10 Best VPN Extensions for Chrome (Free & Paid)

best vpn extensions for chrome

Whenever you use the internet, your browser is always collecting and sending information about you to every single website you visit.

Some of this information includes data such as:

  • Your IP address
  • Your location
  • Your operating system
  • Your computer hardware
  • Whether any other devices are connected to the same network

While you may not care whether Google knows this information about you, what about other websites that are malicious in nature? When you browse the internet with an unprotected browser, your personal information is ripe for the picking.

It doesn’t have to be this way, though—there are plenty of brilliant extensions for Google Chrome, the world’s most popular internet browser, that you can use to protect your information when you’re online.

These extensions are all offered by leading VPN companies you may have already heard of.

As general consumer awareness surrounding privacy has grown, so has the use of VPNs. There are now several high-quality VPN services out there that you can use to cover your tracks online, hide your information, and unblock regional restrictions through streaming sites such as Netflix.

With just a few clicks on your browser, you can protect yourself from Google tracking your every move.

The 10 Best VPN Extensions for Google Chrome

These are the 10 VPN Chrome extensions that we have come across during our VPN review process and think are the best. Ease-of-use, superior features, and solid privacy protection all factored into our decision.

1. ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN is by far the best all-around VPN service that delivers fast, secure, and consistently reliable service with its thousands of servers located in over 150 different countries.

With a valid ExpressVPN subscription, you can add their extension to Chrome in a matter of seconds and benefit from comprehensive protection of your Chrome-based internet activity. It’s worth noting, though, that ExpressVPN’s Chrome extension will not work unless you have their desktop app installed.

The Chrome extension itself performs very well, just as you would expect with any ExpressVPN product.

At the time of this review, ExpressVPN boasts having over 501,000 active installs.

Although they do not offer a free trial, their entire VPN product comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee with no questions asked. This means you can take ExpressVPN for a spin risk-free and get a refund if you’re not impressed—unlikely!

If you do decide to subscribe, their cheapest plan comes to $8.32 per month for a one-year subscription billed annually at $99.84.

Try ExpressVPN

2. NordVPN

NordVPN is almost exactly the same as ExpressVPN, the only difference being that NordVPN is just slightly less expensive.

Just like ExpressVPN, you need a valid subscription to NordVPN in order to use their Google Chrome extension. It can be installed as a standalone extension though—you do not need to have NordVPN installed on your desktop to use it.

Service-wise, there are thousands of servers located across a smaller selection of countries. Performance is consistently great—you don’t lose much speed up or down—and they operate a proven anti-logging policy.

At the time of writing this review, NordVPN has over 236,000 active installs.

You can try out NordVPN with a 7-day free trial. They also offer a 30-day money-back guarantee, but go ahead and use their free trial before making a purchase. 7 days is enough time to decide whether you want to buy a subscription or not.

Their lowest price starts at just $2.99 per month on their 3-year plan for a grand total of $107.64.

Try NordVPN

3. Windscribe

Windscribe offers the full and unrestricted version of its service on the Google Chrome store for free. There is a catch, however—you can only use 10GB worth of data per month unless you pay for a subscription.

We aren’t going to pretend that 10GB of data isn’t a lot though, it is a respectable amount of data that you can easily get a lot of use out of. That said, if you’re someone who wants to remain connected all the time and/or stream a lot of content, it won’t be enough.

So far as their service goes, Windscribe offers strong encryption and a decent number of servers while performing at a level that’s good enough for most activities.

Windscribe VPN is quite popular as a freemium VPN – the Chrome web store shows there are nearly 900,000 users.

Windscribe Pro is available from $9.00 per month or $4.08 per month when billed annually at $49.

Try Windscribe

4. TunnelBear

TunnelBear offers a free version of their premium VPN service that offers access to their Google Chrome extension.

The service itself is very good. It has all the features you would expect–it doesn’t log anything, and it doesn’t slow down your speeds.

The Chrome extension is very easy to use… it certainly passes the newbie test so far as we’re concerned! One drawback, however, is that you only get 500MB of free data per month. This may sound like a lot, but it wouldn’t take a regular internet user long to burn through, even if you abstain from streaming content.

Although there’s a cap, it seems over 843,000 users still enjoy this VPN extension on Chrome.

If you like TunnelBear after trying it out, you can buy unlimited data on a month-to-month basis for $9.99, or $59.99 when billed annually.

Try TunnelBear

5. Ivacy

It only takes a matter of minutes, if not seconds, to install Ivacy on Chrome. You don’t need to install their desktop app for it to work either.

Ivacy is renowned for providing fast and consistently reliable service with over 1,000 servers located across 100+ locations. The breadth of locations is nearly as vast as those offered by ExpressVPN or NordVPN.

When you connect via the Chrome app, you are automatically assigned to an optimum server, but you can easily switch to a different one. The app itself is nifty, fast, and simple to use.

The pricing for their premium service starts at $9.95 monthly. But if you usign up for 2 years, you get a crazy 77% discount. The price drops to a mere $2.25 per month if you get it now.

Try Ivacy

6. ibVPN

Don’t let the missing icon fool you, it’s a great VPN!

To install and use Betternet, you need to create an account. Once you’re logged in, you can manage the VPN quite easily; one click connect and even a nice server picker.

You can sign up for ibVPN for $4.95 per month. And you can even try it for free for 24 hours to get a feel for this VPN Chrome extension.

If you want to sign up for a yearly payment plan, it averages to $3.08 per month. Cheap!

Try ibVPN

7. CyberGhost

CyberGhost offers a free proxy for Google Chrome that installs very quickly and is easy to use—there’s only an on/off button and a menu you can use to switch locations.

While it’s free, fast, and easy to use, you’re very limited in server choice—at the time of writing, there are only four locations available—and the performance isn’t as good as their flagship desktop app. When connected, all your traffic is encrypted, and your information is safe.

CyberGhost says it cannot guarantee that their Chrome extension will protect against leaking when using the free version… this seems like a strange way of persuading people to subscribe to their premium service, but they are quite reputable.

Almost 100,000 users!

Try CyberGhost

8. Private Internet Access (PIA)

PIA is one of the cheapest VPNs available at a budget-friendly price of $6.95 per month on a rolling monthly basis. This comes down to a tiny $2.91 per month when you purchase a two-year subscription at $69.95.

Their pricing doesn’t mean they compromise on performance either.

We’re big fans of PIA—although they’re based in the U.S., they came out on top of two court cases where authorities failed to force them to disclose information about their users. Given that PIA has an anti-logging policy, the information they did have probably wasn’t very interesting or substantial.

Their Chrome extension is just as fast and simple to use as their flagship desktop VPN, and they use the latest standards in encryption and tunneling to protect your data.

Try PIA

9. Hide.me

For some reason, hide.me doesn’t have their Chrome extension on Google’s Chrome web store. And don’t be fooled by the one being offered by hideme.io – it’s not reliable and is not the same as the one being offered by hide.me.

The nice thing is, hide.me also has a freemium model – you can use hide.me for free. It comes with a 2GB data transfer cap.

You will definitely want to upgrade, in which case, you should remember their monthly subscription cost – $4.99.

If you pay for the most expensive subscription, it’s $9.99 per month.
Try hide.me

10. GoBestVPN Search Extension

To help you in your search for the best VPN products online, we created a simple extension that lets you search for reviews on your Chrome browser.

If you want quick access to unbiased reviews on over 100+ VPNs, simply install the tool and you’re good to go!

Get GoBestVPN Search Extension


DO NOT GET THESE FREE CHROME EXTENSIONS

DotVPN

Nearly 1 million vulnerable users.

DotVPN’s free Chrome extension is very basic and limited. It can still be used as a quick and simple solution when you need to temporarily cover yourself online. It’s by no means restricted to the point where it’s rendered useless, that’s for sure.

You do need to sign up if you want to use DotVPN for free and this means you’ll receive marketing emails with DotVPN trying to get you to sign up for their premium service.

DotVPN’s Chrome extension is slow. Don’t even try to stream anything. Also, it’s worth noting that DotVPN is based in Hong Kong and is subject to China’s questionable privacy laws.

The premium version costs too much  for a slow, non-working VPN – $4.99 monthly.

Read Our DotVPN Review

Hola

8 million+ users who are vulnerable

Hola is a popular Chrome-only VPN that’s free, easy to install, and comes with unlimited usage. The catch is that you need to connect to Hola each time you visit a site you want to be protected on.

It’s easy to use the Hola app to select and connect to a country and the service works well enough. It’s slow but you can’t really complain when you’re using something that’s completely free.

Each time you navigate to a new site, though, your connection to Hola drops. It’s important to keep this in mind as you could accidentally expose yourself.

The VPN is a P2P network, meaning you’re leaving yourself extremely vulnerable as well.

We do not recommend using the free version let alone pay for this VPN.

Read Our Hola VPN Review

Ivacy VPN Review

In this review, we look at one of the cheapest VPNs on the market: Ivacy VPN.

Usually, cheap VPNs equate to poor VPN services… this is a sad fact. Ivacy, however, is the exception to the rule.

Let’s see if the industry’s top reviewers are right about Ivacy VPN.

Ivacy VPN Specs & Offers

VPN Name Ivacy
Leak Test No Leaks
Logging Policy No Logs
Speed Fast
Torrenting Torrenting & P2P Allowed
Netflix Unblocks Netflix
Jurisdiction Cooperative With Eyes
Servers / Countries 1000 / 55
Max Connections 5
Kill Switch Has Kill Switch
Anonymous Payment Methods Crypto
Free Trial 7 Days, 500 MB, 30 Sessions
Refunds 7/30 Days*
Customer Support 24/7 Live Chat, Email
Price Starting From $1.33

Ivacy VPN Pros

Pioneer of Split Tunneling?


Ivacy claims to have pioneered split tunneling – this is a feature that allows you to route some of your traffic directly to the Internet while routing the rest of the traffic securely through a VPN.

This feature helps you manage your connection by giving you options. It’s always good to have options. Options for all your Windows, macOS, Android and iOS devices, that is.

Today, gamers seek this sort of feature so that they can keep their low ping for better game performance while keeping a VPN on.

While we can’t verify how Ivacy pioneered this feature, one thing is for sure: it’s an awesome feature to have and decent VPNs do provide this option nowadays.

Servers and Locations: 1000+ and counting

Ivacy hosts a little over 1000 servers and they claim that they continue to grow. Ivacy seems to stick to their word since the server count was sitting at 450 at the end of 2018.

Comparing it to other budget VPN services, 1000 is blowing the competitors out of the water.

What we particularly like about their servers is how they’ve spread apart throughout the globe – in 55 countries (100+ locations).

This is very different from other services that concentrate servers in NA and the EU.

Just based on their server offering, it seems like Ivacy knows what it’s doing.

Want to see something crazy? Ferguson, the live chat support agent for Ivacy confirmed that Ivacy has over 100,000 IPs. Bigger numbers are better, right? RIGHT?

Obfuscated Servers: VPN for everyone

In reality, not all countries allow the use of VPN. Take Russia or China for example.

This is where obfuscated servers come into play.

Obfuscated servers mask your VPN as normal traffic so your ISP would not know that you are connected to one.

This is very useful in censorship-heavy countries where only government accredited VPNs are allowed. Using those VPNs is like going to an open buffet. The government will freely watch your activities, thereby defeating the purpose of a VPN.

Speed and Performance: One of the fastest budget VPNs

As your speed tests go, our longtime readers know that we run tests from North America and Europe to North America, Europe and Asia. Six results in total!

North American VPN Server Speed Test

NA Baseline
(Without VPN)
Test Results
(to NA Server)
EU Baseline
(Without VPN)
Test Results
(to EU Server)
Ping
(5 ms)
17 ms (+12 ms) Ping
(90 ms)
99 ms (+9 ms)
Download
(98.6 Mbps)
73.2 Mbps
(-25.4 Mbps, -26%)
Download
(87.4 Mbps)
84.6 Mbps
(-2.8 Mbps, -3%)
Upload
(98.4 Mbps)
71.2 Mbps
(-27.2 Mbps, -28%)
Upload
(56.3 Mbps)
56.7 Mbps
(+0.4 Mbps, +1%)

 

European VPN Server Speed Test

NA Baseline
(Without VPN)
Test Results
(to NA Server)
EU Baseline
(Without VPN)
Test Results
(to EU Server)
Ping
(93 ms)
120 ms (+27 ms) Ping
(27 ms)
27 ms (0 ms)
Download
(92 Mbps)
63.4 Mbps
(-28.6 Mbps, -31%)
Download
(99.1 Mbps)
88.9 Mbps
(-10.2 Mbps, -10%)
Upload
(58.6 Mbps)
50.6 Mbps
(-8 Mbps, -14%)
Upload
(98.7 Mbps)
89.6 Mbps
(-9 Mbps, -9%)

 

Asian VPN Server Speed Test

NA Baseline
(Without VPN)
Test Results
(to NA Server)
EU Baseline
(Without VPN)
Test Results
(to EU Server)
Ping
(278 ms)
301 ms (+23 ms) Ping
(281 ms)
222 ms (-59 ms)
Download
(46.9 Mbps)
18.9 Mbps
(-28 Mbps, -60%)
Download
(57.8 Mbps)
52.2 Mbps
(-5.6 Mbps, -10%)
Upload
(7.9 Mbps)
7.6 Mbps
(-0.4 Mbps, -5%)
Upload
(6.2 Mbps)
7.4 Mbps
(+1.2 Mbps, +19%)

These speeds are quite good if you look at the numbers. The average user won’t notice the difference.

Comparing it to top-tier VPNs, Ivacy would be slightly behind.

But comparing it to budget VPNs? It’s ahead of the competition by miles.

We got decent speeds using Ivacy VPN, more than decent enough for large file transfers and streaming high definition content. In fact, the speeds are also usable even with multiple users connected simultaneously.

Netflix Test: It works!

Whenever we review cheap VPNs, we generally don’t expect Netflix to be accessible. Netflix is quite fast with blocking VPN IP addresses afterall. VPNs that can’t generate new IP addresses easily fall victim to these blocks.

It was a pleasant surprise that Netflix worked with Ivacy VPN on their US servers. Netflix also worked on the mobile apps which is great on-the-go!

Did you know that Ivacy also offers geo-unlocks for other streaming services? More on this in a bit.

Torrenting Policy: Touchingly supportive

Some VPN providers usually stray away from being torrent-friendly due to the bad rap.

So it’s almost surprising to see this kind of policy—they’re really open about being torrent-friendly.

More than that, Ivacy acknowledges that torrents are home to malware and viruses. Ivacy included a Secure Download feature which filters out viruses and malware right from their servers. Our findings reveal that Ivacy uses a mix of malware detection along with keeping a DNS blacklist to simply block dangerous URLs.

This appears to be a neat feature since we could all benefit from an extra level of protection.

One of the Best VPNs for Watching Blocked Content

Ivacy puts a lot of focus on having servers that can bypass geo-restrictions.

If you have Amazon Prime, BBC iPlayer or Hulu, you can stream just as easily as you would with Netflix. Plus let’s not forget about YouTube and such.

Just take a look at their most popular articles:

It seems their customer base seems to overlap with this specific feature. If accessibility to Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, Kodi, BBC iPlayer is important to you, then this is something to keep in mind.

They have a little something for fans of football, UFC and Formula 1 as well!

Pricing & Plans: Super cheap!

Their 2-year plan sits at $54—that places the monthly subscription of Ivacy at just $2.25 a month. That’s incredibly cheap for a VPN!

Compare this price with NordVPN which sits at $2.99 per month for a 3 year plan. So not only do you end up paying less total, but you also pay less per month with Ivacy. In the end, you will get a similar level of performance (well, slightly worse with Ivacy VPN).

If you can commit to a 5-year plan with Ivacy, the price goes even lower.

We have discovered Ivacy’s private 5-year plan that just goes for as little as $1.33 a month. You’d have to pay more than twice this amount for Private Internet Access.

Funnily enough, their 2018 holiday price was at $1.34 (plus a year of Sticky Password subscription). So, believe it or not, they’re offering the best possible price today.

That’s easily one of the cheapest VPNs available on the market.

In case you need a dedicated IP for whatever reasons (you need to whitelist IPs or something), you can also opt-in for that addon which costs about $2 extra per month. There’s a checkbox during the checkout phase for that.

Without privacy in mind… just based on price, servers, and Netflix availability, Ivacy offers an amazing deal.

Payment Methods: Choices, choices, choices

It just keeps getting better, aside from the cheap price, Ivacy offers numerous many ways to pay.

They accept Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies apart from the regular card and PayPal options. It’s a little odd to see that they don’t offer refunds for Coin Payments since all it would take is to look up the TXID and refund the amount in USD value.

They have Alipay, which is very rare to see in VPN providers. Alipay makes it more convenient for Chinese customers to get a VPN subscription. PerfectMoney and Paymentwall are also available, which opens up more than 150 more options for users around the world.

The only things they’re missing are gift cards and cash!

Refund Policy: 30-day money-back guarantee

A normal 1-month subscription is backed by a 7-day money back guarantee.

Since committing to a 5-year plan is a hard decision to make, Ivacy offers an extended trial period. You can try out their service for 30 days and they can refund you your money anytime.We rarely see trials this long (if given, at all) from budget VPNs, and we’re impressed that Ivacy can offer it.

Just remember there is also a bandwidth cap of 500MB and a 30 session limit as well.

If you’re scared of the details, check out their Refund Policy page. Unlike other reviewers, we don’t think this is a big deal that they have such a policy in place. It’s presumably to deter account abuse (ie – people creating unlimited accounts to get a free VPN).

At the same time, consumers shouldn’t have to dig through the refund policy page. At least there’s an asterisk (*) to the guarantee so smart buyers will go read about the policy.

Device Compatibility: There’s something for everyone

For starters, Ivacy covers the basic grounds; Windows, Mac OS, Android, and iOS. They also include browser extensions for Chrome and Firefox which makes use of your VPN more seamless.

But more than that, Ivacy offers a lot of support options for different devices. Ivacy has support for Linux, smart TVs, gaming consoles, and even for Kodi.

This is also quite surprising for a really cheap VPN.

In the event that your device is not on the list, Ivacy supports router configuration. There is even support for routers.

VPN routers allow for more simultaneous connections on a single account and also allows for more types of devices to connect to a VPN.

For instance, if your device doesn’t have a native app and is a huge hassle to configure, a VPN router is the way to go.

Without a router setup, you are limited to 5 simultaneous logins. This means you can use Ivacy VPN on 5 different devices at the same time.

Sign-Up Process: Piece of cake

Signing up for Ivacy is as simple as it gets. You select your plan, select your payment option and that’s it.

Ivacy will lead you into creating an account with a secure password. After that, you would be all set to use Ivacy VPN. Once that’s done, you can input your login credentials inside the app.

The app itself is well-polished and easy to use.

Product Interface: Welcome to 2019?

The entire app is top-notch. There are tabs on the side for various options and the main menu shows your connection details.

If you’re a casual user who doesn’t want to bother with the details, there’s also a button for “one-click connect”.

There are tabs for connecting to streaming servers, torrenting or Secure Download, and for obfuscated servers.

Once you have connected to a VPN server, you can see your status and connection time. You can also give feedback to Ivacy on whether the VPN worked for you or not within the app itself.

The design seems a bit squirky–because it is–and stands out from the rest of the VPNs. Most VPNs either have a minimal interface or a very sloppy one. Ivacy VPN’s design team did a great job with making the app look great.

Customer Support: Live chat, hallelujah!

Ivacy is filled with surprises. Providing live chat at this price point is something we honestly did not expect. Even the VPNs with the highest price points sometimes don’t offer live chat.

The customer support agent was able to answer our questions in less than a minute. With super helpful answers, no less.

We admire Ivacy for putting some resources into customer service.

Product Documentation: Useful Help Center

In case you want to troubleshoot things on your own, you can easily get answers from the Ivacy help center.

The search feature functions well, and the guides and instructions available were well-written and very easy to follow.

Logging Policy: Zero logs

What separates a usable VPN from a great VPN is their log management. Ivacy keeps no logs at all from your online activities. A no-log policy is a must-have for those with privacy and anonymity in mind.

In any case that a retrieval of data would be requested, Ivacy would not be able to divulge any information since they don’t have any.

They do keep your email that you share during the signup process. If your account is inactive for 12 months, your email address is purged from the database. In any case, we recommend using a throwaway email.

IP and DNS Leak Test: All clear

If your VPN leaks your IP address and DNS, say goodbye to anonymity.

Ivacy values your privacy and secures your connection to prevent leaking of any kind.

Our tests show that there are no leaks when connected to Ivacy. They also provide IPv6 leak protection as well!

Encryption and Protocols: Industry standards

When it comes to VPN security, nothing beats 256-Bit AES encryption. At least, in how the industry is accepting different encryptions, that is.

This level of security wards off potential hackers and intruders since it’s nearly impossible to brute force. This level of encryption is being used by the largest banks and government agencies – making this the industry standard.

The slight downside is that in order to use some specific protocols, you need to use the appropriate server. Not all protocols are available on all servers (you can check the full servers list here).

Kill Switch: Avoid being exposed

Ivacy has a kill switch feature which allows for an added layer of security.

Ivacy disconnects your internet connection when it detects a potential leak or when the VPN server loses connection for any reason. Even some premium VPNs don’t offer this feature.

Needless to say, it’s a welcome addition to Ivacy.

The reason why this feature is so important to have is, no VPN has a 100% uptime. Like any server or network, errors do occur and there is a thing called downtime.

Ivacy VPN Cons

No TOR Integration

If you are extra serious with protecting your identity then TOR is a must.

Unfortunately, Ivacy does not support the use of TOR. A big bummer for privacy fans but a cheap VPN like Ivacy can’t have all the features.

For these premium features, you should head over to a premium VPN provider like NordVPN.


Ivacy VPN as a Business

Ivacy was founded in 2006 under the business name PMG Pte. LTD.
The company is quite big – estimations show they have around 100-250 employees.

It’s a private company based in Singapore. The business address is listed at 38 Beach Road #29-11 South Beach Tower Singapore 189767.

Ivacy is one of those VPN companies that keeps many things behind its doors, including the owners and management. As Frank, the PR Manager at Ivacy puts it: “Being a private limited company, there is no legal or ethical obligation to reveal who the people behind Ivacy are.” In fact, it doesn’t seem like any of their employees are on LinkedIn, except for some affiliate managers. There’s no company page or anything.

Ivacy office is inside a building identical to the adjacent building that JW Marriott Hotel sits in. These buildings are quite new and near the marina, and could indicate how well Ivacy is doing as a business.

Ivacy has also been featured on various tech websites for their excellent VPN service.

Ivacy also admitted recently that they have some sort of relationship with PureVPN. They’ve made it very clear that the two independent entities operate independently of each other and that Ivacy only has a minor and limited stakes “only limited to shared infrastructure and for maintaining anonymity.” Simple enough.

Jurisdiction

Ivacy VPN is based in Singapore.

If you’ve never heard of the 5, 9, or 14-eyes alliances, they’re a conglomerate of nations that share intelligence with one another. Aside from intelligence sharing, they’ve also been known to look at the data and online activity of their residents. While it’s great that Singapore is not a member of those alliances, they’ve been known to be cooperative with the 5-eyes alliance.

Ivacy has no reputation for sharing anything, though. In any case, Ivacy keeps no logs of your activity, so theoretically, there should be nothing to worry about.

Ivacy Reviews from Real Users

We checked for any feedback around Ivacy and mostly found spam (and Twitter bots run by affiliates).

But here’s one real user with real feedback!

Here’s a feedback from one Redditor on /r/VPNTorrents:
Card

Ivacy VPN Conclusion: Go and try it

It’s a simple decision, really.

Our Ivacy VPN review showed that not only is Ivacy one of the cheapest VPNs, but it is also one of the most feature-rich.

The speeds are very decent, Netflix works, it’s torrent-friendly, and there are even obfuscated servers to bypass censorship. Ivacy VPN is a prime example of a great VPN that deserves a spot in our top 10 best VPNs list.

There’s nothing else to do but try out Ivacy VPN… unless you prefer extra premium services.

Buy because:
+ Extremely cheap.
+ Huge server/IP count.
+ Split tunneling.
+ Works with Netflix and other streaming services.
+ Wide compatibility.
+ Obfuscated servers.
+ Wide range of payment options.

Things to consider:
Although Singapore isn’t part of any Alliances, they are known to cooperate with the FVEY. (But no logs!)
No TOR.
No refunds for crypto payments.

Get Ivacy

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