Published on: June 15, 2022
Short on time? Here’s the best torrent site & VPN to stay safe while torrenting in 2022:
- RARBG is the best torrent site since it has tons of popular TV shows, movies, and video games, most of the torrents have enough seeders, and all torrents are verified. The best VPN to use with this site is ExpressVPN — it supports torrenting on 3,000+ servers in 90+ countries, provides industry-leading security and privacy features (including an independently-audited no-logs policy, a kill switch, and full leak protection), has very fast P2P speeds, and comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
I’ve been torrenting for 15+ years, but I know that finding torrent sites that are actually easy to use and won’t expose you to malware is often a headache.
So I decided to put my experience to good use and create a list of the best P2P sites in 2022. On top of that, I will also discuss how to avoid dangerous torrent sites, if torrenting is legal, how to torrent safely, if it’s safe to torrent without a VPN, and the best P2P VPNs.
⚠️ IMPORTANT: Torrenting itself is legal in most parts of the world, but torrenting copyrighted content is illegal in most countries. We here at SafetyDetectives don’t condone illegally downloading files. I strongly recommend you check your local laws before you start accessing P2P sites and downloading torrents.
RARBG is my favorite torrent site because it’s safe to use, easy to navigate, and provides access to tons of content. People can only upload torrents to RARBG if they have accounts (which are not easy to get) — and even then, the uploaded torrents are verified by the site’s moderators to make sure they’re safe. So, you only get high-quality, malware-free torrents.
Due to the strict upload process, RARBG’s content library is smaller than other torrent sites — I was unable to find older or more obscure torrents for TV shows and videos that were available on other P2P sites. But you can still easily find popular movies and video games. Also, almost all torrents have tons of seeders, so it’s easy to get fast download speeds.
I also think that RARBG is very user-friendly — the design is intuitive, there are different torrent categories, most torrents have screenshots, you can sort torrents by the number of seeders (to see the torrents with the most seeders first, as they provide faster speeds), and magnet links are available (so you can start downloading a torrent with 1 click).
Also, unlike most torrent sites, RARBG barely has any ads — when I disabled my ad blocker, I only encountered 1 pop-ad when reloading the site.
1337x provides access to a huge variety of torrents. I had no problem finding popular albums, TV shows, and movies. I also like how pretty much any torrent has a huge number of seeders — I was always able to download large files very fast.
1337x is also very easy to use. Pretty much all torrents come with screenshots, magnet links are available, and you can easily check which torrents are trending each day, week, or month. But unlike RARBG, not all torrents are verified on 1337x — to stay safe, I recommend only downloading torrents from trustworthy uploaders (which are marked with a yellow or blue bar before their names). Also, RARBG’s design is better because it’s pleasant to look at and doesn’t feel so overwhelming. Plus, 1337x lacks the customization RARBG offers, as it doesn’t let you sort torrents by the number of seeders.
1337x doesn’t have a lot of ads, but it’s still more ad-heavy than RARBG. I still recommend using an ad blocker for a safer and more convenient experience.
3. The Pirate Bay
The Pirate Bay is an extremely popular torrent site that’s chock-full of content, but you might come across some malicious torrents. For example, I found 20 KB .exe files claiming to be torrents for popular video games (which would normally be around 5–20 GB or more). The file was uploaded by a random, unknown uploader — so I recommend only downloading torrents from verified uploaders (which are marked with green and pink skull and bones icons). Also, I strongly recommend using an antivirus (like Norton) to protect your device from potential malware infections.
When I used The Pirate Bay, I was able to find pretty much any movie, TV show, video game, and app I wanted, no matter how popular or unknown it was. However, not all torrents have a big number of seeders, so you might have to sometimes settle for slower downloads.
I also like that this torrent site has magnet links and lets you sort torrents by size, seeders, and leechers. Plus, the site has an active community, so you’ll find tons of helpful comments on most torrents — for example, when I wanted to download a torrent of a TV show, many comments mentioned how one of the episodes didn’t work, so I knew to avoid that torrent.
The Pirate Bay has tons of annoying ads, which can endanger your privacy by sharing your online preferences with third parties — some ads could even be malicious and infect your device with malware if you interact with them. So I strongly recommend using an ad blocker with this torrent site.
Nyaa (also known just as Nyaa Torrents) is a great torrent site for East Asian media. I really like how you can find tons of popular anime shows and movies with audio and subtitles in multiple languages. You can also find tons of East Asian manga, video games, and live-action movies.
Nyaa’s interface is very basic, but that also makes it easy to use. It’s simple to look for specific shows and manga, sort the torrents by the number of seeders, and magnet links provide instant downloads. Few torrents include screenshots (unlike RARBG), but pretty much all torrents include a list of files (so you know what you’re downloading and what format it’s in).
I also like how there are tons of helpful comments on the majority of torrents — for example, I was about to download a torrent of an anime movie in 4K quality, but one of the comments mentioned that the movie was actually in cam quality (meaning it was filmed with a handheld camera in a movie theater), so I was able to avoid it.
And my favorite thing about Nyaa is how there are no ads — the site and its web pages always load very fast, and annoying pop-ups won’t prevent you from downloading torrents.
YTS.mx is an excellent torrent site for people who are only interested in movies — you can find the latest releases and cult classics. Most movies are available in 720p and 1080p, but you can also find torrents that provide 4K quality.
I really like that this site keeps the torrents small, so this is a perfect pick if you’re low on storage or using a mobile device. For example, I found 4K movies that only had a size of about 3–6 GB (most 4K movies take up 20–30 GB or even more). Even better, YTS.mx reduces the file size without compromising video quality.
YTS.mx also has a very sleek interface (it almost reminds me of streaming sites like Netflix). And I especially like that, if I hover over a torrent, it conveniently tells me what genre the movie is and what IMDb rating it has. Also, you can stream most movies on YTS.mx without needing to download them, which saves space on your device and time downloading them.
However, unlike RARBG, this site has tons of pop-up ads.
TorLock is very safe to use because it only allows verified torrents on its platform. There are over 9 million torrents on this site, so you can pretty much find whatever you want — from popular movies and video games to eBooks, software, and anime shows. And there are tons of seeders (even for obscure torrents).
TorLock has a user-friendly design, splits torrents across relevant categories, and lists the specifications for each torrent (size, seeders, leechers, and time when it was added) next to it — but it doesn’t let you sort torrents by seeders like RARBG.
Make sure you use an ad blocker when you access TorLock, though — it’s full of annoying pop-up ads (many of which feature adult content).
TorrentDownloads is a great option if you want to find torrents that don’t show up on other torrent sites. For example, I used it to successfully find torrents for older, under-the-radar Eastern European video games (which I couldn’t find on the other sites on this list). I was also pleasantly surprised that those torrents had enough seeders, so I was able to torrent those files pretty fast.
TorrentDownloads is also easy to navigate, but you can’t sort torrents, the torrents don’t display screenshots, and the community is not very active (most torrents don’t have any comments). Like most torrent sites, TorrentDownloads is also pretty ad-heavy.
LimeTorrents comes with a massive torrent library, so you can find tons of popular movies, TV shows, video games, apps, and more. Most torrents have a large number of seeders (especially trending torrents), but I also came across some torrents that barely had any seeders (so downloading small files took hours or days).
The site is easy to navigate, but I wish it allowed you to sort torrents by seeders. I also wish that torrents would display screenshots (not link to them).
LimeTorrents has the most ads on this list, to the point where it’s completely unusable without an ad blocker.
IPTorrents is a private tracker, meaning you can only use it if you have an account — and you can only sign up if you get an invite or make a small donation, which I think is worth it since you get access to a huge library of torrents (that all have tons of seeders). Plus, you won’t come across malicious torrents or have to deal with ads.
But keep in mind you’ll need to maintain a good seed ratio (this is usually mandatory on private trackers), which shows that you have uploaded more content than you have downloaded. To upload, you have to leave the torrent open even after you finish downloading it, so that other users can download from you. On the plus side, IPTorrents makes large downloads freeleech, which means downloading them won’t affect your seed ratio.
10. Public Domain Torrents
Public Domain Torrents is a legal torrent tracker, meaning all content found on it is copyright-free — this site is a good option if you don’t want to risk breaking the law by accidentally downloading copyrighted content.
I ranked this torrent site last because it lacks a lot of content variety. You can only find movies on Public Domain Torrents — while there are around 900+ movies, most of them are lesser-known movies from the ‘50s, ‘60s, or ‘70s. I also don’t like that there are tons of ads, that 4K videos are not available, and that there are no magnet links.
How to Spot Scam Torrenting Sites
Because torrenting is so popular, hackers often set up fake torrent sites — if you interact with them, your device could get infected with malware. Here’s how you can detect and avoid fake or unsafe P2P sites:
- Use private search engines. Popular search engines like Google and Bing sometimes don’t show links to official P2P sites to avoid breaking the law. Instead, they display alternative links (which are usually okay), but they might also display links to copy-cat sites, which can be dangerous to access. So, I strongly recommend using a private search engine like DuckDuckGo, which displays the official addresses of top torrenting sites.
- Check the site’s address. Fake torrent sites copy the names of popular torrent trackers, but with minor misspellings. For example, instead of thepiratebay.org, you might see thep1ratebay.org.
- Avoid unverified torrents. These are torrents uploaded by unknown uploaders, which have not been verified by a torrent site’s moderators, and they can often contain malware-infected files. I recommend only downloading verified torrents (and also checking the uploader’s history to make sure they only upload verified torrents). Alternatively, just use torrent sites that only host verified torrents, like RARBG and TorLock.
- Avoid shady file extensions. Avoid small, single .exe files that claim to be movies, TV shows, video games, or eBooks. Also, .wma and .wmv files (which are outdated formats) and .rar, .tar, and .zip files tend to contain malicious content. To help provide an extra layer of protection against malware, I recommend using a high-quality antivirus like Norton if you plan on downloading these kinds of files.
- Read the comments. Check user comments before downloading a torrent — they’ll often tell you if a torrent contains malware or fake files.
- Check the torrent’s release date. For example, if you’re downloading a new movie, check the movie’s official release date and then the torrent’s release date — if the torrent was released earlier than the movie, it’s fake.
Is It Illegal to Use Torrenting Sites in 2022?
No, it’s completely legal to use torrent sites in most countries — that said, in many places, it’s against the law to torrent copyrighted files, like movies, TV shows, video games, music albums, and more. So you can only legally torrent open-source software and public domain files. But there are a few countries (like Switzerland) where it’s legal to download copyrighted content as long as you don’t monetize it.
Also, some countries ban torrenting (no matter if you’re downloading legal or copyrighted files) or block access to torrent sites (and make it against the law to try accessing them). So, I strongly recommend you check your local laws before you try accessing and using torrent sites to make sure you can’t get fined or be prosecuted.
Is Torrenting Files Safe?
Torrenting itself is safe, but you need to be careful and take some precautions — otherwise, you might accidentally download malicious files or interact with malicious links and ads. So it’s important to make sure you’re only using legitimate torrent platforms, like the ones on my list.
In addition, I also recommend using a top VPN (an online tool that changes your IP address and encrypts your traffic) while torrenting. That way, nobody in the torrent swarm (like copyright trolls and lawyers) can see your IP address, and your internet service provider (ISP) can’t see your P2P traffic. My favorite P2P VPN is ExpressVPN because it allows torrenting on 3,000+ servers in 90+ countries, has excellent security and privacy features (including an audited no-logs policy, a kill switch, full leak protection, and a feature that blocks dangerous torrent sites), and provides very fast download speeds.
Also, I strongly believe you need to use an antivirus while torrenting. It can detect malware and removes malware infections from your device if you accidentally download malicious torrents. What’s more, an antivirus has real-time protection that can also block connections to malicious P2P sites. If you’re looking for a great antivirus, I recommend Norton — its malware scanning engine successfully detects and removes the newest and most advanced types of malware, it has ransomware protection (some malicious torrents can include ransomware), and it comes with a very customizable firewall, which can protect you against port scanning attacks (which can happen while torrenting) by cloaking inactive ports on your device.
Here’s a Quick & Easy Guide to Torrenting Files Safely:
- Choose a trusted torrenting site. Pick a safe P2P site, so that you don’t risk downloading malicious torrents. All the torrent sites on my list are safe, but I like RARBG the most because it only has verified torrents, hosts tons of popular shows and movies, and pretty much all torrents have tons of seeders.
- Install a VPN that allows torrenting. Get a top P2P VPN to secure your torrent traffic — I like ExpressVPN the most because it has excellent P2P support, high-end security, and blazing-fast download speeds.
- Install an antivirus to scan torrent files. Use a good antivirus to prevent malicious torrents from accidentally infecting your device. My top pick is Norton for its excellent malware scanning engine and ransomware protection.
- Proceed to torrent. Start securely downloading any torrents!
Is It Safe to Access Torrenting Sites Without a VPN?
I don’t recommend accessing P2P sites without a VPN because your ISP will see which torrenting sites you’re accessing. In addition, your ISP can see your torrent traffic and throttle it. But if you use a VPN, it encrypts all of your data — making it unreadable, so nobody can spy on it.
What’s more, VPNs also change your IP address when you connect to a VPN server. Without a VPN, everyone in the torrent swarm can see your real IP address — including copyright trolls and lawyers, who can use your IP address to find your identity and location to pursue legal action against you.
What’s more, a VPN allows you to connect to servers located all over the world, which lets you can access P2P sites in any country.
And some VPNs (like ExpressVPN) have features that block connections to malicious sites — so they can protect you from fake P2P sites.
Best VPNs for Torrenting in 2022
Quick summary of the best VPNs for torrenting files safely in 2022:
🥇1. ExpressVPN — Best VPN for Torrenting in 2022
ExpressVPN is my favorite torrenting VPN (it also comes in at #1 on our list of the best P2P VPNs on the market) — it provides excellent P2P support, high-end security features, and lightning-fast download speeds.
ExpressVPN supports torrenting on all 3,000+ of its servers, which are located in 90+ countries (so, it’s very easy to find and connect to nearby servers to get fast downloads). What’s more, it works with all popular P2P apps, like qBittorrent, Vuze, and uTorrent.
In addition to having a strict no-logs policy that has been independently audited and verified, ExpressVPN also comes with:
- TrustedServer technology — All of ExpressVPN’s servers run on RAM memory, meaning every server reset wipes all data. It also has been confirmed through an external audit, and it offers a financial reward to anyone who finds a security vulnerability with the tool.
- Perfect forward secrecy — Changes the encryption key for each VPN connection, so that hackers can’t compromise past or future keys to spy on your P2P traffic.
- Full leak protection — All of ExpressVPN’s apps come with built-in protection against DNS, IPv6, and WebRTC leaks. I ran tests on servers in 20+ countries while torrenting, and I never experienced a leak.
- Threat Manager — Blocks connections to malicious sites (including dangerous P2P websites).
ExpressVPN provided me with the fastest P2P speeds on this list. On nearby servers, it only took me 10 minutes to download a 15 GB file. And on distant servers, I downloaded the same file in just 14 minutes. I also like that ExpressVPN comes with split-tunneling, which lets you choose which apps use the VPN and which apps use your local network — this increased my download speeds by about 15%.
ExpressVPN allows 5 connections and offers several paid plans that start at $6.67 / month — while it’s a little steep, I think it’s worth it because it provides excellent value. Plus, ExpressVPN backs each purchase with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
🥈2. ProtonVPN — Best for Optimizing P2P Download Speeds
ProtonVPN provides fast torrenting speeds, offers multiple ways to speed up downloads, and comes with excellent security features.
Unlike ExpressVPN (which supports torrenting on all servers), ProtonVPN only allows torrenting on 300+ dedicated P2P servers in 16+ countries. Even so, I still had fast P2P speeds on both nearby and distant servers — I downloaded a 15 GB file in 20–25 minutes on average, which is really good. And I love the VPN Accelerator feature, which uses speed-enhancing technologies to increase connection speeds. When I enabled the VPN accelerator feature while connected to a distant server, I had 30% faster torrenting speeds (the same 15 GB file only took around 17 minutes to download).
In addition to the VPN Accelerator feature, ProtonVPN also comes with split-tunneling and port forwarding (lets you connect to more peers to get faster speeds). I used both features while torrenting and had 10–15% faster downloads.
I also like that ProtonVPN has a strict no-logs policy that has been independently audited and how all of its apps are open source — this means that anyone can inspect the code. ProtonVPN even took the extra step and had each app inspected for security flaws by an external cybersecurity company. Also, it provides advanced security features like full leak protection and full-disk encryption (keeps ProtonVPN’s servers secure even if they’re compromised). ProtonVPN also has NetShield, which is a very good ad blocker and prevents you from visiting malicious sites.
ProtonVPN has the best free plan out there, but unfortunately, it doesn’t provide P2P support. Instead, you need to upgrade to one of its paid plans, which start at $4.99 / month. ProtonVPN backs all purchases with a pro-rated 30-day money-back guarantee.
🥉3. Private Internet Access — Best for Torrenting on Mobile Devices
Private Internet Access (PIA) allows torrenting on servers in 80+ countries, has very intuitive mobile apps, and provides great privacy features.
If you like to torrent on mobile, I recommend picking PIA because its Android and iOS apps are very user-friendly. The interface is simple to navigate, all settings and features have helpful explanations, and it provides you with convenient automation options — for example, I configured PIA’s Android app to automatically connect to a server when I use mobile data to access P2P sites.
PIA comes with a strict no-logs policy that has been proven true in court documents, open-source apps (though they haven’t been audited like ProtonVPN), full leak protection, and RAM-only servers. Also, PIA is one of the only VPNs on the market that has a kill switch on its iOS app. PIA also has an ad blocker (PIA MACE), but it’s only available on its desktop apps.
In my speed tests, PIA wasn’t as fast as ExpressVPN and ProtonVPN, but it still provided me with really good P2P speeds — on average, it took me 23 minutes to download a 15 GB file on nearby servers, and 35 minutes to download it on distant servers. Also, I like that PIA comes with split-tunneling and port forwarding.
Private Internet Access allows 10 simultaneous connections and has affordable plans that start at $2.19 / month. Also, it backs all plans with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
(Bonus) IPVanish — Great for Torrenting on Multiple Devices
IPVanish allows unlimited connections, meaning you can use it on as many devices as you want — so it’s a good pick if everyone in your house needs a torrenting VPN.
IPVanish allows torrenting on 2,000+ servers in 50+ countries and comes with 25+ SOCKS5 proxy servers in 10+ countries — these proxy servers change your IP address just like a VPN but don’t encrypt your traffic so you get faster speeds.
IPVanish provided me with decent torrenting speeds, but it was much slower than the other VPNs on this list — it took me around 33 minutes to download a 15 GB file on nearby servers, and approximately 40 minutes to download it on distant servers.
I like that IPVanish has an audited no-logs policy (though, I wish the audit’s results were made public) and advanced security features like perfect forward secrecy.
Comparison of the Best VPNs for Torrenting in 2022
|VPN||Price||P2P Servers||Blocks Malicious P2P Sites||Port Forwarding / SOCKS5 Servers||Simultaneous Connections||Money-Back Guarantee|
|🥇1. ExpressVPN||$6.67 / month||3,000+ servers in 90+ countries||✅||N/A||5||30 days|
|🥈2. ProtonVPN||$4.99 / month||300+ servers in 16+ countries||✅||Port forwarding||10||30 days (prorated)|
|🥉3. Private Internet Access||$2.19 / month||Servers in 80+ countries||✅||Port forwarding||10||30 days|
|Bonus. IPVanish||$3.99 / month||2,000+ servers in 50+ countries||❌||SOCKS5 servers||Unlimited||30 days (yearly plan only)|
How to Choose the Best VPN for Torrenting
- P2P support. The VPN needs to support torrenting on its servers (ideally, most of them) — for example, ExpressVPN allows torrenting on 3,000+ servers in 90+ countries.
- Strong security. All of my top picks come with industry-standard VPN security features like a no-logs policy (to prevent the VPN from collecting your P2P traffic), a kill switch (disables web access if the VPN disconnects to prevent traffic leaks while torrenting), 256-bit AES encryption (makes P2P traffic unreadable), and protection against IPv6, DNS, or WebRTC leaks.
- Fast P2P speeds. All VPNs slow down your speeds due to the encryption process, but the best VPNs minimize the speed loss. All of the VPNs I recommend provided me with fast P2P speeds.
- Ease of Use. I only recommend VPNs that have apps for all major platforms that are intuitive and very easy to navigate.
- Good value. The VPNs on my list come with extra features like split-tunneling, port forwarding, or an ad blocker. They also allow multiple simultaneous connections (ExpressVPN allows 5 connections, and IPVanish has unlimited connections), have affordable plans, and come with a money-back guarantee.
Best Torrenting Sites — Frequently Asked Questions
What are the best torrent sites?
Some of the top torrent sites include platforms like RARBG, 1337x, and The Pirate Bay. They have huge torrent libraries with various types of content and are pretty easy to use. And they also include verified torrents, which are safe to download (website moderators check them to make sure they’re legit).
If you need recommendations for specific types of content, check out this list:
- Movies — I recommend YTS.mx because it only has movies (and tons of them) and keeps the torrents small. RARBG is also a good option, especially if you’re interested in 4K releases. If you want old movies that are copyright-free, try Public Domain Torrents.
- TV shows — 1337x is a good pick because it always has the latest TV show torrents and many of them are verified. RARBG and The Pirate Bay are also good options.
- Video games — I usually find any video game I need on The Pirate Bay and TorLock. I also recommend TorrentDownloads if you need to track down old or less popular games.
- Animes — Nyaa is full of anime torrents and most of them have audio and subtitles in tons of languages. In addition, you can also find torrents with manga and East Asian live-action movies.
- Music — The Pirate Bay, 1337x, and LimeTorrents have tons of torrents with audio files.
- Apps — You can find tons of apps for all platforms on 1337x and The Pirate Bay. RARBG is also a good option if you only need Windows apps.
Keep in mind that using torrent sites to download copyrighted content is illegal in some countries. Make sure you check the laws in your country to make sure it’s safe and legal to access and use torrent sites.
Are torrenting sites safe?
Top torrent sites like RARBG, 1337x, and The Pirate Bay are generally safe, but there’s always a risk that you might come across malicious files if you download unverified torrents. Plus, pretty much all torrent sites have ads, and some of them might be malicious.
So on top of using safe torrent sites, I also recommend that you get a top antivirus — that way, you’ll protect your device from malware infections while torrenting. My favorite antivirus is Norton because it has a very powerful scanning engine and also includes ransomware protection.
I also recommend using a good torrenting VPN to secure your P2P traffic. My top pick is ExpressVPN because it has excellent P2P support, high-end security features (including Threat Manager, which can block shady sites), and very fast download speeds.
Why do I need a VPN to torrent files safely?
A VPN encrypts your traffic (makes it unreadable, so nobody can see what files you download), and it changes your IP address (only the VPN’s IP address is visible online). Without a VPN, your ISP can see your P2P traffic, which they can throttle if they want to “discourage” you from torrenting. Also, anyone in the torrent swarm will be able to see your real IP address.
What is a torrent client?
A torrent client (like Vuze, Deluge, uTorrent, and qBittorrent) is an app you install on your device, which you use to download torrents. The torrent client is responsible for reading the metadata in the torrent files and connecting you to users who are uploading the file so that you can download it from them.
Torrent clients are free to use, though some (like uTorrent) have paid plans. qBittorrent is my favorite one because it’s open-source, lightweight, and doesn’t have ads.