3 Best Free VPNs for Torrenting in 2024: Safe & Fast

Tyler Cross
Tyler Cross Senior Writer
Updated on: June 3, 2024
Fact Checked by Eric Goldstein
Tyler Cross Tyler Cross
Updated on: June 3, 2024 Senior Writer

Short on time? Here’s the best free VPN for torrenting in 2024:

  • 🥇 ExpressVPN : It’s not free but it backs all purchases with a 30-day money-back guarantee. Allows torrenting on servers in 105 countries, has industry-leading security features, maintains the fastest download speeds, and provides very user-friendly apps for all of the major operating systems.

I know it’s tempting to use a free VPN for torrenting, but I don’t really recommend it. Most free VPNs don’t allow torrenting, and the ones that do often lack essential security features and have slow speeds. So I always recommend using a top paid VPN like ExpressVPN instead.

But if you insist on using a free VPN, check out this list first. I tested tons of free VPNs and managed to find a few that actually allow torrenting on their free plans and also provide strong security and good speeds.

Try ExpressVPN Now

Quick summary of the best free VPNs for torrenting:

  • 1. 🥇ExpressVPN — Best overall VPN for torrenting in 2024 with excellent security and fast speeds.
  • 2. 🥈CyberGhost VPN — Great for automating P2P connections + has a large P2P server network in 85+ countries.
  • 3. 🥉 TunnelBear — Decent free P2P VPN with unlimited connections and simple apps but limited data cap.
  • Bonus. Hotspot Shield — Free VPN with unlimited data (but doesn’t promise P2P support and includes ads).

Please Note: SafetyDetectives doesn’t condone using a VPN for illegal purposes. Please consult with local rules and regulations to ensure you are aware of the law for file sharing as it pertains to your jurisdiction.

🥇1. ExpressVPN — The Best VPN for Torrenting in 2024

🥇1. ExpressVPN — The Best VPN for Torrenting in 2024

ExpressVPN is hands-down my favorite VPN for torrenting. It covers all plans with a 30-day money-back guarantee. It doesn’t have a free plan, but since it offers a money-back guarantee, you can test the VPN risk-free by downloading files for a month and then get a full refund if you’re not happy with it.

It’s ultra-secure, extremely fast, and really easy to use. ExpressVPN allows torrenting on all of its servers in 105 countries, which is more than any other VPN on this list and drastically more than the free VPN plans — this way, you can always connect to a local server to get the fastest speeds. There’s also a router app, allowing you to connect all of the devices in your home to the VPN.

Plus, it works with all of the top torrent clients like BitTorrent and Vuze, and it comes with unlimited data, which means you can download as many files as you want — TunnelBear only allows 2 GB per month and Hotspot Shield has annoying ads on its free plan. This is also why ExpressVPN is ranked #1 on our list of the best VPNs for torrenting in 2024.

The provider has excellent security features for torrenting, including a no-logs policy that’s been independently audited and confirmed, so you can trust that the provider doesn’t record any of the P2P sites you visit or files you download. Also, it includes full leak protection, which prevents your actual IP address from being exposed on the internet. I tested ExpressVPN on servers in 10+ countries, and only ExpressVPN’s IP address was displayed (and not my actual IP address).

🥇1. ExpressVPN — The Best VPN for Torrenting in 2024

ExpressVPN also comes with advanced security features like RAM-only servers, perfect forward secrecy, and the Lightway protocol. RAM memory is great for torrenting because it ensures that no data is stored on the hard drive and all data is erased each time the server is rebooted. And I like how perfect forward secrecy randomly changes your encryption key — this means that even if your current key is compromised, a hacker cannot access any past or future keys. It publishes transparency reports, too, that show the requests the VPN receives for data and prove how it doesn’t have any to share.

Thanks to Lightway, ExpressVPN has the fastest speeds in the industry. Lightway is ExpressVPN’s proprietary protocol that has high-end security and blazing-fast speeds (it’s even passed an independent security audit). In my tests, I downloaded a 6 GB file on a local server in less than 7 minutes, which is really impressive. When I attempted to download the same file connected to a distant server, it still only took about 10 minutes.

I love how ExpressVPN also comes with other cool features to help increase your speeds. I took advantage of its split-tunneling feature, which allows you to choose which apps are routed through the VPN connection, and excluded all apps except my torrent client app from the VPN. You can also use port forwarding (only available on ExpressVPN’s router app) to connect to more peers for slightly faster speeds, and there’s an ad and malicious site blocker that blocks ads on P2P sites and protects you from shady torrenting sites — none of the free VPNs listed here have a feature that prevents you from accessing shady sites.

ExpressVPN offers affordable monthly and yearly plans, which start at $6.67 / month. Its prices are on the higher end compared to some other top VPNs, but ExpressVPN offers the best app on the market (and it usually offers deals that include extra months for free).

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Bottom Line:

ExpressVPN is by far the best VPN for torrenting. It supports P2P traffic on all of its servers in 105 countries, includes unlimited data, works with each of the top torrenting clients, and is the fastest VPN out there. ExpressVPN comes with industry-leading security features and a strict and audited no-logs policy. While it’s not free, it covers all purchases with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Read the full ExpressVPN review

🥈2. CyberGhost VPN — Great for Automating Secure P2P Connections

🥈2. CyberGhost VPN — Great for Automating Secure P2P Connections

CyberGhost VPN is an excellent choice for convenient and secure torrenting. With 8,500+ P2P servers in 85+ countries, CyberGhost has a large network of P2P servers that ensure speedy downloads and prevent overcrowding. Additionally, CyberGhost’s Smart Rules feature lets you automate VPN connections — for example, you can configure the VPN app to automatically connect you to a P2P server and open a P2P app on launch.

CyberGhost lacks a free plan, but it has a free 24-hour trial that provides access to all features and doesn’t require payment card details. Also, the provider backs all long-term plans with a 45-day money back guarantee, which provides plenty of time to fully test the service.

🥈2. CyberGhost VPN — Great for Automating Secure P2P Connections

The VPN has advanced security features, such as RAM-only servers and perfect forward secrecy. Additionally, the provider’s Content Blocker protects you from shady P2P sites that may contain malware or other security threats. Also, CyberGhost’s no-logs policy has been independently audited and confirmed, and the provider regularly publishes transparency reports to demonstrate its commitment to user privacy.

The provider is also very fast. In my tests, it only took me about 15 minutes to download a 6 GB torrent. That said, ExpressVPN is still faster since the same file took 5 minutes less to torrent on distant servers, but CyberGhost had faster speeds than the free VPNs on this list. While you don’t get a router app, you can manually configure the VPN to most routers.

CyberGhost VPN’s plans are affordable, with prices starting at just $2.03 / month. In addition to its 45-day money-back guarantee, it also has a 14-day money-back guarantee for the shortest plan.

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Bottom Line:

CyberGhost VPN is an excellent choice for fast, secure, and convenient torrenting. With a vast network of P2P servers and advanced security features, CyberGhost VPN provides everything you need to enjoy torrenting without compromising your privacy or security online. It’s not free, but it has a free 24-hour trial and a 45-day money-back guarantee for all long-term plans.

Read the full CyberGhost VPN review

🥉3. TunnelBear — Fun & Free P2P-Friendly VPN

🥉3. TunnelBear — Fun & Free P2P-Friendly VPN

TunnelBear’s free plan comes with a user-friendly app that’s super fun to use. You can use a digital map to connect to servers, and little animated bears dig tunnels to a VPN server’s location when you connect to it. TunnelBear gives you access to all of its server locations in 47 countries on the free plan, and it also comes with unlimited device connections, which is a nice bonus since this allows everyone in your house to use the VPN’s free plan to torrent.

The VPN’s free plan allows 2 GB per month. That could be enough for some people, but I still think the data cap is pretty restrictive — if you want unlimited bandwidth for torrenting, I recommend ExpressVPN.

TunnelBear has good security features. It comes with full leak protection, and to confirm this, I ran 10+ leak tests and never experienced any leaks. You can even use it in restrictive countries as its GhostBear features, which gets around VPN blocks, is available on the free plan. Plus, the VPN’s server infrastructure, codeware, and apps undergo regular security audits.

🥉3. TunnelBear — Fun & Free P2P-Friendly VPN

The VPN has good P2P speeds, but they’re still slower than ExpressVPN. On average, it took me around 10 minutes to torrent a 1 GB file. Still, I like how split-tunneling is available, so you can use it to boost your download speeds a bit.

TunnelBear’s paid plans start at $3.33 / month. Unfortunately, there’s no money-back guarantee.

Bottom Line:

TunnelBear’s free plan allows torrenting, comes with very enjoyable apps that have a cute design, strong security, and good download speeds. It gives you access to all server locations and features, and allows unlimited connections, but it limits you to 2 GB per month. Upgrading to a paid plan gets you unlimited data but there’s no money-back guarantee.

Read the full TunnelBear review

Bonus. Hotspot Shield — Has Unlimited Data (But Doesn’t Guarantee P2P Support)

Bonus. Hotspot Shield — Has Unlimited Data (But Doesn’t Guarantee P2P Support)

Hotspot Shield allows unlimited data on its free plan, which means you can use it to download as many torrents as you want. Despite that, I ranked it last because its free plan doesn’t officially supports torrenting — I didn’t encounter any issues downloading torrents in my tests, but I can’t guarantee you’ll have the same results.

I like the advanced security features and fast speeds that Hotspot Shield provides — it has perfect forward secrecy, DNS leak protection, and its own superfast proprietary Hydra protocol. Even though Hotspot Shield throttles free subscribers’ speeds to 2 Mbps, Hydra maintained good speeds (though ExpressVPN was much faster).

Bonus. Hotspot Shield — Has Unlimited Data (But Doesn’t Guarantee P2P Support)

However, the free plan limits you to servers in 3 countries, namely the US, the UK, and Singapore. So not all users will be able to use nearby servers to torrent with good speeds. In addition, the free plan only lets you connect 1 device (but doesn’t work with routers), collects your IP address to serve you ads, and you have to watch ads to use it (unlike with TunnelBear). Plus, users on the free plan don’t have access to 24/7 live chat.

Hotspot Shield’s premium plans begin at $2.99 / month and give you guaranteed P2P support, access to servers in 85 countries, and 10 connections. All plans include a generous 45-day money-back guarantee.

Bottom Line:

Hotspot Shield has unlimited data, but it unfortunately doesn’t guarantee P2P support on its free plan — it worked in my tests, but you might not get the same results. The free plan provides good security and speeds, but it limits you to servers in 3 countries and 1 device. The paid version adds more servers and guaranteed P2P support. All purchases are backed by a 45-day money-back guarantee.

Read the full Hotspot Shield review

Quick Comparison Table

VPN Premium Plan (Starting Price) Data Usage Limits Number of Countries Blocks Ads on P2P Sites Number of Simultaneous Connections
🥇1. ExpressVPN $6.67 / month Unlimited 105 8
🥈2. CyberGhost VPN $2.03 / month Unlimited 100 7
🥉3. TunnelBear $3.33 / month 2 GB per month 47 Unlimited
Bonus. Hotspot Shield $2.99 / month Unlimited (but includes ads) 3 1

How to Choose the Best VPN for Torrenting in 2024

  • Select a VPN with reliable security. All of the VPNs on this list have key industry-standard VPN security features, including military-grade 256-bit AES encryption, a strict no-logs policy, and a kill switch to prevent your data from leaking onto the internet if your VPN connection is interrupted.
  • Make sure the VPN has P2P support. The free VPNs on this list allow torrenting on their free servers and are compatible with popular torrenting clients.
  • Choose a VPN with fast speeds. All VPNs slow down your connection speeds due to the distance between the server and your device, as well as because of the encryption process. However, I only recommend VPNs that maintain very fast speeds (ExpressVPN is the fastest VPN out there).
  • Pick an easy-to-use VPN. It’s important that the VPN offers an intuitive app for each of the top devices you want to use for torrenting. All of the VPNs here have easy-to-install and easy-to-use apps for Windows, Macs, Android, iOS, and more — ExpressVPN even has a router app, so you can connect all of the devices in your home to the VPN.
  • Check for affordable paid plans. I only considered VPNs that offer affordable premium plans in case you decide to upgrade to a paid subscription to access additional servers and features.

How to Torrent Safely With a Free VPN

  • Step 1: Get a secure VPN with great P2P support. My favorite is ExpressVPN, but if you want a 100% free VPN, TunnelBear’s free plan allows torrenting.How to Torrent Safely With a Free VPN
  • Step 2. Download and install the VPN on your device. You can get the VPN file from its official website.How to Torrent Safely With a Free VPN
  • Step. 3: Connect to a P2P server. I recommend connecting to a nearby server that supports torrenting for the best possible P2P speeds. You can now safely torrent from your device.How to Torrent Safely With a Free VPN

Risks & Disadvantages of Using a Free VPN for Torrenting

  • No torrenting support. There are many free VPNs that don’t allow P2P traffic. I always recommend using a premium VPN to ensure you’re able to access servers that support file sharing (for example, ExpressVPN allows torrenting on all servers in 105 countries).
  • Bad security. A lot of free VPNs lack essential security features like encryption and leak protection, which can actually put your data and privacy at high risk. Without encryption, your internet service provider can see which websites you visit and files you download. And if your IP address leaks on the internet, it will expose the city where you’re located. The best way to keep your data and privacy secure is to use one of the top premium VPNs for torrenting in 2024.
  • Limited features. Beyond security features, free VPNs often lack advanced features available in premium VPNs, such as split tunneling, dedicated IP options, or advanced protocols that might enhance torrenting performance and security.
  • Beware of free VPNs that monetize your data by selling it to advertisers. Always opt for VPNs with strict no-logs policies.
  • Malware-ridden apps. Some free VPNs may carry malware, adware, or pose various security threats, risking the integrity of your device and the privacy of your personal information. However, every VPN I recommend is a secure option.
  • Poor speeds. Free VPNs often have slow speeds due to limited server access and bandwidth congestion. Some free VPNs also intentionally throttle speeds for their free users.
  • Check for data caps. Almost all free VPNs limit how much data you can use each day or month, which really limits your downloading. Every VPN I recommend has enough data to at least torrent small files, though some offer enough data for a couple medium files per month.
  • Limited customer support. Free VPN services often have limited or no customer support available. This can be a significant disadvantage if you encounter issues or need assistance with setting up the VPN for optimal torrenting performance.

Free vs. Paid VPNs for Torrenting

The choice between a free and a paid VPN can significantly impact your experience in terms of security, privacy, server access, and download and upload speeds. Paid VPNs generally offer superior service in these key areas, though, this doesn’t mean you can’t safely torrent with free VPNs.

The free VPNs I recommend in this article use 256-bit AES encryption, come with a kill switch, and have a strict no-logs policy. A lot of them also include advanced security features in their free plans, including RAM-only servers, perfect forward secrecy, and IP leak protection. In other words, they have the necessary tools to secure all of your P2P traffic online.

But they’re still pretty limited in what they offer in terms of P2P support compared to paid VPNs. For example, TunnelBear gives you access to all of its servers and features, but you only get 2 GB of free data per month. In comparison, ExpressVPN lets you torrent as many files as you want, protects you from malicious P2P sites and ads on torrenting sites, and comes with port forwarding (on its router app).

The biggest advantage of paid VPNs, compared to free VPNs, is the fast speeds when torrenting. Free VPNs give you access to a limited number of server locations, which are often overcrowded, which slows them down. With a paid VPN, you always have access to all servers, so you can pick the fastest one for your location. Plus, upgrading to a paid VPN usually gets you a 30-day money-back guarantee, allowing you to try the service risk-free.

Overall, there are good free VPNs for safe torrenting, but the paid ones offer a lot more for optimal P2P experience.

Features Free VPNs Paid VPNs
P2P Support

(Only some free VPNs support P2P and with restrictions)

(Support for P2P on most, if not all, servers)

Privacy

(Some may collect and share data)

(Strict no-logs policies and better privacy features)

Fast Speeds

(Most have slower speeds due to server and bandwidth limits)

(Designed for high-speed torrenting with no limits)

Access to All Servers

(Access to a limited number of servers)

(Access to a wide network of global servers)

Unlimited Data

(Most have data caps, limiting torrenting volume)

(No data caps, ideal for large downloads)

24/7 Customer Support

(Basic or no customer support)

(Comprehensive support channels available)

Multiple Simultaneous Connections

(Usually restricted to 1 device at a time)

(Multiple devices supported on one account)

Multiple Protocol Options

(Fewer choices, possibly less secure)

(Access to a range of secure protocols)

Double VPN (if available)

(Not offered by free services)

(Extra layer of security for sensitive activities)

Ad, Tracker, and Malware Blocker

(If available, often limited in functionality)

(More sophisticated blocking features for safer browsing on P2P sites)

 Free VPNs for Torrenting to Avoid

  • Hola VPN. It uses a peer-to-peer system that assigns your IP address to others and vice versa, which could lead to legal issues if your IP is used for illegal activities. Hola also keeps logs, doesn’t encrypt traffic, and has leaked user IPs before.
  • SuperVPN. It logs user data, it doesn’t use 256-bit AES encryption, and it doesn’t have a kill switch, so it’s not a safe choice for torrenting. It’s even been caught leaking user data.
  • Betternet. It collects your IP address and provides vague reasons as to why it isn’t safe for torrenting.
  • Phone Guardian. It’s mobile-only and doesn’t do anything that a VPN does, so I don’t recommend it for torrenting. It doesn’t encrypt your traffic or hide your IP address, and it doesn’t have any security features, like a kill switch.
    AceVPN. AceVPN only offers 1 P2P server, there’s no kill switch, and it doesn’t have any dedicated apps, meaning you’ll have to manually configure it on your device.
  • TurboVPN. It has a no-logs policy, but it hasn’t been audited, and its speeds are very slow on distant servers, making it nearly impossible to torrent files over it.
  • Hoxx VPN. It doesn’t support torrenting, and I wouldn’t recommend it even if it does, as it collects data on web activity, device, and location.
  • TuxlerVPN. It uses military-grade encryption, but its privacy policy says it collects and shares a lot of personally identifying information, which isn’t safe for sharing P2P files.
  • Thunder VPN. It’s only available on Android, the free version is filled with ads, itonly uses the SSL protocol which isn’t very secure, and it’s very slow, making it impossible to torrent efficiently.

Top Brands That Didn’t Make the Cut

  • Avira Phantom VPN. Its free plan supports torrenting, but it randomly connects you to the best server location (and doesn’t tell you which one that is), you only get 1 GB of free bandwidth or only 500 MB a month if you don’t want to provide your email address, and there’s no kill switch.
  • Proton VPN. Proton VPN has one of the best free plans on the market thanks to offering unlimited data. While this is great, the provider doesn’t allow torrenting (or streaming) on its free plan.
  • ZoogVPN. ZoogVPN’s free plan allows 10 GB of data per month, but you only get access to P2P servers in the US, UK, and the Netherlands, and it has slower speeds on distant servers — so if you’re not located near one of the 3 server locations, you’ll likely experience slow download speeds.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best free VPN for torrenting?

The best 100% free VPN for torrenting is TunnelBear. It supports P2P downloads on its free plan, works with top P2P apps, has servers in 47 countries, and comes with strong security features, but you only get 2 GB of free bandwidth.

However, my top choice for torrenting in general is ExpressVPN, which supports torrenting on servers in 105 countries, works with all of the popular torrent clients like uTorrent and Deluge, includes industry-leading security and privacy features, and is the fastest VPN on the market. While it’s not 100% free, ExpressVPN backs all purchases with a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you can test it out for yourself risk-free.

Can I legally torrent with a free VPN?

Yes, you can legally torrent with a free VPN, provided that you are torrenting legal content. The legality of torrenting depends on whether sharing P2P files is legal in your location and if the content you are downloading or sharing is legal, not on whether you’re using a free or paid VPN.

If torrenting is legal in your location, and you’ve ensured that the files you’re torrenting are not copyrighted, I recommend ExpressVPN for safe P2P file sharing. If you’re looking for a free VPN that’s safe for torrenting, check out TunnelBear’s free plan.

Are free VPNs safe?

No, many free VPNs often lack essential security features, leaving your data and privacy at risk. In my research, I found a lot of free VPNs don’t have 256-bit AES encryption, which makes all of your internet traffic indecipherable to third parties like your internet service provider. And most free VPNs don’t have a kill switch, so there’s a serious potential that your data may leak onto the web if the VPN connection unknowingly fails.

On top of that, many free VPNs also log and sell user data to third-party advertisers. I strongly recommend that you only use a VPN that has a strict no-logs policy — this way, you can trust that the provider doesn’t store any user data. Fortunately, all of the VPNs on this list include these industry-standard VPN security features.

Why do I need a VPN for torrenting?

A VPN secures your data and protects your privacy when you download files. It uses bank-grade encryption to scramble all of your online traffic (including the torrenting sites you visit) and the files you download, and it hides your IP address so other peers are unable to figure out where you live.

All of the free VPNs on this list come with the essential VPN security features, but my favorite VPN for torrenting is ExpressVPN — it also includes advanced security features, has blazing-fast download speeds, and easy-to-use apps for all of the major operating systems.

Yes, torrenting with a VPN is legal in many countries. However, VPNs are either banned or restricted in some restricted countries, including China, Russia, and Iran, And other countries, like the US and the UK, allow torrenting in the public domain but don’t allow the practice of torrenting copyrighted content. Honestly, I strongly recommend checking the policies and local laws in your country before torrenting so you can avoid facing any associated penalties or fines.

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About the Author
Tyler Cross
Tyler Cross
Senior Writer
Updated on: June 3, 2024

About the Author

Tyler is a writer at SafetyDetectives with a passion for researching all things tech and cybersecurity. Prior to joining the SafetyDetectives team, he worked with cybersecurity products hands-on for more than five years, including password managers, antiviruses, and VPNs and learned everything about their use cases and function. When he isn't working as a "SafetyDetective", he enjoys studying history, researching investment opportunities, writing novels, and playing Dungeons and Dragons with friends."

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