NordVPN Review: Too Good To Be True? | Detailed Test & Review！
NordVPN has been one of the most extensive VPN services snowballs since NordVPN was born in 2012. As they say, NordVPN has become a trusted online security solution, used by over 12 million internet users worldwide.
After our simple statistics, NordVPN APP has accumulated tens of millions of downloads in the App Store and Google Play. And more surprisingly, NordVPN’s average rating has stabilized at 4.5 stars.
It’s no doubt that NordVPN claims to be the “best VPN service provider of [currentyear] “, but NordVPN is too good to be true?
To realize NordVPN with greater depth, we tested NordVPN all apps very carefully and have the NordVPN Review post to help you find the answers to your questions. Also, you can quickly look through NordVPN’s key features below.
Disclaimer: This article contains affiliate links that I receive a small commission for at no cost to you. You can read my full affiliate disclaimer in the footer.
- NordVPN Review Overview
- What is NordVPN?
- NordVPN Logging Policy
- NordVPN Speed Test
- NordVPN Server Locations
- Apps, Extensions, and Compatibility
- NordVPN works with Netflix, BBC iPlayer & torrenting?
- NordVPN Works in China, UAE & more?
- NordVPN Encryption & Security
- NordVPN Supports Ad Blocker?
- NordVPN Offers Static or Dedicated IP Addresses?
- Responsive & friendly live chat
- Easy to set up and get started
- NordVPN’s Pricing Plan&Refund Policy
- How to Download NordVPN?
- NordVPN FAQs
- NordVPN Alternatives
- The Bottom Line
NordVPN Review Overview
NordVPN Key Summary
|Logging Policy||No Logs|
|IP, DNS or WebRTC Leaks||No|
|Jurisdiction||Panama (Privacy Haven)|
|Unblock US Netflix||Yes|
|Works in China||Yes|
|Support||24/7 Live Chat|
|The Cheapest Price||$3.71/mo over 24 Months|
|Refund Policy||30-day money-back guarantee|
|Coupons&Deals||Get 68% OFF NordVPN|
NordVPN Pros & Cons
- Located in Panama, which has no data retention laws
- 5,000+ servers in 60+ countries
- Works with Netflix, BBC iPlayer & more
- P2P & torrenting allowed on many servers
- Military-grade AES-256-GCM encryption
- Connect 6 devices to one NordVPN account at the same time
- Huge server network: 5,100+ servers across 58 countries
- Apps for PC, Mac, iOS & Android with ad-blocker (CyberSec)
- Works in restrictive countries (China, Middle East)
- Offers Double Encryption servers for extra privacy and security
- 24/7 customer support (live chat, email, ticket system) Risk-free30-day money-back guarantee
- Protocol inflexibility for Windows and Android apps
- Manual setup required for China
- Doesn’t accept PayPal
What is NordVPN?
NordVPN was born in 2012 and is developed by Tefincom & Co S.A., under the legal jurisdiction of Panama, not covered by U.S. and E.U. data retention laws.
To protect personal data privacy, the government implemented Law 81 in Panama. All companies, independently of the country of origin or activity, must comply with The Panama government does not require VPN companies to collect or share any of their data with third parties.
As one of the most popular VPN vendors, NordVPN has ever gotten into trouble with not being headquartered in Panama in 2018 and is the subject of a hack in 2019.
On the one hand, you can see CloudVPN INC. listed as the seller’s name when you purchased NordVPN, Which is controversial in NordVPN’s real location because CloudVPN INC. is a company registered in the U.S. CloudVPN INC. is just a payment processor that helps NordVPN handle payments.
On the other hand, NordVPN had ever confirmed a security breach hit it in March 2018. As NordVPN explained, the hack affected a single VPN server in Finland, and its own servers were not compromised.
NordVPN stresses essential facts about the hack: no credentials or user details were exposed.
Although there are many different kinds of comments about this case, especially transparency and timeliness of response, NordVPN’s ultimate responsibility is to monitor its servers’ security rigorously.
It’s worth looking at what NordVPN has learned from the hack and what it plans to do next.
Thorough Internal Audit
After the attack, NordVPN immediately launched a thorough internal audit’ of its entire infrastructure. NordVPN revealed that ‘a few servers could potentially be at risk via a similar remote access system, but these have either been patched or removed.
Moreover, it’s more difficult to access data via a remote management system, which has been hardened with encrypted storage.
Partnered with VerSprite
It’s a significant move that NordVPN has partnered with security consultancy VerSprite, which is a leader in operational risk management and security advisory services.
VerSprite will collaborate with NordVPN’s team in many ways, including conduct testing, intrusion handling, vendor risk assessment, and source code analysis.
Bug bounty program
As you know, many companies that focus on security publish a bounty program. NordVPN does the same thing to encourage others to test and find bugs early and get them fixed before they can do any harm.
NordVPN has done far more above. It is intended to prevent another hack from happening. As a result of this attack, NordVPN is better than ever.
NordVPN Logging Policy
NordVPN claims that it doesn’t track, collect, or share your private data.
Here is the information that NordVPN does not store:
- IP addresses
- Connection timestamps
- Session information
- Used bandwidth
- Traffic data
NordVPN also processes limited technical information like server load information and customer service information. NordVPN needs this little information to provide you with the full scope of the NordVPN Services.
NordVPN states in its Terms of Service: “To limit the number of simultaneous sessions of an active user, an algorithm keeps their username and the timestamp of the last session status while the session is active.”
The information is kept in an algorithm while the session is active. And this data is wiped within 15 minutes after the session is terminated.
Will my personal privacy still be leaked?
Of course not. NordVPN claims it protects and respects customer privacy. It does not log or track activity in any way. In other words, even with this information, it’s impossible to identify you.
Furthermore, NordVPN invited one of the Big 4 auditing firms to perform an industry-first audit of no-logging claims in November 2018. The report concludes that NordVPN’s policy description is fair and accurate. And the audit report is now available to all NordVPN subscribers on January 28th, 2019.
In consideration of increasing the transparency of information, NordVPN launched a Warrant Canary program and had the following statement.
As of 2020-02-11 we state the following:
- We have NOT received any National Security letters;
- We have NOT received any gag orders;
- We have NOT received any warrants from any government organization.
NordVPN is 100% committed to a zero-logs policy and never logs the activities of users to ensure their ultimate privacy and security.
NordVPN Speed Test
NordVPN is a reasonably fast VPN when you connect the servers that are close to you.
The downloads and upload speeds are impressive when we test the same-country server(US-to-US). And the network latency dropped around 5-6% from our average internet speeds.
From our testing lab in Seattle, USA, we measured NordVPN’s seven locations worldwide. These were the results:
Based on our test experiences, the speed is remarkable when connected to a VPN server close to you. As for long-distance connections, it’s less impressive but very stable.
If you usually play games like League of Legends and Fortnite, the reasonably low ping times are conducive to your game just connecting to a nearby server.
NordVPN Server Locations
After years of development, NordVPN has deployed 5,524 servers in 58 countries over the world. It doesn’t have the most VPN servers we’ve reviewed, but it can ensure that you can find nearby servers.
To effectively ease network congestion, NordVPN servers covered popular locations like the UK, the US, Australia, and Canada. Also, its servers are rare in countries like Argentina, Albania, and Vietnam.
What’s more, NordVPN provides many city-level servers in five countries:
- Australia (5 locations, 200+ servers)
- Canada (3 locations, 410+ servers)
- Germany (2 locations, 200+ servers)
- India (two locations, 20+ servers)
- The USA (20 locations, 1,800+ servers)
Besides, NordVPN offers optimized servers for P2P downloads. And you can easily choose the server according to the label with NordVPN’s app.
Apps, Extensions, and Compatibility
Apps for Popular Devices
NordVPN supports all popular operating systems:
- Microsoft Windows
NordVPN supports much more than this. You can also install NordVPN on your router according to NordVPN’s setup instructions for the following:
- ASUS Merlin
- DrayTek Vigor
- Ubiquiti EdgeRouter
More importantly, you can simultaneously connect up to six devices with a single NordVPN account, regardless of whether it’s your desktop computer, laptop, smartphones, routers, or more.
- ASUS Merlin
- DrayTek Vigor
- Ubiquiti EdgeRouter
More importantly, you can simultaneously connect up to 6 devices with a single NordVPN account, regardless of whether it’s your desktop computer, laptop, smartphones, routers, or more.
Apps for Games Consoles & Streaming Devices
- Amazon Fire TV
NordVPN offers a dedicated APP for Android TV. You download and install it on your streaming devices such as Android TV and Amazon’s Fire TV Stick. NordVPN will pick the best VPN server every time you quick-connect with a single click.
If you want to protect your game consoles like Xbox and PlayStation and other streaming devices, you had better install NordVPN on your router.
It must be remembered that these router connections are currently not working with popular streaming sites and apps.
Extensions for Browser
NordVPN offers VPN browser extensions for Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox.
NordVPN browser extension encrypts your browser traffic and helps you stay secure and private on the Internet, even if they are not protected by HTTPS.
NordVPN browser plugins have a built-in WebRTC leak blocker, a beneficial function to prevent your real IP address from leaking.
You can also use the built-in CyberSec to block annoying ads, malware, and other threats.
NordVPN works with Netflix, BBC iPlayer & torrenting?
SmartPlay Feature is developed by NordVPN, which can help you securely access the content that would otherwise be unavailable. NordVPN can successfully unblock popular streaming services like Netflix and BBC iPlayer.
SmartPlay technology is implemented by default in all NordVPN apps. What you need to do is choose a VPN country server according to what you want to access. It’s the same as for the BBC iPlayer.
Additionally, you can unlock the Netflix content libraries in Canada, Japan, Germany, France, and Italy.
You can also access to streaming services below:
- Sling TV
- Sky Go
Even better, you can enjoy private and secure streaming on your TV like Amazon Fire TV Stick. NordVPN offers a custom app to help you enrich your streaming experience.
NordVPN provides enough server choices that allow torrenting and P2P traffic. You can easily connect to the servers listed under ”Speciality Servers” in the app settings. It’s good news for torrents and Kodi streamers.
Actually NordVPN had labelled the server that couldn’t allow P2P in the following countries:
- Costa Rica
- South Korea
- United Arab Emirates
More importantly, NordVPN can help you avoid bandwidth throttling and slow connection speeds when streaming or downloading.
NordVPN Works in China, UAE & more?
No matter how the GFW is upgraded in China, some VPN can still work in China all the time, like NordVPN.
We have ever seen many complaints about NordVPN. It can’t work in China at all. As you know, NordVPN must keep pace with the GFW in China. It’s unavoidable to be blocked in China.
If you want to keep the connection fast and stable, you must complete configuration verification manually.
NordVPN provides seven-country servers for users in China, including Singapore, Canada, Japan, UK, and the US.
NordVPN Speed Test in China
How about NordVPN recommended servers? Here are the speed test results from our physical testing lab based in China：
We test NordVPN’s recommended servers that are available for China. We find that CA and US servers perform very well. The connection speed is breakneck and stable, and we found no IP address and DNS leak.
Even like that, ExpressVPN is still our #1 VPN for China.
Nevertheless, the obfuscated servers still work for other high censorship countries, like Russia and Turkey.
NordVPN Encryption & Security
- OpenVPN (TCP/UDP)
- DNS Leak Blocking
- First-party DNS
- Supports TCP Port 443
- Automatic Kill Switch
- WebRTC Leak Blocking
- Double VPN
- TOR via VPN Server
- Split Tunneling
NordVPN provides various protocols, but it depends on what your system or device is. You can change it according to the following:
- IOS(IKEv2, OpenVPN-UDP, OpenVPN-TCP, NordLynx)
- MacOS(OpenVPN-UDP, OpenVPN-TCP)
- Android(IKEv2, OpenVPN-UDP, OpenVPN-TCP)
- Windows(OpenVPN-UDP, OpenVPN-TCP)
However, we highly recommend the OpenVPN protocol, which can provide the perfect blend of speed and security. NordVPN uses the AES-256-GCM encryption algorithm with a 2048-bit DH key to guaranteeing your sensitive data secure.
As you can see, NordVPN offers a new protocol called NordLynx on iPhone and Linux, which is based on the WireGuard VPN protocol.
NordVPN starts to support WireGuard because it’s a new VPN protocol that aims to be faster and more secure than the current standards. Although it’s in development, it’s worth looking forward to it.
With the VPN kill switch feature, NordVPN will automatically monitor your connection to the VPN server to prevent the connection from accidentally dropping. And it can secure your private data from accidental exposure.
NordVPN provides a Double VPN that can help you hide online activity behind two servers instead of one. Onion Over VPN is a unique feature of NordVPN, giving you all the advantages of The Onion Router (Tor) combined with the extra security.
NordVPN Supports Ad Blocker?
NordVPN does provide an advanced technology solution called CyberSec, which has integrated Ad Blocker. It can help you avoid ads and protect yourself from malware, phishing, and other threats.
The full CyberSec feature is available in the NordVPN apps for Windows, iOS, macOS (OpenVPN only), and Linux. You can enable it behind the hamburger menu.
Keep in mind that CyberSec does not block ads in the NordVPN app downloaded from the Google Play Store because of Google’s policies, but other functions are unaffected.
NordVPN Offers Static or Dedicated IP Addresses?
A dedicated IP address is ideal for accessing corporate remote access systems or private servers securely. It’s also convenient to secure online payment and skip the blacklists.
NordVPN does provide a personal static IP address service used only by you. But it needs extra money to enjoy, and you can request it directly through your client area. And NordVPN offers dedicated IP addresses in these following locations:
- United Kingdom
- United States
Responsive & friendly live chat
- 24/7 Live chat support Yes
- Online Resources Yes
- Email Support Yes
NordVPN offers three main ways above to help you get the answers you are wondering.
As usual, we want to get a response as soon as possible when we get problems. If you’re going to get help right away, you can contact NordVPN’s customer support that is 24/7.
No matter what unexpected problem you face, connection issues, APP install issues, and others. You can get a quick and helpful response via a professional support agent.
As well, you can almost find the answer to many questions through NordVPN organized online resources, including FAQ, Billing, and other connection problems.
Easy to set up and get started
How to Install & Set Up NordVPN
We have mentioned above that NordVPN supports a wide range of platforms. NordVPN also provides comprehensive VPN how-to setup guides for whatever platform you use.
NordVPN also offers a smooth UX experience. You can use it easily across different devices or platforms.
If you want to use NordVPN with advanced settings, you can find them labeled and carefully read the instructions a deciding to change the default option.
You can easily install NordVPN’s browser extensions from the Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox store. Once you’ve logged in with a NordVPN account, you can connect to the NordVPN server with the ‘Quick Connect’ button.
Keep in mind that you can enable ‘Block WebRTC’ behind the hamburger menu to prevent your real IP address leaks.
And you can also enable ‘CyberSec ‘behind the hamburger menu to avoid ads and protect yourself from malware, phishing, and other threats.
NordVPN’s Pricing Plan&Refund Policy
NordVPN is currently providing a 68% discount with a 2-year plan for new users. Here is the latest NordVPN coupon code for 2020 below.
NordVPN Coupon Special offer
30-day money-back guarantee
Coupon applied automatically
NordVPN Pricing Plan
NordVPN is one of the best VPN services on the market, and it’s affordable.
You can enjoy the full scope of NordVPN with every price plan. Like any other VPN vendor, the longer you will subscribe, the more discount you can get.
As you can see, you will spend $11.95 monthly if you choose a month-by-month plan. But you will save 70% if you choose a three-year special deal.
|1 Month||24 Months||12 Months|
|Price||$ 11.95/mo||$ 3.71/mo||$ 4.92/mo|
|24/7 live chat||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Buy Now||Get 68% Off||Get 58% Off|
Payment & Refund Options
NordVPN provides many convenient payment methods, even including PayPal. But PayPal payment is only enabled in Brazil, Japan, India, South Korea, Germany, Italy, and Mexico.
If you don’t find PayPal payment, no worries, NordVPN accepted popular payment methods, which include some cryptocurrencies for those seeking higher levels of privacy:
- Credit and debit cards
- Direct debit
- Amazon Pay
- Apple Pay
- Google Pay
NordVPN provides a 30-day money-back guarantee instead of a free trial.
If you want to get a refund, you can directly contact the customer support team through live chat. But NordVPN will troubleshoot an issue you experience first. After that, the refund will be processed as soon as possible.
How to Download NordVPN?
As we mentioned above, NordVPN almost supports all popular platforms and devices. You can Click Here to Get 68% Off before you start downloading.
And then, you can log in to NordVPN with your credentials. You can click Downloads > NordVPN on the left sidebar of the client area. Then choose the platform and APP version, NordVPN will automatically start downloading to your device.
Is NordVPN easy to use?
Yes. NordVPN offers a friendly user experience, even if you use it on your computer or mobile. You can connect the best performance server with one single click.
What does NordVPN actually do?
NordVPN could help you get secure and private access to the internet, hide your real IP address, protect yourself from hacking, unblock streaming service, and others.
How much does NordVPN cost per month?
NordVPN offers three pricing plans, $11.95 per month, $59.00 annually, and $89.00 every two years. NordVPN is comparatively expensive, but it is really value for the money.
Does it work with Netflix and Disney+?
Yes. NordVPN can unblock many streaming services like Netflix, Disney+, BBC iPlayer…You just connect NordVPN’s optimized servers and start experiencing any issues with NordVPN.
Is torrenting and P2P allowed?
Yes. NordVPN offers hundreds of ultra-fast VPN servers for P2P sharing and torrenting. When you connect to a specialized VPN server, NordVPN will automatically pick the best server and network protocol to ensure you have the smoothest P2P experience.
NordVPN VS ExpressVPN
ExpressVPN is very competitive with NordVPN, as it has a better user experience than NordVPN, but both are very close. What’s more, ExpressVPN works much better than NordVPN in China. Honestly, ExpressVPN is our #1 VPN for China. Click here to Visit ExpressVPN or Read the ExpressVPN review.
The Bottom Line
NordVPN Review Summary
You can notice through our in-depth review of NordVPN, and we highly recommend NordVPN.
The VPN industry experience has been more than eight years, it’s also one of the fastest and safest VPN services we’ve reviewed.
Maybe NordVPN isn’t our top-tier pick, but it’s too excellent to ignore. NordVPN can stand out with so many competitive advanced features and its affordable price plans.
If you have used NordVPN, please share your honest review (good or bad).