As a remote working professional or digital nomad, you probably don’t only work from home, but also different cafes and coworking spaces, which means you’re connected to public internet connection a lot the time.
Virtual Private Networks (VPN) are essential for remote based businesses, digital nomads and workers to remain anonymous online. Instead of your confidential information voyaging exposed across the internet, a Virtual Private Network provider will allow your internet traffic sensitive data to stay encrypted, secured in a private digital tunnel.
Let’s go through the main benefits, criteria and reliably secure VPN providers in the market for remote workers and freelancers:
Main benefits of using a VPN
The benefits of using VPN services are extensive, as using a VPN connection helps to protect companies and individuals alike from cybercriminals and data-seeking hackers providing secure access to the internet independently of their location. In general, it’s always better to have a VPN than to send crucial data across the web without one relying completely on your internet service provider.
Some of the most important benefits of using a good VPN provider are:
- Anonymity Means Safety: Staying anonymous on the internet means keeping your information safe.
- Secure Remote Connection: Remote workers must operate on a secure connection.
- Affordable Security: VPN software doesn’t come with expensive monthly charges, and while it won’t routinely scan for intruders, it eradicates the need for that feature by providing online invisibility.
- Travelers Bypass Geo-Locked Content: You can make your server appear like your usual location, allowing you access to the content you need, independently of where you are.
What To Look For When Selecting a VPN
Not all VPN services are the same, and although you might find free VPNs that provide a similar service, there are many differentiating factors when it comes to selecting the best VPNs for remote work: from the level of reliability, network access, advanced security features, type of encrypted connections, browser extensions, dedicated ip address, zero logs policy, DNS leak protection, VPN client for mobile devices, as well as level of VPN support and intuitive software.
These factors decide the benefit you get and the value for money that the providers give through their VPN services, and should be taken into consideration when hiring the best service in your context:
Security is one of the main reasons why you should get a VPN service. The service of a VPN is highly dependent on the level of security it provides. A VPN service should use the best encryption technology – if at all a third-party manages to gain access, they should not be able to decrypt your data.
A reliable VPN service should have a strict ‘no-logs’ policy. What this means is that they do not store any sensitive data. This protects you even if there is a security breach or any unforeseen government intervention.
Using a VPN service can slow down the speed at which you browse the internet. While selecting a VPN service, make sure that it provides high-speed internet access, otherwise, you’ll be stuck with an average browsing speed.
Using a VPN is fairly easy. However, there are times when you can’t figure out a particular setting or the VPN isn’t working the way its supposed to even if you’ve tried everything. This is when a good support team comes in handy.
As a digital nomad or a frequent traveler, you want a reliable VPN service that you can connect to from all over the world. This translates to a wide range of server network all across the globe, that will allow you to securely connect and access to your work and leisure websites or apps (such as a streaming service) independently of your location. A close VPN server equals a better connection experience.
VPN usage often comes with bandwidth limits. This means that your data is at risk right from the moment your limit runs out. Before selecting a VPN service, consider ones that offer unlimited bandwidth.
Best VPN Providers in The Market
After looking at the basic criteria that will help you choose the best VPNs for digital nomads, it’s important to compare the available VPN providers that are most suited for a nomadic lifestyle.
NordVPN offers plans that range from $3.49/month to $11.95/per month, with a full 30-day refund if you wish to cancel. One of the first things you’ll notice about NordVPN is the affordable monthly payment, as well as long term payment plans available. With various products and options for businesses of all sizes, NordVPN is a strong contender.
The NordVPN offering includes 5200+ servers in 62 countries and is one of the more well-known VPN providers, with a strict no log of user activity, and up to 6 simultaneous connections, works in China, and has a 24/7 live chat.
There’s also a new product for teams, called NordVPN Teams from $ 7.00 user/month. NordVPN Teams provides secure remote access and protects every endpoint in your organization with industry-leading AES 256-bit encryption. This means your employees can work securely from anywhere — on any device. Mitigate risk and give your team hassle-free security today.
- Top-notch security and privacy measures
- No DNS leaks
- Privacy compromise prevented by kill switch feature
- Ability to connect up to 6 devices
- Fast and stable speeds
- Presence in 59 countries with more than 5,000 servers
- Competitive and affordable price options
- Updated Netflix support
- Accepts cash and cryptocurrencies as payment
- Only some servers support torrenting
- Slow application server connections
- OpenVPN configuration lacks user-friendliness
ExpressVPN has been around since 2009 and offers many benefits to its users, like a 256-bit encryption with a network of high-speed servers across 94 countries and apps for all devices: Windows, Mac, Android, IOs, Linux, Routers, Chromebook and Kindle, as well as extensions for browsers like Chrome, Firefox and Edge.
The ExpressVPN offering has higher than average pricing at $6.69/month along with a kill-switch if a VPN network fails. ExpressVPN offers the choice of choosing your server locations but has limited control settings for advanced users.
- Exceptional speed
- Stellar security options
- Unblocks regionally-locked websites
- Attentive and helpful customer support
- Founding member of the VPN Trust Initiative
- High-quality standards
- Dedicated to preventing IPN and DNS leaks
- Easy to use
- Application design is consistent across multiple platforms
- Pricier than other services that use the same technology
- Allows five device connections at once, and while this is decent, it’s not in line with similar services
- Fewer features than other leading VPN services
Romania-based CyberGhost VPN offers access to 3000 servers over 60 countries. CyberGhost has a strong focus on Europe along with a strong protocol and encryption practices. It is best for those who seek a long-term plan and is ideal for streaming services and torrent downloads.
While the company is out of Europe’s 14 Eyes jurisdiction, it also uses Hotjar which is a session-recording script even though it has a no-log policy. CyberGhost has limited payment options such as Credit Card, PayPal, or BitPay.
- Works well with Netflix
- More than 3000 servers are available
- Easy to use and implement
- Fast download speeds
- Rich in unique VPN features
- Functional and simple interface
- Secures data
- Connections are quick and rarely drop
- Affordable pricing
- Specific servers are slow, depending on location
- Account management features are complicated
- Lacking live support
- If an area has too many users connected, you will have to wait
PureVPN uses AES 256-bit encryption, which is a high level of encryption, thus ensuring a secure network. It also offers a generous 31-day refund policy and accepts Bitcoin. It has features like Kill Switch, Multiport, VPN Hotspot, Split Tunneling, and over 2,000 servers.
However, the download speeds are often slow, the customer support is insufficient and there are connectivity issues with some servers.
- Dedicated to keeping customer information safe and private at all times
- Unblocks streaming sites, Netflix included
- Compatible with Android TV
- No DNS leaks
- Wide selection of VPN protocols
- AES-256 encryption
- Supports port-forwarding
- Split-tunneling on Android
- The privacy protection kill switch doesn’t work every time, which can be a significant issue for protecting company data
- It does not offer a free version, unlike most major VPN services
- Connection issues are standard on all servers
IPVanish is a US based VPN service provider with 1,300+ servers (and counting) across more than 75 different countries (primarily located in Europe and North America). It supports multiple devices and P2P sharing and torrent downloads. Its encryption and protocol are high-end AES 256-bit, OpenVPN, SOCKS5.
The only major con is that IPVanish has slow customer support. The lack of live chat can dampen the user experience, especially when it comes to a crisis situation.
- IPVanish owns its entire network, servers included
- Offers over 1,000 servers for connection on a global scale
- Works with almost any device
- Decent server availability
- 256-Bit Encryption
- Working kill switch
- Fantastic speed
- Reasonable pricing without forcing consumers to lock in for long periods
- Lacking optimized servers
- As a US-based company, there is a gray area when it comes to protecting user data
- Previous data-logging controversies
- Lousy customer support
- Complicated for some users to apply, depending on VPN implementation experience
HideMyAss is an easy-to-use VPN service. It has 940+ VPN servers in 280+ locations, spread all across the globe. HideMyAss is a great option for multi-device connectivity as it offers simultaneous connections for upto 5 devices. It also offers a 7-day free trial and a 30-day cancellation policy.
HideMyAss belongs to UK-Based Privax LTD, which makes it compliant to intelligence sharing under Five Eyes jurisdiction between the UK, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United States.
- Fast speeds accommodate streaming
- User-friendly applications for all operating systems
- Strong encryption capabilities
- Live chat support
- No logs policy
- Privacy issues in the past follow HMA around regardless of policy changes
- The minimum lock-in period is one year
- It does not work at all in China, which is a massive deal for many businesses
- Some servers are excruciatingly slow
Private Internet Access or PIA has been around since 2010. It allows users to choose connection protocol and offers various anonymous forms of payment. The payment plans are far cheaper than most VPN services ranging from $6.95 to $3.33 monthly.
Unlike other VPN providers, PIA does offer ease of use and a simple interface, however, the UI is pretty dated and the simplicity and ease of usage also mean that there aren’t a lot of advanced options when it comes to usage and customization settings.
- Complete security protection, including proxy routing and VPN kill switch
- No logging
- Adjustable encryption options
- Fast torrent download speeds
- WireGuard availability
- Almost 30,000 servers available in 70 countries
- It offers a ten-device connection possibility
- User-friendly and available in 19 languages
- Fantastic customer support
- Reasonable pricing
- Too much buffering while streaming
- PIA could definitely be faster, though speeds are decent
- The windows installer is unverified
Choosing the Best VPN for Remote Work
A VPN protects otherwise unsecure internet connections with an encrypted tunnel for you or your business. The best VPN providers offer the best security-wise and a solid performance for working remotely (that a free VPN service won’t), especially when connecting via public wi fi, with benefits like a static IP address, enabling a mobile workforce to maximize their productivity.
However, even the best VPN service has drawbacks, so to select the right VPN in your case make sure to analyze the conditions regarding server locations, speed, device and platform compatibility, security features, and a user-friendly interface. Also, you can’t go wrong with reliable customer service and a free trial or money-back guarantee!
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