Best VPN for Mac in 2021
Users of Macs often think that their devices are totally secure and therefore safe from being hacked or infected with a virus.
This, sadly, is not the case. Here we discuss ways to protect your computer, and other devices, using a specially made VPN for Mac users; so that you can be certain of your online security at all times.
What is a VPN and Why I Need One?
A Mac VPN is a way of securing connections through encryption and connecting to another host server.
This connection, sometimes known as tunneling, is key, as it provides users with another IP address. With this alternative IP address, users look like they are based somewhere that they are not. This new location allows users to access content that they may have originally found restricted. Additionally, this connection to the host server is encrypted, which is how surfing the internet using a VPN becomes safe and secure.
A secure connection is necessary, especially nowadays, to limit the ability of hackers and online criminals to access a user’s personal data while they are online. To this end, an VPN that works on Apple devices doesn’t only make your connection more secure and allow you to access geographically-restricted content, but it also guarantees full anonymity while surfing the web.
The Best Mac VPNs
ExpressVPN is always a reliable VPN for Mac users. We recommend it time and time again owing to the whole host of excellent features it offers.
For example, Mac users usually own more than one device and ExpressVPN allows up to three devices to be used at the same time. It also guarantees that all of these connections will be quick. There is nothing more infuriating than waiting for your Apple VPN to connect, only to then experience buffering issues. ExpressVPN helps avoid this problem with their fast connectivity servers.
One of the main reasons we love ExpressVPN is its approachability. This VPN for Mac users is extremely easy to use with fantastic 24/7 customer support. Through its live chat function, ExpressVPN provides continual support to answer any questions you may have.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, it is also extremely safe and secure. By employing military grade security protocols, ExpressVPN maintains full user anonymity and protection. However, if for some reason you are unhappy you can get your money back, no questions asked, within the first 30 days of use.
Price: As low as $6.67 per month
CyberGhost is an exceptionally well-priced VPN for Apple. It can be used anywhere in the world and is very, very quick. It also has a great deal of other top-notch features as well as a no logs policy. And now it can even be used to unblock Netflix content.
CyberGhost is a fantastic purchase because of its wide network. In fact, it has over 1,000 servers available which are located all over the world. Additionally, with its watertight privacy settings, your data is always private. CyberGhost encrypts all of your data using a military-strength AES 256-BIT encryption which uses a 2048-BIT RSA Key; so you can rest assured that you are safe and secure when surfing the net.
- For a 2-year subscription, CyberGhost charges only $2.90 a month
- A monthly subscription costs $10.99
- 6-months costs $7.99 a month
- A year’s subscription costs $4.99 a month
Every plan you sign up for comes with a 60-day money-back guarantee.
NordVPN is a super user-friendly VPN for Mac customers. In addition, and arguably most importantly, it has watertight security. NordVPN uses several encryption techniques at one time, making it one of the safest VPNs for Mac users on the market.
In fact, NordVPN maintains user anonymity by not retaining any logs of their online activity and it is one of the few Apple VPN providers to employ double data encryption technology to further protect its users against hacking. Its kill switch is also a super important feature. It means that the provider automatically stops the entire internet connection on the device should the VPN itself drop out.
In addition to all of the above, NordVPN also owns one of the largest networks out there, with over 1000 servers around the globe. This means that connections are not only always available, but are quick too.
Finally, NordVPN offers excellent customer service with its live chat feature allowing customers to ask questions and get answers on the spot. And all of these come at the very affordable price of just $3.99 a month over two years.
- $11.95 a month
- 30-day money-back guarantee
HideMyAss remains a popular Apple VPN owing to its whole range of features, such as being compatible with other operating systems. So if you come from a household or business that needs a VPN which is suitable for other, non-Apple devices, this is really helpful. HideMyAss is also able to provide fast connections due to its abundance of servers in many locations, meaning that this Apple VPN opens up restricted content from any country. In addition to its multi-system compatibility, HideMyAss also allows for simultaneous connections. But, if despite all of these features, users don’t like HideMyAss, and they have used less than 10GB of data, they can ask for their money back within 30 days of purchase.
Price: One month: $9.99
This is one of the cheapest VPNs for Mac users on the market, yet it still packs a punch in terms of features. For example, it now has compatibility with many different operating systems. And yet, it also has a brand spanking new iOS app support function making it a great VPN for Mac users.
IPVanish servers are located in many different countries making for easy access to geo-restricted content. And, if you have more than one Apple device, IPVanish allows two simultaneous connections all at a fair price. And yet, despite being one of the cheapest Apple VPN options out there, they still have a money back guarantee policy. So if IPVanish and its VPN for Mac devices don’t work for you, you can get your money back within the first week of usage.
Price: One month: $7.50
Private VPN is one of the safest Apple VPN options on the market, helping users surf the net safely and securely. One of its biggest draws is its low price point, despite the whole raft of features it offers. This Apple VPN is especially well priced over a 13 month period.
Importantly, like most of our top picks, it is compatible with other operating systems so if you need more than a VPN for Mac devices, this VPN is compatible with the majority of other devices too.
One of its most appealing features is its ‘no-log policy’, meaning that PrivateVPN maintains customer privacy by not keeping records of their online antics. So while it has quite a small network in comparison to other Apple VPN providers, it still offers a reliable connection along with a whole load of other important features.
- $8.21 a month
- 30-day money back guarantee
How We Evaluated the VPNs
We have researched the Apple VPN market to come up with a list of the best six VPNs for Macs and/or other Apple devices. These are the main features to look out for when choosing the best VPN for Mac:
- Quick Connection – Whenever you use the internet, a quick connection is crucial for surfing the web efficiently and effectively. VPN providers shouldn’t slow you down. A good VPN provider will offer a quick connection too.
- Large and Wide Network – For content around the world to be accessible, Apple VPN providers need to have a large and wide network. This means a large number of servers for keeping up with demands, as well as server presence in as many regions as possible, so that geographically restricted content can be unblocked.
- Watertight Security Protocols – A VPN for Mac users must also offer secure connections that are upheld by stringent safety precautions, mainly in terms of encryption techniques.
- Excellent Customer Service – the best VPN for Mac users will provide such a good service that you would not need customer service support. But it is always good to know that any questions you may have can be answered quickly by an excellent customer service team.
- Value for Money – A reputable VPN won’t be free, but it still needs to offer value for money for it to be a good purchase.
Is An Apple VPN Legal?
Using a VPN on your Macbook and other Apple devices is legal in most countries. Nevertheless, It is always a good idea to check the laws of the specific country you’re visiting before using a VPN for Apple.
What you access with your VPN for Mac, however, is a different story. If you are in a country that has strict censorship laws, you are subject to the laws of that country and their corresponding punishments. Therefore, if you access restricted or banned content by using your Apple VPN, and are caught, you could be charged. Some countries have some extremely punitive punishments, so it pays to be cautious if you are ever unsure of the legality of what you are accessing.
Can I Use a Free VPN For Mac?
You absolutely can use a free VPN for Mac, but we don’t recommend it. Free VPNs simply do not compare to the ones we have listed here, none of which are excessively expensive anyway.
The two main reasons why free VPNs for Apple are poor performers in comparison to their subscription competition are: speed and security. To provide a service for nothing, free VPN providers have to cut corners and thus tend not to have enough servers to cope with demand. This results in slow connectivity, so users often experience buffering and suboptimal page-loading times.
In terms of security, a free Apple VPN is even worse. They not only never encrypt connections well enough to make them worthwhile, but providers also keep logs so that they can sell data to third parties. Users, therefore, have little chance of remaining anonymous.
We always advocate using ExpressVPN as your VPN for Apple. We rate it on its reliability of connection and its consistency in terms of security. It really is the best VPN for Mac users who won’t experience any diminishment inoperability on their machines and devices. We believe it offers excellent value for money with customer service that is second to none. Subscribers rarely regret signing up to any of their plans.
This VPN software for Mac OS X is also very easy to use. In addition, a user can install it on three simultaneous connections – which means the user can put it on all his devices, no matter what platform they run on. ExpressVPN will keep his data secure both at home and on public WiFi.
The only disadvantage is the high cost of owning this VPN for a long-time. Shouldn’t it be made a bit more affordable for users?
Hi! You’re correct that ExpressVPN is a wonderful VPN service in many ways. We generally recommend it among the top providers for several cases, and it always tests positively. We are aware that it is on the pricier side of the industry average, but still include it because it delivers a great blend of features and functionality even at their price point. It would be great to see them lower their prices, but they do offer some great deals, such as their 12-month plan, which reduces the overall cost of a subscription by almost one third. If you can’t spare the subscription fee, there are still other excellent VPN options that can grant you a similar level of protection for your Mac such as PureVPN and NordVPN. Feel free to share the option you ultimately chose, and how it’s working out for you!
I have no need for VPN except to access Skype to talk to my family. NordVPN is the best choice to me. I’ve had no issues or whatsoever with it. Thanks for the information.
Thanks for sharing excellent knowledge with us that how we can access vpn in our mac device.All the listed vpn are good but i use mostly express vpn and IPVanish vpn.
I have a quick question on these providers that I hope you can help me with. Do you know if any of these services offer automatic WiFi protection where it kicks in whenever it detects a WiFi network. I am a field agent and I travel to a lot of offices around the country.
A lot of travelling means a lot of WiFi access. About 20% of our offices also use WiFi with some having unsecured free connections for our customers (which I often use as it’s easier than setting up my company access.)
I’d need this for both my phone and my laptop.
Hi there! You’ll be glad to hear that if automatic WiFi protection is a must, SaferVPN has an answer for you. The other companies, unfortunately, do not offer automated VPN connections when you access a WiFi network, but they do offer unlimited bandwidth for browsing, which means you can leave your VPN on indefinitely without worrying about paying overage fees or having your connection throttled. In many cases, it may even be safer to simply have your VPN connection turned on, especially if you’re constantly in the field and at risk of unwittingly connecting to an unsecured network. Let us know how it works out for you
I love Nord because they have great security features and double encryption and it also support for multiple devices. Best for Mac so far
Are there any special requirements for a mac VPN? I thought most of these were optimized for windows and won’t be nearly as effective except for maybe iPhone?
Thanks for asking a question we’re sure many people have! Generally speaking, most companies offer their products for both Mac OS and Windows, with each operating system receiving a specific version. As far as special requirements, some platforms may need more processing power, but installing them shouldn’t be a problem if you’re using up-to-date software. They also shouldn’t give you any drop-off in security and quality. Let us know which VPN you end up selecting for your Mac and your experience!
Would like to configure our Apple Extreme to have VPN capability or service that will block our location. Is there anything out there that we can try?
Appreciate the feedback.
Thanks for the question! Generally, Apple’s simplicity is both a benefit and a problem. While the AirPort Extreme is a great home router, it lacks the functionality of non-Mac alternatives in customization. You can create a secure connection through it, but unfortunately cannot directly install a VPN on it. However, you can try to use a dual-router setup, where you connect the AirPort to a second router which is VPN enabled, thus giving you the same benefits the Apple device offers, while protecting your home network. Let us know if this solution works for you!
I don’t know the performance of VPN in a MAC, but I do know of Windows. If the principle of operation are the same for both, I will recommend ExpressVPN and Zenmate.
I’ve used three of these listed VPNs and they are all fine. I even recommended the three to friends. The reviews are helpful.
I have been using PrivateVPN on my Mac. It’s cheap and keeps your data secure. I can’t take any risks with my data.
Always a great experience with NordVPN. Excellent network security and an impressive offering of servers and features. Thanks for the information.
I thought that mac computers were automatically secure, why would you need more security software?
It’s a common misconception that Macs are impenetrable. The claim itself only refers to antivirus and malware, as Apple’s ‘sandboxing’ technique provides internal protection. However, this is not even entirely accurate.
Virtual Private Networks provide security for the connection between your computer and the internet, protecting you from rogue wifi hotspots, government snooping and cybercriminals. As it is not an internal problem, Apple’s inbuilt security has no impact. Try ExpressVPN or NordVPN – our 2 top recommended services.
Interesting read but I’ve been trying for days to get to the Buffered VPN site and all I get is an error message (from Safari, Chrome or Firefox) telling me that my my message is not secure.. and no way of reaching the Express VPN url – HELP!
Hi, David. Sorry you had problems. I just tried the link to BufferedVPN, and it took to me to the site with no problems. Can you try again?