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Some VPN services cater to people who just want something that works, and don’t care about details like VPN protocols and encryption algorithms. Others seem geared more towards experienced VPN users who understand and want control over the technical side of their VPN. TorGuard VPN seems to fit into this second category.
In this TorGuard VPN review we’ll take a close look and examine all the test results. We’ve cataloged the good, and the bad, with the goal of helping you decide whether this might be the right VPN for you.
Let’s get started.
TorGuard VPN overview
We tested the core TorGuard VPN product with particular emphasis on performance and how it protects your privacy. Here’s what we found:
TorGuard VPN PROs:
- Strong encryption and secure VPN protocols
- Consistent speeds
- 3,000+ servers in 50+ countries
- Support for Windows, Mac OS, Linux, Android, iOS, browsers, and routers
- No IP address or DNS leaks detected
- Multiple payment methods including Bitcoin
- Pre-flashed VPN routers available
- Optional features to customize your experience
- Additional pricing options, 8 simultaneous connections
TorGuard VPN CONs:
- VPN apps will be confusing for most users
- Unclear VPN data collection policies
- Based in the United States (bad privacy jurisdiction)
- Limited streaming support, unless you pay for “Streaming Bundle”
- Confusing pricing and order form
- Limited refund window with many exceptions
TorGuard VPN interesting FACTs:
- TorGuard VPN and VPNetworks LLC (background info)
- WireGuard implementation not working well
- TorGuard customer support
TorGuard VPN PROs
TorGuard VPN does a lot right, and could be particularly interesting if you are an advanced VPN user.
1. Strong encryption and secure VPN protocols
When it comes to the technical side of things, TorGuard VPN is very strong. They utilize strong encryption standards together with secure VPN protocols. Here’s what they offer:
VPN protocols: OpenVPN, IKEv2, L2TP, IPSec, plus the following stealth protocols: OpenVPN Stealth, ShadowSocks, Stunnel, and AnyConnect (a.k.a. OpenConnect).
TorGuard now supports the WireGuard VPN protocol, which is integrated directly into the clients. Just select WireGuard in the Tunnel Type drop-down list and go. Unfortunately, we found problems with this implementation, which we’ll discuss in the cons section.
Encryption: AES-128, AES-256, and Blowfish. The addition of full WireGuard support brings ChaCha20 to the list of supported ciphers.
Their support for 8 simultaneous connections is generous compared to most VPN services (but note that Surfshark, among others, supports an unlimited number of simultaneous connections).
2. Consistent speeds
Another great aspect of TorGuard VPN is the performance. We ran all tests with the OpenVPN protocol using the official TorGuard VPN client and a baseline connection speed of 500 Mbps.
Note: At the time of this review, TorGuard’s implementation of WireGuard was inoperable, constantly returning connection errors. Therefore we could not run WireGuard speed tests.
For the first round of speed tests, I selected servers around the United States and Canada.
Seattle was the closest server to my location: 202 Mbps.
At over 200 Mbps, this is a good speed test result.
Next I tested a server in Los Angeles: 266 Mbps.
These are even better speeds despite the longer distance and higher ping.
The last US server I tested was in New York: 116 Mbps.
This was the slowest TorGuard VPN server I tested.
Next I tested a TorGuard server in Toronto, Canada: 200 Mbps.
Finally, I tested a server in the UK: 152 Mbps.
Overall, these are good speeds, but with that being said, there is room for improvement. Also note that we ran all tests with OpenVPN and WireGuard should offer even better speeds. In our WireGuard vs OpenVPN comparison, WireGuard outperformed OpenVPN by a sizable margin.
While TorGuard is not the fastest VPN we have tested, it’s still pretty darn good.
3. 3,000+ servers in 50+ countries
The TorGuard network of VPN servers numbers more than 3,000 servers. They are located in 68 locations spread across more than 50 countries. Their network includes some countries that most VPN services don’t support, such as Moldova and the UAE.
This network is a good size, putting TorGuard on par with many other leading VPN services, including NordVPN and Surfshark.
4. Support for Windows, Mac OS, Linux, Android, iOS, browsers, and routers
TorGuard VPN provides support for the top desktop and mobile operating systems: Windows, Mac OS, Linux, Android and iOS. They also have browser extensions for Firefox and Chrome. These proxies can change your IP address within the browser only and do not include the encryption of the full VPN.
On the hardware side, they support DD-WRT and Tomato routers, along with pfsense.
Finally, TorGuard offers a collection of OpenVPN and DD-WRT configuration files and scripts. You could use these to connect TorGuard to VPN routers such as the Vilfo, which can work with any OpenVPN-capable VPN service, as long as a configuration file is available.
In short, you can use the TorGuard VPN with a wider range of hardware and software than the typical VPN.
5. No IP address or DNS leaks detected
Applying our standard set of VPN tests against TorGuard, we weren’t able to find any leaks of any kind. You can see the IP address in the leak tests matches up with the VPN’s IP address and location in the VPN client on the right. Further strengthening TorGuard is their built-in kill switch.
Likewise, the TorGuard VPN Android app was leak-free. It did not, however, make it onto our list of the best VPNs for Android.
6. Multiple payment methods including cryptocurrencies
You have a good range of payment options if you decide to get a TorGuard subscription. Beyond the usual credit cards, you can pay with cryptocurrencies, gift cards, Paymentwall (a global payment service), and Amazon Pay.
Warning: TorGuard will not offer refunds if you choose to pay with cryptocurrencies or gift cards! We found these exceptions and fine print when examining the Terms of Service, as we’ll explain further below.
7. Pre-flashed VPN routers available
Another potential benefit to going with TorGuard VPN is the availability of a large selection of VPN routers pre-flashed to run with the service. We didn’t get a chance to test one of these routers for this review.
If you are interested in a router that comes ready to run TorGuard right out of the box, you can get more information on their website.
8. Optional features to customize your experience
While TorGuard doesn’t offer some of the more advanced VPN features of other services (split tunneling, for example) they do give you some options for customizing your experience. These include:
- The separate streaming IP addresses we discussed earlier
- Specialized IP addresses including dedicated, streaming, sports, and residential
- A range of business VPN plans
- Startup scripts that run within their VPN clients
9. Additional pricing options
TorGuard has added two new pricing options: the Pro package and the VPN router bundle.
Pro package – We seem to use ever more devices that need an internet connection. And if we are going to use a VPN, we want to be able to protect most or all of our devices with a VPN at the same time. But most VPN services support no more than 5 or 6 simultaneous connections on a single subscription. To help deal with this problem TorGuard’s new Pro package supports 12 simultaneous connections. You also get 1 free dedicated IP address in any location, along with free 10 GB network access.
Note: You can see other VPNs offering a dedicated IP here.
VPN router bundle – TorGuard found that their recent WireGuard update is particularly fast on VPN routers. You can now order the VPN router bundle and receive a free GL.iNET GL-MT300N-V2 mini WiFi router. This router is compatible with both TorGuard’s new WireGuard service and with OpenVPN. To mark the availability of this bundle, for a limited time TorGuard will ship the GL.iNET router to you free when you sign up for the VPN router bundle.
To get access to these new plans, select the Anonymous VPN subscription you want (monthly, quarterly, etc.). Once you do, you’ll see a new page like this one that lets you choose the current plan or one of the new plans. Note that you may have to select the Anonymous VPN product group before you can see the specific pricing plans.
Now let’s move on to the drawbacks of TorGuard VPN.
TorGuard VPN CONs
While TorGuard has a number of good points, it also has a few bad points. These include:
1. VPN apps will be confusing for most users
It appears that the TorGuard team focuses most of their effort on the technical side of the business, and caters more toward technical users. This can best be seen in their VPN clients, which are rich in technical options but not very user-friendly. Here is what the Windows desktop client looks like:
As you can see, all the technical options are front and center in the user interface. While this is great for the more technical user, less-experienced users may find the interface intimidating and/or confusing.
If you would prefer a VPN service that works great without requiring you to mess with all this, check out ExpressVPN.
2. Unclear VPN data collection policies
However, they appear to be using Google Analytics to collect anonymized data, which we don’t like. In addition, they collect Apache Webserver logs, which are “purged regularly.” Finally, they state that they do not collect or log any data from the VPN and proxy services, which of course is good.
As seems to be the case with most US-based services, the Terms of Service is full of legalese protecting the company from liability and binding the user to the terms of the DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act).
It would be helpful if the company provided more details on the data it collects, including how long it retains such data. This is particularly important in light of where the company is based.
3. Based in the United States (a bad privacy jurisdiction)
Whatever your feelings about the United States as a place to live, the country is not a good location for a VPN or any other business involving privacy.
Many of the most active international surveillance organizations were created by the United States. The government has vast legal and perhaps extra-legal surveillance powers over companies based in the country. One of those is the ability to force a company to spy on their customers, regardless of their own privacy policies and terms of service. As part of these powers, they can even force the company to do this surveillance in secret, pretending to honor their policies while passing data to the NSA or other government agencies.
The legal situation in the United States is one of the major reasons that leading VPN services like ExpressVPN and NordVPN are not based in the US or UK.
Some people dismiss the risks of a “Five Eyes” VPN. But there have been numerous cases where privacy-focused companies have been forced to collect logs on their users:
- IPVanish forced to log users for the FBI
- Riseup (an email and VPN service) was forced to log user data for the FBI
- Lavabit was ordered to turn over encryption keys to the US government so they could gain access to user emails and private data.
And these are just the examples that we know about.
4. Limited streaming support – unless you pay extra for “Streaming Bundle”
The TorGuard VPN does support streaming and torrenting. As a matter of fact, their name, TorGuard, refers to their support for using a VPN for torrenting, rather than any connection to the Tor anonymity network. But their approach is different than that of other services.
The basic VPN isn’t particularly good at streaming. For people that need reliable streaming support, TorGuard offers “streaming IP addresses” located in any of 12 locations around the world. This sounds like a great idea — get an IP address that isn’t associated with a VPN so you can stream without worry.
But there are a few problems with this approach. First, each such IP address costs an additional $7.99 per month. That greatly drives up the price of the overall service.
Second, you can’t use these IP addresses for torrenting. According to the website,
They are designed for general use and streaming your favourite services – (Non-Refundable + No Torrents)
We can’t guarantee these IP’s will work for any services outside of streaming networks – they are not designed for anything other than streaming or general browsing.
Overall, we’re not big fans of this approach.
Considering that there are several VPNs that do a good job defeating geo-blocking without charging you extra for the ability, we recommend checking our best VPNs for streaming review if you need to defeat geo-blocking.
There are also VPNs that work with Netflix – without having to pay for any add-ons or dedicated IPs.
And now that we’re discussing pricing, that brings us to another drawback of TorGuard VPN…
5. Confusing pricing and order form
We found both the TorGuard VPN pricing and order form to be rather confusing.
The basic pricing is simple enough, even though there are three different versions that you first need to choose from:
- Anonymous VPN
- Anonymous VPN Pro
- Anonymous VPN + Router
After you select your plan and payment schedule, you are then bombarded with a plethora of add-ons to choose from:
Add in the fact that the order form itself is very poorly designed, and you have a recipe for confusion. It took us several tries to even specify exactly what we wanted and successfully place an order.
To make matters even more confusing, the homepage lists a bunch of other subscription plans including:
- Anonymous VPN
- Business VPN
- Streaming Bundle
- Anonymous Email
Beating our way through the subscription process gave us bad feelings about the product before we even installed it.
6. Limited refund window with many exceptions
The TorGuard refund policy rates poorly compared to those of the leading VPN services. While most give you 30 days, here you get 7. And only certain items are refundable. The policy is complicated, so instead of us trying to describe it, we’ve included the entire policy below:
If you are less than 100% satisfied with the TorGuard.net VPN and Proxy services, we will gladly refund your payment if the refund is requested within seven (7) days from the date of the purchase, all Dedicated IP’s, Streaming or Residential IP’s are excluded from the refund. Requests made later than the 7 day purchase date window will be denied. Refunds can be denied within the 7 day period in certain cases. Refunds can also be withheld in the event of a terms of service violation. Gift cards and Crypto Payments cannot be refunded, they also cannot be refunded to alternative gateways, cards that cannot be refunded to the source will be applied as a credit on your TorGuard account.
As you can see, there are numerous clauses, exceptions, and barriers that prevent you from getting all of your money back. Meanwhile, leading VPNs such as NordVPN, ExpressVPN, and Surfshark, all offer a full 30 day money-back guarantee without all of these exceptions and clauses.
All of the exceptions and clauses where refunds are denied are noteworthy.
Proceed with caution.
TorGuard VPN interesting FACTs
Finally, let’s look at some additional interesting facts about the TorGuard.
1. TorGuard VPN and VPNetworks LLC (background info)
TorGuard’s parent company is VPNetworks LLC, which itself is part of the Data Protection Services LLC holding company. Both VPNetworks and Data Protection Services LLC are based in Orlando, Florida, USA.
According to the Data Protection Services LLC website, the holding company owns TorGuard VPN, Private-Email, and PrivateRouter, the company that sells pre-flashed TorGuard routers.
Offshore to Nevis, now back in the USA
At some point, however, TorGuard decided to move the corporate structure back to the United States.
2. WireGuard implementation not working well
In August 2020, TorGuard announced the release of WireGuard support, with direct protocol selection available in the updated VPN client:
To access the latest TorGuard app featuring WireGuard simply click the update banner at the bottom of the TorGuard app or visit our downloads page to grab the latest copy. After the install opens the TorGuard app, under tunnel-type chose “WireGuard”. You will now be able to connect to any server through this new protocol.
However, there are still some bugs and issues with TorGuard implementation of WireGuard. We tested it with both the Windows and Mac OS VPN clients. In both cases, the WireGuard connection failed and returned this message:
In the meantime, if you want to use this new protocol, there are other VPNs that support WireGuard.
3. TorGuard customer support
While you will hopefully never need customer support, if you do, TorGuard offers a full range of contact points. This includes all the usual social media channels, email, and a US-only toll-free phone line. Beyond these, they also offer an FAQ page, knowledge base, community forum, and a YouTube channel.
The team also has a good reputation around the web for their fast, helpful support. This is particularly important since TorGuard is less user-friendly than many other VPN services.
TorGuard VPN review conclusion
The TorGuard VPN has a lot of technical strengths, and might appeal to users who need detailed control over VPN protocols and other technical aspects of their VPN connection.
If that does not describe you, we recommend you consider a different VPN service. There are numerous VPNs available that we think would better serve general VPN users.
Additionally, if you are a privacy-focused user who wants a VPN that’s located in a good privacy jurisdiction, then TorGuard does not fit the bill. And as we’ve seen with IPVanish, even a “no logs” VPN can be forced to collect data for the FBI (government agencies).
You can also check out these VPNs services that passed our tests and are located in good privacy jurisdictions.
Want to give TorGuard VPN a try? You can get started here >>
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TorGuard VPN Review