Best VPN for Torrenting. Period.
Not Every VPN is Best Suited for Torrenting
"Only fools and crazies would torrent without a VPN"
The quote above is made up, but the truth behind it isn’t. Downloading torrents without a VPN seems crazy to torrenting and P2P veterans, yet many people continue to do just that.
When you download (leech) or upload (seed) torrents, your IP Address is exposed to the public and your ISP may automatically detect p2p traffic. There are hundreds of honeypots out there with money-hungry law firms and companies waiting to catch you and sue you for all you’re worth. Your ISP may send you a notice or terminate your internet plan all together.
A VPN will keep you anonymous and safe from these threats and others, which is again why we must specify — “only fools and crazies would torrent without a VPN”.
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FAQs for the Best Torrent VPNs
Having greater anonymity is one reason why you would want to use VPNs when torrenting. While torrenting itself is legal, there are gray areas where torrenting can potentially be declared otherwise. This is especially the case when downloading copyrighted content, with companies and anti-piracy agencies constantly monitoring torrent networks.
If you connect directly to torrent sites, you expose your torrenting activities to tracking. Even if you don’t download copyrighted content, being tracked by authorities can be concerning. VPNs help cover your tracks by encrypting your connection. Some VPN companies even have zero-log policies, meaning they don’t keep a copy of your browsing activities, adding another layer of anonymity.
Using VPNs will also protect you from hackers, scammers, and other parties trying to steal your information. Due to the open nature of peer-to-peer networks, these attackers can easily trace your computer and compromise it if you do your torrenting unprotected.
Improved downloading efficiency is the third major reason to use a VPN when torrenting. By connecting to a fast network, you can get around your Internet service provider throttling down your connection speed. VPNs also give you a less crowded connection to torrent servers, resulting in fewer data packets lost and faster downloads.
- Your IP Address won’t be exposed.
- Bypass ISP Throttling to download faster.
We know what you’re looking for and need when downloading torrents, so we look for them in the manor. When looking for a VPN for torrenting, we consider the following factors:
- Location: For increased anonymity, we choose VPNs that have many servers locations. You may also want to connect to locations in countries that are more “torrent-friendly.”
- Speed: We consider both the download speed and the upload speed. The latter is important if you want to be a torrent seeder.
- P2P optimization: VPNs that are optimized for peer-to-peer networking can maintain fast download speeds even if you are located far from the servers.
- Privacy policies: Go for a VPN provider that has clearly laid-out privacy terms. Look for ones that have a “No logging” policy for added peace of mind.
- Mobile torrenting: Some VPN providers offer support for downloading on mobile devices, which is great if you want to torrent on the go
To ensure a safe torrent download through a VPN, enable the important security features that the VPN has, including:
- Online tracking blockers: They will provide an additional layer of protection against different parties trying to follow your browsing activities.
- Malicious website blocker: Some VPNs can detect and block external websites that attempt to ride your torrent connection and infiltrate your computer.
- Kill switches: They shut off your connection in case of drops in speed or interruptions. This will prevent data corruption and possible IP leaks.
- Server switching: Good VPN services will automatically connect you to the most suitable server for torrenting on their networks
- Automatic program launch: Certain VPN services let you specify how your applications run when connected to them, such as launching your browsers in incognito mode.
Update your VPN client on a regular basis to ensure that these features work properly and to gain the needed security.
How you run and manage your torrents also play a major role in safe downloading. To ensure quality, get your torrents only from reputable sources. Read the comments section of each torrent for any warning of viruses or malware.
Before running your torrent client, check your IP address to see if it is indeed hidden by your VPN. To avoid any issues, you should connect to a VPN server located in a country where torrenting is considered legal.
Using VPNs for anonymous torrenting follows the same steps for increasing download safety. Aside from those steps, you can also boost your anonymity by:
- Encrypting your torrents: Some torrent clients let you encrypt the torrent traffic. This feature serves as a good complement to your VPN’s own encryption features.
- Using Peerblock: PeerBlock lets you restrict specific IP addresses from connecting to your computer. Use this to prevent trackers from mapping your torrent traffic.
- Seeding the right way: Uploading only the same amount of data that you downloaded will let you clear your torrent trackers early while still contributing to the network.
Note that some of these steps might slow down your downloads, but the added anonymity provides a good trade-off.
One thing to remember when seeding torrents is that it leaves you more open to tracking since you are the one distributing content. Get maximum protection by turning on all important safety features on both your VPN and torrent client, most notably a kill switch feature. Compensate for any slowdown by coursing your uploads through a faster server.
Using a different server from the one you used for downloads also helps secure your seeding activities. Be sure to switch servers regularly to lessen the chance of being tracked. Some VPNs let you do this by just selecting the server you want to connect to without having to reconfigure your settings.
VPNs for torrenting can vary greatly in the features they offer. To narrow your choices to the best ones, consider how you plan to do your torrenting activities. If you only intend to download, look for services that have sufficient anonymizing features. On the other hand, if you want to become a seeder, you should look into the speed and variety of servers of the VPN providers.
Get more information about the best VPNs for torrenting by checking out our reviews above. We cover all the essential details of their services, and we performed tests to show how effective they are for these purposes.
While they can be used for torrenting, free VPNs are less reliable. Their limited security features will be your biggest concern. Free VPNs can also become overcrowded with users, slowing your downloads. Worst of all, they could have data caps so low you won’t be able to get all of the latest episode of Brooklyn 99! In these cases, paid services are better because of their more advanced features.