024, as it allows P2P downloads on all 200+ of its servers, which are located in 63 countries. Even so, I like ExpressVPN better, as it allows torrenting on servers in 105 countries, so it’s easier to avoid overcrowded servers and use nearby servers to get fast downloads.

I ran tests while connected to PrivateVPN on multiple popular torrent clients, and I never experienced any issues — I had the fastest speeds with qBittorrent, but I also enjoyed quick downloads with Vuze, Deluge, Transmission, uTorrent, and BitTorrent.


I also like how port forwarding is available, as it allows you to connect to more peers to get faster downloads — it’s also great that port forwarding is automatically enabled once you connect to a server, so you don’t need to enable or disable any options on your end.

In addition, each one of the provider’s servers comes with a SOCKS5 proxy, which changes your IP address like a VPN but doesn’t encrypt your traffic, so you get significantly faster downloads. For example, it only took me about 11 minutes to download a 15 GB file with a SOCKS5 proxy server — with a VPN server, the same file took about 20 minutes.

The provider also comes with good security features that keep you safe while torrenting, as it has a kill switch, a no-logs policy, and protection against DNS and IPv6 leaks. I ran leak tests on servers in 7+ countries before I started torrenting, and I never saw any leaks. Also, I ran several torrent IP leaks while using 3 torrent clients to make sure the P2P apps don’t leak my real IP address — the results always displayed PrivateVPN’s IP addresses.

But I think it’s a shame that PrivateVPN is missing a feature that blocks ads and malicious sites (like ExpressVPN and Private Internet Access have) — that could protect you from potentially dangerous ads on torrenting sites and shady P2P sites.

Overall, PrivateVPN provides great P2P support — it allows torrenting on all of its servers, it works with popular P2P apps, it allows port forwarding and has SOCKS5 proxies, and it provides strong security.

PrivateVPN is great for gaming. When I played Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, my ping was really low on local servers and stable on distant ones. Downloading updates was quick too.

It protects against DDoS attacks by changing your IP address and has anti-DDoS protection on all servers. You can also set it up on your router for devices like gaming consoles.

For hardcore gamers, ExpressVPN might be better. It’s easy to install on routers, works with cloud gaming platforms like Google Stadia, and is rated 5 Best Free VPN for Gaming in 2024.

PrivateVPN uses Stealth VPN to hide your VPN traffic from third parties. Its customer service reps confirmed it works in countries like China and Iran.

PrivateVPN is cheaper than most top VPNs. It offers 3 payment plans, including a 1-month, 3-month, and 36-month plan (this plan offers the best savings and costs just INR170 / month).

PrivateVPN offers a 30-day money-back guarantee, but you have to explain why you want the refund. While they do refund without any issues, it’s not as clear as competitors like ExpressVPN, ProtonVPN, and CyberGhost VPN who offer no-questions-asked refunds.

You can pay for PrivateVPN with 7 different credit cards, PayPal, Ethereum, and Bitcoin. But if you pay with cryptocurrency or have auto-renewal, you can’t get a refund.

PrivateVPN works on iOS, Android, Windows, and macOS, Linux, Kodi, and routers. Installing PrivateVPN’s apps is simple. It only took me 1-2 minutes to do it on my Android and iOS smartphones, and 2-3 minutes on my Windows 10 PC and MacBook.

  • Step 1: Subscribe to PrivateVPN. I suggest choosing the longest plan as it offers the best value in the long run.
  • Step 2: Download and set up the VPN app. Just follow the on-screen instructions — it shouldn’t take you longer than 2 minutes.
  • Step 3: Open the VPN app. Pick the server you wish to connect to and click on it. You’re all set for safe and secure web access.

PrivateVPN’s Android app is pretty good — it’s both feature-rich and user-friendly. I installed the app on my Samsung Galaxy and I was impressed by how intuitive the interface is. Even people who have never used a VPN should have an easy time learning how to navigate the app.

I love how the home screen is easy to understand. It tells you if the VPN is on or off and lets you instantly connect to a server with one tap. PrivateVPN’s Settings tab lets you easily decide which OpenVPN protocol to use (I recommend UDP over TCP because it has faster speeds). You’ll also find the kill switch and Stealth VPN features under the Setting tab.

One thing I like is that PrivateVPN is one of the rare VPNs that offers 128-bit AES encryption and 256-bit AES encryption. I recommend sticking with 256-bit AES for most of your online activity, but you can switch to 128-bit AES to get slightly faster speeds (for streaming). It’s also cool that you can configure the app to automatically connect to a VPN server when you turn on or restart your smartphone (this way you won’t accidentally expose your data).

Overall, I really like PrivateVPN’s Android app. Although I wish the app included L2TP/IPSec and IKEv2/IPSec protocols, the Android app is easy to use, feature-rich, and you can connect to a server with one tap.

PrivateVPN’s iOS app is easy to use and has a similar design as the Android app. But it’s missing a kill switch, IPv6 leak protection, and the connect on startup feature. That said, unlike the Android app, the iOS app also has IKEv2/IPSec (which is faster than OpenVPN).

Despite lacking a couple of features, I found the iOS app to be very intuitive and reliable. I had no problems connecting to a server, switching servers, or browsing and streaming content.

Overall, PrivateVPN has a good iOS app that is really easy to navigate, but I would feel more secure if it had a kill switch. On the other hand, PrivateVPN’s iOS app is faster than the Android version because it has IKEv2/IPSec.

PrivateVPN’s Windows app has 2 view modes, including Simple View and Advanced View. You can easily switch between the modes with just one click.

The Simple View is great for beginners. You can connect to a server by using the power button or manually choose a server, access live support from the main screen, and review your account.

The Advanced View is ideal for experienced users who want more control over the default settings. In addition to similar connection options offered on mobile devices, PrivateVPN allows you to pick the VPN protocol (OpenVPN, PPTP, and L2TP/IPSec) and your VPN encryption (256-bit AES encryption or 128-bit AES encryption), see which port to use for port forwarding, and track how much data you consume.

I really like the app’s user-friendly interface and how simple it is to navigate (like the mobile apps). Under the Settings tab, you can enable PrivateVPN to automatically launch and connect to a server when you turn on your device — this way you know you’re always protected. PrivateVPN nicely organizes leak protection and the kill switch under the Connection Guard tab. There’s also Application Guard, which allows you to terminate specific programs if you’re disconnected from the VPN.

Overall, PrivateVPN has really good desktop apps. Its macOS and Windows apps are feature-rich and easy to use.

You can manually set up PrivateVPN on your router, as long as the VPN is compatible with your router’s firmware. The good news is that the provider supports a lot of popular router models and firmware — some top competitors (like TunnelBear) don’t support router setups at all.

It’s normally pretty difficult to manually configure a VPN on your router — but PrivateVPN provides helpful step-by-step tutorials that even include screenshots. I used one of its tutorials when I set up the VPN on my router, and it only took me around 12–13 minutes to do it.

Even so, I still think you’re better off with ExpressVPN if you plan to mainly use the VPN on your router — it’s one of the only VPNs on the market that comes with a router app, which you can easily install on your router. Plus, the router app is very intuitive, and it also comes with Lightway, which provides the fastest VPNs speeds in 2024.

Overall, PrivateVPN supports manual setups on many router models and firmwares and also provides access to helpful tutorials.

PrivateVPN has easy-to-use apps for Android, iOS, Windows, and macOS. They’re mostly the same, but the iOS app is missing a kill switch, IPv6 leak protection, and the convenient auto-connect option. You also get detailed step-by-step guides to manually set up the VPN on your router and protect devices like your smart TV and gaming consoles.

Overall, PrivateVPN apps have a very similar design, and they’re all simple to navigate even if you’re a beginner, so you’ll have no issue protecting your online traffic when streaming, torrenting, gaming, or otherwise browsing online.

Graphical User Interface (GUI)
Kill Switch
IPv6 leak protection
Application Guard
Stealth VPN

PrivateVPN’s support is pretty good. They have detailed guides for installing the VPN, including videos, and a lot of FAQs. You can talk to them anytime through live chat or email, but they don’t have phone support, which is common for VPN providers.

Their guides are really helpful, but sometimes the FAQs don’t have all the answers, so you might need to ask for help through live chat or email.

One cool thing is their remote help option. You can let a support person access your device remotely to help you set up or fix things, which makes it easier.

I tried PrivateVPN’s live chat support a few times, and each time I got connected to someone quickly. They answered all my questions nicely and accurately. They offer support in English, but they can help you in many other languages using a translation tool.

I also emailed them, and they replied in less than 10 minutes with helpful info. Usually, it takes VPNs longer to respond to emails.

Their customer support was also great when I asked for a refund. They replied to my email in just 30 minutes, were friendly, and didn’t try to change my mind. I got my refund in only 9 hours, which is faster than many other VPNs.

Even though PrivateVPN is great, there are some areas it can improve. The 4 biggest complaints I have are that PrivateVPN’s server network is a bit small, it lacks advanced security features, the customer support is thin on troubleshooting guides, and the extra features offered are pretty thin compared to its top competitors.

PrivateVPN’s server network is on the small side. While it has a server in 63 countries, the number pales when pitted against ExpressVPN (105 countries), CyberGhost VPN (100), and Surfshark (100).

This VPN doesn’t use RAM-only servers. This is a shame, as RAM-only servers don’t store any data to the hard drive, and all of the data on the server is erased each time the system is rebooted. In addition, it has DNS leak protection and IPv6 leak protection but is missing WebRTC protection. Plus, there’s no kill switch on iOS, which many VPNs include, so iPhone users are a bit less protected than users on other devices.

I was also disappointed that there are no troubleshooting guides on PrivateVPN’s website. I prefer being able to troubleshoot myself rather than needing to wait on customer service and tech support. VPNs like Private Internet Access have in-depth troubleshooting guides for every possible issue you might have while using its service.

Finally, I wish PrivateVPN would offer extra features like split-tunneling, which is a really convenient tool for deciding which apps/sites are or aren’t routed via the VPN, and an ad blocker, which usually also includes an ad tracker blocker and prevents you from visiting malicious sites.

PrivateVPN is a solid choice for staying safe online. It’s got good security, decent speeds, and works well with streaming sites. Plus, it has lots of servers in many countries and supports P2P traffic on all of them, which is great for torrenting.

During my tests, the speed drop was only around 40%, which is better than most VPNs. I could do everything online without much lag, even gaming.

It’s got strong security features like encryption, a kill switch, and Tor support. Customer support is good too, with 24/7 live chat and a cool remote help option.

However, it’s missing some features like ad blocking and split-tunneling, and the iOS app doesn’t have a kill switch. There aren’t many troubleshooting guides either.

There are three payment plans, all with a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you can try it out risk-free.

For gaming, PrivateVPN is pretty good. Ping was low, even on distant servers, and it’s got anti-DDoS protection to keep you safe from attacks. You can even set it up on your router for gaming on devices that don’t support VPN apps. Overall, it’s a good choice, but if you’re a hardcore gamer, ExpressVPN might be better because of its dedicated router app and compatibility with cloud gaming platforms like Google Stadia.

PrivateVPN doesn’t offer a free plan, but you can try it risk-free with a 30-day money-back guarantee. Just remember, you might need to give a reason for the refund, and it doesn’t apply to cryptocurrency payments or auto-renewals.

Free VPNs are available, but they’re not a good idea. They often lack important security features, have slow speeds, and limit your bandwidth. It’s better to invest in a low-cost VPN like PrivateVPN, which offers strong security, works with popular streaming services, and maintains fast speeds.

Yes, PrivateVPN is compatible with Netflix. It’s also a good choice for watching other streaming services, like Hulu, Disney+, etc.

Because of PrivateVPN’s good speeds, I was able to watch Netflix Romania in HD and 4K during all of my tests with no buffering or delays.

PrivateVPN has strong security features. It uses really strong encryption to protect your data, like what banks and militaries use. They don’t keep any logs of your activity, have a kill switch on Android and Windows, and their leak protection works well.

They’re based in Sweden, which is part of some international agreements about sharing information. But even if the government asked for user data, PrivateVPN doesn’t have any to give since they don’t store it.

PrivateVPN is a good option for places like China where internet access is restricted. They have a feature called Stealth VPN that hides your VPN use from others. It works on all their servers, and their support team says it works well in restricted countries.

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