The Tor network (often seen in its shortened form “Tor”) is an open-source privacy network that offers its users the ability to surf the internet anonymously. It also enables users to visit sites that would have been otherwise inaccessible to them.
When you use Tor, your web traffic will be encrypted, making it hard for anyone else to read it, even if they could intercept it. Please note the Tor browser doesn’t let you use the whole internet. It’s only for web browsing. Things like FTP, BitTorrent, or any other activity outside of a browser are not within the Tor protocol’s scope.
As good as this level of anonymity and privacy Tor provides you, it still needs to be 100% full-proof. For starters, your Internet Service Provider (ISP) and government security agencies can identify traffic protected by Tor. Unfortunately, this is not convenient because even though you use Tor for its many legitimate services, the network gets infamously tied to illegal activity. And as such, you stand the risk of attracting unwanted attention.
For this reason, you should use Tor alongside a Virtual Private Network (VPN). A VPN serves as a means to hide the use of Tor. It does this by adding an extra layer of encryption and routing your traffic through a secondary server. Note that your VPN provider can tell you’re using Tor, but only them.
With this solution to the anonymity and privacy problem, we will discuss the best VPNs to maximize privacy when using the Tor network.
Best VPNs for Tor privacy – Quick list
This guide elaborates on all the VPN services that work great with Tor. But if you’re looking for quick recommendations to start your Tor session immediately, check out these three.
- NordVPN: The leading VPN service that defiantly supports Tor via dedicated servers. Also, it never compromises on speed.
- ExpressVPN: The industry-veteran that is always the best choice to protect online privacy, and this fact remains true even for Tor browsing.
- Surfshark: A pocket-friendly VPN service offering robust privacy even with critical activities like Tor browsing.
- PrivateVPN – A user-friendly VPN for Tor that has quick servers and doesn’t record any of your activity.
- CyberGhost. It is one of the safest and most reputable Tor VPNs with top-notch security, no tracking, and speedy connections.
- IPVanish. It is a trustworthy VPN with strong encryption that guarantees no logs and safeguards Tor privacy.
- AtlasVPN. A good VPN service provider that secures your personal data and offers standard privacy and essential security features for Tor.
A brief overview of the best Tor VPNs
|Ranking for Tor||1||2||3||5||4||6||7|
|Average speed (Mbps)||100+ Mbps||100+ Mbps||100+ Mbps||71 Mbps||100+ Mbps||100+ Mbps||100+ Mbps|
|Popular sites unblocked||95%||86%||88%||85%||85%||70%||93%|
|Devices supported||macOS, Windows, iOS, Android, Linux, Smart TVs, Routers||Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, Linux||macOS, Windows, iOS, Android, Linux||Windows, macOS, iOS, Android||Windows, macOS, Linux (command line), Android, iOS||iOS, Windows, macOS, Android||macOS, Windows, iOS, Android, Linux, Android TV, Amazon Fire TV|
|Best deals per month||$3.49|
SAVE 57% on a 2yr standard plan
SAVE 49% on the annual plan
Get 2 Months OFF with a 2-year plan
SAVE 85% on the three-year plan
SAVE 83% on a two-year plan + 2 months FREE
SAVE 77% on a two-year plan
SAVE 83% on the three-year plan + 3 months OFF
Determining the best VPNs for Tor
When getting a VPN, you expect it to tick the privacy box, but that’s not nearly enough. Instead, VPNs have more features that can improve your internet surfing experience. If you do not know what other boxes your VPN should be ticking, here are the key features we’ve used to determine our list of best VPNs for Tor:
To consider a VPN among the best for Tor, it must prioritize security. As a result, it must be equipped with IPv6 and DNS leak protection, 256-bit encryption, and a kill switch. The VPN must have anti-surveillance protocols or cloaking features, enabling you to access Tor anywhere in the world.
Although you might think secure means private, this is not the case. A VPN that provides security but not privacy is a no-no. For a VPN to offer complete privacy, it must have a no-logs policy, meaning third parties can’t review your activities at any time under any circumstances.
In addition, look out for the ones that go a step further to allow you to pay anonymously, adding a second layer of protection to the whole process.
Speed is critical for various things, for example, streaming, if you wish to enhance privacy and security while streaming online content, especially on free streaming sites.
Tor is great for many things but can be pretty slow. For this reason, you must ensure that you do not pair it with a sub-par performance speed VPN. So, look for VPNs that perform well in speed testing when used with Tor.