NordVPN Review: How Good and Safe is this VPN?
Virtual Private Networks (VPN) are an important level of security to have nowadays when you’re browsing the internet. With so many companies trying to acquire your personal information and data, and threats lurking online around every corner, a VPN is another great level of security to have on top of your antivirus. A VPN masks your IP address by acting as a middle-man and reroutes your web traffic. It also adds a layer of encryption, and the combination of the VPN server and the encryption tunnel blocks your ISP, hackers, and anyone else from spying on you as you use the internet.
One of the best VPN services you can use is NordVPN. On top of being extremely easy to use, NordVPN has a strong customer privacy stance, their VPN protocol – NordLynx – is built on the latest WireGuard VPN technology, and NordVPN offers a ton of great tools such as split tunneling, multi-hop, auto-connection (to make sure your VPN is always connected), threat-protection, Tor connections and tapjacking protection on mobile. NordVPN, in addition to offering a desktop program that will cause all of your PC’s traffic to go through the VPN, also offers a phone app so that you can get the same level of protection on your phone, as well as web browser extensions (FireFox, Chrome, etc) which will give you the option to only route your web browser’s traffic through the VPN and not all of the traffic from your computer. In addition, NordVPN does allow you to have up to 6 simultaneous connections at once with one VPN account, allowing your various devices to all be connected with your VPN all at once. But, with all of these ways to use NordVPN, is it worth using? Let’s take a look.
NordVPN offers three package levels for various pricing per month, with the longer the subscription term (2 years, 1 year, monthly) the cheaper the overall monthly cost is. NordVPN isnt priced overly different from other VPNs; it’s cheaper than some, and more expensive than others. However, you get a ton of value for your money based on package choice. If you’re looking for just purely a VPN service, the standard package is more than enough and most users will be happy with that tier (and even their base package offers a TON of tools on top of the VPN itself). However, if you want some extra security features, the Plus and Complete packages may be looking into. I’d also recommend testing out the VPN with maybe a shorter contract period so that if you dont enjoy it, you wont be out a ton of money if you cancel. However, once you start using NordVPN, if you enjoy it, you can upgrade to one of those longer-term plans to get a lot more long term savings!
The data breach scanner of the plus package will check the Dark Web to see if your credentials (such as emails and passwords) were effected by a data breach, and the complete package’s encrypted cloud storage will allow you to back up your data to the cloud under the protection of Nord’s encryption.
NordVPN’s VPN Protocols
NordVPN offers different VPN protocols: NordLynx (built on WireGuard Technology) as well as OpenVPN. These are both gold standards in the world of VPNs, and most people will just be able to set their VPN protocol to “recommended” and let NordVPN choose what’s best at any given time.
NordVPN’s Servers & Server Locations
With NordVPN, you can choose from 5565 ultra-fast servers in 60 countries all around the world. The majority of NordVPN’s servers are in the US and the UK. However, NordVPN also has a large mix of servers around the world, with servers in Asia, South America, and Europe, with some servers even in India, the Middle East and Africa
NordVPN Compared to Other VPNs
How is NordVPN’s Speed?
When you use a VPN, it will slow your speed down due to the fact that you’re using the VPN’s service as the middle man for your data. However, with NordVPN, you are choosing one of the fastest VPNs on the market. Looking at some charts on a variety of website’s, NordVPN either is listed as the fastest VPN or is at least in the top 3. With that said, speed shouldn’t be the only thing that matters when you use to choose a VPN. Value for money, ease of use, and commitment to privacy are important factors to consider, and in these categories, NordVPN still sits near the top.
What about gaming?
Some people use VPNs to lower their ping when playing their favorite games. The goal of this is to have your data takes a more direct route to your game of choice, thus lowering your ping. In general, it’s not recommended to use a VPN to connect to your favorite game unless you have issues, because sometimes these can add lag where there was previously none. Now, while NordVPN is a fantastic VPN, it isn’t designed with gaming in mind. If you’re looking for something specifically for gaming and not for browsing the internet/encrypting your data, this program would be my recommendation.