BitTorrent and other Peer2Peer file sharing software gives you an excellent method for downloading large files quickly, but it does pose some security risks that could cause problems for you.
As the popularity of file sharing networks increases, hackers have begun to take notice and are using people’s lack of security knowledge to steal sensitive information.
If you haven’t given your personal security a second thought, you may want to stop and address the areas that put your sensitive information at risk when connecting to a file sharing network.
One of the best ways to protect yourself while connecting to file sharing networks is to first connect through a Virtual Private Network service.
Virtual Private Networks allow you to keep your sensitive information secure by keeping your connection to the internet anonymous and encrypted.
VPN services also protect you from local governments that attempt to prosecute users for illegally downloading files via Peer2Peer file sharing networks.
Why You Should Trust Us
At SecureThoughts, our writers have spent years diving deep into internet security, learning about new vulnerabilities and figuring out creative ways to help keep our readers safe.
Each VPN service that we’ve featured here has been thoroughly reviewed, requiring a significant amount of time and in-depth testing to find the best VPN service for BitTorrent users.
Table of Contents
- Best VPN for Laptops
- Why You Should Trust Us
- Table of Contents
- Testing Methodology
- How We Tested Each VPN Service
- VPN Services You Should Avoid
- VPNs Disqualified Due to Missing Features
- VPNs Eliminated Due to Poor Reviews
- Top Three VPNs for Securing Your Laptop
- Wrapping It Up
Before you subscribe to the first service that promises to keep you safe, you need to know that not all VPN services are equal and worth the money you’re going to be spending.
Some VPN services provide increased security through military-grade encryption, while other services promise high-level encryption and fail to deliver.
That’s why we’ve devoted so much time to testing each service individually, to determine which VPN services are worth the money and which services fail to deliver on their promises.
How We Tested Each VPN Service
To ensure that you remain protected and secure while downloading files with BitTorrent, we reviewed more than 170 different VPN services using a three-step process to help find eligible providers.
To skip the methodology and go straight to our recommendations, click here now.
The first step that we’ve taken was to immediately eliminate any service that is based in a country where the government can force the services to turn over activity logs to officials.
Then, we looked at features of the remaining VPN services and eliminated any that did not meet our minimum required feature set and specifications.
We also read reviews of the remaining VPN services and removed any services that failed to achieve a 60 percent rating (or 3 out of 5 stars) to help instantly remove low-quality service providers.
Finally, the remaining services were tested against each other using five criteria that allowed us to make an objective determination and find the best VPN service for BitTorrent users.
Those five criteria are:
Price – Price is one of the most important factors that we considered for each VPN that would potentially receive a recommendation.
Setup Process – To verify an easy setup process, we signed up for each service and then downloaded and installed the software they provided.
Ease of Use – We then tested each service to determine how intuitively their software performs and how easy it is to find and stay connected to their servers.
Speed – We verified the speeds offered by each VPN service by testing their servers from the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia.
Customer Service – We contacted their customer service department before the sale was made, after installing the software and again with a fictitious payment issue.
These are the results of our investigation.
VPN Services You Should Avoid
We’ve tested more than 170 different VPN services that are available to users looking to stay anonymous and secure while they’re downloading files via BitTorrent.
To start our review process, we eliminated any VPN service that’s located in a country that participates in the “14 Eyes” program.
If you’re not familiar with the “14 Eyes” program, it’s an agreement between local governments that allows them to spy on their citizens and track what they’re doing online.
VPN services that operate inside of 14 Eyes participating countries can be forced to turn over your activity logs, and the government can use that information to prosecute you in a court of law.
Of the original 172 VPN services we started reviewing, 123 of them were eliminated because of their participation in the 14 Eyes program.
To give you an example, five of the services that were eliminated due to participation in the 14 Eyes agreement are 3Monkey, ChillGlobal, FrootVPN, GoVPN and IPPredator.
VPNs Disqualified Due to Missing Features
During our review process, we verified that the remaining VPN services offer six different features that BitTorrent users are going to need when connecting to a VPN.
As we continue through the review process, we’re going to break down the details of each of those features and only recommend services that provide them with your subscription.
Criteria #1: Unlimited Bandwidth and Data Transfer
When you’re downloading large files via BitTorrent and file sharing networks, you’re going to consume large amounts of bandwidth.
Some VPN services offer unlimited bandwidth but will throttle your connection speeds when you transfer large amounts of data across their network.
A few of the VPN services that were eliminated due to bandwidth and data transfer issues are 3Monkey, IPPredator and GoVPN.
Criteria #2: No Data Logging Policies
Many VPN services will track your activity to help them diagnose issues that you may be having while you are connected to their network.
These data logging practices put you at risk, which is why we eliminated any services that have policies in place where they track what you’re doing while you are connected to their network.
Some of the VPN services that were eliminated due to their data logging practices are BeeVPN, Betternet and Blockless.
Criteria #3: Support for Multiple Operating Systems
BitTorrent is compatible with multiple different operating systems which means that you may also need to connect to the VPN service using different operating systems.
Companies that support every OS were ranked higher in our review process, so you know that their software is compatible with everything from Windows, to iOS, Linux and Android.
Some of the VPN services that were eliminated due to their lack of support for multiple operating systems are IntelliVPN, SunVPN and Overplay.
Criteria #4: Support Multiple Concurrent Connections
You probably have more than one device that you use to connect to the internet which means you need a VPN service that will help you protect each additional device you own.
VPN services that support multiple concurrent connections were ranked higher during our review process than companies that have connection issues when you connect with more than one device.
Some of the VPN services that were eliminated due to their lack of support for multiple active connections are HotVPN, Insorg and IBVPN.
Criteria #5: No Peer2Peer Blocking
If a VPN service blocks your access to Peer2Peer and file sharing networks, you’re not going to be able to protect yourself while using BitTorrent to download large files.
If the VPNs that we tested block access to P2P networks, they were immediately eliminated from our review process.
Some of the companies that were eliminated due to their lack of P2P support are SunVPN, UnoTelly and LibertyVPN.
Criteria #6: Free-Trials, Refunds and Money-Back Guarantee
At SecureThoughts, we want to ensure that every one of our readers has access to the best VPN services that are currently available.
If you happen to have problems with a service that we’ve recommended, we want to ensure that you’re able to receive a refund on your purchase so you can try another service.
Some of the VPN services that were eliminated due to their lack of refunds, free trials and money-back guarantees are VPN Shield and VPNBaron.
VPNs Eliminated Due to Poor Reviews
We’ll admit that taking reviews from other customers may not be the ideal way to find the best VPN service for BitTorrent users, but it does allow us to quickly eliminate sub-par services.
After sifting through customer reviews for the remaining VPN services on more than 100 different websites, we managed to dwindle our list of potential services down to three.
Top Three VPNs for BitTorrent Users
Now that we’ve eliminated 169 of the original 172 VPN services due to a lack of features, poor customer service, connection issues and compatibility issues, we reviewed the remaining three services.
Each of the remaining three services will be reviewed based on five criteria:
- Setup Process
- Ease of Use
- Customer Service
Through an extensive review process, we’ve concluded that one service has become the clear winner for keeping you safe while downloading files with BitTorrent.
#1 ExpressVPN – (9.5 / 10) – The Best VPN Service for BitTorrent Users
After a thorough review process, we’ve found that ExpressVPN is the clear winner. They provided fast connection speeds, competitive pricing and excellent customer service.
For pricing, ExpressVPN fell in the middle of the pack, with single-month subscriptions costing $12.95, falling to $8.32 per month for 12-month subscriptions.
Installing the ExpressVPN software and getting connected to their servers was simple and straightforward. We were connected within a few minutes of downloading and installing the software.
They also provided the fastest download and upload speeds, without showing any signs of potentially throttling our speeds due to excessive bandwidth consumption.
Using the ExpressVPN service didn’t cause too many hiccups, and the customer support team responded quickly to all the requests that we sent to them.
Even though ExpressVPN clearly won during our review process, we believe that their pricing could be more competitive compared to other services we’ve tested.
Their connection speeds, when tested from Australia, were also slightly slower than elsewhere. This could be due to the time of day and the location we tested from, though.
We would love to see ExpressVPN respond to customer support requests quicker than during our testing, but understand that they may have had other customers to deal with at the same time.
Summary: ExpressVPN is an excellent service when you need to protect yourself while downloading large files via BitTorrent and file sharing networks.
Other services can’t compare to the network strength of ExpressVPN, and the customer support team at ExpressVPN were incredibly helpful and answered fast enough to keep us happy.
To protect yourself while using BitTorrent with ExpressVPN, click here now.
#2 IPVanish – (7.5 / 10) – Suitable if ExpressVPN isn’t Available to You
In some countries, BitTorrent users may find that they cannot open an account through ExpressVPN and will be left looking for other options to protect themselves.
IPVanish is one of the services that may prove to be a suitable alternative to ExpressVPN if you happen to find out that ExpressVPN isn’t available to you.
They are currently one of the cheapest VPNs available, costing only $7.50 for a single-month subscription, and only $4.87 per month for 12-month subscriptions.
The IPVanish software setup process is simple and straightforward, showing how much time and money has gone into ensuring that their customers can connect to their network.
When it comes to using their service, IPVanish was comparable to the level of service that ExpressVPN provided. Neither service presented many issues where usability is concerned.
During connection speed tests, IPVanish ranked #2 in the United States and the United Kingdom, while ranking #3 in speed tests run from inside of Australia.
The customer service team at ExpressVPN were helpful when we sent them messages, but it did take longer than 24 hours for them to respond to the messages we submitted.
Summary: While IPVanish compared to ExpressVPN in a few areas, ExpressVPN did provide substantially faster download and upload speeds, which are critical for BitTorrent users.
If you’re unable to open an account with ExpressVPN and want to remain safe, secure and anonymous while using BitTorrent, IPVanish may be a suitable alternative.
If you would like to know more about IPVanish, you can visit their site by clicking here.
#3 HideMyAss – (5.5 / 10) – Not Recommended
The third and final VPN service to make it to our list is HideMyAss.
After an extensive review process, HideMyAss did manage to beat the remaining 169 services, but cannot be recommended as a viable service for protecting yourself while using BitTorrent.
Installing and setting up the HideMyAss software didn’t present many problems. We were connected to their servers within a few minutes of paying for their service.
You can tell they devote a significant amount of resources to ensuring a simple and intuitive connection process and we didn’t experience many technical hurdles.
The network strength provided by HideMyAss was lackluster, with their speeds ranking #3 in tests based out of the United States and the United Kingdom, and #2 in Australia.
HideMyAss is also among the most expensive VPN services currently available, costing $16.99 for a single-month subscription and $9.29 for 12-month subscriptions.
It took the team at HideMyAss significantly longer to respond to the requests that we submitted than the customer support team at ExpressVPN.
Summary: During testing, we experienced better customer support experiences and didn’t have many connection issues with ExpressVPN and IPVanish.
HideMyAss, on the other hand, did present connection problems, and their customer support team took significantly longer to respond to our requests.
ExpressVPN and even IPVanish are both much better choices when you’re trying to keep yourself secure while downloading files via BitTorrent.
If you want to learn more about HideMyAss, you can do your own research by clicking here.
NOTE: Hackers rely on people connecting to file sharing networks and using BitTorrent without securing their connection to the internet.
If you regularly download files via BitTorrent and want to ensure that your connection is safe, anonymous and secure, you will want to connect through a VPN service.
VPN services help keep you safe and secure by encrypting the information you send and receive across their network and helping you hide your original location.
ExpressVPN is, by far, the best VPN service that’s currently available for helping you protect yourself while you are connected to file sharing networks and downloading via BitTorrent.
To protect your laptop while it’s connected to the internet, get ExpressVPN now by clicking here.
Wrapping It Up
Connecting to a file sharing network and downloading files via BitTorrent without thinking about securing your connection is a recipe for disaster.
Virtual Private Network services help keep your sensitive information safe and keep you anonymous so you do not have to worry about hackers or local governments spying on your activity.
After extensive testing, we’ve concluded that ExpressVPN is the best service for helping you protect yourself while connected to file sharing networks and downloading via BitTorrent.
To learn more about ExpressVPN and protect yourself while downloading via BitTorrent and file sharing networks, click here now.