Nord VPN

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The detailed NordVPN review

We will say it straight away that in this NordVPN review we won’t be maintaining suspense until the last line. Therefore, let’s begin the NordVPN review by stating that this is so far the best VPN service in the industry, as confirmed by such respectable tech magazine as PC Mag. This year, NordVPN was the only service that got all green checks from this magazine in its lineup of the best VPN services in the world. If you are not convinced by the evaluation of PC Mag, you should also know that CNN, BuzzFeed, Wired, and many other well-known publications featured extremely positive Nord VPN reviews. But let’s substantiate these praiseful NordVPN reviews with some solid facts about all of its features.

The safety of browsing experience

So, is NordVPN safe? First of all, it is necessary to note that NordVPN is owned by the company of the same name which is registered in Panama. This is great news for all proponents of anonymous online surfing because this particular country is not subject to any data retention laws that could be enforced by the 14 Eyes Alliance or any other official intelligence agency. The second point concerns the question that has been asked many times by VPN users from all over the world, “Does NordVPN keep logs?”. The answer is very definitive, and it is stated on their official website. NordVPN adheres to its ultra-strict no-log policy. Moreover, the company claims that they don’t collect information about the duration of browsing sessions, the used IP addresses or servers. It was written in other NordVPN reviews, and confirmed on the company’s official website, that NordVPN does use some ticket and live chat tools, as well as Google Analytics, for the purposes of improving the user experience. However, it is surely not something that one should be worried about.

The security measures adopted by NordVPN are not limited to the no-log policy and jurisdiction. They also have the double VPN and CyberSec features as well as the military-grade encryption. Our NordVPN review wouldn’t be complete without the detailed information about all of these features.

Double VPN is also known as the chainage of VPN servers. In essence, it is the process of concealing the user’s online activity by redirecting the traffic to the additional VPN server where it gets encrypted again. Even if the Internet service provider recognizes that you are using VPN, your online activity will remain untraceable due to the additional encryption and the intermingling of both UDP and TCP protocols. Such a double encryption may not be necessary for those who engage in recreational browsing (watching TV series and enjoying some other entertaining content) but it is vital for socially and politically active people who reside in countries with severe Internet censorship.

CyberSec blocks ads and potential malware thus improving your browsing experience. When writing this NordVPN review, we have deliberately tested this feature and it would be safe to say that CyberSec is an incredible addition to the overall security structure of NordVPN. It turned out that one of our computers was infected with malware that would have forced it to participate in a DDoS attack. Moreover, it blocked two websites that were deemed potentially dangerous, and our browsing session wasn’t interrupted by a single pop-ad.

Finally, the most important security feature of this NordVPN review, which is military-grade encryption. NordVPN employs two types of encryption, namely OpenVPN, which is basically a general standard for all VPN services, and the most advanced version of IKEv2/IPSec called the Next Generation Encryption. The encryption experts have stated in many other Nord VPN reviews that this particular version of the protocol can’t be cracked even by the most powerful computers in the world. Therefore, it is highly recommended to always utilize this protocol, especially if you are using the devices that run on the iOS or MacOS operating systems.

The usage of the OpenVPN protocol is common among other providers but it should be mentioned that NordVPN employs the most sophisticated version of this algorithm, particularly AES-256-CBC which is enhanced by the 2048-bit DH key.

We are certain that this part of our Nord VPN review alone can convince you to purchase this VPN client due to the fact that it provides an unparalleled level of protection and anonymity which is essential for online browsing.                               

Pricing and offered services

Surely, the first thing that most people would like to know when they start reading this NordVPN review is the pricing policy of this company and what services will the users get for their money. NordVPN offers its users three service plans, two of which come with the decent discount offers:

  • The 1-month plan can be purchased for $11.95 per month with no discount included. Frankly speaking, this plan is a bit pricey, especially compared to other VPN services, but the users will surely get the supreme quality of services for this money.
  • The 6-month plan will cost you $9 per month. You will be billed the total amount of $54 on a semi-annual basis.
  • Finally, the 1-year plan that comes at a price of $6.99 per month of usage. At the moment, it is the most lucrative deal of all, since you will get a massive 41% discount and a full refund of the paid amount, in case you won’t be satisfied with their level of services, which is highly unlikely.

Nord VPN download feature also has the 30-day money-back guarantee which has become an industry standard, although not all VPN providers have this feature. As for the payment options, the choice is quite vast, and ranges from the conventional methods to the ones that are more innovative. You can purchase any of the NordVPN service plans using the following financial outlets:

  • Banking cards: Visa, Mastercard, Amex, Discover; PayPal;
  • Cryptocurrencies: Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple;
  • Alternative payment methods: Alipay, GiroPay, Sofort, WebMoney, and Yandex.Money.

Let’s continue our NordVPN review with the overview of services and features provided by this company.       

The possibility to combine Nord VPN download options or NordVPN torrent with the Onion network. For your information, the Onion network, also known as Tor, is a set of servers that encrypts the online traffic by the virtue of different exit nodes in various locations. The combination of Tor and NordVPN give users an unprecedented level of anonymization and protection. NordVPN provides a separate Onion over VPN server which connects the user directly to the mentioned network, thus relieving him or her of the hassle of installing and configuring the Tor browser.

As mentioned in other Nord VPN reviews, this provider offers not one but two types of automatic kill switches that protect the sensitive information from being exposed to the third parties. The first one is designed for the desktop versions of MacOS and Windows. This kill switch allows the user to configure the list of applications that would be shut down in case of unexpected disruption of the VPN connection. Some NordVPN reviews contain information that the company has plans to improve this particular type of kill switch to make it capable of shutting down the Internet connection completely.

The second type of kill switch works on Android and iOS mobile devices, and it provides for the system-wide termination of access to any of the app of the user’s device in case the existing VPN connection gets compromised.

Users can also perform two types of test for DNS leaks: the standard and the extended ones, directly within their Nord VPN download client. These tests will allow them to figure out whether their traffic is subject to the ISP throttling or even possible data theft. This is a very useful feature which is not offered by many VPN providers.

Peer-to-peer data sharing. This is another feature that was widely praised by many, allows for secure transfer of sensitive data directly between the network participants. The P2P data exchange has many benefits, but it is highly advisable to engage in it only when using the VPN secured connection. The combination of Double VPN and the Onion network, provided by NordVPN, ensures the swiftness and the integrity of data communication. 

Netflix unblocking capabilities

In order to figure out whether Nord VPN Netflix unblocking capabilities can meet the industry standards, and find out if NordVPN torrenting performance can do the same, we would have to include the overview of servers and download/upload speed in our review NordVPN. Currently, NordVPN has 4957 high-performing servers which are located in 62 countries. The majority of servers are located in Europe and the countries of both North and South Americas. Here is the NordVPN server list. All of these servers were designed and carefully optimized to meet the need of the most demanding customers:

  • Dedicated IP server provides a separate IP address for each user.
  • Double VPN server, the extra-secure servers which were already described in our Nord VPN review.
  • Obfuscated servers which are capable of fouling the trails of online activities. These servers are indispensable for users from such countries as North Korea or China where Internet traffic is heavily regulated and censored.

The rest of the servers include the Onion Open VPN servers and the P2P servers, also described in our Nord VPN Review, as well as the industry-standard VPN servers with the usual set of features.

As for the NordVPN speed, it is not the most impressive but certainly much higher than the speed output, displayed by the majority of other VPN services. If you are living somewhere in Europe, then you can count of having the following NordVPN download/upload speed indexes: the download speed will be at around 74 Mbps, the upload speed may get as high as 48 Mbps with 40ms ping. The speed indexes of the US-based services may be 25 to 30% lower.

So, now we’ve come to one of the most interesting parts of this Nord VPN review which will answer the question, “Whether NordVPN torrenting and NordVPN Netflix streaming capacities are as good as their competitors’?”

The answer is a definite “yes”! Given this the good Nord VPN download/upload speed is close to being incredible, the users can engage in NordVPN torrenting without experiencing significant speed decreasements. Moreover, NordVPN provides the unlimited bandwidth, so when you use the combination of NordVPN uTorrent, you won’t have any ISP throttling whatsoever.

Speaking of NordVPN Netflix, it unblocks this popular streaming service quite easily. To be precise, NordVPN has six servers (three in the United States, and the rest on the territory of the UK, Netherlands, and Canada). Moreover, NordVPN has a special feature called SmartPlay technology that allows access to various streaming platforms, including Netflix, without any additional steps, like registration of installation of third-party software. The speed of streaming is also quite good, even if you are accessing Netflix from Europe or Asia. If you manage to find the appropriate server, it would be possible to watch all popular shows in HD quality.  

Are there any extra features like a NordVPN trial period?

Unfortunately, there is no NordVPN trial option offered, but you can always purchase the 1-month plan and then exercise the 30-day money-back guarantee option to get a refund. This way, you will get at least some sort of the Nord VPN trial period. However, we are more than certain that after reading our NordVPN review, and maybe some other Nord VPN review, you won’t be even thinking about exercising this option. In our opinion, NordVPN offers a truly vast amount of features and services; therefore, in our Nord review, we have slightly overlooked the absence of a free trial period because this company offers a really great product.           

Next articleWhy use the best VPN for Android?
Herman Stark
Herman Stark
I've worked for several companies in the security area managing Firewall and Routers, dealing with Intrusion Prevention, and a lot more. My background allows me to adequately asses VPN providers from the technical point of you. I hope that my objective reviews will help you make the right choice.

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