VPN Protocols – Most Secure VPN Protocol Comparison

VPN protocols determine how data is transmitted through a connection. The protocols have different specifications depending on the desired circumstances and benefits. Some protocols focus on encrypting or masking data packages for security and privacy, while others prioritize data speed.

While it might be tempting to pick WireGuard as the best VPN protocol, it depends with why you’re using a VPN service. Furthermore, some devices don’t support all protocols (especially if you are using a VPN with no VPN app). For such reasons, its important to ensure the VPN you use supports the protocols you’re looking for. Some of the most popular VPN protocols you’ll find include SSTP, WireGuard, L2TP, OpenVPN and IKEv2.

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What is a VPN?

If you frequently use the Internet, it’s highly likely you’ve heard about a VPN. It’s an abbreviation that stands for the Virtual Private Network. In simple terms, the phrase refers to a service that allows you to increase your online privacy, access blocked content, and bypass censorship.

These services provide VPN apps, which create encrypted tunnels sending the data through remote VPN servers and into the destination server (e.g., apple server if you’re visiting apple.com). The good news is that VPN is legal in most countries around the world. Using a VPN boosts your security by hiding your IP address and using encryption to secure your connection.


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1. ExpressVPN – #1 Trusted Leader in VPN
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3. IPVanish – Excellent Support
4. CyberGhost – Rock Solid Connection


What Is A VPN Protocol?

VPN protocols and Virtual Private Networks (VPN) aren’t the same. For example, NordVPN is a great service that allows you to choose from different VPN protocols based on your preferences and the device you want to use the protocols on.

The VPN transmits the online traffic via encrypted tunnels to the VPN services, which assign devices a new IP address. The VPN protocols are processes and programs that determine how the secure tunnel is created. Each of the VPN protocols you find is a solution to a specific private, anonymous, and secure Internet communication problem.

Keep in mind that there is no VPN protocol that’s perfect. Each might have possible weaknesses, either documented or hasn’t been discovered yet, that might compromise your security. A VPN protocol determines how Internet data is transmitted and encrypted between the device and the VPN server.


Top VPNs With Best Protocols?

All VPNs aren’t created equal. The VPN Protocol might have different capabilities, speeds, or event privacy vulnerabilities and security.

🥇 1. ExpressVPN

It isn’t important for you to know exactly how a specific VPN works. However, if you check the ExpressVPN app settings, you can see the tab, which allows you to pick the protocol.

Protocols are methods through which devices connect to the ExpressVPN secure servers. ExpressVPN has a unique protocol by the name Lightway. This is a next-generation protocol that offers the best reliability, security, and speed.

Today, Lightway is available on ExpressVPN apps for routers, Linux, Mac, Windows, and Android. However, besides Lightway, ExpressVPN also has other protocols for VPNs, including L2TP/IPSec, OpenVPN, IKEv2, PPTP, WireGuard, and SSTP.


🥈2. NordVPN Protocols

NordVPN supports several security protocols to offer the best VPN for iPhone service. The security purposes and levels of the protocols differ but so do the needs of customers. For this reason, VPN users are encouraged to closely look at the pros and cons of every protocol. Some of the protocols you can find in NordVPN include:

  • OpenVPN is robust and mature open-source software, allowing NordVPN to offer a secure and reliable VPN service. It’s a very versatile protocol, which might be used, on both UDP and TCP ports.
  • IKEv2/IPSec – It substantially increases the privacy and security of users through the use of strong cryptographic keys and algorithms.

🥉3. IPVanish VPN

IPVanish supports different VPN protocols to make sure users enjoy a secure and fast connection. Some of the IPVanish protocols you’ll find include:

  • IKEv2 is a great protocol available via IPSec; it’s often used for security configuration. Although IKEv2 is only available in new smartphones, it’s often considered to be an IPSec protocol since devices can easily switch between cellular networks and Wi-Fi without interfering with the VPN connection.
  • OpenVPN – It allows for different authentic techniques but often utilizes SSL/TLS for key exchange.
  • IPSec – This is protocol software that encrypts IP packets for tunneling and transport. It’s available for many mobile devices.

4. CyberGhost Protocols

If you choose CyberGhost, your traffic shifts via the encrypted tunnel. The data can’t be intercepted any longer. Keep in mind that your Internet service provider already knows you’re connecting to the VPN server but cannot see anything else. And since the IP address remains hidden, websites cannot track you either.

Today, CyberGhost supports four protocols, some of which are available based o the device you’re using, including PPTP, IPSec/IKEv2, and OpenVPN.

  • OpenVPN – Its incredible AES-256 encryption offers high-end security for your web data, whereas it’s also optimized to ensure high reliability and menial slowdowns.
  • IKEv2/IPSec is a great protocol that maintains a superb VPN connection during switching between mobile data and Wi-Fi.

How do VPN Protocols Work?

Amongst the many things that communication protocols consider essential parameters such as address format, authentication techniques, error connection types, packet size, and more; it’s highly likely you’ve heard about some popular communication protocols like SMTP BitTorrent, HTTP, or TCP/IP.

There’s an extensive range of tunneling protocols. Technically, they are often used for similar functions, which is to allow the exchange of data from one network to another. For this reason, they use some authentication method to make sure there is a genuine VPN server connected on the other end. Next, you’ll find an encryption technique that makes the data exchanged impossible to inspect.

While they work the same way, every VPN protocol has specific traits, which make them ideal for certain tasks and not so good at others. No single protocol is best for all things. It largely depends on the exact context, and there are numerous aspects to consider before choosing one.


Is VPN Protocol Important To Have?

As mentioned earlier, a VPN protocol is the set of rules about how data is packaged and sent over the private network. They create VPN tunnels to exchange data safely.

If you’re looking to transfer more data to the server, you can use a cable to connect the device to a server. However, if the server is located in another continent, the best VPN for Netflix enables you to connect to the remote server as if you were using a cable, making a new and private network that cannot be accessed by outsiders. To create such a connection, you need VPN protocols.


Does Every VPN Have Protocols?

Yes, but it’s important to note that every VPN uses different protocols based on the device they are being used on, whether you need the best VPN for gaming and how you want to get it done. For example, if you’re just relaxing at home watching your favorite show on Netflix, it will not do you any harm to choose the VPN protocol with few security measures to boost your speeds.

Keep in mind that there’s nothing like the best VPN protocol ideal for every person. As mentioned earlier, every VPN has protocols, but it all depends on what you want. For instance, if you’re a gamer, you most likely utilize VPNs for different reasons than someone who watches lots of Netflix.


Is It Safe To Use A VPN Without Protocols?

You should not use a VPN with no protocols. In fact, the best VPN for Kodi service can’t be categorized as a VPN if it doesn’t support various protocols. As mentioned earlier, the VPN protocol usually determines how the data routes between the VPN server and the PC. Protocols have unique specifications, providing many benefits to users in different situations. For example, some VPN prioritize speed, whereas others focus on security and privacy.

For your peace of mind and complete security, you should choose a VPN provider that offers a wide range of protocols. In the section below, we’ll delve into the different types of VPN protocols.


Types of VPN Protocols

The VPN connections often use the encrypted connection, also known as a tunnel. There are different ways through which such VPN connections might be set up. These protocols make sure that your connection data remain safe and cannot be accessed by others. The most usual VPN protocols are:

  • OpenVPN – This is the most popular VPN protocol. OpenVPN is an open-source protocol, which utilizes encryption depending on the SSLv3/TLSv1 and OpenSSL protocols. Many VPN services usually support OpenVPN and are available on different platforms, including routers, Android, Linux, and windows). Most users consider OpenVPN to be a great option. The only issue is that it does not work on iOS and macOS, meaning you need different protocols.
  • IPSec/L2TP – It’s a protocol that combines IPSec for data encryption with L2TP to establish a more secure connection. Many of the operating systems include IPSec/L2TP; that’s perfect if you can find OpenVPN.
  • IKEv2/IPSec – It’s a great protocol based on IPSec. The protocol quickly connects to and switches between the networks. This is what makes it a perfect option for smartphones since these devices often switch between public Wi-Fi networks and Wi-Fi networks regularly. According to some sources, IKEV2 is fast than OpenVPN.
  • PPTP – Also known as Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol, it’s one of the most popular protocols. The protocol comprises a few leaks. For this reason, it should only be used if you prioritize speed over security. This might be the case if you’re looking to bypass various streaming services.
  • WireGuard – WireGuard is a new protocol that has increasingly become popular over the past few years. WireGuard runs on the Linux Kernel and aims to perform better than IPSec and OpenVPN. Keep in mind that it’s still in the early developmental stages, so that you will be better off with OpenVPN.
  • Softether – Unlike other protocols mentioned here, this isn’t a standalone protocol and works across various platforms and provides support to different VPN protocols like Microsoft Secure Socket Tunneling Protocol, OpenVPN, L2TP/IPSec, and SSL VPN.

Protecting Your Privacy With VPN?

A VPN provides more privacy because you won’t be browsing the Internet with your IP address exposed publicly. The VPN allows you to remain anonymous about all the sites you visit. The Person IP address remains hidden every time you connect with a VPN server, and it will also change the VPN server’s IP address.

Technically, you can link your web activities to your location and identity based on the IP address. For instance, the ISP, the sites you go to, and many governments can see everything you try online. So your online activity becomes more private because you cannot be traced or identified through the IP address.


VPN Protocols FAQs

What VPN protocol should you use?

Looking for a secure VPN protocol? If so, many experts recommend using OpenVPN because it’s more secure. OpenVPN utilizes 256-bit encryption and offers other ciphers like 3DES, AES, CAST-128, and Blowfish.

What is the fastest VPN protocol?

If you’re looking to stream Netflix, then you need the fastest VPN protocol. Luckily, PPTP is the fastest VPN protocol, mainly because of the weak encryption. Also, IKEv2 and L2TP are pretty fast, whereas SSTP and OpenVPN are slower.

What are the best types of VPN Tunnels?

There are numerous types of VPN protocols, which provide different security levels and other essential features. OpenVPN, SSTP, L2TP/IPSec, and PPTP are the most commonly used tunneling protocols.

Is the UDP or TCP better for VPN?

It depends on the reasons you’ve chosen to use a VPN. The TCP is more reliable, and so, you might think that the TCP is a better option, but there are many cases where the UDP may be more preferred. UDP is a perfect choice for using VoIP, streaming, and gaming services.

What VPN protocol does Netflix use?

IKEv2 is another stable and speedy protocol. It can resist network changes, which means the VPN connection will not go down if you switch from mobile data to Wi-Fi.
Author: Daniel Jovanovic
Daniel Jovanovic is an avid website creator who started exploring the World Wide Web as a young kid. Being still a newbie got his first project hacked, which inspired him to learn more about network protection. Now he understands internet security by heart, and this is why he is our VPN expert.