Malaysia doesn’t exactly have one of the freest Internet infrastructures in the world. In fact, Reporters Without Borders ranked them 146th out of 180 countries in their 2016 report. This is not atypical of countries in Southeast Asia, where the Internet is usually tightly controlled to prevent offensive political and religious messages from circulating. As such, there are many reasons why residents and tourists need to protect themselves online with a VPN tunnel.
Despite the Multimedia Act created in the 1990’s, the government takes great care to block a lot of websites. The act assures the freedom of information and civil liberties, but due to the involvement of the government, a lot of people are scared into self-censorship. Bloggers, journalists, and opinionated people can find themselves as targets if they post or access offensive content.
To ensure that people don’t access certain content, the government maintains a list of offensive websites that is blocked via DNS. Leaders and officials have repeatedly stated that they will not censor web content, claiming it is up to families and parents to implement their own censorship software to prevent youths from seeing offensive content such as pornography. However, the reality is that the government does block a lot of content.
In addition, telecommunication companies also claim that they don’t censor web content at the request of the government. But this doesn’t seem to be true, because leaders have often discussed a nationwide filter to censor the web.
Accessing Websites Securely
There are two reasons why websites are inaccessible in Malaysia. Past the government’s censorship endeavors, you’ll find that a lot of services block connections based on a user’s global IP address. Sites like Hulu, Pandora, and Spotify have licensing and trade agreements that prevent users in other countries from accessing their content – unless you use a VPN tunnel, that is.
With a VPN service, Malaysian users will be able to circumvent the government’s censorship program and connect to sites that block connections based on IP address. This is facilitated by using a DNS server that doesn’t restrict websites. A VPN tunnel will also mask your IP address, making it appear that you are connecting from another country. Furthermore, VPN tunnels encrypt data so it can be intercepted and read by third parties such as hackers or the Malaysian government. Because your data is encrypted, they won’t be able to see your online activities or what website you access. A VPN is essential in Malaysia to protect a user’s anonymity and to keep data out of the hands of ISPs, governments, and hackers by using encryption. With that said, let’s take a look at the best VPNs for Malaysia.
VPN for Malaysia – Top Picks:
IPVanish is our top pick for the best VPN for Malaysia, and Malaysian users will be able to connect to a server in Hong Kong to introduce minimal geographic latency. Currently, they operate 400+ servers in 60 countries, and they have strong security features that help prevent deep packet inspection by ISPs and governments. Their servers use strong encryption using OpenVPN, PPTP, and L2TP protocols, and 24/7 customer support comes standard with their service. While they may not be the cheapest service available, they certainly aren’t the most expensive. IPVanish only costs $6.49 per month with a long term subscription.
VyprVPN is our second choice for users in Malaysia, and they are best for users who distrust companies that are based in the United States. A lot of people fear that the NSA and American Government could coerce companies into creating backdoors into their security software, but VyprVPN is based out of Switzerland and has a fantastic no-logging policy. Right now they have 700+ servers in 50 countries, and they have useful add-on features to their service such as a VPN kill-switch, per-application tunnel routing, up to 50GB of online storage, and a NAT firewall for extra protection. VyprVPN’s plans allow for 1 to 3 simultaneous connections per account depending on which package you select, and the pro version of their service only costs $6.25 per month.
PIA VPN is another great alternative for Malaysian users, especially those that don’t want to pay too much for their service and those who have a lot of devices to secure. With a 1-year subscription, PIA VPN only costs a measly $3.33 per month, and they allow up to 5 simultaneous connections per account ($0.67 cents per device per month). With 3,100 servers in 24 countries and an unlimited server switching and data usage, users will be able to secure all of their devices without a hitch. And PIA allows Bit Torrent (P2P) traffic on their network, boosting the user experience with DNS leak protection. Last but not least, they offer a 7-day money back guarantee and 24/7 customer support.
PureVPN is an obvious choice for Malaysian users since they have servers in so many neighboring locations. To date PureVPN carries the distinct advantage of having a larger global server presence than their competitors, having 500+ servers in 140 countries around the world. Like PIA VPN, they too offer a 7-day money back guarantee and allow up to 5 simultaneous connections per account. PureVPN covers all the major operating systems and uses connection technologies such as PPTP, OpenVPN, and L2TP, though we would recommend refraining from using PPTP. In addition, they don’t cost too much. Priced at only $4.16 per month with an annual subscription, PureVPN is one of the most inexpensive providers on the market.
NordVPN is our last choice for users in Malaysia, and they make a good fit for users who want a fast and reliable VPN connection at a low price. Though not priced as inexpensively as PIA VPN, they aren’t too far off. The monthly cost of their service is only $4.00 when users opt for a long term plan, and they have servers in 27 countries around the world. But one advantage of their service that is greater than any other competitors on this list is the ability to connect up to 6 devices simultaneously with a single account. 24/7 customer support and a 30-day money back guarantee are included in their service, and they even provide an automatic kill-switch feature and a DNS leak resolver.