Our Surfshark score
Surfshark Review (Aug 2023): Powerful VPN for a Great Price
We’ve tested Surfshark's VPN servers from around the globe.
It delivers on many fronts like speed and encryption, while also providing a host of additional features to help you boost your privacy online. Keep reading for the full review.
Surfshark has been consistently ranked as one of the top VPNs in the market, including being the first service to receive AV-Test’s seal of approval. It’s also the only provider to get its first independent audit the very year it was released. As VPNs go, Surfshark is an excellent choice all around and is one of our favorites here at VPNOverview.
If you want to know how well this VPN actually performs, continue reading our full Surfshark review.
Surfshark: A Short Review
What We Liked
- Unlimited connections
- Unblocks streaming services like Netflix with ease
- High-speed performance
- Secure protocols and no-log policy
- Easy installation and usage
- Affordable subscriptions
- Torrenting works
- Useful extra features, like adblocker, stealth VPN, and split tunneling
What We Didn't Like
- Linux client not that great
After testing Surfshark, we concluded that its reputation as one of the best VPNs is well-deserved. First, the VPN dishes out excellent speeds, even outperforming NordVPN, the overall best VPN for download speeds. Its upload speeds and latency are equally top-notch, making Surfshark a great choice for high-quality streaming and gaming.
In terms of server networks, Surfshark holds its own. It has a server footprint in 100 countries, far more the many of the top VPNs. And its servers are reliable too. We were able to unblock all streaming services we tested, from Netflix to Disney Plus. So you can enjoy your favorite sports, shows, and movies with a Surfshark subscription.
Surfshark’s security features are impressive. It offers OpenVPN, IKEv2/IPsec, and WireGuard protocols, which give you a good mix of security and speed. There’s an automatic kill switch to ensure your traffic is always hidden. Surfshark abides by a strict no-logs policy, which independent third parties have verified. Useful extra features such as CleanWeb (adblocker), NoBorders Mode, Camouflage Mode (stealth VPN), and Bypasser (split tunneling) give you extra layers of privacy and protection.
If you’re budget-conscious, Surfshark offers affordable pricing, considering the collection of features it boasts. Plus, it has unlimited simultaneous connections, meaning you can use it on as many devices as you want.
Overall, Surfshark VPN has many great qualities and performed exceptionally during our extensive tests. This is why we gave it a total score of 9/10.
Need a little more context? Below, we’ve poked, prodded, and laid bare everything Surfshark has to offer in our full Surfshark review.
|💵 Price||From $2.30 a month|
|📱 Operating systems||Linux, Windows, Mac, iOS, Android|
|💳 Payment methods||PayPal, Other, Credit card, Cryptocurrency|
|🔒 Protocols||OpenVPN, IKEv2, Wireguard|
|📥 Torrent options||Torrenting allowed|
|📅 Money-back guarantee||30 Days|
|📋 Logs||No Logs|
|🎬 Works with|
Speed — How Fast Is Surfshark?
Our Surfshark VPN connection speed tests show some pretty phenomenal results. We didn’t face any disconnects or slowdowns during everyday use and could browse the web, stream HD videos, and download large files without any hiccups. In fact, Surfshark is faster than many other VPNs we’ve tested. That’s why it gets a 9.5/10 for speed.
Here’s a brief overview of what we’ve found:
- Surfshark VPN dishes out amazing speeds across the board.
- Our fastest connection saw us retain about 95% of our usual download speed.
- We experienced no major fluctuations during daily use.
- Even faraway servers produce strong speeds, though pings can suffer.
Speed test results for Surfshark
We ran several speed tests on Surfshark from our base in the Netherlands. The aim was to try different Surfshark servers and evaluate the impact on download and upload speeds.
First, we checked Surfshark’s latency, upload, and download speeds without a VPN connection to gauge the speed drop-offs. Next, we tested Surfshark’s speeds in at least one country on each continent. This gave us a bird’s eye view of how Surfshark performed. We’ve summarized the results in the table below.
Your actual speeds might differ depending on various factors, including your starting speeds, internet connection and location. So, view these values as an indicator of potential speeds.
|Server||Download (Mbps)||Upload (Mbps)||Ping (ms)|
|Fastest server (Amsterdam)||192.59||230.07||6|
|Germany (Frankfurt am Main)||193.75||229.47||18|
|Mexico (Mexico City)||75.5||28.94||349|
|United States East (New York)||167.99||219.05||182|
|United States West (Los Angeles)||132.28||63.82||310|
|Brazil (São Paulo)||127.95||225.71||405|
|South Africa (Johannesburg)||133.01||209.12||469|
|Argentina (Buenos Aires)||63.45||31.58||347|
When we connected to servers in Europe, close to our testing location, we did not experience a significant impact on our upload and download speeds. We were able to maintain at least 94% of our initial speeds on the European-based servers we tested. Our latency on those servers increased, but not by much.
Pound for pound, Surfshark’s upload and download speeds are some of the best and fastest speed test results of any of the VPNs we’ve tested, making it one of the fastest VPNs. Here’s a quick comparison against our most recent download speed test results from other top-drawer VPNs:
- Surfshark’s fastest server maintained 94.81% of our initial speed.
- ExpressVPN’s fastest server gave us 58.94% of the download speed we started with.
- With CyberGhost, we saw download speeds peak at around 93.20% of our starting speed.
- NordVPN, our all-around best VPN, held 93.30% of our starting speed.
The server that Surfshark VPN chose for us wasn’t actually the fastest, but there was very little difference between that and the fastest server we found ourselves.
For distant servers in countries such as Brazil, Australia, and South Africa, our speeds dropped slightly, and our ping increased. Again, compared to other VPNs that we’ve tested, Surfshark’s latency is better than most.
It’s noteworthy that Surfshark’s speeds are not a flash in the pan. We have tested VPNs for many years, and Surshark has always been a top performer.
Speed during daily use
Based on our test results in this Surfshark review, especially the speeds we got on the U.S. server, we expected our everyday connection speeds to be great. The VPN didn’t disappoint: it ran seamlessly during everyday use. We tested Surfshark VPN whilst surfing, watching some of the best shows on Netflix, downloading torrents, and playing online games, and it provided a fast, stable connection every time.
VPNs can slow down your connection; it’s a natural result of using such a service. But while browsing, we didn’t notice Surfshark’s effect on our internet speeds at all. Loading websites, emailing, downloading attachments, and browsing social media went very smoothly. We had no issues watching videos on YouTube and streaming content, either.
Netflix even appeared to buffer faster than we’ve seen with other VPN providers. We can confidently say that Surfshark VPN is an ideal choice for streaming (especially Netflix).
Torrenting wasn’t an issue with Surfshark VPN. We managed to download relatively large files in no time. What’s more, Surfshark automatically detected that we were using a torrenting program and switched from a regular VPN server to a specialized P2P server to facilitate the download. This was a nice touch, and it actually boosted our download speed.
On top of this, we didn’t experience any lag while gaming. We connected to both local and US servers without noticeable delays. We tested graphics-intensive, first-person shooting games like Battlefield 2042 to see how the Surfshark VPN would hold up. There was a slight latency drop, but it was marginal. The gameplay wasn’t affected at all.
Safety — How Secure Is Surfshark?
After analyzing Surfshark’s security features, we’re confident that the VPN provider can offer you a high degree of protection. From masking your true IP and encrypting your traffic, to not logging personal data, Surfshark passes every test with flying colors. That’s why we give it a 9/10 for security.
Here are a few key takeaways in terms of security:
- Surfshark VPN supports OpenVPN, IKEv2/IPsec, and the super-secure WireGuard.
- This provider does not keep any harmful logs – as recently guaranteed by a Deloitte audit.
- This VPN comes with an automatic kill switch.
- Surfshark offers powerful security features that block ads, whitelist websites, and offer increased levels of security.
- Surfshark has a NoBorders Mode for areas with strict censorship, GPS-Spoofing options, and a Camouflage Mode that prevents your ISP from seeing that you are using a VPN.
- To create an account, you simply provide your email address and payment info.
Surfshark offers AES-256-GCM encryption (which is faster than regular AES-256 encryption) and uses some of the safest VPN protocols currently available to VPN providers: the WireGuard and OpenVPN protocol. Clearly, there’s no compromise when it comes to users’ security.
- OpenVPN is an open-source tunneling protocol. Because this protocol is open source, a vast community of security-focused developers continues to test, update, and enhance the protocol’s standards. Surfshark offers options for UDP or TCP on all major operating systems.
- WireGuard is a newer protocol that’s available for all Android, Windows, iOS, macOS, and Linux users. It uses the ChaCha20 encryption algorithm and is incredibly fast. WireGuard has under 4,000 lines of code (while OpenVPN has 400,000+), which reduces loading times and vulnerabilities hackers might exploit.
Additionally, Surfshark offers the IKEv2/IPsec protocol for mobile users.
Although Surfshark no longer offers Shadowsocks, the encrypted proxy that was specifically designed to bypass censorship in China, it offers its NoBorders mode. This feature helps users bypass censorship in restrictive regions. During our Surfshark tests, we were impressed by this feature’s performance because it detects restrictions on your network and recommends the most optimized servers. This means that you’re better protected without sacrificing performance.
Access in China, however, is inconsistent. Our tests showed that it was possible to go online in China while connected to Surfshark, but you might have to try many different servers. Even then, your location and provider might determine whether Surfshark actually works or not.
Finally, Surfshark offers perfect forward secrecy, no matter what protocol you choose. Forward secrecy constantly changes encryption keys, so if there’s ever a breach, the stolen keys become useless once you turn your VPN off.
Logging and privacy
Surfshark VPN has a no-logs policy and makes every effort to record as little personal information as possible for its VPN to work. Like most other providers, Surfshark needs your email address to create an account, as well as your payment details.
Furthermore, Surfshark — like most VPN services — requires certain other information to monitor their service and prevent abuse. For example, they use anonymized information to keep track of how busy their servers are and to see if there are any connectivity issues. But these issues aren’t traceable to a specific user. They only cover the general use of their servers and VPN service.
The bottom line? Surfshark doesn’t appear to be keeping any logs that would risk your privacy. Their strict no-logs policy was verified by independent security audits in 2018 and 2021. In December 2022, Deloitte once again audited and confirmed the legitimacy of Surfshark’s policy, emphasizing that your data is safe with Surfshark. This has landed this VPN service a place on our list of best no-log VPNs.
Surfshark also uses a RAM-only server network, which means that there is no information stored on any hard drives: data is automatically deleted with every server reset. As a result, the information cannot be retrieved afterward. More and more VPN providers are switching to RAM-only servers because they offer more privacy.
In addition, Surfshark is one of the first VPNs to offer two-factor authentication (2FA), meaning you can log in via two steps. For Surfshark Alert users, this two-step authentication is mandatory, while the “normal” Surfshark user has the option to use it for extra protection. We strongly recommend using 2FA across all of your accounts, where available.
A kill switch is an essential security feature for any VPN. As the name suggests, it instantly “kills” your internet connection if your VPN malfunctions unexpectedly for whatever reason. This prevents data leaks (like your real IP address) and keeps you protected whenever your VPN falters.
Surfshark offers a kill switch on Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android. You can turn it on by going into the settings in the Surfshark app, and we can confirm that it functions as intended.
Surfshark Nexus is the VPN’s latest upgrade to improve security and user experience. Nexus is an innovation based on software-defined networking (SDN) technology. It connects users to the VPN’s entire network of servers instead of connecting them to an individual location (or subgroup of servers).
Connecting every user to the entire network and moving their traffic around could cause latency or security concerns, but it seems to us that Surfshark is handling the risk well. The Nexus infrastructure has already been deployed into the current Surfshark VPN. The full features are being gradually rolled out. This process began in 2022 and is continuing into 2023. These features include:
- IP Rotator: Automatically changes your IP address every five to 10 minutes while your VPN location stays the same
- IP Randomizer: Gives you a new IP address each time you visit a new website or open a new app
- Dynamic MultiHop: Allows you to pick your own entry and exit points for MultiHop
At the time of writing, only the “IP Rotator” feature was live. You can activate this feature by following these steps:
- Go to “Settings” in the Surfshark app.
- Click on “VPN Settings.”
- Scroll down and tap “Advanced Settings.”
- Click the slider behind “Rotating IP” so it turns green.
To us, Nexus appears to be an improvement for Surfshark users’ online privacy. Now, you will be able to rotate between servers without losing the VPN connection, protecting your real IP address from being intercepted.
MultiHop, Bypasser, and CleanWeb
Surfshark offers multiple extra features that help keep you safe online. Three of the big ones are MultiHop, Bypasser, and CleanWeb. All of these did exactly what the provider said when we tried them for this Surfshark review.
The MultiHop option allows you to “hop” from one VPN server directly to another, providing additional security. Essentially, all of your traffic now goes through two encrypted connections. Unfortunately, this does have a negative impact on your internet speeds. After all, your traffic has to go through two VPN servers instead of one.
If you’re looking for a split tunneling feature in Surfshark VPN, you’ll be happy with their Bypasser. This tool allows you to connect to specific apps and websites you trust using your own IP address instead of that of the VPN server.
CleanWeb is Surfshark’s ad blocker and worked surprisingly well during our tests. It was even able to block ads that managed to slip past some of our best ad blockers.
NoBorders and Camouflage Mode
Surfshark also has two different VPN modes on top of its regular VPN service. These are Camouflage Mode and NoBorders Mode.
Camouflage Mode is Surfshark’s version of “obfuscation technology.” It’s primarily designed to disguise your VPN traffic to bypass any content filtering and makes it more difficult to monitor your activities. It runs automatically when you pick OpenVPN (TCP or UDP) as your protocol.
If you’re located in a region with restricted internet, NoBorders Mode allows you to access the internet freely. When Surfshark detects any kind of restrictions on your network, it automatically enables the NoBorders mode. This gives you a selected list of servers that perform well despite network censorship.
Unlike Camouflage Mode, you’ll have to enable NoBorders yourself via your VPN Settings menu.
Recently, Surfshark has added a GPS spoofing function to its service. GPS spoofing allows you to change your virtual location, even when it isn’t based on your IP address. Surfshark’s GPS spoofing option is only available on Android for now.
This feature is useful if you want to cloak your real GPS location on apps such as dating apps or BeReal. Do keep in mind that using this feature also means you won’t be able to use Google Maps and similar platforms as easily.
Setting up this option takes some extra care and time. Here’s a rundown of the process:
- In the Surfshark software, go to “Settings” in the bottom right corner, then click on “VPN Settings.”
- Scroll down and click on “Advanced Settings.”
- Click the slider next to “Override GPS Location” so it turns green.
- Likely, Surfshark VPN will tell you that you need to adjust your phone’s settings to allow you to override your GPS. If so, go to your phone’s “Settings” (the cogwheel on your main screen) and scroll down to “About Phone” at the very bottom.
- Scroll to the bottom of the “About Phone” menu until you see “Build number,” and tap this option seven times. Fill in your pin, and your device will tell you you’re a developer.
- Go back to your phone’s “Settings,” click on “System,” and unfold the “Advanced” menu at the bottom.
- Tap “Developer Options.”
- Scroll down and tap on “Select Mock Location App,” and select “Surfshark.”
- Go back to the Surfshark app and tap “VPN” in the bottom left corner.
- Connect to a server of your choice.
You’ll now be connected to the VPN server of your choice, and your GPS will match the location of that server.
Surfshark Alert and Surfshark Search
Surfshark Alert and Surfshark Search are only available in the Surfshark One package, which is an all-in-one solution that includes more than just the VPN service.
Surfshark Alert will notify you when your email or passwords might be in danger of being compromised. Surfshark Search is Surfshark’s answer to the anonymous search engine DuckDuckGo.
On top of these smaller tools, Surfshark One also includes a separate antivirus program. The Surfshark One package costs $1.49 per month on top of your regular plan. If you’d like to know more about the antivirus software specifically, you can read our full Surfshark One review.
Does Surfshark leak your data?
VPN services can leak data in a number of ways, including through IP leaks, DNS leaks, or WebRTC leaks. Much like a leaky pipe drips water, a VPN leak can allow data to slip through the encryption protocol, potentially exposing your real identity, location, or your browsing activity. So, as part of our Surfshark review and all of our VPN reviews, we tested for common data leaks.
And Surfshark did not disappoint. It passed our leak tests with flying colors. Below we give you more information on how we tested Surfshark VPN for data leaks.
First, we checked for IP leaks using our handy IP checker tool. Surfshark passed this test.
Next, we used a different service to test for DNS and WebRTC leaks. It’s good news all around — Surfshark didn’t leak our data.
Regardless of the location we tested, Surfshark kept both our original IP address and VPN use secret. The following image gives an overview of the effectiveness of Surfshark VPN at keeping us hidden in different countries worldwide.
So, to summarize, Surfshark keeps no logs and won’t leak your data. Couple that with strong encryption protocols and its Camouflage Mode, and we’re super satisfied with Surfshark’s approach to security.
What information does Surfshark need?
All you need to create an account with Surfshark VPN is your email address and password. Follow our advice on creating a secure password, and you’ll have little to worry about in terms of data privacy.
If you want a completely anonymous VPN purchase, we recommend buying your VPN with cryptocurrencies. Should you choose to pay with a service like PayPal instead, you will have to link your PayPal account in order to complete the payment. Since PayPal is tied to your real name and address, this payment method offers less anonymity.
Usability — How User-Friendly Is Surfshark?
Surfshark excels at user-friendliness. Their software is very easy to use because it manages to make its extensive features highly accessible. On top of that, customer service is easy to reach and very knowledgeable. We give it a 9/10 for user-friendliness.
During our research for this Surfshark review, we arrived at the following conclusions:
- Surfshark’s website and apps are very easy to use.
- The app installation is quick and effortless.
- Surfshark is one of the cheapest VPN providers and offers a 30-day money-back guarantee.
- The customer support team is skillful and quick to respond.
Surfshark’s website and installation process
The Surfshark website is very well-organized, not too busy, and all the important information is right at your fingertips. This made navigation simple and straightforward as we moved around the website.
They’ve kept the “My Account” section of the website as simple as possible. There are a couple of buttons for downloading software for specific devices and operating systems. You can also see when your subscription will end, and there’s a button for changing your password and one for logging out.
As a result, managing your Surfshark account is very easy.
Installing Surfshark is incredibly straightforward too. On mobile devices, you can download the Surfshark VPN app from the App Store or the Play Store. On Mac or PC, simply click the relevant icon on your account dashboard. We tested each app for our Surfshark review, and we had no problems with any platform.
Here’s a step-by-step guide for installing Surfshark:
- Choose a Surfshark subscription and go through the order process.
- Log in to the Surfshark VPN website.
- Click on the icon of your operating system to download it.
- Open the .exe file you downloaded.
- Go through the steps of the installation wizard.
- Open the Surfshark app once it’s installed.
- Log in with the Surfshark login information you created for your account.
- If you want, select a server, then enable Surfshark.
Surfshark’s appearance and ease-of-use
Surfshark VPN’s UI is incredibly simplistic, and it’s one of the most user-friendly VPNs in the market. You don’t need to be a tech whiz to understand all the options available to you.
Once you’ve signed in, you won’t be overwhelmed by countless options and settings. Instead, you’re only shown settings that matter to the average VPN user. All options and settings include a clear description, and different menus are easy to navigate.
You don’t have to worry about manually selecting a Surfshark server for specific tasks, such as streaming or downloading torrents. Simply connect to Surfshark’s VPN, and it will do most of the work for you. For example, we didn’t have to manually select a P2P server, as the program took care of it for us.
Moreover, all American servers appear to work with Netflix, and you can even set up a double VPN tunnel. This routes your connection through two VPN servers, further concealing your identity. All these separate elements make Surfshark a very user-friendly VPN.
You can also connect to individual servers in certain countries. We were able to pick specific servers in specific regions. You can check the servers list to see how many servers are available in certain regions. To connect to a specific Surfshark server, just head to the “Specific IPs” section and select one.
Surfshark on Mac
Many service providers tend to falter when it comes to installing their VPN on macOS, but Surfshark rides the wave pretty well. It worked seamlessly on a MacBook Pro with macOS Monterey. Surfshark VPN also works perfectly with the latest Apple M1 Pro chip, so you don’t need to worry about tinkering in the Command Terminal to get it running properly on macOS.
Also, as you’ll see in the pricing section below, you can take advantage of a seven-day free trial on Mac. If you need a robust VPN for Mac, you can’t go wrong with Surfshark.
Surfshark on Linux
Surfshark is also available for Linux users. Specifically, the terminal app is available on Ubuntu and Debian distros. Unfortunately, this does not even come close to the amount of Linux options available from competitors like NordVPN and ExpressVPN, which offer support for other distros too. Users of other distros can make do with manual OpenVPN servers, however.
Our experience when using Surfshark on a Debian distro is two-sided. On the one hand, the client is quite user-friendly. The installation is a piece of cake, and the selection of commands you have to learn is limited and intuitive. Surfshark VPN on Linux also includes a number of neat extra features, such as an automated selection of the best available server, a kill switch, multihop, and the ability to easily switch between UDP and TCP servers.
However, the number of servers available to Linux users is somewhat limited compared to Surfshark’s overall server network: about 102 Surfshark servers are spread across 61 countries.
The quality of our VPN connection varied wildly: some of Surfshark’s servers offered blazing-fast speeds, while others barely managed to achieve a quarter of our normal internet speed. We’d advise running a quick speed test when you connect to a new server to gauge the difference.
Of greater concern is the fact that Linux users tend to suffer from DNS leaks or transparent proxies while connected to Surfshark. This problem can be resolved with the help of Surfshark VPN’s customer service, but it shouldn’t be occurring in the first place.
In summary, this is one area of our Surfshark review where the service falls a little short. If you want a reliable VPN to use on a Linux system, there are better VPNs for Linux than Surfshark out there, like ExpressVPN and PIA.
Surfshark’s browser extension
Surfshark’s dedicated browser extension works for Chrome, Firefox, and Edge and allows you to use the VPN exclusively within your browser. Usually, we’d recommend the regular software to protect all of your internet traffic, but Surfshark’s extension comes with some useful extra options:
- Netflix VPN blocks bypassing: In the rare case that Surfshark’s software doesn’t work with Netflix, the browser extension provides a simple solution. Connect to the right server, clear your cookies, and enjoy your favorite Netflix show.
- Ad blocker: Instead of downloading a separate ad blocker extension, you can use Surfshark to block advertisements and trackers within your browser.
- Pop-up blocker: Use Surfshark’s blocker to stop annoying cookie consent pop-ups while browsing.
- Data breach alert: While the extension is active, Surfshark will warn you about sites with a history of data breaches by displaying a thin red line at the top of the screen.
- Malware alert: Similar to the data breach alert, Surfshark will monitor malicious activity and warn you if it finds anything suspicious.
The browser extension works well for its purposes. Just make sure you turn on the relevant features to take advantage of everything Surfshark has to offer. Moreover, the browser extension is an especially good solution to get around streaming blocks and can be downloaded for free directly from the Surfshark VPN website.
Pricing and payment methods
Surfshark is very reasonably priced. It’s one of the cheapest options around, and they have discounted deals active throughout the year. As with most other VPN service providers, you receive a discount when you subscribe for a longer period.
On their website, these prices are also available in euros, AUS/CAN dollars, Chinese yuan, and pound sterling.
Payment methods for Surfshark include the following options:
- Credit card (Mastercard, Visa, American Express, and Discover Card)
- Google Pay
- Amazon Pay
- Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies (using CoinGate or CoinPayments)
- Other local payment options, such as Direct Debit
Please note: Surfshark VPN uses the US dollar as its main currency, so the price in other currencies (e.g., the pound) may vary. On top of that, appropriate VAT/sales taxes might be added to the final costs depending on your location.
Additionally, if you are interested in enhancing your online security even further with this VPN provider, you’ll be glad to know that Surfshark offers more than just a VPN. For just $1.49/month, you can opt for the Surfshark One package that offers an antivirus solution, an alert to let you know if your email address has been leaked, and a search feature you can use to browse without ads.
How does Surfshark’s money-back guarantee work?
Surfshark offers a 30-day money-back guarantee as long as you abide by their terms of service. You can use this refund option to try Surfshark for free for a full month, and after that, you can cancel Surfshark if you want. Moreover, one subscription can be used on unlimited devices.
Surfshark offers a seven-day free trial on macOS, iOS, and Android. All you have to do is download the Surfshark VPN app from the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store, sign up for an account, register your payment method, and start the trial.
Your card will be charged after seven days unless you choose to cancel. In case you accidentally keep a subscription, you’re still eligible for Surfshark’s 30-day money-back guarantee, so it’s a win-win either way.
Get Surfshark for free – for longer!
Did you know that you can use Surfshark for free for up to two years? While the money-back guarantee is great, you’ll have to subscribe for extended use. But with the refer-a-friend program, you can extend your free period.
When you subscribe, you’ll receive a custom link, which you can find under the “Settings” menu in your app. If your friend signs up with the link and sticks around for a month, you’ll earn free subscription extensions! Here’s how it works:
- Invite one friend (Iron): 1 month free
- Invite three friends (Bronze): 2 months free
- Invite five friends (Silver): 3 months free
- Invite ten friends (Gold): 6 months free
- Invite 20 friends (Platinum): 12 months free
The only downside is that Surfshark doesn’t specify how many invites you must send to hit “Diamond” status and gain 24 months for free. In our opinion, convincing 20+ friends to sign up could be hard enough! But few other providers offer such incentives, so this was a great addition to see.
Surfshark’s unlimited simultaneous connections
One of Surfshark’s unique features is that you can use it on an unlimited number of devices. This is perfect if you need a VPN for multiple devices or you want to share your subscription with friends and family. You and your friends can even pool resources together to purchase a Surfshark subscription.
Surfshark’s unlimited simultaneous connections offer is impressive because most top VPNs cap the number of devices you can connect to at the same time. For example, you can use NordVPN on only six devices simultaneously, while ExpressVPN caps it at five.
During this Surfshark review, we discovered that Surfshark VPN provides an incredibly clear and intuitive Help Center. You can find it tucked away under the “Resources” section of the website. It covers everything from installation guides to connectivity issues, with plenty of FAQs. We were quickly able to locate answers to our questions.
You can reach out to Surfshark’s customer support agents through email. If you want real-time support, you can use the chat function. Note that you’ll have to go through a chatbot first. However, you can switch to a live agent whenever you want.
In our experience, we were assisted by an actual employee within a minute. We reached out because of initial problems with watching American Netflix, and customer service was able to help us fix our issue in no time.
The support agents were patient, kind, and helpful, and we were able to resolve the problem.
Server Network – Can Surfshark Unblock the Internet?
When it comes to VPN server infrastructure, we’re primarily interested in server quality and the sheer number of available server locations. Bigger server networks increase your chances of bypassing online censorship and geo-restrictions with a foreign IP address. This also helps with server lag caused by overcrowding. Surfshark’s current server configuration earns an 8.5/10.
These are the conclusions we arrived at regarding Surfshark’s server network and locations:
- The Surfshark VPN server network has an impressive list of 3,200+ servers across 100 countries.
- Surfshark includes about 40 virtual server locations.
- You have access to different Netflix libraries all over the world.
- You can download torrents safely and easily.
- Surfshark offers dedicated IPs with an anonymous dedicated IP option.
Number of servers and locations
Surfshark has 3,200+ servers across 100 countries. If you’re looking for a specific IP address, you can find Surfshark servers in the following countries:
- Americas: Argentina, Bahamas, Belize, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Puerto Rico, United States, Uruguay, and Venezuela
- Asia Pacific: Australia, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei, Cambodia, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Laos, Macau SAR China, Malaysia, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, New Zealand, Pakistan, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, and Vietnam
- Eurasia: Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, and Uzbekistan
- Europe: Albania, Andorra, Armenia, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Greenland, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Isle of Man, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Montenegro, Netherlands, North Macedonia, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine, and the United Kingdom
- Middle East and Africa: Algeria, Egypt, Ghana, Israel, Morocco, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, and the United Arab Emirates
Some of Surfshark’s servers are virtual servers. This means the server could appear to be in a particular country, although the physical infrastructure is in another country. The main challenge with using a virtual server is that you might face slow response times.
As of the time of writing, Surfshark had about 40 virtual servers in countries such as India, Ghana, Mexico, Monaco, and Laos.
Surfshark and streaming (Netflix, Disney Plus, Hulu, BBC iPlayer)
Surfshark VPN is one of the better premium VPNs for evading geographical restrictions, particularly for streaming. While other providers have often briefly lost access due to blocks, Surfshark is generally quite adept at unblocking streaming platforms, and you can definitely use it if you want to watch Netflix with a VPN.
Surfshark can also unblock several other streaming services.
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It’s good news all around. Thanks to features like NoBorders and dedicated streaming servers, Surfshark is an excellent choice for unblocking streaming platforms.
In case you still can’t access Netflix or another platform with this VPN, try the browser extension. Don’t hesitate to contact Surfshark if you’re struggling to access a service. Their live chat works effectively and can usually help.
In short, Surfshark is among the best VPNs for streaming content online.
Surfshark and torrents
Surfshark has specialized P2P servers that can help users avoid the legal pitfalls of torrenting, although we advise all our readers to check their local laws on torrenting before downloading anything. You don’t have to manually select Surfshark’s servers: they are automatically activated when you open a torrenting program.
The VPN server will recognize the P2P traffic and connect you to a P2P server. We even suspect it might automatically connect you via MultiHop servers. This means added protection against prying eyes.
This is a welcome addition to Surfshark’s VPN service. Some providers don’t support torrenting. Others don’t take a stance on it but secretly limit your speed if you participate in P2P file sharing. So, to see Surfshark VPN actively supporting your torrenting efforts? That’s a huge plus in our book.
Dedicated IP address
While conducting our latest research for this Surfshark review, we discovered that Surfshark had added a dedicated IP address feature. This static IP address is assigned to the user instead of the server. This is different from Surfshark servers with a static IP address.
With static IP servers, you will always get the same IP address. However, they are still shared with others and are not dedicated. The benefits of choosing a Surfshark dedicated server include:
- Improved unblocking: Some websites have strict access controls and may block or limit access from shared IP addresses. Having a dedicated IP address can help you bypass those types of restrictions.
- Better reliability and speed: With a dedicated IP address, you have a consistent IP address that is less likely to change, providing a more reliable and faster VPN connection.
- Less likely to be blacklisted: Shared IP addresses in VPNs can sometimes be blacklisted by certain websites or apps due to the actions of other users who may have used that IP address when spamming or committing other illicit activities. With a dedicated IP address, your online activities are isolated from others, reducing your risk of being affected by IP blacklisting.
- Reduces the number of CAPTCHA requests: Using a dedicated IP address cuts down the number of CAPTCHA prompts you get on Google and other sites. We got a lot of “prove you’re not a robot” requests while testing Surfshark’s servers. Although these prompts can be resolved with a few clicks, it can get a bit annoying to have to do it repeatedly.
There are some privacy risks associated with dedicated IP addresses. They tie back the fact that these types of IP addresses are more traceable than shared IP addresses.
However, Surfshark has users covered with their anonymous Dedicated IP option, which deletes all information about your Dedicated IP address stored in their database. Currently, Surfshark offers dedicated IP addresses for a few locations in the U.S., the UK, and the Netherlands.
Our Experience With Surfshark
To conclude, Surfshark is a great VPN for most users. It’s reliable, secure, fast, can connect unlimited devices, and works well for browsing, streaming content, downloads, and torrents.
At the same time, it boasts great features like a kill switch, ad blocking, GPS spoofing, and access to varied Netflix libraries. On top of that, its affordability makes it a great alternative to using free VPNs that often come with limitations and security issues.
Surfshark VPN holds its own in the league of top providers. It’s even expanding into the antivirus realm and recently created its own data deletion service called Incogni. This service contacts data brokers and requests that your information is deleted from their records. Hence, you enhance your online privacy without having to lift a finger, as Surfshark does it for you.
We’re sure you’ll have an amazing experience with this VPN provider, but in case you want to compare this Surfshark review to other options, we’ve got detailed articles covering just that. Check out the links below to learn how Surfshark VPN holds up against the other top VPNs we recommend.
Do you have a question about Surfshark? We’re here to help. Simply click the question you’re interested in, and the answer will appear.
Surfshark is a very secure provider. It uses the two safest and most well-known protocols: OpenVPN and WireGuard. As our Surfshark review shows, this VPN does not keep logs and only requires your email address in order to create an account. Moreover, it offers countless additional security features to protect your online presence.
Surfshark works with Netflix perfectly. When you use their servers, you’ll be able to access the Netflix library of dozens of different countries, including the U.S., the UK, France, Germany, and Turkey. If you use a Surfshark server that isn’t located in one of these countries, you’ll automatically be sent to the American version of Netflix. Surfshark is, without a doubt, one of the best Netflix VPNs out there.
Surfshark is one of the cheapest VPN providers out there. You’ll be able to get a two-year subscription for just $2.49 a month. A twelve-month subscription comes down to $3.99 a month, while a monthly subscription will cost you $12.95.
Surfshark very fast and barely affects your internet speed during daily use. In fact, it is one of the fastest VPNs on the market. Surfshark does cause a minor decrease in download and upload speeds, but that does not affect browsing, streaming, or downloading activities, which makes Surfshark a good VPN for everyday use.
Surfshark is a great VPN. In fact, it is our number two pick for overall best VPN. Between the kill switch, AES-256 bit encryption, split tunneling, and its ability to unblock Netflix and other streaming platforms, the Surfshark VPN is a great pick for most users.
Yes, Surfshark and other VPN services are perfectly legal in most countries, including the United States, most of Europe, and other Western nations. However, some countries such as China, Russia, and Iran may have bans and restrictions on VPN usage.
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