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NordVPN VPN Review 2023: Fast, Secure + Great Value?

Published on: March 22, 2023
Tim Mocan
Tim Mocan
Published on: March 22, 2023

NordVPN Review: Quick Expert Summary

NordVPN offers excellent security features, maintains very fast internet speeds, and has user-friendly apps. It also has over 5,400 servers in 59 countries, allows up to 6 simultaneous connections under a single account, works on all major platforms and devices (Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, smart TVs, routers, etc.), and is pretty affordable.

When I tested NordVPN, I was able to unblock the most popular streaming sites (like Netflix. Hulu, Disney+, and BBC iPlayer) and download large files while connected to dedicated P2P servers.

NordVPN also has:

  • Double VPN servers.
  • Obfuscated servers.
  • Tor support.
  • Split-tunneling.
  • And a lot more…

There are a lot of things I like about NordVPN, but it has some flaws. Threat Protection, NordVPN’s ad, tracker, and malware blocker doesn’t block ads at all on Android if you download NordVPN from the Google App store — instead, you have to download the .apk version on NordVPN’s website to use Threat Protection on Android. I also think it’s a shame NordVPN’s iOS and macOS apps are missing split-tunneling (ExpressVPN is one of the few VPNs that supports split tunneling on macOS 10.15 and below — but not on iOS).

But overall, NordVPN is one of my favorite VPNs in 2023. It has great security features, offers a cheap long-term plan, and it’s really easy to use on both desktop and mobile. NordVPN has monthly, 1-year, and 2-year subscription plans, which are all covered by a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.

🏅 Overall Rank #4 out of 80 VPNs
🌍 Number of Servers 5,400+
📱 Number of Devices 6
💸 Starting Price $4.99 / month
🎁 Free Plan
💰 Money-Back Guarantee 30 days

Download NordVPN Now (30 Days Risk-Free)

NordVPN Full Review

NordVPN Full Review

I spent weeks testing and researching NordVPN to see how it compares to the top VPNs on the market, and I can safely say it’s one of the best options out there.

It provides all industry-standard VPN features, a wide range of extras, a huge server network, fast speeds across all servers, and excellent streaming and P2P support.

NordVPN is also pretty budget-friendly. It offers reasonably priced plans that start at just $4.99 / month and backs all purchases with a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.

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NordVPN Features

NordVPN has the following security features:

  • 256-bit AES encryption. Unbreakable end-to-end encryption that makes all of your traffic virtually unreadable by third parties (and is also used by government agencies and banks).
  • No-logs policy. NordVPN doesn’t log your personal data or online activity (including the sites you visit and the files you download). Its zero-logs policy was independently verified in 2018 and 2020.
  • Kill switch. This feature shuts down your internet access (or just specific apps) when your VPN connection is interrupted, preventing your data from accidentally getting leaked and exposed to third parties.
  • RAM-only servers. NordVPN’s entire server network runs in RAM-disk mode instead of using hard drives. This means that all of your internet traffic and personal data is wiped clean when NordVPN reboots the server.

NordVPN started introducing colocated servers in late 2022. These are servers that are owned and operated solely by NordVPN. NordVPN ships its own hardware to data centers that provide the storage space and internet access, but only NordVPN staff has access to them.

NordVPN has 3 VPN protocols: OpenVPN (UDP and TCP), IKEv2/IPSec, and NordLynx (NordVPN’s proprietary protocol built around WireGuard). IKEv2/IPSec is the default protocol on macOS and iOS, but you have to manually set it up on Windows — and this could be a difficult process for non-tech savvy users.

NordVPN offers integrated DNS, WebRTC, and IPv6 leak protection to prevent data leaks. It runs its own DNS servers and blocks all IPv6 traffic and unwanted WebRTC IP leaks.I think it’s great that NordVPN offers IPv6 leak protection — competitors like Surfshark, CyberGhost, or TunnelBear don’t support IPv6 and instead instruct you to disable IPv6 on your device.

NordVPN allows up to 6 simultaneous connections, which is about the average for a good VPN. But there are some competing VPNs that offer unlimited simultaneous connections, including Surfshark and IPVanish.

Besides these standard features, NordVPN also offers a wide range of additional tools:

Double VPN

NordVPN Features

Double VPN servers route your traffic through 2 VPN servers (in 2 different countries) instead of 1 server. The connection looks like this:

You → NordVPN Server 1 → NordVPN Server 2 → Internet

NordVPN has more than 90 double VPN servers in 9 countries — this is a lot more than competing VPNs, including Surfshark that has only 14 double VPN servers!

NordVPN’s double VPN servers provide you with extra security — they add two layers of encryption to your data, which makes it impossible for anyone to intercept your traffic. That said, double VPN shouldn’t be used for everyday internet use, but it’s a great feature for users in restricted countries, journalists, and activists.

Because double VPN provides double encryption, it will slow down your internet speed quite a bit. However, NordVPN does give you an option to connect to the fastest double VPN servers and countries. And NordVPN shows you the server load to help you find a server that’s not overcrowded.

Overall, I was pretty impressed with NordVPN’s double VPN, especially considering that most competitors don’t offer this feature.

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NordVPN Features

NordVPN’s split-tunneling tool allows you to choose which traffic is routed through the VPN server and which traffic is routed through your Internet Service Provider’s (ISP’s) network. For example, I tested NordVPN’s split-tunneling feature while downloading files. I routed all of my torrenting traffic through NordVPN and browsed the internet connected to my local server — and everything worked just as promised.

NordVPN offers both split-tunneling and inverse split-tunneling. Split-tunneling allows you to choose the apps you don’t want to route through the VPN and is available on both its Windows and Android apps. On the other hand, inverse split-tunneling lets you select which apps you want to go through the VPN tunnel and is only available for Windows users. This is similar to what other top providers offer. But some VPNs like Surfshark also let you specify which websites you want to exclude out of the VPN tunnel.

I’d also like to see NordVPN add split-tunneling to its Mac and iOS apps ExpressVPN is one of the rare VPN providers to include this feature in its app for Mac (available for macOS 10.15 and below). That said, NordVPN’s split-tunneling feature is much easier to use than ExpressVPN’s split-tunneling.

Overall, NordVPN’s split-tunneling feature is a great way to secure some of your online data and maintain non-VPN connections simultaneously. I also like how easy it is to use. However, I’d like to see NordVPN add an option to exclude specific sites from the tunnel, as well as include split-tunneling in the Mac and iOS apps.

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Obfuscated Servers

NordVPN Features

NordVPN’s obfuscated servers allow users to bypass government firewalls in countries that restrict access to the internet. If you’re in a country that censors the internet, you can connect to one of NordVPN’s obfuscated servers (that are located outside of that country) to access a free and open internet.

NordVPN’s customer support confirmed that it could bypass China’s Great Firewall. They also said that NordVPN’s obfuscated servers would unblock the internet restrictions in Iran and Russia.

NordVPN’s obfuscated servers are similar to Surfshark’s NoBorders feature. However, NordVPN users have to manually connect to one of NordVPN’s 150+ obfuscated servers, whereas Surfshark automatically enables NoBorders when it detects you’re in a restricted country.

To use NordVPN’s obfuscated servers, you’ll have to use the OpenVPN protocol — most VPNs’ obfuscation servers normally only work with OpenVPN, so this isn’t a drawback.

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Onion Over VPN

NordVPN Features

NordVPN’s Onion Over VPN servers send your traffic through the The Onion Router (Tor) network (an independent network of servers designed to provide extra privacy) before it reaches the web. By being connected to one of NordVPN’s encrypted servers, you will get another layer of privacy on the Tor network.

Also, NordVPN allows you to surf .onion sites directly in your browser — normally, you need to use the Tor browser to visit them. This is a great feature for people who use Tor often, like users who handle sensitive data on a regular basis.

The problem is that NordVPN only has Onion Over VPN servers in 2 countries (the Netherlands and Switzerland), so they’re often overcrowded. I was able to access the easycoin .onion site in Opera, but it took over 15 seconds for it to load.

NordVPN’s Tor integration is a cool feature for users looking for added privacy, but it isn’t unique ProtonVPN offers a similar feature which works better than NordVPN’s feature.

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Threat Protection

NordVPN Features

Threat Protection blocks ads and trackers and protects you from malicious sites and files. I tested Threat Protection on some ad-heavy sites like Buzzfeed and Huffington Post, and I didn’t see a single ad. Threat Protection also made the sites load faster since there were no ads to slow down the loading process.

I visited a few fake websites that I found on PhishTank, and Threat Protection blocked most of them. Keep in mind that Threat Protection doesn’t block ads on Android — but it still prevents you from visiting phishing sites.

Threat Protection’s anti-malware capabilities aren’t great, though. I tested it using a collection of malware-infected sites, and it failed to catch a good number of malware files.

Overall, Threat Protection is a good ad blocker and anti-phishing tool, but it’s no replacement for a proper antivirus program like Norton or Bitdefender. It blocked most of the phishing sites I tried visiting and it was pretty effective at blocking ads. However, its detection rate for malware files wasn’t stellar.

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Dark Web Monitoring

NordVPN Features

Dark web monitoring notifies you if any personally identifying information linked to your account’s email address has been compromised in a data breach. This is a pretty nice feature which further expands NordVPN’s ability to keep you safe online. However, it’s very much a side feature and doesn’t measure up to the identity theft protections offered by the best internet security suites like Norton, which are far more comprehensive.

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NordVPN Features

Meshnet allows you to create a secure, private network for up to 60 devices anywhere in the world. This can be used to connect your own devices, or you can invite other trusted NordVPN users to your network. It’s available on all operating systems (Windows, MacOS, iOS, Android, and Linux).

This feature has a lot of possible applications. You can, for example, create a virtual Local Area Network (LAN) for gaming, remotely access files from linked devices, browse the internet using the IP address of another device, and more.

Overall, Meshnet is a very unique and useful addition to NordVPN which opens up whole new ways of using the VPN. It’s also super easy to use.

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NordVPN Privacy & Security

NordVPN has a transparent no-logs policy. It doesn’t monitor or store any of your online activity — the sites you visit or the files that you download. In NordVPN’s Privacy Policy, NordVPN states that it only stores your email address (for creating an account and communication purposes), payment information (for issuing refunds), the timestamps of your latest session (for ensuring you’re not using NordVPN on more than 6 devices at the same time — but this is deleted 15 minutes after you disconnect from NordVPN), and your interactions with NordVPN’s customer support.

NordVPN Privacy & Security

NordVPN’s no-logs policy was independently audited and verified in 2018 and 2020 by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC) AG in Switzerland. PwC interviewed NordVPN employees, had complete access to all of NordVPN’s servers, observed how NordVPN deployed server configurations, and analyzed log files and logging configurations. Both audits concluded that NordVPN’s no-logs policy is 100% accurate.

NordVPN is headquartered in Panama, a country that is not part of the 5/9/14 Eyes Alliances — a group of countries that share intelligence data. Panama also doesn’t have a mandatory data retention law, so NordVPN has no legal obligation to log user data and share it with the government.

Overall, NordVPN is one of the most transparent VPNs on the market — it doesn’t keep any logs, it’s located in a privacy-friendly country that’s not part of the 5/9/14 Eyes Alliances, and it underwent 2 security audits to back up its privacy claims.

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NordVPN Speed & Performance

Using a VPN will slow down your speeds, but good VPNs minimize speed loss by offering multiple servers in many locations (to avoid overcrowding and to allow users to connect to a server that is close to their location) and lightweight and fast protocols.

I ran multiple speed tests on NordVPN’s servers — and NordVPN provided me with really good speeds. I had the fastest speeds when I was connected to a server in my country (Romania), but my internet speed was also very fast while I was connected to distant servers (in Ireland and Japan).

First, I ran a speed test without being connected to a VPN server to get a baseline for my speed:

NordVPN Speed & Performance

I then used NordVPN’s Quick Connect feature, which automatically connected me to the fastest server. The speed loss was minimal. I watched videos in HD and downloaded large torrents with basically the same speed as if I wasn’t using a VPN at all.

NordVPN Speed & Performance

Next, I connected to a server in Ireland. My download speed dropped by more than 100 Mbps, but I didn’t notice any decrease in my internet speed. I could still watch Netflix in HD — and videos loaded quickly. I even managed to play video games without any issues. However, websites took an extra 1-2 seconds to load.

NordVPN Speed & Performance

Finally, I connected to a server in Japan. The speeds were much slower, but that should be expected since the distance between Japan and my location is 5,417 miles (8,719 kilometers). Websites and Netflix videos took 4-5 seconds to load, and it took more than 1 minute for Netflix to run in HD — so I had to watch parts of an episode in standard definition (SD).

NordVPN Speed & Performance

I also checked which protocol offers the best speeds: NordLynx or OpenVPN. I connected to a server in Romania and a server in Ireland with both protocols. NordLynx was always faster, which is why I used it in all of my tests.

Because Romania has really fast speeds, it’s not fair to compare my VPN speeds to what people from other countries might see. That’s why I asked my colleague from the US to run some speed tests.

First, my colleague in the US ran a speed test without being connected to a NordVPN server:

NordVPN Speed & Performance

Then, he used NordVPN’s Quick Connect option and was connected to a local server in New York. My colleague only saw a decrease in speed of about 9%, which didn’t affect his browsing or torrenting speed.

NordVPN Speed & Performance

Then, my colleague connected to a server in France. His download speed was actually faster than his connection without a VPN — this is really impressive! He didn’t notice any delay in his web browsing, and he was able to stream Netflix France in HD without any interruptions.

NordVPN Speed & Performance

Finally, my colleague connected to a distant server in New Zealand, and his speed slowed down by 25%. He reported that websites took about 4-5 seconds to load, and a movie or TV show on Netflix didn’t start for almost a minute-and-a-half — however, once they began, the movies and TV shows played in HD and there was no lag.

NordVPN Speed & Performance

Overall, NordVPN is one of the fastest VPNs around — it maintains the best speed on local servers, but its speeds are also pretty good on distant servers. Because NordVPN is so fast, it’s a really good choice for users interested in streaming, torrenting, and other activities that use a lot of data.

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NordVPN Servers & IP Addresses

NordVPN has over 5,400 servers in 59 countries. While a couple of competitors, like CyberGhost, have more servers, I’m really happy with NordVPN’s server count — and because NordVPN shows the load percentage on each server, I was able to pick servers that weren’t overcrowded (for faster speeds). I also like that you can pick the server location (the city, and not just the country), which is very useful for bypassing sports blackouts in the US.

NordVPN only uses physical servers, meaning the servers are actually located in the country where NordVPN says they are. Some of NordVPN’s competitors use both physical and virtual servers. A virtual server provides you with an IP that matches the location you’re connected to, but the server is physically located in a different country. I generally prefer physical servers over virtual ones because physical servers are faster (they’re in the same country as the sites I want to unblock).

In addition to obfuscated servers, Onion Over VPN servers, and double VPN servers, NordVPN also has:

  • P2P servers. Hundreds of dedicated P2P servers that let you download torrents.
  • Dedicated IP servers. They’re available to users who buy dedicated IPs (IP addresses assigned only to one account).

NordVPN’s servers use static shared IP addresses. With a static shared IP address, you always have the same IP and you share it with other users. That’s good because nobody can identify your traffic, as it’s mixed in with other users’ data.

But one thing I really like is that NordVPN gives you the option to purchase a dedicated IP address for a small monthly fee. With a dedicated IP address, NordVPN assigns you an IP address that is only for your use — you’re the only account that uses that IP, so sites are less likely to blacklist the IP address (like bank sites). NordVPN only allows you to connect up to 2 devices with a dedicated IP address, and you’re restricted to connecting to a NordVPN server in 5 countries — the US (Buffalo, Los Angeles, Dallas), the UK (London), Germany (Frankfurt), France (Paris), and the Netherlands (Amsterdam).

Overall, NordVPN has many servers in most parts of the world. In addition to offering obfuscation servers, Tor Over VPN servers, and double VPN servers, NordVPN also has P2P servers as well as dedicated IP servers. NordVPN uses shared IP addresses on all of its servers, but you can also buy a dedicated IP address.

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NordVPN Streaming & Torrenting

NordVPN works with Netflix (including in the US, UK, Canada, and Japan), Hulu, Amazon Prime, Disney+, and BBC iPlayer, etc. I was also able to access other less popular sites like Pluto TV, VRV, and Tubi TV.

NordVPN Streaming & Torrenting

NordVPN is able to access streaming services because of its advanced SmartPlay feature — it uses Smart DNS technology to access geo-restricted content and the VPN to secure the connection. And the best part is that SmartPlay is automatically enabled in all NordVPN apps, so there’s really nothing for you to do other than connect to a NordVPN server.

NordVPN offers very fast streaming speeds. When I used it with Netflix, I was always able to watch content in HD. I didn’t even experience any lag when I watched TV shows and movies in 4K on my PS4.

NordVPN also provides a great torrenting experience. NordVPN has hundreds of dedicated P2P servers, and it works with all popular torrenting clients, including uTorrent, BitTorrent,, and others. NordVPN doesn’t offer port forwarding (opening ports on your router and assigning them to different devices — this improves torrenting speed), but I had good speeds without it. When using a Canadian P2P server (4,758 miles/7,658 km from my location), I was able to download a 22 GB file in around 15-20 minutes, which is really good.

I never experienced DNS and IP leaks when using NordVPN. I ran 10 leak tests on different NordVPN servers, and I had 0 DNS and WebRTC leaks — and IPv6 was fully blocked (no accidental IPv6 leaks).

Overall, NordVPN works with the most popular streaming sites and supports torrenting on hundreds of P2P servers. The download speeds are fast, and NordVPN is safe to use since it doesn’t suffer DNS, WebRTC, or IPv6 leaks.

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NordVPN Government Bypassing

NordVPN’s obfuscated servers allow you to bypass government censorship online in countries with restrictive internet laws. These are special servers that people in restrictive countries can connect to in order to gain access to a free and open internet.

NordVPN representatives confirmed that their service can bypass government firewalls in China, Iran, Russia, Saudi Arabia, and Indonesia. NordVPN will let you circumvent VPN blocks in almost any restrictive country.

NordVPN Government Bypassing

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NordVPN Plans & Pricing

NordVPN has very reasonable pricing that starts at $4.99 / month. Like many other VPNs, it offers a subscription-based pricing model. The longer the subscription you purchase, the more money you save. And each purchase includes a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.

NordVPN has a 1-month plan, a 1-year plan, and a 2-year plan. All subscriptions give you access to the same features. But the 2-year plan offers the cheapest monthly average rate — and it’s cheaper than top competitors like ExpressVPN and ProtonVPN.

NordVPN accepts many payment options, including credit cards, Amazon Pay, Union Pay, ACH Transfer, and cryptocurrencies.

Overall, NordVPN has attractive pricing and full-featured subscriptions. The 2-year plan offers great savings, making NordVPN a great option even for users on a tight budget.

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NordVPN Ease of Use: Mobile & Desktop Apps

NordVPN works on Windows, macOS, Linux, iOS, Android, Chrome, Firefox, and Android TV. You can also download it onto your router, which will allow you to use NordVPN on gaming consoles.

Setting up NordVPN is very easy — it took me just 1-2 minutes to download and install the apps on all of my devices. The design is user-friendly, so you won’t feel overwhelmed (even if you’ve never used a VPN before). The setup process is more complicated on Linux and routers, but NordVPN has step-by-step tutorials that make everything simple — and you can contact the support representatives via live chat for any additional assistance.

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NordVPN’s Android app is feature-rich and easy to use. I installed it on my Samsung Galaxy A51, and I was able to connect to a server with a simple tap on the screen.

The main screen displays the server network map and the Quick Connect option. Clicking on Quick Connect automatically connects you to the fastest server. To view the entire server menu, scroll down and you’ll see each location listed by alphabetical order. Above the locations, you’ll see 2 options: Search (use keywords to find a server) and Specialty servers (P2P, obfuscated, double VPN, dedicated IP, and Onion Over VPN).

NordVPN Ease of Use: Mobile & Desktop Apps

The Android app also has a Settings cog icon that lets you pick which protocol to use, enable/disable the kill switch, and use split-tunneling. You can also turn on Threat Protection, but it won’t block ads on Android — though it will protect you from malicious sites.

NordVPN has 2 cool extra features for Android smartphones:

  1. Tapjacking: This feature alerts you if a malicious app adds a screen overlay. Basically, hackers can’t hijack your taps to steal your passwords or credit card details.
  2. Metered VPN connection: You have more control over how much data you use through the VPN (essential if you don’t have an unlimited data plan with your Android device).

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The iOS app is almost the same as the Android app. To use the fastest server, just tap Quick Connect. Otherwise, you can manually connect to one of NordVPN’s many servers (including specialty servers).

Unlike on Android, Threat Protection blocks ads on the iOS app. However, the iOS app is missing the split-tunneling feature. There’s also no tapjacking protection, making the iOS app less secure than the Android app.

That said, the design of the iOS app is very intuitive — and even though the app is lacking a couple of the features included in the Android app, I still think the iOS app is excellent.

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Windows/Mac (Desktop)

Like NordVPN’s Android and iOS apps, the Windows/Mac apps have Quick Connect. The app always connected me to a Romanian server in under 5 seconds. When I connected to servers in the US, Canada, Hong Kong, and Japan, it didn’t take more than 10 seconds.

You can manually select a server from the alphabetical list located on the left side of the screen. All servers give you the option of connecting to the fastest server or manually selecting the one you want to use. You can also see the load in percentages (how overcrowded they are) to make sure you are connecting to the fastest server.

NordVPN Ease of Use: Mobile & Desktop Apps

The Settings icon includes a few tabs. Here are the most important ones:

  • General. This is where you can choose app preferences like whether or not you want to receive connection notifications and launch options.
  • Connection. Pick which protocol you want to use (you have to manually install IKEv2/IPSec on Windows), and enable/disable auto-connect.
  • Kill switch. You can enable/disable the system and app-level kill switches.
  • Split-tunneling. Select which apps to route through your local network and which app traffic gets routed through NordVPN’s servers. Split-tunneling isn’t available on macOS.

It’s also important to keep in mind that NordVPN has 2 apps for Mac — one app uses OpenVPN and includes most of NordVPN’s features (except the NordLynx protocol), and the other app uses IKEv2 and comes with NordLynx (but it doesn’t have obfuscated servers, double VPN, CyberSec, or dedicated IPs). While the IKEv2 version of the app may provide better speeds, I recommend getting the OpenVPN app because it’s more secure and has more security features.

Overall, NordVPN’s Windows and Mac apps are really good. They’re intuitive, easy to use, and packed with tons of features and settings.

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NordVPN Apps: Is NordVPN Easy to Use?

NordVPN has great apps for Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android. They’re all easy to use and have many excellent features, but the iOS and macOS apps are missing the split-tunneling feature. The Android app also has extra perks like tapjacking protection. Unfortunately, the Android app’s Threat Protection feature won’t block ads from appearing on the websites that you visit.

Overall, NordVPN’s apps are among the best on the market. They offer everything you need to protect your data, access geo-blocked content while you’re traveling abroad, and work in restrictive countries. And they’re suitable for both beginner and advanced users.

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NordVPN Customer Support

NordVPN has extensive FAQs and troubleshooting guides, email support, and 24/7 live chat. It doesn’t offer phone support, but that’s not a problem because its live chat reps are very responsive and helpful.

The setup and troubleshooting guides are very informative and helpful. NordVPN split the support articles into different categories (FAQs, general information, billing, and connectivity issues), so it’s easy to find the one you need — there’s also a search button if you can’t locate the information you’re looking for.

NordVPN Customer Support

When I tested NordVPN’s live chat feature, I was connected to a support rep in less than 30 seconds, and they were able to answer all of my questions. I was pleasantly surprised by the response times since I performed the test on a Sunday. Besides English, NordVPN offers live chat support in German and French. For other languages, it uses a translation tool that works pretty well.

I also sent NordVPN 2 emails — its customer service representatives responded with helpful information to my first email in under 5 hours, and I got a response to the second email the next day. I didn’t really like that it can take more than a day to get a reply, but it’s not surprising since email responses are usually slower.

Overall, NordVPN offers excellent support through an extensive FAQ library, live chat, and email. If you have an issue or question, I recommend using NordVPN’s live chat feature instead of email because you’ll get an answer to your question in just a couple of minutes from NordVPN’s live chat reps.

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Is NordVPN a Good Value in 2023?

NordVPN is very secure, maintains fast speeds, and provides excellent streaming and torrenting support. It also has more than 5,400 servers in 59 countries and allows up to 6 simultaneous connections. NordVPN’s apps are available on all of the major platforms and operating systems, and NordVPN is really easy to use.

NordVPN comes with high security features that allow you to browse, stream, and torrent safely. On top of offering 256-bit AES encryption, NordVPN also has a no-logs policy, a kill switch, split-tunneling, and full leak protection (DNS, IPv6, and WebRTC). It’s also one of the only VPNs that lets you surf Tor sites in your regular browser through its Onion Over VPN servers.

When I tested NordVPN, I always had fast speeds — even when using distant servers. Compared to other competitors, NordVPN has one of the most extensive lists of specialty servers, including P2P, dedicated IP, obfuscated, double VPN, and Onion Over VPN servers.

NordVPN is really good, but it’s not perfect. NordVPN’s Threat Protection isn’t great at detecting malware and the split-tunneling isn’t available on NordVPN’s iOS app. There aren’t many Onion Over VPN servers, which could lead to slow speeds and connection issues, but NordVPN said it would address both of those issues.

Despite these few downsides, NordVPN is one of my favorite VPNs in 2023 — it has a wide range of useful features, it’s very secure, and it provides blazing-fast speed. NordVPN is also pretty affordable, and all of its plans come with a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Is NordVPN safe?

Yes, NordVPN is extremely safe. It uses 256-bit AES encryption (the same cipher used in militaries and banks), doesn’t store any logs, and its servers only run in RAM-disk mode, meaning all of the data that is on them is wiped every time NordVPN reboots the servers.

NordVPN offers good leak protection, protecting you from DNS, WebRTC, and IPv6 leaks. It also has a reliable kill switch that shuts off internet access when the VPN disconnects to avoid traffic leaks. NordVPN also has double VPN servers that double-encrypt your data (they send your traffic through 2 VPN servers instead of 1).

Finally, NordVPN offers a pretty good ad, tracker, and malware blocker (Threat Protection).

What is the best NordVPN server to choose?

Most users can just use its Quick Connect feature, which automatically connects you to the fastest server. But you can also manually choose a server. NordVPN groups servers by country and gives you the server load, which helps you find a server that’s not overcrowded to get faster speeds.

But NordVPN also has specialty servers that offer specialized features. Here are NordVPN’s specialty servers:

  • P2P. These servers allow you to download torrents.
  • Onion Over VPN. NordVPN servers that encrypt and send your traffic through the Tor network (you can also use Tor sites straight in your browser).
  • Double VPN. They send your connection through 2 VPN servers instead of 1.
  • Obfuscated. These servers work in restrictive countries like China.
  • Dedicated IP. Use them to get a dedicated IP address (one that’s only used by you). Dedicated IPs help you avoid proxy errors on streaming sites and getting blacklisted by your bank’s site. However, these servers cost extra.

Is NordVPN free?

No, NordVPN doesn’t have a free plan. However, it does have a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee, which is more than enough time to test its service. And if you’re not happy with NordVPN, just ask for a refund through live chat and you’ll get your money back in 1-2 business days.

I recommend avoiding free VPNs. They’re usually slow, lack standard security features, and have bandwidth caps. Some also spam you with ads and expose you to malware. Overall, it’s better to pay for an excellent low-cost VPN like NordVPN.

Can NordVPN be used for Netflix?

Yes, NordVPN works with Netflix, so you can access the content library of your home country while traveling abroad. You can also use NordVPN with other streaming sites (Hulu, Amazon Prime, Disney+, and more).

NordVPN Products & Pricing

NordVPN Standard
$4.99 / month
30 Days Money Back
NordVPN Plus
$5.99 / month
30 Days Money Back
NordVPN Complete
$7.49 / month
30 Days Money Back
Bottom Line

NordVPN is one of the best VPNs on the market in 2023. It has a huge network of servers (over 5,400 in 59 countries), user-friendly apps for all of the major platforms and operating systems, and excellent security features (256-bit AES encryption, a no-logs policy, kill switch, etc.). NordVPN also offers fast speeds and additional features like double VPN connections, split-tunneling, P2P support, and obfuscated servers. And NordVPN works with most streaming sites like Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, Amazon Prime, and Disney+. You can test NordVPN risk-free with its 30-day money-back guarantee.

About the Author

About the Author

Tim Mocan is a QA Editor at SafetyDetectives. He has 5+ years of experience researching and writing about cybersecurity topics, and he specializes in VPNs. Prior to joining SafetyDetectives, he worked as a contributor for other VPN review websites and as a content writer for several VPN providers. Throughout his freelance writing career, he has also covered other niches, including SEO, digital marketing, customer loyalty, home improvement, and health and rehab. Outside of work, Tim loves to spend his time traveling, playing video games, binging anime, and using VPNs (yes, really!).

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