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Best free VPNs for Mac in 2022


People tend to overestimate the safety of Apple products, including macOS. Consequently, Macs are becoming one of the most targeted devices by hackers. However, by adding an extra security layer, like a free Mac VPN, you can avoid this new hacker trend and take your online freedom to the next level.

On the other hand, despite the importance of a robust VPN, it’s still popular to look for a free option that can be dangerous and offer insanely limited possibilities. We think it’s safer to go for a premium VPN with a 30-day money-back guarantee, such as NordVPN. After all, a risk-free month allows you to try out everything the service provides.

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With this in mind, we have assembled a list of the best free VPNs for macOS in 2022. Here, you will find only trustworthy services to boost your online safety.

Top 5 best free VPNs for Mac:

  1. NordVPN – overall the best free VPN for Mac
  2. Surfshark – macOS VPN for unlimited simultaneous connections
  3. Atlas VPN –free VPN for Mac with a user-friendly interface
  4. IPVanish –all-around VPN for Mac and browsing on Safari
  5. Ivacy VPN – free Mac VPN with an outstanding server fleet

📢 LIMITED OFFER: Try NordVPN risk-free for 30 days!

Is it worth having a free VPN on Mac?

When it comes to a free Mac VPN, only your needs determine its worth. It’s rather a rule that a completely free VPN will only offer minimal services. You will find only a few servers, one or two features to use, and, overall, worse protection.

More importantly, is that free VPNs tend to compromise your privacy and security. That being said, there have been cases where they collect your data and sell it to third parties. For them, it’s a way to earn an income; for you, it’s a security and privacy loss. Plus, there won’t be a day when the app wouldn’t remind you to upgrade your plan to a paid one.

Overall, a free-of-charge VPN can only be tolerated as a temporary solution. But even for a short time, getting a premium VPN with a free trial and a 30-day money-back guarantee is better. This way, you can use all the premium security features, unblock favorite streaming sites, browse global content, and more.

Pro tip

Considering to get a premium VPN? We suggest going for options like NordVPN or Surfshark.

The best free VPNs for Mac – our detailed list

There’s no doubt that free applications are very tempting. Yet, the VPN market isn’t exactly the perfect place for trusting every free service you come across. So, to help you find a good and reliable VPN, we have tested and picked out the 5 best free VPNs for macOS.

Each listed VPN was tested following specific criteria regarding security, ease of use, price, and overall performance. Read below and choose your favorite one!

1. NordVPN – the best free macOS VPN in 2022 overall

NordVPN banner
Simultaneous connections:6
Data cap:Unlimited
Unblocks Netflix:Yes
Current deal:🔥 Get NordVPN with 68% OFF + 3 months FREE 🔥

NordVPN is absolutely the best free VPN for macOS you can currently get. It uses only the most advanced security features that are constantly getting improved. The app is perfectly personalized for every operating system, and it can also unblock all major streaming platforms, like Netflix, DAZN, Disney+, and more.

Security and privacy: NordVPN is one of the market’s most secure VPNs, and there are several reasons why. To encrypt your online traffic, the service uses the market-leading AES-256 encryption. You can enable a fully functional kill switch feature to protect your IP from VPN connection drops. And this is a Panama-based company, meaning that they don’t have to collect your activity logs – so they don’t.

Performance: this VPN has developed an in-house NordLynx tunneling protocol that allows you to experience the best connection speed without compromising your security. Combining the latter with 5500 servers in 59 countries ensures better security and splendid connection speed.

Features: here, you get whatever feature you expect from a VPN. Essentials, such as split tunneling, DNS leak protection, and dark web monitoring. Or extra features, like Smart DNS for comfortable streaming on all home devices and obfuscated servers for invisible VPN connection in highly-censored locations.

By claiming NordVPN's free trial and using its 30-day money-back guarantee, you can use the service for free for more than a month. And, further on, there are always fantastic NordVPN discounts for paid plans.

Get to know the service better in our NordVPN review.

2. Surfshark – advanced VPN application for unlimited devices

Surfshark banner
Simultaneous connections:Unlimited
Data cap:Unlimited
Unblocks Netflix:Yes
Current deal:🔥 Get 82% OFF Surfshark + 2 months FREE 🔥

Surfshark – is another excellent free macOS VPN. With a single account, you can connect as many devices simultaneously as you wish. And with each of them, whether it’s macOS, iOS, or Android, you can use a next-generation suite of features to enhance your online experience.

Security and privacy: Surfshark uses advanced AES-256 encryption. In the app, you will find a kill switch feature and the IP rotator that changes your IP address every other moment. And as the Netherlands-based service follows a strict privacy policy, meaning Surfshark doesn’t collect your logs.

Performance: since Surfshark has the WireGuard tunnel implemented in the app, it is one of the fastest VPNs available today. And a solid server fleet of 3200 servers in 99 countries only guarantees you the best connection speed.

Features: among all essential VPN features, Surfshark also offers a built-in antivirus that stands among the best antiviruses today. Its servers support a P2P connection for uninterrupted torrenting, or you can enable a double VPN for extra protection and privacy. A Smart DNS feature allows you to stream Netflix, YouTube, Hulu, and more on devices that don’t support a VPN connection.

To have all this for free, you need to claim Surfshark VPN’s free trial and combine it with a 30-day money-back guarantee. And even though this VPN offers the best price and quality ratio, you can always benefit from Surfshark’s discounts.

Find out more about the features in our Surfshark VPN review.

3. Atlas VPN – beginner-friendly free VPN for macOS devices

Atlas VPN banner
Simultaneous connections:
Unlimited
Data cap:
5 GB
Unblocks Netflix:Yes (paid-only)
Current deal:🔥 Get Atlas VPN, now 81% OFF 🔥

If you’re fresh regarding VPNs, then Atlas VPN can be a fantastic free VPN for your macOS device. As one of the best free VPNs overall, Atlas VPN guarantees only the best-quality free protection and content unblocking capabilities with a paid version.

Security and privacy: like most premium VPNs, Atlas VPN also uses unbreakable AES-256 encryption. With it, your network traffic will be as secure as the government data would be. To ensure your security and privacy, Atlas VPN promises not to collect any of your data even if you’re using its free version.

Performance: not too many free VPNs offer the WireGuard tunneling protocol for their users, but Atlas VPN does. Considering that, a free version ensures respectful speeds. And if you decide to pay for the service, the experience gets much better with a larger server fleet (750 servers in 37 countries) as you wouldn’t have to use overcrowded servers.

Features: a free Atlas VPN version allows you to use a functional kill switch feature that protects your IP address when a VPN connection drops unexpectedly. You can also use all of its servers for torrenting. And set the app to start on the launch for more comfort and better protection.

All in all, Atlas VPN is one of a few reliable free VPNs. It allows you to connect up to 2 devices simultaneously and secure up to 5 GB monthly. Yet, to fully experience what the service has to offer, we recommend choosing a paid plan.

Take a look at our Atlas VPN review to learn more.

4. IPVanish – a free all-in-one solution for Mac users

IPVanish banner
Simultaneous connections:Unlimited
Data cap:Unlimited
Unblocks Netflix:Yes
Current deal:🔥 Get up to 69% OFF IPVanish + Antivirus 🔥

IPVanish is an excellent solution for those Mac users struggling with finding a versatile VPN. Its suite of security features includes everything you need to ensure online protection, torrent as much as you need, or enjoy Netflix, BBC iPlayer, and YouTube.

Security and privacy: your connection will be protected using the advanced AES-256 encryption with SHA-512 hash functions. There’s also a customizable kill switch feature that worked great during the test. Plus, the company follows an audited no-logs policy.

Performance: with IPVanish, you receive a respectful list of tunneling protocols that include the WireGuard tunnel. And the server fleet of 750 servers in 37 countries is also large enough to ensure great connection speeds wherever you are.

Features: next to the essential kill switch feature, you will also find split tunneling for choosing what apps are going to use a VPN connection. For fast torrenting, you get a free SOCKS5 proxy. And to securely store the most sensitive data, you receive an encrypted 500 GB storage. There’s also traffic obfuscation that hides your VPN connection from your ISP, the government, or anyone who wishes to stop you from using it.

Once you subscribe to IPVanish’s 2-year plan to get a 30-day money-back guarantee, you can instantly start using all premium features the macOS application has. And if you decide to continue with the paid service, you can always count on our constantly updated IPVanish discounts!

Find out more details in our IPVanish review.

5. Ivacy VPN – macOS VPN with a large server fleet and a risk-free month of trial

Ivacy VPN banner
Simultaneous connections:10
Data cap:Unlimited
Unblocks Netflix:Yes
Current deal:🔥 Get Ivacy VPN, now 88% OFF + gift! 🔥

Ivacy VPN is another fantastic free macOS VPN. There’s no doubt that its server fleet of 5700 servers distributed in 68 countries is one of the best available on the market. Consequently, you won’t need to deal with overcrowded servers and comfortably enjoy the global libraries of Netflix, DAZN, and other streaming services.

Security and privacy: this VPN also has the next-gen AES-256 encryption implemented in its application (we wouldn’t go for anything else, right?). And just like your data gets encrypted, it also won’t be collected as Ivacy VPN has a strict no-logs policy.

Performance: here, you won’t find the WireGuard tunneling protocol, but there’s an OpenVPN tunnel that is very well optimized and offers a stable and secure network connection. Next to it, you can find the IKEv2 tunneling protocol that’s more suitable for mobile devices.

Features: split tunneling feature is a fantastic component that you can use to choose what apps will go through a VPN connection. P2P support and the Secure Download feature ensure you download stuff quickly and safely.

Ivacy VPN is just enough to maintain your online life protected from prying eyes. The service gives you a one-day free trial or a trial week for a single dollar which you can add up to a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Learn more about it from our Ivacy VPN review.

How we tested these free Mac VPNs

Choosing a free VPN for macOS might be a bit confusing. After all, there are key points to pay attention to when considering the service. Below, you can see what criteria we have followed to test and pick only the best free VPN for Macs.

  • Security and privacy. In all the VPNs we have tested, we looked for the most advanced AES-256 encryption and the market-leading tunneling protocols, like OpenVPN or WireGuard. Plus, we made sure there would be followed a strict no-logs policy.
  • Unlimited data. The smaller amount of protected data you get, the lesser you can browse safely. We made sure that the service would offer unlimited data or at least 5 GB per month.
  • Speed. The network speed should never interfere with your online experience. That’s why we listed only those VPNs that offer both – great connection speeds and no limits around it.
  • Features. Free VPNs already offer quite poor suites of features. Hence, we looked for those apps with extra features next to the most essential ones.
  • Suitability for macOS. It’s known that Windows users get the most developed applications from all. Yet, there are services that don’t leave macOS behind, so we found them and listed them here for you.

How do I set up a free Mac VPN on my PC?

Nowadays, everything is made to be easy. The rule applies to setting up a VPN as well. To learn how it’s done, see the step-by-step guide below and follow it to install and set up the VPN app on your Mac device.

  1. Choose and download a reliable free Mac VPN. NordVPN worked great for us.
Download NordVPN on Mac
  1. Choose the subscription plan that you prefer the most (a 30-day money-back guarantee applies to all of them).
NordVPN subs
  1. Sign up for the service by creating a Nord Account.
Nord acc sign up
  1. Open the NordVPN application and choose to Log in.
  2. Head to Settings > General and select the tunneling protocol you want to use. We recommend the WireGuard tunneling protocol.
WireGuard on NordVPN
  1. Head back to the main page and select the location you want to connect to.
  2. Allow adding NordVPN configurations.
NordVPN configurations on Mac
  1. That’s it, you’re connected to the server!
Mac connected to NordVPN

Keep in mind that a 30-day money-back guarantee applies within a month. Unfortunately, claiming a refund a day after the termination won’t be helpful. You may cancel your subscription in your Nord Account or by heading to NordVPN customer support.

Free Mac VPNs compared

To simplify choosing the best free macOS VPN for you, we have gathered the most important details in one place. Find the table below, and compare each VPN to find the one that suits your needs the best.

NordVPNSurfsharkAtlas VPNIPVanishIvacy VPN
Brand:logologologologologo
Data cap:UnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
macOS compatibility:Has a personalized macOS appHas a personalized macOS appHas a personalized macOS appHas a personalized macOS appHas a personalized macOS app (no kill switch and split tunneling)
Unblocks Netflix:YesYesYes (paid version)YesYes
Works with Safari:YesYesYesYesYes
Works with Apple TV:YesYesNoYes (by sharing protected connection to Apple TV)Yes (by sharing protected connection to Apple TV)
Sign up required:YesYesYesYesYes

Why free VPNs might be dangerous

There are dozens of articles suggesting to avoid free VPNs. And there are also enough articles that encourage you to trust them. These different opinions can easily mess with your head and guide you in the wrong direction.

Having this in mind, we have prepared a list for you of the most important reasons why free-of-cost VPNs are better to avoid.

  1. Free VPNs might allow the government to collect your data. Heavily-restricted countries tend to ban VPN usage for their citizens. Therefore, free VPNs go into a compromise and allow the government to interfere with your privacy in return for the possibility of working in a country.
  2. Malaware and other infections. One of the niches that also helps free VPNs to earn money is malicious websites. Because of this, you end up having malware and annoying ads on your device.
  3. Free VPNs can plant a tracker for unspecified reasons. Overall, it can be an additional way to have an income for them. Yet, for you, it’s an additional danger. This way, the risk of getting infected with malware or getting exposed gets bigger.
  4. Hijacked browsers. Using a free VPN might lead you to have your browser hijacked. When this happens, you are redirected to websites that you didn’t intend to visit. Usually, those are malicious websites.
  5. Outdated security features. While you expect to receive top-notch online security features, due to lower investment, a free VPN tends to offer you out-of-date encryption or a very limited list of tunneling protocols. This can mean only one – a high possibility of getting your protection compromised.

All in all, whenever you come across a free application, think twice before even downloading it. While the service claims to be free of charge, and you get tempted to use it, there are many threats lurking for you. In the end, you might end up as a product to sell instead of the VPN service itself.

That’s why we tend to recommend benefiting from a 30-day money-back guarantee or a free trial that nearly every premium VPN offers. For example, NordVPN has both, and with it, you can have 37 days of free service.

Free Mac VPNs to avoid

We can clearly see that there are some free VPNs that are reliable and good enough to protect you online. Yet, it’s still important to stay aware and know what exact VPN services are better to pass and not to look back. See them below:

  1. Hotspot Shield - even though this VPN is quite popular to use – don’t get tricked. It uses trackers in its applications, and there have also been reported DNS leaks.
  2. Betternet – one of the most favorite free VPNs in the App Store that, clearly, isn’t worth the title. It’s been reported that there have been IP leaks and related malware infections.
  3. Hola VPN – another candidate for allowing your device to be infected with malware. Unfortunately, this VPN is well-known to be one to compromise your online security and privacy.
  4. Opera VPN – a free VPN service from the Opera browser is rather a gateway for the Chinese government to your personal data. Plus, instead of the VPN service that it claims to be, it’s only a browser proxy that offers extremely limited protection.

Conclusion

It would be unfair to claim that all free VPNs are dangerous and can’t offer you even a tiny level of online security. After all, a reliable free VPN service is a great solution to ensure security and privacy when using public wi-fi or to simply improve your daily browsing experience.

And if you’re wondering what free VPN service to get on your Mac device, there are a dozen of options to choose from. Like, our favorite, NordVPN that offers a 7-day free trial which you can combine with a 30-day money-back guarantee and enjoy the market-leading VPN security for more than a month for free.


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