Surfshark offers all the features you want from a top-notch VPN. It has watertight security, uncompromising anonymity, very fast speeds, all for an incredibly affordable price.
Surfshark offers all the features you want from a top-notch VPN. It has watertight security, uncompromising anonymity, very fast speeds, all for an incredibly affordable price.
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Since its launch in 2018, Surfshark has earned the consumer’s trust and became one of the top overall VPNs. This wasn’t just about excellent speed or top-notch security and privacy. The biggest argument for Surfshark VPN was getting all that for a low price.
Operating from the British Virgin Islands, this provider has set a strict standard upon itself. It has a no-logs policy and stays away from the Five Eyes surveillance alliance. Additionally, Surfshark uses military-grade encryption and the latest tunneling protocols to protect its users.
With Surfshark VPN, you’ll be able to torrent safely and watch multiple streaming platforms. There more than 3200+ servers in 65+ countries, so if one won’t unblock Netflix, the other will.
I wanted to learn whether that user trust was warranted, so I set out to answer the key questions in this review: Is it a secure VPN? Does it log user data? And crucially, how good is it for torrenting and Netflix?
It turns out Surfshark VPN ticks all the boxes, including speed, unlimited simultaneous connections, easy-to-use apps, and even prices, which are better than most competitor’s.
Read my in-depth Surfshark VPN review to see all the test results. Alternatively, you get Surfshark with 81% off now.
|Rank||#2 out of 223 providers|
|Support||24/7 live chat, FAQ|
|Free version or trial||7-day free trial|
Surfshark is one of the fastest VPN services in 2021, as our in-house VPN speed testing tool has shown. No matter which country you connect from, this provider will compete with the best of the best.
We regularly run speed tests from servers in the US, the UK, and other countries.
|Download Speed||720 Mbps|
|Upload Speed||700 Mbps|
|Download Speed||525 Mbps|
|Upload Speed||423 Mbps|
|Download Speed||522 Mbps|
|Upload Speed||528 Mbps|
As you can see from the results, the connection speeds with the WireGuard protocol are really fast, especially if we compare with the competitors that still use OpenVPN. The upload is also way above most VPNs, no matter which country you choose. So what do these numbers mean, really?
For starters, you should be able to stream 4K (UHD) videos and play online games on your continent, unless your continent is huge. You shouldn’t experience lag during video and VOIP calls, which put the ping limit at 200 ms, but contacting someone on the other side of the globe might take its toll. Finally, downloading a 10 GB torrent file might take less than 3 minutes.
The speeds seem to be increasing each time I update this Surfshark VPN review. There’s obviously a lot of investment going into this VPN. While it is on the TOP of the fastest VPNs list in 2021, I believe its speed will continue to improve.
Surfshark VPN has some of the fastest servers. The list consists of 3200+ servers in 65+ countries.
Here’s how the Surfshark server coverage looks across the globe:
|Africa, the Middle East, and India||6+|
As always, North America and Europe have the best coverage. However, I was pleasantly surprised by the three countries in Africa. Mostly you get South Africa only or no servers whatsoever.
All servers are physical and RAM-only, which means you can expect better performance and more security. Surfshark doesn’t own all of its servers, and few providers do, but I believe it’s only a matter of time. It also uses virtual locations for a few countries, but those are clearly marked in the app.
Surfshark VPN has three different pricing plans, all of which offer the full set of functions, including military-grade encryption, kill switch, and unlimited devices:
Note: VPN providers like to change prices often. Secure the best Surfshark deal in 2021.
Optionally, you can also unlock the Surfshark One bundle. This package includes Antivirus, Alert, and Search. The upgrade costs $1.49/month but if you’ve unlocked Alert and Search previously, the last piece of the Surfshark One puzzle costs a mere $0.49/month.
Alert monitors your personal data and notifies you in real-time if you’re ever a victim of a data breach. Meanwhile, Search enables you to search the web without the interference of ads and online trackers. Finally, Antivirus protects your devices and improves performance by removing malware and other harmful files.
With these optional additions, a Surfshark subscription totals $3.98/month. While that seems rather expensive, it’s actually quite a bargain for so much much digital security in one package.
There are plenty of payment methods you can choose from to pay that 2-dollar fee as well. That includes anonymous options, like crypto. There are credit cards, PayPal, Sofort, Direct Debit, Google Pay, Amazon Pay, Giropay, and Webmoney as well, for those interested. Some of the best VPN service providers have overlooked the type of privacy given by a crypto payment option, and it’s a great shame.
Surfshark is also one of the few to offer a lengthy 7-day free trial on Google Play and the Apple App Store. This means that you’ll need an Android, macOS, or iOS device to get it. After creating the account, you’ll be able to install Windows and other clients as well.
One thing to point out – Surfshark still asks for payment info before unlocking the service. The good thing is that if you miss the free trial deadline, you will still be able to cancel during the 30-day money-back guarantee period.
Surfshark’s refund policy grants a 30-day money-back guarantee to all plans and all devices, so you’re not losing anything if you don’t want to. Getting your money back involves contacting customer support. But since it has a 24/7 live chat, this shouldn’t be a problem.
In fact, you can also schedule the cancellation in advance and use the VPN right until the last day.
As always, accounts paid in cryptocurrencies aren’t refundable.
There’s plenty of good to say about the privacy and anonymity credentials of Surfshark VPN. Here’s a shortlist of its main features that will keep you safe online:
However, that’s just the tip of the iceberg. The provider had its browser extensions audited by Cure53, a well-known and respected cybersecurity company. Also, since July 2020, all Surfshark servers are RAM-only. Finally, in May 2021, Cure53 did an independent server infrastructure audit.
Additionally, you’ll get malware blocker (CleanWeb), split tunneling (Whitelister), multi-hop, and “stealth protocol” (Camouflage and NoBorders). This VPN also offers ID protection (Alert), GPS spoofing, and incognito search (Search).
These advanced features combined take Surfshark VPN very close to other security-focused VPN providers, like NordVPN or ProtonVPN.
Surfshark VPN implements AES-256 encryption, which is used by financial institutions and militaries around the world. It means that there’s virtually no way to break this cipher.
Surfshark currently offers the following tunneling protocols:
In October 2020, this VPN implemented the next-gen tunneling protocol in WireGuard. It’s faster and more secure than any other protocol available. One can clearly see the speed advantage by checking our VPN speed testing tool results. Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS users can now select WireGuard, which also uses a new ChaCha20 symmetric encryption.
While neither can penetrate the Great Firewall alone, Surfshark VPN has Camouflage and NoBorders modes for use in China.
Surfshark has a great kill switch that will automatically deactivate your internet connection if your VPN connection drops unexpectedly. This allows the Virtual Private Network to protect your privacy by ensuring your online traffic is always encrypted and is a critical feature for any secure VPN to have.
My tests have shown the kill switch to work reliably each time I deliberately disabled my VPN connection.
The only caveat here is that the Linux app doesn’t have the kill switch turned on by default, and there’s no article on their website telling how to do it. However, the always helpful Surfshark customer support team provided me with the instructions.
My basic leak tests indicate that Surfshark has no leak issues. I connected to a server in Denmark at got the IP address 184.108.40.206. Then I ran the test and got the following results: no DNS, WebRTC, or IPv6 leaks, as the image below indicates.
The IP and DNS addresses shown here are the same as the ones I got assigned by Surfshark. If I saw my actual IP address, that would mean there’s a leak somewhere.
This service has in-built DNS, WebRTC, and IPv6 leak protection, as well as a private zero-knowledge DNS network. Simply put, unlike many tools on the market, Surfshark VPN keeps your personally identifiable information hidden.
Surfshark is based in the British Virgin Islands (BVI), a British overseas territory with no data retention laws, and isn’t involved in any intelligence-sharing agreements, such as Fourteen Eyes. It’s also not subject to any EU data protection laws, unlike its “parent” country.
As the company is subject to BVI laws and regulations, they have the luxury of a meaningful no-logs policy, stating that Surfshark “does not collect IP addresses, browsing history, session information, used bandwidth, connection timestamps, network traffic, and other similar data.”
As a matter of fact, if their FAQ is to be believed, Surfshark doesn’t log anything at all, except your email address and billing information, which means that the provider is one of the few actual “no-logs” VPNs out there. That’s extremely rare and impressive, but I would also like to see their policy independently audited to silence the naysayers once and for all.
In 2018, Surfshark did an independent audit of its Chrome and Firefox browser extensions. Submitting your VPN apps for an independent audit is a commendable move regardless of the results.
The audit was carried out by a respected German cybersecurity company, Cure53, which also performed the very first independent VPN audit in 2017 (kudos to TunnelBear).
In short, Cure53 found only two vulnerabilities, only one of which had any potential to cause problems for users. This is an outstanding result and gives a lot of credence to this VPN service provider.
You can read the full report on Surfshark’s website.
Since the introduction of the Camouflage and NoBorders modes, this service is capable of disguising VPN traffic. These features switch from the default tunneling protocol to OpenVPN with the XOR patch, scrambling your traffic and confusing the censors. As a result, Surfshark VPN is great for China.
You will be able to unblock restricted websites, such as Facebook, and keep your identity protected at all times. Therefore, if you’re a journalist or a whistleblower, you can trust that this VPN will protect you.
CleanWeb is another great extra feature from Surfshark. It works as an ad and tracking blocker but can also detect malware. Even more, CleanWeb might detect phishing attempts and protect your personal information.
This tool works on all major platforms, including browsers and Amazon Fire TV. Using it on your smartphone can save mobile data and even increase browsing speeds. After loading all those ads and pop-ups takes a toll.
Most VPN providers call this feature “split tunneling.” Surfshark’s Whitelister allows users to choose apps that can function outside the VPN tunnel. It’s especially convenient when you want to protect only certain activities and run others at full speed.
For example, you may want to use a VPN to protect your torrenting and watch Netflix in 4K simultaneously on your smart TV. Also, some websites might not work if they detect you using a VPN. Finally, with Whitelister, you’ll be able to access your network devices, such as printers.
Also known as Double VPN, MultiHop is a feature that connects you to two VPN servers instead of one. This means much higher security, thanks to the double-encryption of your data. MultiHop is great for those who seek maximum protection online, including journalists and political activists.
Surfshark lists all possible Double VPN connections next to the regular server selection. One thing to note: your connection will be considerably slower, so this mode is not recommended for day-to-day use unless you don’t have a choice.
Camouflage mode, or “stealth VPN,” disguises your VPN traffic, so it looks like it’s coming from a regular connection. It’s a useful feature because some websites block VPNs and in some countries, using them is illegal.
NoBorders mode aims to unblock every possible online resource. This includes geo-blocked content on streaming sites, social media, or anything that your government bans. These modes switch your tunneling protocol to OpenVPN with the XOR patch. It scrambles your traffic and makes it more difficult to detect through Deep Packet Inspection (DPI).
Alert is an innovative security solution for protecting your ID. This ID leak protection is a privacy feature that has been integrated into all client apps.
It’s especially relevant in the age of data breaches because it warns users when their passwords, social security numbers, and other sensitive details get leaked. It comes as an additional feature with the Surfshark One package for $1.49/month.
This feature routinely scans leaked databases, looking for password and email matches. If it finds any, the user will receive a notification. Alert enables you to change your credentials on time, minimizing the damage caused by data leaks and breaches.
With Surfshark One, you also gain access to Search. It’s an alternative to the major search engines, such as Google or Bing, that are known for displaying ads and taking quite some of your data before giving away your search results.
This feature removes the ads and tracking from the organic search and ensures that your privacy remains intact and your patience untested.
The final bonus that comes with Surfshark One is Antivirus. At the moment, it is available for Windows and Android devices, although macOS support is coming soon as well.
Antivirus protects you from malicious files that would harm your device or intrude on your privacy. The feature works in real-time and provides immediate security from danger. That means that it will prevent you from opening infected files that have made their way onto your device. Plus, you can also scan your entire system and exclude certain files or folders if you’re certain they’re safe.
Also known as GPS spoofing, GPS override is a feature for Android uses who want to add an extra layer of protection. While a regular Virtual Private Network connection changes your IP address, GPS override also hides your device’s physical GPS location.
It’s an optional feature that is not on by default and can be enabled from Android app settings.
When activated, any app that will request the user’s physical coordinates will be overridden with the VPN server coordinates. So when a web service wants to access a user’s GPS data, it will see him in the US while, in fact, that person is in the UK.
Very likely, yes. Surfshark has apps for all the major desktop and mobile devices, including Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, and iOS. There are also dedicated apps for Android TV and Amazon Fire Stick & Fire TV. Finally, you can download browser extensions for Chrome and Firefox.
And here comes the best part: Surfshark VPN allows unlimited connections. This means that you can protect all devices during the family reunion with one account. You don’t even have to manually configure it on your router, which would otherwise be the way to connect as many devices as you want.
All apps are pretty similar across the platforms and also easy to use. The settings are well explained, so you can instantly decide if you want it turned on or off. And if you want to learn more, I recommend our article on how to use Surfshark.
Regarding ease of use, the Surfshark desktop apps are as simple as A-B-C. The interface is clean and intuitive, while most settings can be found with a button click.
Connecting to Surfshark servers is just as easy – just click on Locations on the left sidebar menu and choose your preferred location from the list of cities and countries. Physical servers are sorted by region, while virtual and P2P servers are on separate lists.
You can get under the app’s hood by pressing the white Settings gear. There, you can toggle the startup and auto-connection options and tinker with the security features.
Thankfully, the Mac app is just as secure as the Windows version. Both use military-grade encryption, kill switch, and other features. This is relatively rare – most VPNs release limited macOS apps, which is not the case with Surfshark.
The Linux app works with Ubuntu and Debian. It doesn’t feature a GUI and has a command-line interface instead. Moreover, its kill switch is turned off by default, and there’s no information on turning it on. This means that Linux users should either find a way to activate the kill switch themselves or ask live chat support for help.
Surfshark mobile apps, both on Android and iOS, are lightweight and simplified versions of their desktop counterparts. The security is almost as good as what you’d get on PC or Mac, with several minor caveats.
Most importantly, the Android version has its kill switch, so you no longer have to use the native Android version or a third-party app to complement the Virtual Private Network. It also offers to turn on the Override GPS location feature, which hides your phone’s physical location.
You can get the Surfshark Android app from Google Play or just download it directly as an APK file from their website. The Surfshark iOS app is available from the App Store.
Surfshark has browser extensions for Chrome and Firefox. They are essentially proxy services – you can use them to secure your browser traffic and nothing else. In other words, if you want to use torrents, try one of the regular clients or run the VPN some other way.
However, these browser extensions are not only about hiding your IP and encrypting your traffic. They also include the CleanWeb feature, which takes care of ads, tracking, malware, and phishing attempts. What’s more, both add-ons have been independently audited by Cure53 security testers.
The Chrome extension has been downloaded over 300,000 times, a number dwarfed by the likes of ExpressVPN or NordVPN. Naturally, the Firefox version is even less popular, with just 35,000+ users.
In addition to the apps for major platforms, Surfshark VPN also has dedicated apps for Android TV and Amazon Fire Stick & Fire TV.
Additionally, its website has instructions for manually configuring your router, so you could use it to protect your entire home network. This provider supports a bunch of different models and makes, including DD-WRT, AsusWRT, OpenWRT, and Tomato, among others. You can also manually set up the VPN on Chromebook, pfSense, and Raspberry Pi.
Last but not least is the Smart DNS feature. It allows you to unblock websites and streaming platforms on your Apple TV, other smart TVs, and game consoles. With your PlayStation or Xbox, you will also be able to play online games in other regions.
The process of downloading and installing Surfshark is pretty straightforward. You can get it from their website or, in case you’re using a smartphone, from Google Play Store or Apple Store. In any case, you should start by purchasing the subscription.
Here’s what you need to do:
Surfshark is one of the best VPNs for streaming. It’s fast, has an Amazon Fire TV app, unblocks multiple Netflix libraries, and offers plenty of other streaming services.
Thanks to the Smart DNS feature, you will be able to stream your favorite shows and movies on a bunch of devices that don’t have the client app. This includes game consoles, Apple TV, LG TV, Samsung TV, Roku, and other smart TVs.
Does Surfshark work with Netflix? According to its website, this VPN is great for Netflix and streaming other geo-blocked content. Well, it turns out to be true.
I’ve tested Surfshark for Netflix from Europe and found that it unblocks Netflix in every region I tried, including the US, the UK, Canada, and Japan libraries. I recommend choosing Surfshark servers in these countries as they offer a wide selection of content.
What’s more, Surfshark VPN can unblock Hulu, Disney+, BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime Video, and other streaming platforms. The speeds should be good enough to stream in 4K (UHD), thanks to the WireGuard tunneling protocol. Of course, the main factor will be your internet connection.
Besides, this VPN doesn’t have specialized streaming servers, so you can choose the one that works best for you.
You can stream Peacock outside the US with Surfshark VPN. Launched in 2020, this NBC Universal platform gives you Parks and Recreation, The Office, and other beloved series. To watch NBC’s Peacock, you simply have to launch the VPN and select any server in the US.
Getting HBO Max is not easy because you have to get a US credit card. After that is done, you just have to connect to a server in the US and start streaming.
We recommend using the nearest VPN server because the distance between New York and Los Angeles is not to be ignored. This way, you’ll get the best possible speed and lower buffering times.
Hotstar is the most popular streaming platform in India. In 2020, a great deal of Disney+ content was added, making Hotstar an even more attractive choice.
Even though it’s available in India, the UK, the US, Canada, and Singapore, you may still want to watch it from another country. This can be done easily with the help of Surfshark. All you have to do is connect to a VPN server in one of the mentioned countries and start watching.
I would also recommend Surfshark for Kodi any day of the week. Actually, it’s among the best VPNs for Kodi in 2021, even though you have to configure it manually. Another option is to use the Zomboided VPN manager add-on.
For the best Kodi experience, you need a fast and secure VPN connection. Surfshark delivers in both categories, providing some of the industry’s best speeds together with military-grade encryption, a no-logs policy, and a reliable kill switch.
Installing Surfshark on Fire Stick is an excellent choice. It will unblock virtually all streaming options while also securing your connection. This VPN has an app for Fire TV, which means setting it up will be a breeze.
Thanks to its extensive server list and exceptional performance, you should have no problem watching your favorite movies and TV shows in 4K video quality without buffering. Finally, Surfshark is great for Kodi, so you’ll be able to use both with your Fire device.
Unfortunately, Roku doesn’t support VPNs or Smart DNS feature. However, there’s still a way to use it with Surfshark.
Here you have two main options. One is setting up Surfshark on a router where Roku is also connected. The second is to create a virtual router using a VPN.
Since both options require manual tinkering, we advise reading the step-by-step guides on the provider’s website.
Surfshark is one of the top (if not the top) VPN for Twitch. You’ll be able to access this platform from anywhere in the world and steam anonymously. This VPN can deal with censorship (China) and IP bans in no time.
Furthermore, this service can help avoid bandwidth throttling, which is pretty common among internet providers. When you turn on the VPN, they can’t tell what you’re doing online, so you get the full speed even while streaming.
Surfshark is very good for torrents. Thanks to its WireGuard tunneling protocol, the speeds are very fast, and the security credentials almost faultless. You can also choose to protect only your P2P activities with the Whitelister (split tunneling).
This provider is not shy to invite torrenting fans to try their service, and it doesn’t discriminate against P2P traffic. Even more, they say that they are compatible with all P2P clients. Also, Surfshark is on the best VPN for torrenting list.
I liked that torrenting is allowed on all Surfshark servers, and there are no bandwidth limits. What’s more, a Virtual Private Network located in a privacy-friendly jurisdiction and keeps no logs is always a good choice for P2P activities. There are also anonymous payment options for those who want extra safety.
Surfshark VPN has great customer service. Here are your options when you need help:
Their 24/7 live chat is excellent. The waiting times are short, if any, while the customer support agents are helpful and polite. And I’m basing this assumption on more than a few instances.
Next, I tried submitting a request. The questions that I sent using the form were answered in a couple of hours or so. There was only one instance when it took longer to get an answer, but again, such response times are still a goal for many VPNs.
The FAQ is pretty short, with entries that link to dedicated support articles. There are about a hundred tutorial pages and more than fifty dedicated to general info and billing.
Overall, while Surfshark has considerably expanded its self-help section, I would still use live chat to put most of my concerns aside.
After making a thorough investigation for this Surfshark review, I can confidently say that you should get this VPN before it raises its prices.
They’ve done well to cover the basics – security, jurisdiction, speed, support, etc. – and have taken steps in unique directions. Rarely do you see a paid Virtual Private Network with no limit to the number of simultaneous connections and a real zero-logs policy.
Between that, with an anonymous signup process, an option to pay in cryptocurrencies, and WireGuard support, Surfshark is already one step ahead of the competition. Here’s a quick list of its core strengths:
To me, it seems just a matter of time until we get more features and from Surfshark VPN that will further strengthen its already solid position among the industry’s best.
Learn more about Surfshark’s speed test and the key events in 2020. There’s also a video version of this review.
Surfshark is constantly competing with other highly-rated VPN services. Here’s how it fares:
Surfshark is not a good VPN. It’s an excellent VPN. You would be hard-pressed to find top-notch protection and the best speeds for such a low price. Consider trying this service risk-free – it has a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Both Surfshark and NordVPN are top-class providers. We have them at the top of our best VPNs list. However, Surfshark is cheaper, so if you don’t see any feature that only NordVPN has, I recommend trying the former first.
Yes, Surfshark is a great choice for China. It will unblock various streaming services, such as Netflix. Also, Camouflage and NoBorders mode will let you access Google, YouTube, and other censored websites.
Yes, Surfshark is great for streaming. You’ll get access to multiple Netflix libraries and other content platforms, such as Peacock, Hulu, or BBC iPlayer.
Below is the list of the latest updates for Surfshark’s Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS.
|2.8.4||Improved connectivity from restrictive countries. Bug fixes.|
|2.8.1||In-app notifications added. Location search now more intuitive.|
|2.8.0||Whitelister optimized. Improved customer support chat security.|
|2.7.8||Whitelister lets you select or deselect all apps. Invisible on LAN now works only if the VPN is on.|
|2.7.6||New button shows latency and load next to the server location. Bug fixes.|
|3.4.1||Support for Apple’s M1 chip.|
|3.2.0||Redesigned app. Improved performance. Added Help menu.|
|3.0.0||App moved to the status bar. The connection page now has a status bar. Connections to VPN now smoother and faster. Bug fixes.|
|2.7.0||Automatic protocol selection. Bug fixes.|
|220.127.116.11||Fixed widget sizing issue. Search Locations now more user-friendly. Android TV facelifted.|
|2.7.0||In-app Live chat. Latency and load next to server locations. Bug fixes.|
|2.6.7||QR codes instead of standard codes. New sharing options for Refer-a-friend program. Run diagnostics on Android TV without logging in.|
|2.6.5||Improved connectivity in restrictive countries. Shadowsocks work better on Android TV. Bug fixes.|
|2.17.0||Surfshark stickers in Messages. Some pop-ups removed. Bug fixes.|
|2.16.2||In-app language change. You can now reset your profile in Settings.|
|2.12.0||Improved app integration with Search and Alert features. Fixed some translations. Bug fixes.|
|2.11.0||WireGuard is now available.|