Black Friday

5 Best VPNs for India 2017 – Freely Browse The Web In India

Stephen Cooper

Stephen Cooper

September 13, 2017

The Indian government has a propensity to ban websites. It particularly dislikes porn sites and “escort services.” The escort website ban frequently nudges over into dating sites as well.

Politically sensitive religious festivals and ethnic tensions can provoke local judges to black out whole swathes of the internet in a particular region. They can do this under the Criminal Procedure Code. Worse still, they can impose these bans “until further notice.” Thus many levels of government and the judiciary have extraordinarily far-reaching control over internet access in India.

Quick Links to Our 5 Best VPNs for India

  1. ExpressVPN
  2. IPVanish
  3. Buffered
  4. NordVPN
  5. VyprVPN

Torrenting sites are another target for official wrath. The authorities are unlikely to send you to jail for downloading copyrighted material through peer-to-peer (P2P) networks. However, you could face a fine. Furthermore, you’ll find it impossible to reach torrent directories, such as The Pirate Bay.

The Indian government has never taken steps to shut down sites relating to LGBT issues or gambling. However, this is probably because these sites do not exist in India, where being gay and gambling are illegal. In these cases, Indian access to foreign websites is widespread. However, you should protect your identity when accessing these sites on the internet.

Bollywood is one of the greatest entertainment industries in the world. However, you may tire of chirpy singers dancing through the same cookie-cooker plot in every movie. If you hanker for US entertainment and want access to foreign video servers, you don’t have to battle the Indian government (unless you’re after porn). In these instances, the streaming companies themselves will block you out. That’s because you don’t live within their area of operations. These blocks are called regional restrictions – and thankfully you can get around them.

In India, you can get into foreign video services, access porn sites, visit gay and gambling websites anonymously, and download copyrighted media to your heart’s content as long as you use a Virtual Private Network (VPN).

A VPN masks your connections, so the authorities and your Internet Service Provider (ISP) can’t see which sites you’re visiting. Those sites also can’t work out where you are. You can read more about the wonderful world of unrestricted web access below. First of all, let’s get you set up with a VPN.

As you will read later on, it is ISPs that implement the bans on websites in India. They prevent your browser from discovering the internet address of the sites you want to visit. This stage involves Domain Name System (DNS) servers, so you need a VPN that runs its own. A VPN for India must also be able to get around regional restrictions. Furthermore, it must have a no-logs policy, and should be happy about you using P2P networks. With those attributes in mind, we have selected the five best VPNs for India.

Best VPNs for India: Summary

BestVPN Editor's Choice Award
Nomination
ExpressVPN Homepage
PROS:
  • Special Deal: Save 49% Today!
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • P2P allowed
  • Fast speeds
  • No logs
  • Private DNS servers
CONS:
  • A bit pricey - but worth it!

ExpressVPN offers good protection for torrent downloads. The VPN is also good for streaming - it can get around the proxy detection systems of Netflix. The company is based in the British Virgin Islands and it doesn't keep activity logs.

The server network of the VPN includes locations in 94 countries. This gives you plenty of scope when you want to get into streaming services for different companies. The server network includes servers in India, which would be a good bet if you want to protect your chat traffic. The VPN app can be loaded onto mobile devices that run iOS or Android. ExpressVPN also implements automatic WiFi protection. The service includes a private DNS and encryption standards are excellent. The customer support team is very competent and is available around the clock via live chat.

Special Deal: Save 49% Today!

Visit ExpressVPN »30-day money-back guarantee
Nomination
IPVanish Homepage
PROS:
  • Seven-day money-back guarantee
  • Servers in 60 countries, including India
  • No activity logs
  • Gets into Netflix
  • Fast speeds
CONS:
  • Customer support is slow

IPVanish has a very fast network, which was custom built for VPN services. The server list has locations in 60 countries, including servers in India. The company allows torrent downloading from its network. However, the IPVanish headquarters are in the United States, which may make the company vulnerable to legal pressure. The company vows that it does not keep activity logs, so it can't be forced to hand over records that don't exist.

Security measures include a kill switch to prevent apps on your computer from connecting to the internet if the VPN is not engaged. There is also automatic WiFi protection. IPVanish has its own DNS servers, so you can bypass the use of your ISP's DNS system.

3. Best VPN for India: Buffered

Buffered Homepage
PROS:
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Private DNS
  • Apps for Windows, Mac OS X, Android, iOS
  • Kill switch
  • No logs policy
CONS:
  • Can't get into all streaming services

Buffered is fine about customers using the VPN for P2P downloading. Its customer support staff can give you useful advice on how to set up the VPN with torrent clients. The company is based in Gibraltar and it keeps no activity logs, so you'll be protected from prosecution if you use this VPN to cover torrent downloading. The company has servers in 37 countries, including India. Although this VPN can get into a lot of streaming services, it can't get into Netflix.

Security measures include a kill switch and a private DNS. There is also automatic WiFi protection with this service.

Nomination
NordVPN Homepage
PROS:
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Servers in 61 countries
  • No logs
  • Kill switch
  • Gets into Netflix
CONS:
  • Customer support can be slow

NordVPN has servers in 61 countries, including three servers in India. This app is very easy to use and fits nicely onto the screen of a smartphone. You get automatic WiFi protection with NordVPN. Other security features include a specialist Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) protected server and a double-hop configuration option that encrypts all of your traffic twice. The company has its own DNS servers. The VPN client also includes a kill switch.

This VPN company is based in Panama. It keeps no logs, so you'll be completely protected from the risk of being sued for downloading with BitTorrent.

Nomination
VyprVPN Homepage
PROS:
  • Three-day free trial
  • Servers in more than 70 countries, including India
  • Private DNS system
  • Kill switch
  • Automatic WiFi protection
CONS:
  • Basic plan has weak encryption

VyprVPN uses a special cloaking method that was developed in-house, so no one else can study its methods. That explains this VPN's success in dodging detection in China. This service is also able to get you into just about every streaming service, including Netflix.

The server network has locations in 70 countries, including India. The app looks good and works on mobile devices. You get automatic WiFi protection to protect you from fake hotspots as you walk around. Other security features include a private DNS server and a kill switch.

Best VPN for India: Considerations

Indian DNS Manipulation

When you visit a website, you enter a web address into your browser. This address is known as a URL, which stands for “universal resource locator.” If you get to a site by clicking on a link, the browser copies that new URL into the address field for you.

Web addresses are meaningless on the internet. Those URLs need to translated into internet addresses, known as “IP addresses.” Connections get across the internet because routers pass them on in a chain from network to network until they reach the right computer. Before your browser can send out a request for a webpage, it needs to obtain the proper IP address. Your ISP runs a lookup service, called a “Domain Name Server.” A quick query to the DNS will return the correct IP address. Then your browser can send off for the page.

India implements all website bans by altering the records in the DNS table. If the government wants to block access to a specific site, it sends a notification to the ISP. The ISP then alters the IP address for that URL. The new address will point to a single page that displays a warning message.

If your browser can’t get the proper IP address of the webpage you want to look at, that page is effectively blocked.

India & VPNs

The VPNs in our list all run their own DNS servers. The VPN software traps traffic from your computer at the point that it goes onto the network card to get onto the internet. The VPN repackages the outgoing request to change its destination address. If the VPN program spots a DNS request, it diverts the query to the VPN company’s DNS server.

Even though your ISP has a fake address for each banned site, your VPN has the proper address. As such, your browser can go to the correct computer, and request the page that you asked for. When the browser’s webpage request gets to the network card on your computer, the VPN intercepts it. The VPN encrypts the message, including the destination and origin addresses. The VPN then bundles that message inside a packet, which it addresses to its own server.

The process of carrying an internet message through to the server is called “tunneling.” This is because your communications are kept from view on the stretch of its journey from your computer to the VPN server. This prevents the ISP from being able to analyze the contents of your messages. It can’t even read where those messages are going.

When the VPN server receives the bundled packet, it decrypts it and sends the original message on its way. However, it replaces the source address of the message to show its own address and not yours. This means that the target server doesn’t know the request has come from you. This is how VPNs get around regional restrictions on streaming servers. You need to select a server location before you turn the VPN on. This location will be your “virtual” location until you turn the VPN off, or switch to another server.

If you choose a VPN server in the same country as the video service that you want to get into, it should let you watch videos. That’s because it will think that it is dealing with the VPN server, which is in the approved location for access.

Best VPN for India: Conclusion

Don’t just sign up for the first VPN you hear about – not all VPNs are the same. Some VPNs have very weak security and can allow your real IP address to leak out, thus exposing you to danger. Streaming services know that people use VPNs to try to circumvent their regional restrictions, so they try to detect and block VPN activity. Only very few VPNs can evade detection by streaming services. The five on our list are among that number.

Get into blocked sites and protect your identity when downloading files with torrents by using a VPN. The five best VPNs for India on our list will work very well and keep you safe on the internet.

Best VPN for India: Side-by-Side Comparison

Image Credit: kb-photodesign/Shutterstock.com

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