Best VPN for Italy in 2019
Italy is somewhere in the middle when it comes to internet censorship in comparison to other countries. While it allows its citizens to access a great deal of content on the internet, there are strict regulations on public networks and gambling sites. If a gambling site is not licensed in the country, users will find that access to it is blocked automatically. To bypass these content blocks, among others, as well as protect privacy when online while in Italy, the easiest thing to do is use a VPN.
This article investigates what the best VPNs to use for Italy are while also investigating further why internet access is sometimes limited in Italy and why exactly and more specifically, why a VPN helps workaround those limitations.
Top 3 VPNs for Italy
Knowing how a VPN helps users in Italy is all very well, but there are so many VPN providers these days on the market. With so many options out there, it can be hard to know which VPNs are worth your money. Here are a few of the most popular ones on the web, and how they compare for speed, security, and accessibility in Italy.
#1 Choice: ExpressVPN
ExpressVPN is definitely the industry leader for VPNs, and for good reason. Their connection speed is unparalleled, making them great for things that demand a fast connection, like online gaming and streaming. We also like it for these reasons:
- Guaranteed Connections – ExpressVPN is incredibly reliable, so your information is never left exposed because of a drop from the server. It also means that should you be watching a film or TV show, you won’t experience any buffering plus, you can be sure that you will be able to connect to a server.
- Market Leading Customer Service – Where ExpressVPN really shines is their customer support. They have staff available 24/7 to answer your questions via live chat and email. The service is exceptionally prompt with the average email response times less than 20 minutes. So even if you are traveling in Italy and away from home, you know you can get a VPN connection quickly even if you have come across a problem.
- Money Back Guarantee On top of that, ExpressVPN guarantees their service with a no-questions-asked 30 day money back guarantee, so you never have to worry about haggling for a refund. They even have an awesome referral program that gives you and a friend a month of free service when you get them to sign up.
- Unlimited Bandwidth – As far as their plans go, you get completely unlimited bandwidth and a number of simultaneous connections with all of them, so you can protect both a home and mobile device for no additional charge. Having unlimited bandwidth is a must so that you never have to worry about your VPN connection cutting out when in Italy.
- Multi Platform Compatibility – ExpressVPN’s software is compatible with all major operating systems, and is super easy to use. So whatever device or system you use when in Italy, you can ensure that your connection is secure with this provider’s VPN.
Plus, with military-grade encryption, your data is always private, and always secure. If you want fast connections that are secure, ExpressVPN is the provider to use.
Read our full ExpressVPN review now.
This is one of the newer VPNs on the market, being around since 2011, which has been recently acquired by the security tech giant McAfee. You will have no issues browsing the net securely and taking care of finances using internet banking in Italy. The only issue we have with this VPN service is the online ticketing support system which takes longer to answer your questions than online chat services which provide almost instant communication between you and customer service. That being said, we do like TunnelBear for the following reasons:
- Simple to use – If you are unsure about using any VPN service and are hesitant to get started before going on your trip to Italy, you should know that TunnelBear is probably the simplest VPN service available. Everything is laid out in an easy-to-understand manner and there aren’t too many technical terms thrown around in their advanced settings.
- Truly anonymous – Unlike many VPN services TunnelBear offers one of the most ample privacy policies around. You don’t have to worry about TunnelBear recording the IP addresses visiting its site, IP addresses upon service connection, DNS queries while connected or any information about the applications, services or websites you may use whilst connected to the TunnelBear service.
- Freemium option available – There is a free version of the TunnelBear VPN service available if you do not want to commit straight away. You will get 500MB of free data, with an additional 1GB of data if you say nice things about TunnelBear on Twitter. There is also a 30-day money-back guarantee if you choose to sign up for their paid subscription.
- Affordability is key – When you’re traveling you want to save as much money as possible. This is where the TunnelBear one-year plan comes in. It will save you 50% on the usual monthly rate you usually pay. You can use various payment methods including the usual credit cards, but there is also the option to pay with Bitcoin which will ensure maximum anonymity. There is also an option to pay with jars of honey, but we’re not sure where to send those.
All in all, this is a great service, particularly those that are wary of using a VPN for the first time.
HideMyAss has long been a popular VPN on the market and it is definitely an option for those that cannot get a connection to IP Vanish and ExpressVPN when in Italy. The only thing that really does the company a disservice is the customer support department which does not provide fast enough answers to customer queries. However, we do rate it for the following reasons:
- A Truly Global Network: HideMyAss has a network of servers that are dotted around the globe in over 150 countries. The result is, that even in Italy with its strict internet censorship laws, users can access any content they want due to the ability to circumnavigate geo restrictions.
- Vast Network: By having a lot of servers in many countries, users of HideMyAss can be assured of a connection whenever they want it as there will always be a server available to them. In short, the more servers a VPN provider has, the better.
- Multiple device connections: When VPN providers offer many simultaneous connections, they are providing their users with more options. HideMyAss grants access to a VPN on many devices at once, so even if subscribers are away traveling with family members in other countries, they can all connect to a VPN under the same subscription plan at the same time.
Why Is My Access Limited In Italy?
For instance, the country has strict bans on gambling sites that are not licensed in the country. Ultimately, this is a decision made by the government. In part this is motivated by money and taxes, and in part motivated by wanting to stop making gambling too easily available to citizens.
Another internet limitation was implemented in Italy in 2007, with the OpenNet Initiative which determined that access to 7,000 websites was filtered. On top of that, only 32% of internet users in Italy have access to Wi-Fi, thanks to the country’s strict limitations on establishing public networks. While this does have its upsides, as it stops hackers from making use of public networks to hack into someone’s device, it is quite frustrating for native Italians or visitors.
So for those living in Italy or planning on visiting, one of the simplest and most effective ways around these limitations and restrictions, is using a VPN. We look at the legality of this below, but VPNs are definitely a method of unblocking the majority of content on the internet and preventing government surveillance from spying on your activity.
How Will A VPN Help You In Italy?
VPNs, or Virtual Private Networks, are like secret tunnels in the internet. It’s a paid subscription service that gives you privacy and a secure connection while opening up your access to blocked content, regardless of your geographic location. Here’s how it works:
- You sign up for a service plan through a company.
- Once you download the software, you select a server location and connect.
- Your IP address is masked, and you’re given an IP address for the country of the server you’ve chosen, circumventing content blocks entirely.
- Your data is encrypted, so even if it is intercepted, it’s completely secure and private.
VPNs are extremely good at what they do and are handy for getting around content restrictions as well as protecting your data on unsecured networks.
In short, connecting to a VPN provider’s servers makes a user based in Italy, look like he or she is elsewhere so that they can access content that is blocked for geographical reasons.
Privacy Laws and Regulations
Given that Italy has strong restrictions when it comes to internet usage, especially when compared to other European countries, it is good to question what are the regulations and laws regarding VPNs in that country. More specifically, it is good to question what the laws and regulations are when using a VPN to bypass those very restrictions and limitations.
The answer is that VPNs are legal to have on your computer or device in Italy. However, what a VPN subscriber uses it for is what causes a bit more confusion. In short, if a VPN subscriber uses a VPN to access sites that are deemed illegal by the Italian government, then that subscriber is subject to the laws and punishments of that action should they be caught. The same is the case if they use a VPN to hide their identity for illegal cyber activity.
It is also worth noting here that Italy has a more stringent approach to monitoring its citizens’ online usage. In 2006, Italy made the EU’s 2006 data retention directive into law. This means that Italian internet service providers are required by law to record and archive customer information. This includes IP addresses, billing information, and websites that users visit as well as the recipients of emails.
Streaming Italian Services Abroad
VPNs work whatever country you are in, so if you are an Italian who is abroad, you can also use your VPN to access content that is only accessible in Italy. This means that if you subscribe to video content libraries like Netflix, from an Italian account, you can still view all your favorite films and TV shows whenever you travel overseas.
Italian Netflix is available here.
The Bottom Line
Italy is something of an anomaly when it comes to access and restriction in Europe. Their tight regulation of public networks has limited their population severely in regards to wireless access. Plus, it’s clear that more legislation is in the works to impose further content filtering and surveillance.
Though these measures may seem restrictive, ExpressVPN is a simple and effective way around them. By routing your connection through a secure server in another country, you can bypass content blocks entirely. State of the art encryption keeps your data safe from hackers, and IP address blocking makes you untraceable by snooping government agencies.
Ultimately, to take back your privacy and access blocked content in Italy, use ExpressVPN.