Google Chrome is the most common browser on the planet, and for good reason. It’s reliable, simple to use, and thanks to its extensions, you can add a slew of new features and customizations.
Virtual private network (VPN) extensions are among the most common, as they allow users to protect their online privacy while also unblocking content that is otherwise blocked in their area.
If you use your Chrome browser to watch Netflix, for example, a VPN will allow you to access content that is not available in the United States. The legality of using a VPN in some cases is a tricky issue, so we’re not condoning it, but we’ve compiled a list of the best VPNs that you can use with Google Chrome without difficulty.
How does a VPN function?
Without getting into specifics, a VPN effectively gives the impression that you’re in a different physical place, such as a different region, to any possible online observers.
You can use a VPN extension in Chrome to make Netflix and other sites think you’re in the UK if you’re using a VPN in the US and want to view content only available in the UK. Another advantage is that your real location and IP address are hidden, providing complete anonymity and privacy.
With that in mind, here are the top five Chrome VPN choices right now!
Dedicated Chrome extension: Yes | Chrome Web Store rating: 4.4/5 | 24/7 live chat: Yes | Free trial length: 30 days | Maximum devices supported: 5 | Servers/countries: 3,000+/90+
- Wide server coverage
- Substantial extension
- Fast, reliable performance
- Extension won’t work without the app
Let’s start with the one major drawback: in order for the extension to function, you must first install the ExpressVPN desktop software on your Mac or PC. Given the outcome, this is a mild annoyance at best.
To begin, you can modify your spoofed location and settings directly from the extension, allowing you to switch countries in the blink of an eye. Although VPNs can slow things down, ExpressVPN keeps things moving quickly and does not log your web traffic or operation.
If you use your PC or Mac as your primary media device, you’ll be happy to know that ExpressVPN unblocks all of the major services, including Amazon Prime Video, Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and others.
It’s also paired with requiring more stable HTTPS versions of websites and providing live customer service.
Dedicated chrome extension: No | Chrome Web Store rating: 3/5 | 24/7 live chat: Yes | Free trial length: 30 days | Maximum devices supported: 6 | Servers/countries: 5,000+/55+
- Wide server coverage
- Fast speeds
- Adware/malware blocking
- Can be expensive
Since NordVPN doesn’t have a free Chrome extension, you’ll have to contact them directly to get everything set up. The extension is simple to use, and the speeds are adequate, with over 5,000 servers dedicated to NordVPN users around the world.
Nord also has your protection in mind, with a double hop and encryption combination that should keep you completely anonymous and safe online.
A live 24/7 chat service lets you solve problems whenever you want, and while it can be expensive if paid monthly, there’s a 30-day money-back guarantee if you want to give it a try. The three-year contract, in particular, provides the best value for money and is worth considering if you know you’ll use the service frequently.
3. Hotspot Shield
Dedicated chrome extension: Yes | Chrome Web Store rating: 3.7/5 | 24/7 live chat: Yes | Free trial length: 45 days | Maximum devices supported: 5 | Servers/countries: 3,200+/80+
- Free trial
- Fast speeds
- Easy to use
- Monthly plan can be expensive
Hotspot Shield is an excellent option for those who want to try out a VPN without committing to a monthly or yearly subscription.
The free extension allows you to try out the service by restricting your spoofing to just four countries and including an ad-blocking incentive.
It’s simple to use, automatically selecting the fastest server for your link, and it shows: download and upload speeds are both impressive, with 256-bit encryption for secure anonymity.
The 45-day trial is the cherry on top of an already delicious cake.
Dedicated chrome extension: No | Chrome Web Store rating: 4.4/5 | 24/7 live chat: Yes | Free trial length: 45 days | Maximum devices supported: 7 | Servers/countries: 6,500+/85+
- Free to use
- Solid performance
- Ease of use
- Monthly payments are expensive
The free proxy extension from CyberGhost is simple to set up and use, allowing you to turn it on and off as well as choose your desired location directly from your Chrome browser.
The speeds are consistent, but depending on your position and/or time of day, you can experience some slowdowns. For added security, the service provides 256-bit encryption, and there are four different plans to choose from depending on your needs.
Although the monthly subscription is pricey, the yearly plan is more cost-effective, with the three-year plan providing the best value for money.
5. Private Internet Access
Dedicated chrome extension: Yes | Chrome Web Store rating: 3.7/5 | 24/7 live chat: No | Free trial length: 30 days | Maximum devices supported: 10 | Servers/countries: 3,300+/45
- Lots of features
- Extra privacy tools
- Easy to use
- No live support
The extension from Private Internet Access is a solid, reliable choice that’s simple to use and comes with additional privacy features.
These features include the ability to prevent websites from accessing your microphone, venue, or camera, as well as the ability to avoid WebRTC leaks, block/disable Flash, third-party cookies, credit card auto-filling, and much more.
Aside from the numerous security features, it also unblocks content – though Amazon Prime and BBC iPlayer can cause issues. It’s best to look elsewhere if you use those services.
While download speeds are fast, there is no live chat support. The latter is aided by a 30-day free trial, which allows you to try things out before fully committing.