With online safety on the decline around the globe, the solution for many Nigerians is to invest in a virtual private network (VPN), which shields your identity and location by connecting you to a remote server and encrypting your connection.
However, while a good VPN provider will keep your information private and untraceable, a bad VPN will only make false promises, which can only render your connection and identity unsafe.
To help you avoid such a pitfall, we’ve compiled a list of the best VPN for Nigeria.
Our VPN ranking system
Our five candidates have been chosen with the following criteria in mind:
- VPN security
- Entertainment (effectiveness against geo-blocking, torrenting capabilities)
- Reliability against firewalls and censorship
- Ease of use and customer support
With this in mind, let’s head straight to our Top 5 VPN picks for Nigeria.
1. NordVPN ‣
The best VPN for Nigeria
- Pros: great security, massive server list, torrenting, support
- Cons: not the speediest in the list
- Price: starts at $2.99
- VPNpro rating: 9.5
NordVPN is the premier VPN provider on the market today, and its reputation is second-to-none. But what makes it one of the best VPNs for Nigeria?
Quite simply, Nord leads the way in terms of keeping your information private and secure. It’s registered in Panama, which means not only is it outside the jurisdiction of the Fourteen Eyes alliance, it’s also free from data retention laws altogether.
It also uses industry-standard encryption software; namely, AES-256-CBC. This locks your data behind a firewall that is so airtight it can never be brute-forced.
NordVPN keeps your connection speedy, too, with over five thousand servers spread across sixty-five countries. This massive server fleet, plus its range, also makes it a great option for unblocking geo-restricted content.
What’s truly amazing about NordVPN, though, is that it offers all of this for such a low price. It’s great for any budget, and it allows you to surf completely anonymously.
The budget powerhouse
- Pros: great security, geo-unblocking, unlimited connections, support
- Cons: no free trial
- Price: starts at $1.99
- VPNpro rating: 8.2
Surfshark is another excellent option for VPN-hunters on a budget. Like NordVPN, it also offers way more than you could reasonably expect from the asking price.
One advantage that Surfshark has over NordVPN is its encryption cipher: AES-256-GCM as opposed to Nord’s AES-256-CBC. The difference is simple: Surfshark’s model encrypts data much more quickly without losing an ounce of security.
As this would indicate, Surfshark offers powerful download speeds. It has a much smaller server fleet than Nord, unfortunately, so there’s ultimately less range. Nevertheless, Surfshark is no slouch when it comes to unblocking content in the regions where it does have servers.
The cherry on top is the ability to use Surfshark on multiple connections at once, which means that one subscription package could potentially protect the every device in your family.
For us, this makes Surfshark one of the very best VPN for Nigeria.
3. VyprVPN ‣
The champion of anti-censorship
- Pros: great security, geo-unblocking, large server fleet, live chat support
- Cons: not the best for torrenting
- Price: starts at $5.00
- VPNpro rating: 8.3
VyprVPN is unique among its competitors for its support of Chameleon, a protocol developed by its parent company Golden Frog.
Chameleon is designed to prevent blocking and throttling, both of which are common techniques ISP use when users are consuming a lot of bandwidth.
As such, VyprVPN is an especially great choice for those who need the internet a lot, such as people who work from home. It keeps your connection speeds unaltered throughout your subscription to VyprVPN.
Of course, this would mean nothing were VyprVPN not totally secure. Thankfully, it is; it uses the same level of encryption as all the other options we’ve included here.
As you can see, this is a top-quality service, and we are confident in our decision to include it as one of the best VPN for Nigeria.
4. ProtonVPN ‣
Superb free version included
- Pros: great security, geo-unblocking, user-friendliness, support, great free version
- Cons: average speeds
- Price: starts at $4.00 (there’s also a free version)
- VPNpro rating: 8.0
ProtonVPN is based in Switzerland, but more specifically, it’s based at the European Organization for Nuclear Research. Yes, the place that contains the Large Hadron Collider.
Even beyond its unlikely origins, ProtonVPN is unique in that its free version is actually good. Ordinarily, we would instruct our readers to avoid free VPN like the plague, but Proton is no ordinary VPN.
That doesn’t mean you should rest on your laurels; the free version works well enough, but to get the most out of one of the best VPN for Nigeria, it’s worth investing in the paid-for options.
Either way, ProtonVPN is a solid piece of software that encrypts your data just as well as anything on this list. Its developers being scientists also means that you can rely on them to answer all manner of questions should something go slightly wrong.
Reasonably decent speeds improve the user experience even further, and Proton’s ability to easily unblock geo-restricted content anywhere it has servers is certainly a bonus.
5. ExpressVPN ‣
The VPN fit for a prince
- Pros: great security, great protocols, large server list, torrenting, live chat support
- Cons: expensive
- Price: starts at $8.32
- VPNpro rating: 9.6
Here, we get to the most expensive entry, the one that still boasts a great combination of pricing and features albeit to a slightly lesser extent than the options we’ve mentioned thus far.
However, there’s a reason ExpressVPN costs as much as it does, and if you’re able to stretch your budget, you’ll find it a highly rewarding VPN – and it certainly counts as one of the best VPN for Nigeria overall.
There’s something to be said for paying for brand recognition; ExpressVPN has been a market leader for years, and that’s because it’s known to be trustworthy.
ExpressVPN covers most of the usual ground from there, using the AES-256-CBC cipher and a registry in the BVI data haven to ensure its customers’ personal information.
Where it truly succeeds, though, is in its accessibility features. ExpressVPN has custom apps for every major operating system, and extensions for every major browser. (We particularly like the browser extensions because they act like remote controls for the VPN, making it easier to toggle your connection in real time.)
Is it safe to use a VPN in Nigeria?
As internet access continues to increase in Nigeria, the online landscape becomes less permissive.
In particular, many pro-Biafra bloggers have been arrested over the past few years, and websites promoting the independence of the region are blocked in Nigeria.
Furthermore, the repression of the LGBTQ community continues to be a problem, and many queer commentators feel unsafe posting online content under their own name.
If you’re in Nigeria, which of these VPNs have you used before? Did we miss any great VPNs for Nigeria? Let us know in the comments below.