Despite the fact that many neighboring nations have strict and harshly controlled Internet infrastructures, Israel actually isn’t too bad when compared to other countries. They may not have the freest Internet in the world, but by and large, things really aren’t too bad. In fact, Reporters Without Borders ranked them 96 out of 180 countries in their 2014 report. However, even though the Internet is nowhere near as scary as a place like Syria or Iraq, there is still a fair amount of censorship and surveillance that takes place. Let’s take a closer look at how these affect Internet users.
The Israeli military actually has a censorship program that they use to police the Internet. From blog content to videos and other forms of communications, the military keeps a close eye on things and shuts down anything that could be deemed harmful or offensive. They take especially great care to thwart any attempt to report on the military, as doing so could be a threat to national security.
However, despite this initiative, they really aren’t as adept and powerful at suppressing such types of information as they would like. They hold little power over various news sources, which frequently find ways to post their content without directly violating the censor.
Generally speaking, the country as a whole has a very strong freedom of speech. Laws protect the freedom of information as well, as affirmed by Supreme Court rulings. Furthermore, the country protects the freedom of the press on the whole, and the legal framework does a good job of guarding the media as well. However, there are a few caveats that place certain restrictions on journalists. As you might expect, racism and hate speech are not tolerated, and the government does take measures to make sure content that promotes violence and hate crimes are not allowed to continue.
Using a VPN in Israel
Despite the rather lax attitude towards Internet regulations, there are still several reasons that people need a VPN tunnel in Israel. First of all, a VPN tunnel will encrypt data, making it impossible for foreign governments and common hackers to steal your data. While the domestic government may not take strong measures like neighboring nations to implement surveillance techniques to incriminate their citizens, wiretapping is still a threat.
As users access web resources from Israel, their data could flow through several different countries before reaching the destination server. In fact, your data could travel halfway around the world. Users need to encrypt their data so foreign governments can’t intercept and read personal information. In addition, users in Israel will also discover that foreign resources, such as streaming video and audio applications among others, are not available.
This is not due to censorship for the Israeli government, though. Instead, note that some services block incoming connections based on geographic IP addresses. They do this for various reasons, but some of the most popular reasons include licensing agreements and copyright regulations. Fortunately, a VPN tunnel will unblock all of the restricted content so users can watch their favorite shows and listen to their favorite music. With that understanding, let’s take a look at the best VPN for Israel.
VPN for Israel – Top Picks:
NordVPN has over 10 servers in Israel and in this location, it supports P2P so you can download your favorite content securely. This provider is one of the best options for people who want to keep their privacy intact and who also want to have the freedom to access websites, apps, videos and anything else that may be blocked in your location. NordVPN protects your internet traffic with high level encryption and it gives you all the features needed to enjoy the best and most secure internet experience. NordVPN is a zero logs provider.
Arguably the top choice, ExpressVPN has a reputation in the VPN industry for providing high quality service with extremely fast and reliable servers. Though they cost more than other providers (as low as $8.32 per month with a 1-year subscription) most people feel the quality of their service justifies the price. They permit 2 simultaneous connections between 1 computer and 1 handheld device per user account, and they have an extremely long 30-day money back guarantee in absence of a free trial. Furthermore, they have servers in 78 countries around the world, giving users a lot of flexibility to select servers near their geographic region. Learn more on ExpressVPN’s full review page.
PIA VPN is our third pick for users in Israel, and they too allow up to 5 simultaneous connections per account. One reason they are so popular is because they offer a high quality service at one of the cheapest rates on the market. With a 1-year subscription, the price drops to only $3.33 per month, or $0.67 cents per device (when using 5 devices). Though they only have servers in 24 countries, they have all the major geographic regions covered. Other notable features include the allowance of P2P traffic for Bit Torrent users, a 7-day money back guarantee, DNS leak protection, and 24/7 customer support. You would be hard pressed to find a service of equal quality for such a small monthly cost. Read more on our review of Private Internet Access.
Surfshark is another provider that is ideal for customers in Israel. It delivers strong protection for your data and it also uses powerful unblocking technology to let you get around restrictions. Surfshark has servers in Israel, so if you need to access content that you can also access there, it is a good choice. It adds a solid layer of encryption to your traffic to keep your information secure. Since it doesn’t keep logs, your privacy is also protected. Head to the Surfshark complete review for more info and customer feedback.
TorGuard is the next best alternative for users in Israel, and they aren’t based in the US, either. Instead, they are based in Panama and have a very secure no-logging policy. This service also offers really strong encryption using AES-256 with OpenVPN as well as PPTP and L2TP. Currently they have 1,200+ servers in 42 countries, and they allow up to 5 simultaneous connections per account, which is great for users who have a lot of smartphones, tablets, and computers to secure. In addition to a 99% uptime guarantee, they also have 24/7 customer support. Though they don’t offer a free trial, their service is moderately priced at only $5.00 per month. Visit our TorGuard VPN review page for additional information.