Before we dive into our top 3 picks, let us point out a few facts about using a free VPN for torrenting. It’s vital that you see clearly, and we are not here to risk your online privacy with downright dangerous options.
By using a free VPN for torrenting, you may:
- risk your personal data being logged and sold to third parties
- risk being identified by the authorities
- be annoyed by third-party advertising
- be limited to just a few servers
- not be able to use dedicated P2P servers at all
- have slow speeds in general
- experience connection drops
- have to use overloaded servers
You need to understand that maintaining a virtual private network costs a lot of money. To offer it for free usually means that the service provider makes money out of advertising, selling your logged data, having an unlimited premium version, and so on. No wonder why only so-called Freemium VPNs end up on our lists, which are basically limited versions of premium VPN services.
To be perfectly honest, we would never use any free VPN for torrenting. But we also need to serve the huge demand out there, so here is our “safest” list of three.
Top 3 Free VPN for Torrenting
We need to warn you again that “free” is a relative concept when it comes to virtual private networking because you may pay the highest price, your identity, for skimping on your cybersecurity. Nonetheless, you may consider the following options but read the full reviews as well to get the bigger picture once you choose any of them.
Remember that simply installing a VPN service will not mean that your torrenting activities are safe. You need to configure your BitTorrent, uTorrent, or Vuze applications to only use the VPN tunnels for internet traffic. If you don’t set your client up properly, it may use your ISP as a mediator between your computer and torrent seeders or leechers, which could have catastrophic consequences with regard to your privacy.
1. Atlas VPN
Email, tickets, FAQ
- Good security
- 24/7 email support
- Unblocks Netflix US
- Allows torrenting
- Few countries
- Apps lack features
Our top pick in the torrenting category is AtlasVPN. One of the main factors in this decision is the fact that Atlas VPN doesn’t have any bandwidth limits. Additionally, there’s an internet kill switch available to keep your IP secure in case the VPN connection fails. Of course, it is a freemium service so some roadblocks do exist. But for the most part, it’s a very solid choice.
Free users get access to three server locations – Netherlands, USA New York, and USA Los Angeles. Not a lot, but it should keep most users covered.
Naturally, download speeds will also be throttled a bit so that premium users would get the best experience. But the reduction is by no means major and it’s a small price to pay for top-notch security.
For a deeper investigation of Atlas VPN, read our Atlas VPN review.
2. Windscribe VPN
- No identifying logs
- Unlimited simultaneous connections
- Very fast speeds
- Great free version
- Works with Netflix & P2P
- Ad and malware blocking
- No live chat support
- Complicated refund policy
This VPN service offers 10GB data for free as a monthly bandwidth limit. You can use 13 servers out of an undisclosed number of VPN servers located in 50+ countries and 100+ cities around the world. Though limited to 13, this server number is still much better than the usual 3 servers other competitors can offer. The Windscribe VPN connection speeds should be fine for all kinds of file sharing.
This is one of the safest free services that offer a good range of online security and privacy features, which you will definitely need if you want to use a free VPN for torrenting.
For a deeper investigation of Windscribe VPN, read our Windscribe VPN review.
3. Hide Me VPN
- Good security credentials
- Decent geographical variety
- Works in China
- Not bad for torrenting
- Minimal logging
- Above-average speeds
- Somewhat expensive
- Does not unblock Netflix
- Does not unblock BBC iPlayer
With its 2GB monthly traffic cap and the 3 servers, you can use with the free version, Hide Me or Hide.me VPN is probably not the best choice if your GB appetite is bigger. We experienced average speeds with this service but with the occasional connection drops, your P2P file downloads and uploads could turn into a painful experience.
Furthermore, we certainly wouldn’t trust our anonymity to Hide.me partly due to the reported DNS and WebRTC leaks. Even if this free VPN comes with a good variety of security protocols, leaks are not friends with privacy in any sense. Since torrenting is closely related to piracy and copyright infringement, we believe that you must go for the best possible option to protect yourself.
For a deeper investigation of Hide Me VPN, read our Hide Me VPN review.
Avoid these free VPNs for torrenting
While we do not encourage you to use any of the above top 3 free VPN for torrenting picks due to the apparent implied privacy risks, we downright ask you to avoid the following free services at all costs if your online security and privacy are of importance to you.
- VPNGate: This is a volunteer-based VPN network that has thousands of peers in over 230 countries. Nevertheless, this free service has probably the worst privacy of all. Although it does offer a good range of security protocols, this service has extensive logs of your usages and connections as well. What’s more, every single peer you use as a VPN server may spy on you and log all kinds of sensitive data about you. If you add to this equation that it is rather painstaking to find a proper connection at all and the speeds can be completely useless at times, you may want to give this free VPN a wide berth as it should be obvious from our VPNGate review. VPNGate discourages P2P file sharing anyway due to its volunteer nature.
- Hola VPN: You’d better say goodbye to this free VPN before you would say “hola.” Even if you think “yo no hablo español,” you will say “gracias” when we save you from all the possible and horrible risks our Hola VPN review warns you about with regard to this Israel-based possible scam. Many cybersecurity experts consider this free service resembling a malicious botnet in fact. Since the free users are exploited as exit nodes, being part of this rather shady “VPN” network has its own dangers. How about cyber criminals using your IP address to commit online frauds or do any other illegal activities? Sounds like fun? We don’t think so. This is why we advise you to steer away from Hola VPN as far as you can.
- Betternet VPN: This free VPN scored very low on the online security and privacy front in our Betternet VPN review (4/10). Yet, some reviewers may actually recommend it as a free alternative for torrenting. For starters, this provider is based in Canada, a Five Eyes country. It keeps connection logs and has tracking libraries because of its third-party advertising. Betternet also has no kill switch, which makes it a liability when it comes to possible leaks. Since it doesn’t even support P2P file sharing, your BitTorrent or uTorrent experience would be rather painful with this free VPN. So, if you ask us, we would say: if Betternet is your free VPN for Torrenting, you might as well go commando.
Free VPN Alternatives for Torrenting
We tried, and we tried our best as always. Still, we do take our mission seriously, which is to help you protect your online security and privacy in the virtual world, but we cannot really come up with any better free choices for torrenting. At the same time, we do understand your desire to use a free VPN service for your needs if possible, so all we can do now is keep our eyes wide open and update this page when a potential top 3 candidate shows up.
When it comes to BitTorrent, uTorrent, and Vuze, however, we need to draw the line thick between anonymous file sharing and risking an identity leak, which could have serious consequences. Torrenting cannot be mentioned on the same page with browsing geo-blocked content and watching censored YouTube videos.
Therefore, we advise you to check out our list of best premium VPN alternatives for torrenting by clicking the link below: