I am sure that you used torrents at least once in your lifetime. But do you know what a torrent is and how it works? Well, first you should know that what we call torrents, are actually P2P (peer-to-peer) networks designed to facilitate file sharing over several computers or devices connected with each other. These computers or devices are called peers and each one has equal privileges.
Computers connected to such a network, allow a portion of their network bandwidth and storage area directly available to other computers in the network. This means that you are actually allowing other participants in the network, access to your computer. While such a network makes sharing a lot easier, it is also quite risky since you don’t know the other participants. This is one of the reasons why clients like Bittorrent are usually considered a security risk.
Another issue with P2P networks is the distribution of pirated content such as movies, games, or music. And this is the main reason why they are carefully monitored by governmental agencies. We all heard of various cases when huge fines or even jail time was applied to users who downloaded and distributed such content. So how can you still use P2P networks and make sure you don’t end up on a list on someone’s desk? Well, the safest way is to use the best P2P VPN service – this way your real IP will be hidden from any prying eyes.
Now that we mentioned the best P2P VPN, it’s time to offer a proper explanation of what is such a service. If you are familiar with what a VPN does, then you know that the main purpose of such a solution is to hide your real network details and encrypt the information you send so it can’t be poked into. If you use the Internet without the protection of a VPN, your ISP and any other person with some technical skills can find out who you really are and what you’re doing online.
With a P2P network, you don’t even need skills as your IP is visible to anyone using that network. It’s that easy. So, to protect your information and remain hidden from the rest of the peers, the best P2P VPN will offer both access to the network and privacy (by hiding your real IP address).
But why do you need a special VPN that is designed to use P2P? Don’t all VPNs provide security and online privacy? Well, while some of the best solutions out there will keep you protected and hidden, not all allow using P2P networks. Because of the stigma that people use them for illegal downloads, many providers prefer to block access. It’s easier this way.
So, if you do use the BitTorrent protocol, you will need a VPN provider that allows access to it.
How to evaluate P2P VPN
Now that you know you will need a special VPN solution to continue using Bittorrent, let’s discuss the main features such a solution should have. Besides the usual ones, the best P2P VPN service must also implement a few additional features that will fit this particular situation.
The main concern when it comes to your online privacy is connected to your provider’s log policy. Here is specified if the VPN service keeps logs and the type of logs that are kept. There are several types of logs kept by VPN services, but the most important ones are logs which would allow a real IP address to be matched with the user account in the VPN. Also, these logs may contain time stamps and traffic information pointing to what the user did while using the VPN.
VPN services that don’t keep logs at all are preferred in this situation. So, make sure to check the policy carefully and ask before submitting for a subscription. Services like Express VPN and IPVanish are most recommended in this case as they are true to their log policy.
Another piece of information you need to know about your provider, is the country where the headquarters is based. If the country is in Europe or the USA, then they are required by law to keep logs and to hand them over the authorities when asked.
Yes, you found the best P2P VPN provider which can assure your online privacy, but it is not compatible with your router or your mobile devices. This will raise frustrations and you will end up ditching the provider because of this. A good VPN provider must offer easy to use clients (the software that comes on your device) that can be installed on most modern operating systems. They must support both desktop and mobile devices, but you shouldn’t stop here. The best P2P VPN should have clients for router installation and other devices as well.
Encryption Type and protocols
The encryption used to make your browsing secure depends on the security protocol used for the connection. When it comes to torrenting, the preferred protocols are PPTP, L2TP/IPSec, and SSTP. These provide your connection with a fair balance between speed and encryption level so you won’t be losing speed over security or vice versa. However, PPTP is known to be easily broken by governmental agencies and SSTP (Secure Socket Tunneling Protocol) is not the best to ensure your online anonymity.
L2TP/IPSec is more secure as it provides your connection with a double-layered encryption, but this is also felt in the download speed. However, the speed loss is not that drastic and you will still be able to share and download files without frustration.
One of the most secure and recommended protocols is OpenVPN because it provides the strongest encryption. However, it is not a friend with high speeds and it may hinder your download. Protocols like PPTP and SSTP come with 40-bit to 128-bit weak low-level encryption and this translates into higher speeds. Still, if you’re afraid of being discovered, OpenVPN is the best protocols to use since it uses a 256-bit encryption key.
The best P2P VPN service must be able to work with most firewall protocols installed on various computers. Even more, it should have a kill switch that will warn the user when the VPN connection is down and stop the connection when this happens. This keeps you away from being accidentally discovered.
The Support Team
Support is of extreme importance when it comes to a VPN solution and you should have unlimited access to the team. Some of the best solutions out there also offer a knowledge database where you can find tutorials (video and text) and answers to a wide range of questions.
The support team must be professional, polite, and readily available regardless of the time you need assistance. This way you can either call or send a message and get answers in the shortest time possible.
P2P Servers location
Before thinking about the location of the P2P servers, it’s best to check if such servers exist in the network. If not, this is not the best P2P VPN you are looking for.
If P2P servers exist, check their location. A quick warning: many P2P servers are not located in the US because the law doesn’t allow it. Still, this won’t affect you in any way since the content is uploaded by users and it doesn’t matter the location. The location is important for speed – the closer the server it is to your geographical location, the higher the speed it will be.
Another feature you must consider is the type of IP the VPN provider uses. Most solutions used both types (Shared and dedicated), but for P2P connections, a shared IP is the best way to keep you hidden.
If you truly need to stay anonymous, then you should choose a VPN solution that supports payments via Bitcoin. Any other payment method can be linked back to your real-life persona.
Own DNS Servers
All online requests (e.g.: when you introduce the address of a page in your browser) are solved via a DNS server. These are usually public and can be used to trace your steps online, even if you use a VPN service. This is why it’s important to choose a service that owns its own DNS servers, like Express VPN. This way, your activity via the DNS server is protected by the same protocols and encryption keys.
As you can see, it goes a bit more effort into finding the best P2P VPN service. There are more features to consider and you need to think a bit more about this. However, once you identify the perfect service, you won’t have to worry about your activity being monitored when you’re using BitTorrent. Also, you are protected against people who try to invade your device and steal your personal data. With the best P2P VPN service, your torrenting just became a lot safer and relaxing so, lean back and enjoy your downloads!
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