Cryptocurrency trading volumes have exploded in recent years, with more people buying and selling Bitcoin, Ethereum, and altcoins through centralized and decentralized exchanges worldwide.
According to research from CryptoCompare, monthly crypto trading volumes surpassed $2.5 trillion in November 2021, representing a staggering 1,735% increase versus 2020.
With huge sums of money flowing through crypto markets and exchanges, it‘s no surprise that cybercriminals are targeting traders‘ accounts, wallets, and financial information more than ever before.
This is why using a virtual private network (VPN) is now essential for crypto enthusiasts who want to protect their trading activities and sensitive personal data.
Here‘s why every trader should be using a VPN:
- Enhanced privacy – VPN encryption hides your IP address, location, and online activity, preventing snooping by your internet service provider (ISP), government agencies, or malicious actors on public WiFi networks.
- Access restricted exchanges – VPNs allow you to bypass geo-blocking and access crypto exchanges that may be unavailable in your country. For instance, Binance restricts access to users from the United States.
- Secure public WiFi – Public hotspots are extremely risky for crypto trading. A VPN shields these insecure connections.
- Prevent throttling – VPN encryption prevents ISPs from throttling or blocking access to crypto exchange sites and wallets.
- Defend against hackers – Encryption protects your data from cybercriminals aiming to steal wallet info by intercepting unsecured connections.
- Hide trading strategies – Encryption makes it impossible for competitors to monitor and copy your unique trading strategies and behaviors.
According to Atlas VPN, there was a 41% global increase in VPN usage in 2021, indicating that more crypto traders are indeed turning to VPN services to protect their privacy and defend against cyber threats targeting exchange accounts.
Choosing the right VPN for your crypto trading activities is absolutely crucial. In this comprehensive guide, we‘ll compare the top virtual private networks and explain how to select the best solution for protecting your connections, data, and privacy across all devices.
How to Select the Best Crypto Trading VPN
With hundreds of VPN services available in 2023, it can be challenging to identify which provider offers the ideal mix of privacy protections, encryption security, speed, and ease of use for traders.
Here are the most important criteria to evaluate when picking a VPN for crypto:
Jurisdiction Outside Surveillance Alliances
It‘s preferable to select a VPN provider located outside of intelligence-sharing surveillance alliances like 5/9/14 Eyes. VPN companies based in these jurisdictions may be subject to more stringent data retention laws and pressures to share user information with government agencies.
For example, leading providers like NordVPN and Surfshark are located in privacy-friendly countries like Panama and the Netherlands.
Strong Encryption & Protocols
Military-grade encryption is vital for securing your internet connection and shielding financial transactions from interception or monitoring. Look for VPNs using AES-256 bit encryption along with protocols like OpenVPN, IKEv2, and the faster WireGuard protocol.
For example, ExpressVPN uses AES-256 across its entire network in combination with its proprietary Lightway protocol for enhanced security and speed.
Key Privacy Protections
Your VPN provider should have essential privacy protections like a strict no-logs policy, ensuring that zero user activity or connection data is tracked or stored long-term.
Leak prevention via automatic kill switches, IPv6 protection, and DNS leak prevention are also must-haves to prevent accidentally exposing your IP address.
Extensive Network of Fast Servers
Large server networks across diverse locations worldwide are crucial for consistently accessing crypto exchanges with low latency. Slow speeds and delays can disrupt time-sensitive trading activities.
For instance, NordVPN offers over 5,500 worldwide servers optimized for features like P2P file sharing.
Accepts Anonymous Crypto Payments
For added privacy, look for VPNs that allow you to pay for services using major cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple etc. This prevents exposing personal payment information.
Providers like CyberGhost and Surfshark accept a wide range of cryptocurrencies for subscriptions.
Browser Extensions for Added Security
For an extra layer of security when accessing exchange sites and web wallets, choose a VPN that offers browser extensions for Chrome, Firefox etc. This encrypts browsing activity separately from your device‘s network connection.
ExpressVPN and IPVanish are top providers that supply browser VPN plugins.
Reputation & Third-Party Audits
Carefully research providers‘ reputations regarding transparency and commitment to user privacy. Look for VPNs like ExpressVPN that periodically undergo independent audits to verify no-logs policies and other security claims.
The Top 5 VPNs for Crypto Trading in 2023
Based on extensive evaluation of the criteria above, these top 5 virtual private networks stand out as the best overall solutions for crypto traders:
|NordVPN||$3.29/month||Best overall – Combination of speed, security protections and privacy make it our top choice|
|ExpressVPN||$8.32/month||Most secure – Leading security and privacy protections to safeguard transactions|
|Surfshark||$2.49/month||Most affordable – Robust security fundamentals at a budget-friendly price|
|CyberGhost||$2.25/month||Best for anonymity – Accepts crypto payments and allows torrenting|
|Private Internet Access||$2.19/month||Fastest speeds – Optimized servers provide low-latency connections|
Below we‘ll take a deeper look at our top 3 recommended VPN services for securing your crypto trading activities across devices:
1. NordVPN – Best VPN for Crypto Overall
Overall rank: #1
Our top choice overall is NordVPN thanks to its winning combination of advanced security features, excellent speeds, and enhanced privacy protections.
NordVPN checks all the boxes in terms of essential criteria for crypto traders:
- Jurisdiction: Panama-based provider outside surveillance alliances
- Encryption & protocols: AES-256, OpenVPN, IKEv2, NordLynx
- Privacy: Strict no-logs policy, full leak protection
- Network: 5,500+ servers in 60 countries
- Speeds: Consistently fast and low latency
- Payment: Accepts crypto – Bitcoin, Ethereum etc.
Beyond these basics, NordVPN supplies many additional features to safeguard user privacy:
- Onion over VPN – Routes traffic through the Tor network for enhanced encryption
- Double VPN – Encrypts data twice by chaining connections
- Obfuscated Servers – Masks VPN traffic to evade blocks and censorship
- Dark Web Monitor – Alerts you if credentials are leaked or sold online
- Dedicated IP – Provides a unique IP for added anonymity
We like that NordVPN offers custom apps for all major platforms like Windows, iOS, Android, macOS and Linux. There are also handy browser extensions for Chrome and Firefox to encrypt web traffic separately from your device‘s network connection.
NordVPN provides 24/7 live chat support and offers a 30-day money back guarantee on all plans. For the best bang for your buck, opt for longer 12 or 24 month subscriptions.
Overall, NordVPN‘s combination of security, speed, and privacy protections make it our top recommendation among crypto traders that want a full-featured VPN solution without breaking the bank.
2. ExpressVPN – Most Secure VPN for Crypto Trading
Overall rank: #2
In terms of robust privacy and security for crypto trading activities, ExpressVPN is one of the leading solutions available in 2023.
Some of the top benefits include:
- Jurisdiction: Based in the British Virgin Islands outside surveillance alliances
- Encryption & protocols: AES-256, Lightway, OpenVPN
- Privacy: Zero-knowledge DNS, split tunneling, no-logs policy
- Network: 3,000+ servers in 94 countries
- Speeds: Extremely fast speeds without sacrificing security
- Payment: Accepts various crypto currencies
ExpressVPN sets itself apart by offering a wide array of advanced security technologies and customization features aimed at protecting user privacy:
- Threat Manager -Blocks suspicious websites and analyzes risks
- Perfect Forward Secrecy -Frequently rotates encryption keys
- Private DNS – Encrypts DNS requests to prevent sniffing
- Split Tunneling – Choose which apps use the VPN versus device connection
- Kill Switch – Prevents exposure if VPN connection drops
One unique benefit is ExpressVPN‘s TrustedServer technology, which ensures VPN servers have no sensitive data stored on them that could be compromised if hacked.
The British Virgin Islands-based provider has a strict no-logs policy protecting user activity, which is verified through independent audits conducted by firms like PricewaterhouseCoopers.
For crypto enthusiasts who refuse to compromise on privacy and encryption security, ExpressVPN is the leading solution despite the higher subscription costs. The provider offers apps for all major platforms, 24/7 live chat support, and a 30-day money back guarantee.
3. Surfshark – Most Affordable Crypto Trading VPN
Overall rank: #3
For crypto traders on a budget, Surfshark offers an impressive value option without cutting corners on core privacy protections.
Top benefits of Surfshark include:
- Jurisdiction: Netherlands headquarters outside surveillance alliances
- Encryption & protocols: AES-256, IKEv2, WireGuard, OpenVPN
- Privacy: Strict no-logs policy, MultiHop feature
- Network: 3,200+ servers in 100+ countries
- Speeds: Fast and consistent in our tests
- Payment: Accepts numerous cryptocurrencies
Additional Surfshark features aimed at anonymity and security:
- CleanWeb – Blocks trackers, ads, malware, and phishing sites
- Whitelister – Allows bypassing VPN for specific apps or websites
- Camouflage Mode – Masks VPN usage from ISP and networks
- Private DNS & Leak Protection – Prevent IP address exposure
- Kill Switch – Halts internet access if VPN disconnects
At just $2.49 per month, Surfshark is far cheaper than the competition while still offering robust protections for crypto trading privacy.
The provider is based in the Netherlands and offers custom apps for all major platforms. Surfshark also provides 24/7 customer support and a 30-day money back guarantee.
For traders focused purely on low cost and basic security fundamentals, Surfshark is a compelling VPN option.
Crypto Trading Security Tips Beyond VPN Usage
While a trusted VPN is essential for any crypto trader, there are additional steps you should take to enhance privacy and security:
- Use Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) – Enable 2FA like biometrics or authentication apps for all exchange accounts whenever possible. This prevents unauthorized logins even if credentials are compromised.
- Avoid Public WiFi for Trading – Only access crypto accounts and exchanges when connected to a password-protected trusted network, not free public WiFi.
- Use a Hardware Wallet – Store the bulk of cryptocurrency funds offline in a hardware wallet. Keep smaller trading amounts on reputable exchanges.
- Unique Passwords – Every exchange account should have a unique and complex password. Consider using a password manager.
- Log Out of Inactive Sessions – Enable auto-logout from exchange accounts after a period of inactivity for additional security.
- Research Exchanges – Only trade on well-established, mainstream exchanges versus unproven platforms. Verify exchange security practices.
- Update Software Frequently – Maintain up-to-date operating systems, browsers, VPN clients and exchange apps to get the latest security patches.
- Avoid Scams – Be cautious of phishing emails, texts, fake exchange sites, phone porting scams and other threats aiming to steal login credentials or compromise accounts.
The Bottom Line
As crypto trading volumes accelerate globally, it‘s essential for enthusiasts to protect their privacy and data by using a trustworthy VPN.
Based on our extensive research, NordVPN, ExpressVPN and Surfshark stand out as the leading solutions for masking IP addresses, encrypting connections, and blocking online trackers and threats.
By selecting one of these top-tier VPN services and pairing it with additional security best practices, crypto traders can access exchanges confidently worldwide knowing their accounts and information are protected from compromise.