If you buy, sell, or trade crypto, you care about security. Anyone who’s involved in financial transactions wants to make sure their connection to the internet is absolutely secure. Cryptocurrencies, though, aren’t backed up the way other financial securities — stocks, bonds, savings accounts — are. If someone manages to gain access to your personal information, they can wipe you out completely.
And then there’s the issue of countries blocking certain websites. Without a VPN (virtual private network), you can be locked out of crypto trading sites, even sites that are above board and legal. For instance, have a look at Rollbit.com below, which we tried to access without a VPN. Access denied.
If you’re a crypto trader, you may have already invested in a VPN. If you haven’t gotten around to, well, you’re living on borrowed time. Not only does a VPN encrypt your online connection, but it also conceals your actual IP address behind an untraceable anonymous address. This allows you to keep your transactions private and secure, while also spoofing your location so that you can access crypto trading sites that are blocked due to geo-restrictions. In the image below, you can see how connecting to NordVPN allowed us to access Rollbit without a problem.
The question is, do you have the right VPN for trading cryptocurrency? Not all VPNs are created equal. Does yours offer you AES-256 encryption? Do you have a choice of protocols? Can you multihop? Some VPNs even let you pay in cryptocurrency.
If you haven’t purchased a VPN, what are you waiting for? If you have, maybe it’s time you reevaluate it to make sure it’s meeting all your needs. Below, you’ll find everything you need to do just that. We’ve created a list of the very best VPNs for trading crypto. We’ll get into all of their various features so you can make an informed decision about which one is right for you.
If we’re going to talk about the best VPNs for trading crypto, we should probably establish some ground rules. You ought to know, before we even begin, just what we’re looking at when we make our selections. Anyone can create a list of VPNs by just Googling what companies are out there and picking the ones with the lowest prices, or the best names, or the coolest graphics on their webpages. If you want an honest-to-goodness list of the VPNs that are going to keep you the safest, that have all the best features, and that give you the most value for your money, you have to do a little more work than that. Not to worry — that’s why you have us.
We start by closely examining three key factors.
Speed: All VPNs slow your devices down. There’s no way around it. We perform upload, download, and latency speed tests on every VPN so we can tell you which ones will slow them down the least.
Value: Price matters, of course, but a free VPN isn’t worth much if it doesn’t do its job. So we don’t just talk about price; we talk about how much you’re getting for your money. In other words, we’re interested in value.
These three factors tell us a lot, but they don’t tell us everything. This list is all about cryptocurrency, so we also consider how well each VPN on our list works with cryptocurrency. Do they unblock trading sites, for example? Will they protect you from government oversight? Can you pay for them with cryptocurrency?
What did we discover when we considered these VPNs from all of these different angles? Let’s get into that now.
Where do we even start? NordVPN uses AES-256 encryption, the same encryption used by the U.S. military. It offers a choice between OpenVPN and WireGuard, two open-source protocols that have been tested safe for at least a decade. It maintains multihop servers that let you route your internet connection through two or more servers and get at least twice the encryption while you’re at it. It even lets you go into camouflage mode so no one knows you’re using a VPN. If you’re going to be trading cryptocurrency, you need as many layers of security as you can get. You just can’t afford for there to be even the smallest chink your armor. With NordVPN, you don’t have to worry.
We were pretty impressed, overall, with NordVPN’s speeds. In our tests, the VPN increased download speeds by an average of just 16%. Uploads increased by an average of 43%, not quite as good, but certainly not a bad number. That’s fast enough to get you on to your favorite crypto site any time you need to make a quick trade.
NordVPN’s prices are pretty average. The company charges $12.99 for a single month of service. Compare that to Surfshark, which charges $13.99 for one month. On the other hand, one month of UltraVPN is just $7.99. So, you know … Nord is average. Like all other VPNs, NordVPN’s price drops considerably if you’re willing to invest in a couple of years of service, down to just $3.97 per month. How does that compare to other VPNs? Again, it’s about average. ExpressVPN’s lowest monthly price is $8.32, but you can sign up for five years of Ivacy and pay just a buck a month.
What We Like
Excellent for buying and selling crypto
Strict logging policy
Outside Five Eyes, Nine Eyes, and 14 Eyes
What We Don’t Like
Not all servers support torrenting
Slow speeds on Windows
Only six simultaneous connections
No phone support
NordVPN is not only at the top of our list of best VPNs for trading cryptocurrency, but also our lists of best VPNs, the best VPNs for streaming, and several of our other best VPN lists. It’s no accident that it got to that top spot: A VPN’s job is to keep us safe, and no VPN keeps us safer than NordVPN
We don’t get up to anything nefarious when we’re online. Our worst sin is listening to Barry Manilow. Still, we prefer the government not monitor our listening habits. Luckily, in addition to all its other security features, NordVPN is located in Panama. That means it’s comfortably outside of the Five Eyes, Nine Eyes, and 14 Eyes surveillance consortiums. Government agencies can show up with all the warrants they want, and NordVPN doesn’t have to turn over any customer information.
Is NordVPN perfect? No VPN is perfect. NordVPN doesn’t offer dynamic IP addresses, for example. Dynamic IP addresses are constantly changing so you can never be tied to any one address. Instead, NordVPN offers shared addresses. Those keep you pretty safe, too, since you’re sharing an address with hundreds of other users so no one can figure out who’s doing what with the address. That’s safe. It’s just not as safe as dynamic addresses.
Obviously, we’re not going to put a VPN on this list unless it offers superior surfing protection. Private Internet Access, or PIA, as it’s sometimes called, certainly has all the necessary security components. Multihop, which routes your internet connection through two or more servers, is impenetrable, even to the most skilled hackers. AES-256 is good enough encryption for the CIA. You get the OpenVPN protocol. Heck, you even get a kill switch to ensure no one can see what you’re up to online, even if your VPN signal fails.
All of PIA’s speeds are reasonable. We measured its latency at 86.7 ms. Even if you’re a gamer, anything under 100 ms is acceptable. As for upload speeds, we found that our devices worked about 86% slower when we were running PIA than when we were using them without the VPN. That’s not great. As you can see in our Proton review, our upload speeds with them increased just 4%. But it’s not the worst number out there. Norton Secure VPN, for example, increased our upload speed by 88%. And PIA makes up the difference with its download speeds, which in our testing slowed things down just 5%.
One of the things we like best about Private Internet Access is that we save money whether we sign up for a single month of service, a year, or two years. One month is $11.95. That’s a full dollar less than NordVPN’s single-month price. One year is around $3.33 per month, and PIA’s two-year plan can be had for less than two dollars per month — $1.98.
What We Like
Accepts cryptocurrencies as payment
Offers dedicated IP addresses
Fast on Windows devices
What We Don’t Like
U.S.-based, so subject to Five Eyes
No obfuscated servers
Some slow servers
Clunky sign-up process
Several VPNs on this list accept cryptocurrency as payment, including Private Internet Access. Among other types of payment methods, PIA accepts bitcoin, bitpay, and litecoin. Why would you want to pay for a VPN with bitcoin? The only information a VPN like PIA keeps about you is your payment information. If you can conceal that information behind a cryptocurrency, you can become essentially untraceable when you’re online.
We should probably point out that Private Internet Access is based in the U.S. What difference does that make? The U.S. is a key member of Five Eyes, one of the three powerful surveillance consortiums. Countries that are part of these consortiums have agreed to share intelligence information with each other, including information about their own citizens. Any Five Eyes member country can force a company in any other Five Eyes member country to turn over customer records. Luckily, PIA doesn’t keep any records about its customers’ online activities — no IP addresses, no time stamps, and no browsing histories. And if you sign up with cryptocurrency, you can make yourself even more anonymous.
Our favorite aspect of PIA, though, has to be that it offers dedicated IP addresses. We get worn out having to answer all those security questions: Is there a boat in this picture? Which photos have a hedgehog in them? Click on all the sweet potatoes, but not the white potatoes. Dedicated addresses are anonymous, just like dynamic and shared addresses. They keep us just as protected. But they stay the same, so we face fewer brain teasers when we’re trying to get our banking done.
Like NordVPN, ExpressVPN features military-grade AES-256 encryption. It also offers a choice of protocols. You can use the open-source OpenVPN to deploy your encryption — it has been around for 20 years, so it’s been thoroughly tested and proven safe — or you can use Lightway, ExpressVPN’s proprietary protocol. Lightway hasn’t had quite as much testing, but it’s lightweight and fast. In other words, you get to decide whether you want a speedy connection or a seriously secure one. Choice is always a good thing.
Did we mention ExpressVPN developed its own protocol? Lightway was put together to be faster than the other protocols out there, especially OpenVPN. And while it hasn’t been proven as secure as those other protocols, man is it fast. Our upload speeds increased by just 25% when we were using ExpressVPN. Our download speeds increased by just 7.5%. That was so fast we had to double-check it, but it turned out to be accurate.
ExpressVPN has a lot going for it: speed, security, access to Netflix. It’s not the cheapest VPN on the block, though. Its single-month price of $12.95 is comparable to single-month prices from other VPNs on this list, like NordVPN and CyberGhost. Its annual price, though, works out to $8.32 per month, quite a lot more than most of its competitors. Surfshark’s annual price is $3.99 a month, and it offers a two-year plan that costs just $1.99 a month. ExpressVPN doesn’t offer any subscriptions longer than a year.
Job one for any VPN is security, but “security” takes on a whole other meaning if you’re trading cryptocurrency. You can’t afford for anyone to get a peek at what you’re up to online — not even accidentally. One of the real benefits to ExpressVPN is that it features a kill switch. A kill switch shuts down all your internet activity the moment you lose your VPN connection. Everything immediately disappears. Now, that might sound like a frustrating feature. Why would you want to have to reopen all your web pages and apps every time your connection fails? If you’re dealing in crypto, though, you know why. If your online activities are on display to the world, there’s no telling what an enterprising hacker might be able to do with that information.
Of course, ExpressVPN has plenty of features that have nothing to do with security. Because it maintains obfuscated servers, for example, it can access virtually any streaming service out there, including Netflix, Prime Video, and Hulu. With servers in 94 different countries, we were able to access Netflix libraries all over the world. Our favorite so far? France. If you haven’t seen the film “Tom a la Ferme,” well, we won’t spoil it for you. But if you’re looking for edge-of-your-seat thrills, you might want to log in to one of ExpressVPN’s Paris servers.
The downside of ExpressVPN, of course, is the price. We talked about what you’ll pay for single-month and annual subscriptions. What we didn’t mention is that you get only five simultaneous connections when you sign up with ExpressVPN. When you consider that some VPNs offer an unlimited number of connections — check out our Atlas VPN review — five seems a little stingy.
Ivacy doesn’t offer multihop. Ditto camouflage mode. It does have a couple of less impressive security features, though. The kill switch ensured all our activity shut down any time we lost the VPN signal, so we didn’t have to worry about anyone seeing what we were up to, even accidentally. Like all the best VPNs, it offers AES-256 encryption — the best in the industry — and the OpenVPN protocol.
Ivacy definitely works best when you’re downloading data. Our speed tests show that our devices slowed an average of just 4% when we turned on the VPN. Upload speeds were a little less impressive. We saw an increase of 86%. Latency was 125 ms, which is a little slower than we like to see, especially when we’re trying to get our gaming on. Still, none of these numbers are outrageous. Atlas VPN, for instance, increased our latency by over 7,600%. Don’t believe us? Check out our Atlas VPN review.
Ivacy offers the lowest prices on the market, no matter what plan you sign up for. One month is a low $9.95, 30% less than some of the bigger names like NordVPN and ExpressVPN. One year is $3.50 per month. That compares pretty favorably to VPNs like Hotspot Shield, which charges $7.99 per month for a one-year plan. But, get this, you can buy a five-year subscription to Ivacy. That plan runs for just $1 per month.
Without all those bonus features, though, you get something you won’t get with other VPNs: the lowest price on the market. All of its prices are low. We don’t know of another VPN that offers a five-year subscription, and that subscription is just $1 per month. That’s not free, but it’s close.
Even without obfuscated servers, Ivacy manages to unblock Netflix, including libraries in each of the more than 100 locations where the company maintains servers. Plus, with 10 simultaneous connections, we were able to watch “The Crown” securely, even when all our nieces and nephews were over and using their devices too. Peace in the house — you can’t put a price on that.
CyberGhost is fast when it comes to downloads. Compared to our speeds without the VPN, our speeds with the VPN increased by just 5%. Maybe that’s one reason CyberGhost is a top VPN for torrenting. Upload speeds weren’t quite as good; we found an increase of nearly 70% in our testing. We wouldn’t recommend CyberGhost for gaming, either, since we wound up with ping rates of 115 ms, a bit above the 100 ms recommended for glitch-free gameplay.
CyberGhost’s single-month price is pretty average at $12.99. That’s exactly what NordVPN charges for one month, and a whole 4 cents cheaper than what ExpressVPN charges. Given that both of those VPNs offer more security features, you’d probably be better off with them if you’re interested in just one month of service. CyberGhost’s long-term prices drop low enough, though, to make the company a legitimate contender. With a two-year plan, you pay just $2.03. That’s as low a price as you’ll find with anyone but Ivacy, and you have to commit to five years to get their $1 rate.
What We Like
Outside Five Eyes, Nine Eyes, and 14 Eyes
Servers in 91 different countries
What We Don’t Like
Logs IP addresses and home countries
Limit of seven simultaneous connections
No obfuscated servers
CyberGhost doesn’t have quite as many impressive security features as some of its better-known competitors. It doesn’t have multihop servers, like NordVPN. It doesn’t have a camouflage mode, like ExpressVPN. It doesn’t have split tunneling, a handy feature some VPNs offer, which lets you sign on to the regular internet at the same time as you’re signed on to the VPN. And its access to streaming services isn’t always reliable.
Why is it on this list then? If you’re engaged in buying and selling cryptocurrency, you probably like to be in charge. You don’t want a VPN that makes all the choices for you. You want to pick your protocol. You want to decide which server is the best for your particular needs. Streaming is great and all, but you’d much rather torrent, since it gives you more control over your content. CyberGhost is perfect for you. You get to choose, for instance, between the security of the OpenVPN protocol and the speed of the WireGuard protocol. You get access to P2P-configured servers for a streamlined torrenting experience. You get super-fast downloads. We don’t torrent, but CyberGhost is so fast that we downloaded half a dozen movies from Netflix to watch before we took our last cross-country flight.
CyberGhost is also plenty secure — secure enough to ensure you stay anonymous while you’re dealing in crypto. Besides AES-256 encryption and a kill switch, the company is based in Romania, which is well outside Five Eyes, Nine Eyes, and 14 Eyes jurisdiction. You can even sign up using bitcoin to add an additional layer of anonymity.
Choosing the Best VPNs for Crypto Trading
Want to do your own VPN research? You’ll want to know exactly what to look for. We can’t tell you all our secrets, but we can give you a few pointers.
Encryption: A VPN is literally an encrypted tunnel. That means it’s only as good as the encryption it uses. Don’t settle for anything less than AES-256. That’s military-grade, by which we mean the U.S. military uses it to encode all sensitive information.
Protocols: Find out which protocols the VPN you’re researching uses. OpenVPN has long been the gold standard, because it’s open source and it has been around long enough to have been thoroughly tested and proven safe. WireGuard, though, is fast becoming a viable alternative to OpenVPN. It’s open source like OpenVPN, and it has been around for over a decade. Plus, it’s a little faster than OpenVPN.
Additional privacy features: Most VPNs these days have a kill switch, which shuts down your internet activity should you lose your VPN signal. Many, though, also offer multihop, which routes your connection through at least two separate servers. Camouflage mode is becoming more popular, as well. It conceals the fact that you’re using a VPN. Obviously the more privacy features a VPN offers, the safer you’ll be — but you should remember that these features often slow devices down.
Access to streaming services: If you’re going to purchase a server, you might as well get one that gives you access to great entertainment, right? Of course, you want to make sure it has top-notch security tools, but it never hurts to check out which Netflix libraries in other countries it can help you access.
Plenty of servers: More servers usually means a faster connection. For one thing, you can always find one nearby. For another, you have a better chance of finding one with light traffic.
Intuitive apps: We all know what clunky apps feel like. A VPN is too important to be confused while you’re using it. The best companies offer VPN apps that help you better use the service. They’ll choose which server is right for your online activities and even select the right protocol for you.
Customer service: You also want to be able to get answers quickly any time your VPN isn’t working quite right. When it comes to security, you don’t want to have to worry about things going wrong. VPNs don’t usually offer phone support, but they should definitely have a good online help database and, ideally, 24/7 live chat support.
The whole point of using a VPN is to protect yourself online — to ensure that hackers can’t hack you, and also that government agencies can’t spy on your activities. The beauty of a VPN is that it keeps you secure in two separate ways. First, it routes your internet signal through an encrypted tunnel, which prevents anyone from gathering information about you and your online activities. Second, it assigns you an anonymous, untraceable IP address so no one can connect you to what you’re doing on the web.
Here’s the thing though: If you sign up using a credit card, you create a paper trail. That paper trail may not lead directly to your browsing history, but at a minimum it tells anyone who’s snooping that you’re using a VPN. That can raise suspicions.
Paying with cryptocurrencies adds one more layer of anonymity to your online experience. There’s no record of your transaction; you’re just a username. If that’s the kind of privacy you’re after, paying with crypto makes sense.
What Is a Dedicated IP Address?
A dedicated IP address is an IP address that never changes. Most VPNs give users a new IP address every time they log on. The point is to conceal your actual address, giving you the ability to surf anonymously.
These new addresses ensure your privacy, but they come with a downside. Because they’re constantly changing, websites you visit frequently can’t recognize you. You have to re-establish your credentials every time you go to a secure site, and that can get tedious. It’s a small price to pay for security, but wasted time is wasted time.
Dedicated addresses are special IP addresses assigned by a VPN. They’re just as anonymous and untraceable as rotating IP addresses, but they don’t change the way rotating addresses do. That means you’re always you — digitally speaking — every time you revisit sites.
That means you want your VPN to employ the very best encryption. That’s AES-256, the same encryption employed by both the U.S. military and the CIA. Those are some pretty strong credentials.
There’s also this: Even if you employed the fastest supercomputer in your quest, it would still take you millions of years to crack AES-256 using brute force. So many companies and organizations use AES-256 that if anyone ever figured out a way to crack it, the world will likely come to a complete standstill. Whether someone could decode your internet activity would be the least of your worries.
The Bottom Line
You can’t take chances with online security when you’re dealing in cryptocurrency. If someone managed to hack your account, there’s no way to get your money back. Once it’s gone, it’s gone.
You absolutely must have a VPN, and you need one that offers top-tier security. There are a lot of those out there. If you’re going to secure your online connection, though, why not make things easier on yourself by choosing a VPN that works well with crypto sites? Why not go with a VPN that accepts cryptocurrency, giving you one additional layer of security?
We can’t tell you which VPN on this list is right for you. You’ll have to compare features for yourself. We feel pretty confident, though, that the right VPN for you is somewhere on this list.
We get so many questions about the best VPNs for crypto trading that we thought we’d take a little extra time to answer some of them here.
NordVPN is the best VPN for crypto trading. NordVPN combines the safety and security of AES-256 encryption and multi-hop technology with features like 5,200 global servers and split tunneling. Plus, the company actually accepts many kinds of cryptocurrency as payment. Other good VPNs that deal with cryptocurrency include ExpressVPN, Private Internet Access, Ivacy VPN, and CyberGhost.
Yes, VPNs are useful for dealing with cryptocurrency. First, by assigning you an anonymous IP address and routing your internet connection through an encrypted tunnel, a VPN makes your crypto transactions more secure. In addition, a VPN adds an extra layer of privacy to your crypto transactions. If your purchases take place via a secure VPN, they are that much harder to trace.
It is not illegal to use a VPN for buying and trading cryptocurrency in countries where VPNs and cryptocurrency are both legal. That is, assuming your country has not outlawed these activities, you are perfectly within your rights to use them together. There are, of course, countries that have banned cryptocurrencies, including China and Russia. Likewise, there are a few countries where VPN usage is forbidden, including North Korea, the UAE, Turkey, and Iraq. Outside of these places, however, you are free to trade cryptocurrency via a VPN to your heart’s content.
Using cryptocurrency to pay for a VPN adds a layer of protection to your online experience, helping to keep you even safer. When you sign up with a VPN, you can surf anonymously. However, if you pay for the VPN with a credit card or a bank account, you create a record proving you purchased the VPN. Signing up with cryptocurrency, though, allows you to pay anonymously.