Best No Log VPN for 2021

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In a Hurry? Here's the Best No Log VPN for 2021

We’ve chosen NordVPN as the top no log VPN. NordVPN underwent two independent audits by PricewatershouseCooper (PwC). Auditors were able to determine that NordVPN does NOT collect:

  • Users’ local IP addresses
  • IP addresses assigned to users
  • Connection and disconnection times
  • Traffic data
  • Personal communications while using the VPN
  • DNS queries

NordVPN wasn’t the only provider that got our recommendation. Read the full article to find out our other top picks.

The internet is an inherently nosey place. There are all kinds of online snoops trying to take a peek at your activity while you browse. This could be a rogue employee at your internet service provider (ISP), online advertisers, law enforcement, or other government authorities.

Besides that, threats are rampant. If you jump onto a coffee shop’s public Wi-Fi hotspot, a savvy hacker could be watching your every move to steal your data and use it for identity fraud before you’ve even finished your latte.

This is why so many users flock to VPNs. It’s a solution for those concerned with their online privacy. VPNs provide a secure, encrypted tunnel for you to browse in. But not all VPNs are created equal when it comes to your privacy. A lot of VPN providers proudly declare they have “no log” or “zero log” policies. But do they really? Is it possible to have no records of anything?

What is a No Log VPN?

Most companies keep a record or log of your activities to better serve you as a customer. An online shoe store might keep tabs on your purchases or search history on their site to give you better recommendations and promotions for when you return.

But a good VPN guards your privacy. It’s not anyone’s business whether you’re checking out red high heels or running sneakers. Since a VPN sells anonymity online, there should be no trace that you even used it.

A no log VPN is exactly what it sounds like. It means the VPN provider keeps no record or log of your browsing history or activity while you’re using their services. Even if law enforcement comes knocking on your VPN provider’s door demanding your history, there’s nothing there to show them.

This means a true “no logs” provider keeps no records of:

  • Users’ real (local) IP addresses
  • IP addresses assigned to users
  • Connection and disconnection times
  • Traffic data
  • Users’ online communications
  • DNS requests

While there are many great “no logs” VPN providers, some VPN companies haven’t adhered to their own policies:

This isn’t to say that we condone using VPNs for this kind of illegal behavior. These cases just let us reach the conclusion that some VPNs do actually keep logs, and are willing to turn them over at their discretion.

Top 5 Best No Log VPNs

There are some top VPN providers that have proven themselves in regards to their “no logs” policies. We at VPNOverview feel it’s possible to be verified in several ways. It could be through court documentation and real-world activity, independent audits, or providing users exceptional transparency.

We’ve taken a hard look at a lot of VPNs. While there are plenty of VPNs that claim a “no logs” policy, we wondered how many have actually proven themselves. Which VPNs can show you proof that they’ve stuck by their mission statement to provide users with total anonymity and privacy?

The VPN services on this list are compatible with most devices and operating systems: Windows, Mac, iOS, Android and sometimes Linux. This allows you to rest easy knowing that no logs are being kept across any of your devices. Here’s our top 5 best VPNs that won’t log any of your online activity or data — with the proof to back it up.

1. NordVPN: Independently audited twice

Specifications NordVPN
Operating systems
  • Windows
  • ,
  • Mac
  • ,
  • iOS
  • ,
  • Android
  • ,
  • Linux
Simultaneous connections
  • 6
Torrents
  • Torrenting allowed
Netflix
  • Works with Netflix
Logs policy
  • Zero logs
Protocols
  • OpenVPN
  • ,
  • IKEv2
  • ,
  • Wireguard
Payment methods
  • Other
  • ,
  • Credit card
  • ,
  • Cryptocurrency
Money-back guarantee
  • Yes

NordVPN is already renowned for its security, but we’ve given the provider our top spot for its dedication to privacy. PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) Switzerland audited NordVPN not once, but on two separate occasions in 2018 and 2020. That was at NordVPN’s own request.

Though these reports aren’t published online, they are available to NordVPN users. We’ve provided a description on how to view them later. PWC auditors had total access to NordVPN’s operations. After they observed those operations, interviewed employees and inspected NordVPN’s servers and databases, auditors verified that NordVPN strictly adheres to its no logs policy. That means NordVPN doesn’t keep local or assigned IP addresses you’ve used, your connection history, traffic logs, or DNS queries.

NordVPN: Privacy and security features

  • Location: NordVPN is headquartered in Panama, a privacy safe haven. Panama doesn’t have data retention laws like the EU, UK, or Australia. Panama also isn’t a member of the 5 eyes, 9 eyes, or 14 eyes countries.
  • Security: NordVPN offers 256-bit AES military-grade data encryption. This, along with their excellent firewall and well-protected servers, makes NordVPN’s safety top of the line.
  • Speed: Speed used to be NordVPN’s weak point, but not anymore. It’s becoming one of the fastest providers available. It also offers very good P2P and torrenting speeds. It’s even able to unlock content like American Netflix.
  • Account: All you need is an email, a payment method, and a password to create an account. So if you use an anonymous email service like ProtonMail, and secure payment method like Bitcoin, NordVPN could provide total anonymity for those who want it. If you use another form of payment, like a credit card or transfer, you’d have to provide your personal banking information.

How to access NordVPN audit report

To read the PWC’s no logs policy report, you have to be a NordVPN user. If you’d like to dive into the findings, follow the instructions below.

  1. Visit NordVPN’s website.
  2. Log into your NordVPN account.
  3. Under “My Account”, on the bottom left click “Reports”.
  4. Click “View Report” on either of PWC’s November 2018 or May 2020 audit reports.

2. ExpressVPN: Independently audited and verified

Specifications ExpressVPN
Operating systems
  • Windows
  • ,
  • Mac
  • ,
  • iOS
  • ,
  • Android
  • ,
  • Linux
Simultaneous connections
  • 5
Torrents
  • Torrenting allowed
Netflix
  • Works with Netflix
Logs policy
  • Zero logs
Protocols
  • OpenVPN
  • ,
  • IKEv2
  • ,
  • L2TP/IPsec
  • ,
  • Lightway
Payment methods
  • Paypal
  • ,
  • Other
  • ,
  • Credit card
  • ,
  • Cryptocurrency
Money-back guarantee
  • Yes

ExpressVPN is probably most well-known for its speed, security, user-friendliness, and number of servers around the globe. Those servers run on its TrustedServer technology, and never write to the hard drive. All data is wiped with every reboot as they run on RAM only.

On top of that, this VPN has proven itself repeatedly when it comes to privacy and its “no logs” policy. ExpressVPN was also independently audited by PwC, with the results showing that ExpressVPN strictly adheres to its privacy policy and commitment to anonymity.

But ExpressVPN also showed its dedication to privacy in a high-stakes, real-world scenario.  An ExpressVPN server was seized following the 2016 assassination of Russian diplomat Andrei Karlov by policeman Mevlüt Mert Altıntaş. Turkish media reported that Facebook and Gmail messages relevant to the investigation of the assassination were deleted by an unknown individual using the VPN. However, ExpressVPN was unable to help with the investigation, because there simply weren’t any logs to give authorities.

“As we stated to Turkish authorities in January 2017, ExpressVPN does not and has never possessed any customer connection logs that would enable us to know which customer was using the specific IPs cited by the investigators,” ExpressVPN said in a statement. “Furthermore, we were unable to see which customers accessed Gmail or Facebook during the time in question, as we do not keep activity logs.”

ExpressVPN: Privacy and security features

  • Location: ExpressVPN is located in the British Virgin Islands. These Caribbean islands have different laws than Great Britain. There are no data retention laws, no 5 Eyes, 9 Eyes or 14 Eyes alliances, and they aren’t required to cooperate with international investigations.
  • Security: ExpressVPN offers military-grade, 256-bit AES data encryption and well-protected servers. ExpressVPN provides its own DNS servers, so all requests are run through the same encryption and tunneling services.
  • Speed: This VPN is also well-known as one of the fastest VPN providers, with the largest number of servers around the globe. It works especially well for streaming and torrenting.
  • Account: All you need is an email and a password to create an account. So if you use an anonymous email service like ProtonMail, and a secure payment like Bitcoin, you could be completely anonymous.

How to access ExpressVPN audit report

If you’d like to read the PwC’s no logs policy report, you have to be an ExpressVPN user. Follow the instructions below.

  1. Visit the ExpressVPN website.
  2. Log into your ExpressVPN account.
  3. Click on “My Account”.
  4. Scroll to the very bottom of the page. Under “About ExpressVPN”, click “Security Audits”.
  5. Click on the PWC’s June 2020 update on the audit report.

If you’re on the fence with NordVPN and ExpressVPN, check out our article comparing the two.

3. VyprVPN: Independently verified no logs report

Specifications VyprVPN
Operating systems
  • Windows
  • ,
  • Mac
  • ,
  • iOS
  • ,
  • Android
  • ,
  • Linux
Simultaneous connections
  • 5
Torrents
  • Torrenting allowed
Netflix
  • Works with Netflix
Logs policy
  • Zero logs
Protocols
  • OpenVPN
  • ,
  • Wireguard
  • ,
  • L2TP/IPsec
Payment methods
  • Paypal
  • ,
  • Other
  • ,
  • Credit card
Money-back guarantee
  • Yes

VyprVPN is another one of our verified zero log VPN services. VyprVPN’s strict no logging policy has been independently audited by Leviathan Securities. This audit is available publicly here. Leviathan auditors confirmed that VyprVPN doesn’t save any identifiable logs without user permission.

It’s also worth noting that in the past, VyprVPN kept logs on their users, which they clearly stated in their terms and conditions. This and the independent audit provided a sense of transparency we like. Ever since they’ve instated their new logging policy, it appears they have stuck to it.

VyprVPN: Privacy and security features

  • Location: VyperVPN is located in Switzerland, long-known as a safe haven for privacy advocates.
  • Security: VyprVPN owns its own server network, including its DNS servers. This allows them to ensure optimal safety and privacy. With no third parties involved in their services, the chances of DNS leaks are slim to none. VyprVPN is able to guarantee more online anonymity that users love. They use 256-bit SSL encryption and advanced protocols.
  • Speed: This provider shows relatively good speeds for a VPN, but isn’t quite as fast as the providers above. Our testing showed a slight lag with downloading and gaming.
  • Account: VyprVPN might ask you to share personal data, including your name, email address, phone number, payment information, and address. They offer credit cards and Paypal as payment options, so it might be harder to stay completely anonymous.

4. Private Internet Access (PIA): Proven in court

Specifications PIA
Operating systems
  • Windows
  • ,
  • Mac
  • ,
  • iOS
  • ,
  • Android
  • ,
  • Linux
Simultaneous connections
  • 10
Torrents
  • Torrenting allowed
Netflix
  • Works with Netflix
Logs policy
  • Zero logs
Protocols
  • OpenVPN
  • ,
  • Wireguard
  • ,
  • L2TP/IPsec
  • ,
  • PPTP
Payment methods
  • Paypal
  • ,
  • Other
  • ,
  • Credit card
  • ,
  • Cryptocurrency
Money-back guarantee
  • Yes

Private Internet Access (PIA) has a very strict zero log policy, and has proven itself in real-world situations several times. The FBI subpoenaed PIA for logs in 2016, but PIA testified that there weren’t any to provide, according to court documents. Again, authorities called on PIA to provide logs in 2018, to which the provider testified it had nothing to show.

PIA maintains a strict no-log policy, and regularly provides updated transparency reports on subpoenas, warrants and court orders. The logs produced from seventeen legal process requests were zero.

One of PIA’s selling points is its focus on security and privacy. The company said that, while it makes some things more difficult, like handling support tickets, sending outbound emails and dealing with abuse, its no logging policy makes customers’ anonymity and safety a top priority.

To ensure privacy, browsing data is never stored on hard disks. It goes through a special null device. This is a virtual device that automatically treats any data sent through it as if it doesn’t exist. Once the information has been written to the null device, it becomes unretrievable. This is how PIA can guarantee its no-log policy.

PIA: Privacy and security features

  • Location: PIA is located in the United States, which is a member of the 5 Eyes, 9 Eyes and 14 Eyes alliances. This makes some privacy advocates nervous. Also, in theory, pushy agencies like the FBI or NSA could use a court order to monitor American users they deem suspect. However, there are no data retention laws in the United States. This means PIA isn’t obligated to store information for a specific period, as is often the case in Europe. And their track record proves they’ve got no logs to show.
  • Security: PIA works with various strong protocols, including OpenVPN. Recently PIA has ensured that all of its VPN servers now support the new Wireguard protocol. It also has a SOCKS5-proxy.
  • Speed: This VPN hasn’t performed as well on our speed tests, though it still ranks fairly high. Our testing showed a slowdown when using faraway servers.
  • Account: All you need is an email and a password to create an account. So if you use an anonymous email service like ProtonMail, and a secure payment like Bitcoin, you could be completely anonymous. PIA provides you an “Order ID” after payment which allows you to communicate with the company.

5. CyberGhost: a transparency-minded VPN

Specifications CyberGhost
Operating systems
  • Windows
  • ,
  • Mac
  • ,
  • iOS
  • ,
  • Android
  • ,
  • Linux
Simultaneous connections
  • 7
Torrents
  • Torrenting allowed
Netflix
  • Works with Netflix
Logs policy
  • Zero logs
Protocols
  • OpenVPN
  • ,
  • IKEv2
  • ,
  • Wireguard
Payment methods
  • Paypal
  • ,
  • Other
  • ,
  • Credit card
  • ,
  • Cryptocurrency
Money-back guarantee
  • Yes

CyberGhost is another provider that makes the list because of its focus on privacy. While CyberGhost hasn’t had any independent audits or court appearances since 2012, we like their transparency. Every three months, CyberGhost releases transparency reports. They were the first VPN to do these kind of reports when they started in 2011, and they’ve released them ever since.

The company regularly updates its users on police requests, abuse, and malicious activity complaints. For example, they had 25 international police queries during the first quarter 2021 after criminal activity was tracked to CyberGhost IP addresses.

“We generally get police requests from various law enforcement agencies and police departments from around the world. Representatives contact us after they’ve traced back an IP address to one of our data centers. They’re usually looking for logs to help with their investigation,” CyberGhost said in the report. “Because we have no data to show, we have not complied with any of these requests.”

CyberGhost: Privacy and security features

  • Location: CyberGhost is located in Bucharest, Romania, outside of the 5 Eyes, 9 Eyes and 14 Eyes alliances. Though they are a member of the EU, they don’t follow the same privacy laws as the rest of Europe. Romania has twice repealed data retention laws it deemed unconstitutional.
  • Security: CyberGhost uses various strong protocols, including OpenVPN and the new, innovative protocol WireGuard.
  • Speed: It’s a fast VPN, though not as fast as our top 2. Our speed tests showed some slow down on downloading and streaming speeds, as well as when using faraway servers.
  • Account: You’ll need an email and password to sign up. You can pay anonymously with Bitcoin, but all other payments are made through a third-party, Cleverbridge. Cleverbridge is reputable when it comes to privacy. CyberGhost will have you activate a customer serial number so you can anonymously sign up.

The Takeaway

We’ve tested dozens of VPN services and consider many factors, including speed, geo-unblocking, and user-friendliness. Even so, privacy, security, and a proven no log policy remain essential. Which of the five VPNs named in this article you choose, depends on your personal preference, and what other features you find important. Whichever you choose, we’ve found proof that these VPNs truly keep no records or logs of activity.

When interested parties come looking for logs, your provider should protect you by offering up nothing, because there’s simply nothing to show them.

No Log VPNs - FAQ

Do you have a question about no log VPNs? Click on one of the Frequently Asked Questions below to find the answer.

We’ve found five great VPNs that have proven they don’t keep logs:

  1. NordVPN: A security and privacy-oriented VPN that was independently audited twice.
  2. ExpressVPN: A truly no logs VPN with speed, security and other features.
  3. VyprVPN: A private VPN that was independently audited.
  4. PIA: A company that has proven not to keep logs twice in court appearances.
  5. CyberGhost: A privacy-minded VPN that provides quarterly transparency reports.

It depends on the provider. Some VPN services claim a no logs policy, though they’ve cooperated with law enforcement and government authorities by turning over records, which means they had to have kept logs. Find out which providers have proven themselves through independent audits and real-world action.

Police can’t track a VPN if the provider truly has a no logs policy. Some providers are situated in countries and territories that have no data retention laws and aren’t required to cooperate with law enforcement and authorities. Find out which ones in our full article.

If your VPN does not adhere to its no logs policy, then yes, it can be tracked. In the past, VPN providers have submitted logs of certain users after inquiries from law enforcement and court subpoenas. The VPN services on our list, however, simply had no logs to provide when they were put in these scenarios.

A no log VPN is a provider that keeps no records of its users’ online activity. This could be connection and disconnection times, DNS queries, local and assigned IP addresses, and traffic and browsing data. Check out the rest of our article to find out our top picks for the best no log VPN providers.

Tech journalist
Taylor is a tech writer and online journalist with a special interest in cybersecurity and online privacy. He’s covered everything from sports and crime, to explosive startups, AI, cybercrime, FinTech, and cryptocurrency. For VPNOverview.com he follows news and developments in online privacy, cybersecurity, and internet freedom.