- Simultaneous Connections: 5+
- Number of Countries: 50+
- Number of Cities: 51+
- Monthly Cost – High/Low: $9.99/$4.99 USD
- Zero-Log Policy: Yes
- Review Last Updated: 2017-02-27
TorGuard has been in service since 2012, and have done a good job of building out a performing network that has proven to be consistent and dependable. On first glance, many believe their name refers to the Tor network, but TorGuard is actually short for Torrent Guard. The service focuses on providing VPN and Proxy servers for the purpose of sharing and downloading torrents, but can just as well be utilized for any other imaginable use beyond seeding and P2P applications. The provider offers above average security features, including DPI Firewall bypassing for countries likes China or Iran.
TorGuard doesn’t beat around the bush about your privacy. There are no logs, no time stamps, not a single trace according to their service policy. Based out of Nevis, West Indies, they make an ideal choice for users looking for an off-shore provider, but it should be noted that TorGuard’s headquarters are located in the US.
TorGuard’s plans can be a little confusing on first glance, but they have made an effort to reduce the amount of options and streamlined the process for an easier selection experience. You have both anonymous consumer VPN and business VPN plans available. The business offerings are good for users who require 10 to 20 simultaneous connections or more. Regular plans allow up to 5 simultaneous devices to use a single account, but you can add an unlimited amount of users at the cost of just $1 per month. This is great for adding one or two extra devices without having to purchase another plan.
Additionally to their VPN service, they also offer anonymous Proxy only at lower cost. The proxy service is good for both torrenting and unblocking websites, although often reported to not be as effective as a VPN. It’s important to note that proxies only help mask your IP and location, but don’t fully encrypt your web traffic.
Other than their 2000+ proxy IPs available in 50+ countries, TorGuard provides SOCKS5 + HTTP/SSL encrypted proxies to better secure users. These anonymous proxy servers are arguably more than sufficient to mask traffic from your ISP while keeping your bandwidth speeds intact. The service is available in 8 countries and provides a list of about 200 proxy servers to connect to.
Some users such as torrent seeders may want to have both VPN and Proxy services. Signing up for both provides a considerable Bundled plan discount. Finally, TorGuard also offers both free and paid encrypted email services.
A quick overview of all of TorGuard’s services and cost (excluding Business plans and routers):
- Anonymous Proxy: Starting from $5.95/month – As low as $3.91/month USD
- Anonymous VPN: Starting from $9.99/month – As low as $4.99/month USD
- Bundled Proxy + VPN: Starting from $11.54/month – As low as $5.35/month USD
- Encrypted Email: Free 10mb or from $6.95/month – As low as $4.16/month USD
If we zone in on the Anonymous VPN plans, their offering is competitive and in line with most other services available. On all their plans and services, they offer monthly, quarterly, bi-annually, or yearly price points. As you would come to expect, the longer the subscription period, the lower the average monthly cost is. Semi-annual and yearly plans come out to being the same price, allowing you to signup for a shorter period of time without feeling like you’re paying more.
- Monthly: $9.99 USD per month.
- Quarterly: 6.66 per month – Total $19.99 USD.
- Semi Annual: $4.99 per month – Total $29.99 USD.
- Yearly: $4.99 per month – Total $59.99 USD.
They once had a 30-day money back guarantee, but this has now been reduced to only 7 days to better deal with abuse on the network. They accept over 80 payment methods to encompass everything from standard options to gift cards, bitcoins, and alt coins.
TorGuard did a good job of simplifying their plans, and unifying all features together. Additionally, as of 2017, any past hiccups or concerns have been properly remediated and patched. They have proven to be reliable and trustworthy to their users. Overall, the service offers a variety of features that meet the needs of VPN users of all sorts.
TorGuard provides software clients on all popular platforms: Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, and Android. The interface is pleasingly designed, graphically rich and easy to use. Simply select a server from the drop-down menu and off you go. A kill switch is available to automatically stop all web traffic in case the VPN connection drops. The service also actively blocks ads and malware that might be detected on websites. Right from the get-go, the service provides an all round protection for online browsing.
Users can maximize their protection by utilizing the advanced settings available with TorGuard’s client. A standard kill switch option is included but users may also add individual applications to the App kill list, which automatically terminates them in case the VPN connection drops.
Stealth DPI (Deep Packet Inspection) is offered to avoid detection in countries such as China, Iran, Syria, or the United Arab Emirates. This allows for bypassing government firewalls that otherwise block VPN services from working.
As mentioned, TorGuard’s name refers to Bittorrents, and is most certainly P2P friendly. Perfect for both seeding and downloading torrents, as well as streaming content such as Popcorn Time or Netflix. Complete IP and DNS leak protection is put in place to ensure that you remain secure at all times. With over 1600 servers in some 50 countries, it also caters to users on a global scale.
The Anonymous VPN service includes SmartDNS for your TV or game console, and a free Viscosity license which usually costs $9 on its own. If you never heard of Viscosity, it essentially is an advanced, but simple to use OpenVPN client compatible on Mac and Windows. It offers visual traffic monitoring to proper DNS and system protection on both Windows and Mac platforms. Advanced users can apply scripts for unlimited customization, and VPN connections can be tweaked in many more ways than traditional clients allow. Beginners should skip this client.
For the Proxy plans, both standard and encrypted SOCK5 proxy servers are offered. Just like a VPN, proxies can be used to hide your traffic from your ISP, unblock geographically restricted content, and safely download or seed torrents.
The Anonymous Proxy plan can be bundled with the VPN service for a big cost discount. Some users wish to have layered security when sharing torrents for example. In this case, it’s possible to use the proxy in conjunction with the VPN, but the VPN server must be used in a SOCKS5 enabled country as well in order to function properly.
Finally, TorGuard also offers anonymous email and nowadays, we know how important email security can be for both individuals and businesses. Using Secure G/PGP Encryption, MITM protection and offshore email storage, TorGuard seems to have a dependable end-to-end encrypted email service. Complete mobile support including calendar features make it an adaptable replacement to gmail. Free service is offered with a limit of 10megs on your inbox.
As we mentioned, there are no logs. Even under proper court order or DMCA takedowns, there is no information provided. TorGuard protects itself from abuse by server basis without needing to know which one user is perpetrating the activity. Using firewall rules, it can quickly stop spam or respond to any DMCA take down request by simply blocking the source. This effectively leaves legitimate users secure and private, and allows TorGuard to quickly respond to take-down notices in 24 hours or less.
128-256-bit AES encryption matched with Perfect Forward Secrecy (TLS) handshakes provide a high standard level of security. As mentioned in the features section, DPI Bypass, or Deep Packet Inspection protection is available. It is called ‘Stealth’ and allows users to utilize a VPN even where local authorities attempt to block all encrypted tunnels, such as China, UAE, Iran and Syria. Additional to blocking ads, live malware protection is also always on with VPN plans. Finally, the app also features built in leak protection against WebRTC, DNS, and IPv6 leaks.
Speed & Stability:
Speed is important for any peer-2-peer enthusiast and our test results did not disappoint. As far as BitTorrent goes, the unlimited speed delivers. After revisiting the service this year, I spent some time testing various locations with torrents and just regular content streaming. TorGuard did a good job of regularly updating their server count, and I had no trouble finding fast servers, but they did lack any detailed feedback on server response times, loads, or bandwidth capabilities. With now more than 50 available countries, the service is backed by more than 1600 servers and continuously growing.
Speed tests fair with the best, regularly maxing out my bandwidth on download and upload. For the most part, a degradation of 15-20% on the farthest locations could be observed, but results did fluctuate on some countries, cutting speeds as low as 30-40%. Ping times remained excellent for the most part, making TorGuard suitable for gaming or hosting scenarios, and I did not suffer from any disconnections while testing.
TorGuard has improved on customer service. I remember having trouble reaching them back in 2014. This time around, I was able to get email responses within 4-6 hours, and the live chat was always available. Support agents are friendly, and do their best to help you get setup or answer any questions you may have. Although a big jump from when I last had to deal with them, I did not run into any serious snags that would require support. Their online forum has also been kept active and contains hundreds of previously posted topics that might answer existing questions. Or you can always start a new thread for advanced setups or issues that might require expert help.
I’m glad to see their split VPN plans gone for good. You shouldn’t need a special service for torrents, and now everything is combined. Business plans are competitive and provide a 24/7 dedicated support agent so you never have to deal with more than one or two people. I also like the fact that a free Viscosity OpenVPN license is included.
More importantly, the right security features are put in place. With Stealth VPN DPI bypass protection, full DNS and IP leak protection, as well as malware and spam blocks, TorGuard offers a well rounded service. Price is competitive when pre-paid for half of full year terms. Each plan allows up to 5 devices to connect at once, but additional users can be added at the cost of $1.
- Good to fast speeds.
- Medium-large sized network coverage.
- Supports P2P torrents.
- DNS and IP Leak protection.
- Kill switch included.
- Deep Packet Inspection bypass.
- Good price on semi-annual, annual, and bundled Proxy plans.
- Various plans and services can be a bit confusing at first.
- High cost on monthly plans.