Andrey Doichev
Last updated:

Here are 196 countries and links to their laws on VPN. Use CTRL+F to find your country. If you find something incorrect, please let me know.

VPN bannedVPNs are legal, generally.

It depends largely on the country you’re physically sitting in while using a VPN. But even then, their laws and restrictions are often opaque.

What’s legal vs. illegal is not always clear.

Some activities, while frowned upon, are still shrouded in grey area.

In this research we fact-checked 196 countries laws and their opinions on VPNs.

VPNs are illegal in: China, Turkey, Iraq, United Arab Emirates, Belarus, Oman, Russia.

VPNs are some-what illegal in: Iran, North-Korea, Turkmenistan.

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Find out if VPN is legal in your country:

A

Afghanistan

The Afghanistan government made news recently for instructing ISPs to filter certain categories of sites it considers objectionable, and to outrightly ban sites they find offensive. The use of VPNs is still legal in Afghanistan, though.

Albania

The Albanian constitution protects citizens’ freedom of speech and press, and there has been no recorded instance of the government trying to infringe on these rights or citizens’ rights to use the internet. VPN use is legal in Albania.

Algeria

Algeria has legislation that require ISPs to police online content, and there have been recorded instances of the Algerian government blocking certain sites — including that of political opponents — as well as a well-publicized event in which the Algerian government blocked all social media to “prevent cheating” in a national exam. However, the use of VPN is still legal in Algeria.

Andorra

Approximately 79 percent of Andorrans use the Internet, making it one of the top countries in terms of Internet penetration. However, there hasn’t been a documented record of Internet censorship in Andorra and the use of VPN in Andorra is legal.

Angola

Angola has made news for trying to censor the media and access to the internet, with the Angolan president even publicly announcing his plans to crack down on social media, but no attempts has been made to block VPN usage in the country.

Antigua and Barbuda

There is no report of Internet censorship or an attempt from the government to interfere with the Internet in Antigua and Barbuda. VPN usage is also legal in Antigua and Barbuda.

Argentina

Argentina is a relatively free country that respects its citizens’ internet rights, but the country was recently heavily criticized for its proposed reform to its National Anti-discrimination Act bill. Experts claimed the reforms are vague and make it easy for the government to censor citizens. The use of VPNs is legal in the country, though.

Armenia

There have been documented evidences of internet censorship in Armenia, with the OpenNet Initiative (ONI) concluding, after running tests on first-tier ISPs in the country, that “pervasive filtering was occurring.” However, VPN use is legal in Armenia.

Australia

While Australia recently passed legislation that gives its government power to block access to certain sites, VPNs in particular have not been targeted. The use of VPNs in Australia is legal, and many use VPNs to bypass some of the restrictions put in place by the new legislation.

Austria

The Austrian constitution protects the free speech and press of its citizens, and this is respected by the Austrian government. Austria has hardly been involved in any attempt to censor users, and the use of VPN is legal in Austria.

Azerbaijan

Azerbaijan has been reported to actively censor the Internet, with the Azerbaijan government arresting bloggers, punishing online activists and even placing social media sites under strict scrutiny. However, the government has not made any move to block the use of VPNs in the country.

B

Bahamas

There have been news of some attempts at internet censorship in The Bahamas. However, the use of VPNs is still currently legal in The Bahamas.

Bahrain

The Bahrain government actively censors the Internet, but the use of VPNs in the country is still legal.

Bangladesh

The government of Bangladesh has repeatedly made news for banning various sites and social media, including Facebook and WhatsApp, and at a point the government even mistakenly shut down the Internet while trying to implement a ban. However, the use of VPNs is perfectly legal in Bangladesh.

Barbados

There is no credible report that the Barbados government actively censors the Internet, and the use of VPNs is perfectly legal as at the time of writing this.

Belarus

Belarus made news in February 2015 for banning Tor and all technology used to anonymise internet usage. As it is, the use of VPNs is currently illegal in Belarus.

Belgium

While Belgium has been reported to censor the Internet in the past, the use of VPNs is Belgium is completely legal.

Belize

There have been reports of the government placing restrictions on internet access. However, the use of VPNs is legal in Belize.

Benin

There hasn’t been active reports of the government trying to censor the Internet. The use of VPNs is currently legal in Benin.

Bhutan

While the government has been found to block content it finds to be morally objectionable, there haven’t been reports of this extending to political content. The use of VPNs is currently legal in Bhutan.

Bolivia

With research showing that more than half of Bolivian journalists have suffered a form of censorship, and top political leaders actively pushing for regulating the social media, Bolivia isn’t exactly the freest of countries. However, the use of VPNs is perfectly legal in Bolivia.

Bosnia and Herzegovina

While legislation was recently passed that gave the government power to criminalize social media postings that they feel “disturb public order,” there hasn’t been documentation of the government actively censoring the Internet. The use of VPNs is legal in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Botswana

There is no documented report of the government actively censoring the Internet, and the use of VPNs is currently legal in Botswana.

Brazil

Brazil has made news for banning parts of social media, including WhatsApp in 2016. The Brazilian government has also attempted to introduce legislation that allows it to censor the Internet in the country. However, use of VPN in Brazil is legal.

Brunei

There have been reports of the government actively monitoring internet usage and activities of its citizens. However, the use of VPNs is currently legal in Brunei.

Bulgaria

The Bulgarian government actively monitors internet usage of its citizens and have attempted to introduce legislation to grant the state power to control internet communication. However, the use of VPNs is currently legal in Bulgaria.

Burkina Faso

With just 9.4 percent of its population using the Internet, internet penetration in Burkina Faso is very low. The use of VPNs is legal in the country.

Burundi

With just 2 percent of its 10 million citizens using the Internet, Burundi’s government hasn’t been slack when it comes to enforcing restrictions on the Internet. Once making news for banning WhatsApp and Viber, Burundi actively censors citizens’ Internet access. However, the use of VPNs is legal in Burundi.

C

Cape Verde

There hasn’t been any documented report of the Cape Verde government trying to censor the Internet. The use of VPNs is also legal in Cape Verde.

Cambodia

Cambodia has repeatedly made the news for active efforts to censor the Internet, including having members of the opposition arrested for Facebook posts. The Cambodian government even passed legislation that gave the government more power to monitor and censor the internet. However, the use of VPNs is still legal in Cambodia.

Cameroon

Cameroon recently made news for blocking internet access in English-speaking parts of the country, an act that affected 20 percent of Cameroonians. The Cameroonian government has also come out publicly to issue threats to internet users. However, VPN use is legal in Cameroon.

Canada

While top telecommunications experts, most notably David Purdy of Rogers Communications, have called on the Canadian government to block VPNs in the North American country, no such actions have been taken yet. The use of VPNs is still legal in Canada at the time of writing this.

Central African Republic (CAR)

Central African Republic have made news for its government’s several attempts to censor citizens, including the time the country banned phone text messages (SMS). However, usage of VPNs is legal in the country.

Chad

Chad is another country in which the government actively censors citizens’ internet access — especially during elections. However, no move has been made by the government to ban or illegalize VPN usage in the country.

Chile

Chile has a reputation for actively interfering with, and censoring, its citizens’ access to the Internet. However, the use of VPNs is legal in Chile.

China

China has repeatedly tried to crack down on VPN service providers by blocking individual providers, but many new services keep propping up for each VPN service the Chinese government blocks. With new legislation released by the Chinese government, VPN service providers are required to first gain approval from the Chinese government (and potentially agree to terms that defeat the purpose of a VPN). Certain regions also ban the use of VPNs completely, thereby making VPNs effectively illegal in China.

Colombia

While Colombia recently made news for banning Bitcoins, the Internet has been flourishing over there and the government has been doing a good job of not interfering. The use of VPNs is perfectly legal in Colombia.

Comoros

There hasn’t been documented reports of the Comoros government trying to censor the Internet. The use of VPNs is currently legal in Comoros.

Democratic Republic of the Congo

Don’t let the name deceive you, when it comes to the Democratic Republic of Congo and the Internet, there is nothing really democratic about it. While the government is famous for its numerous internet shutdowns and blocking of major sites and social media, thankfully VPNs are yet to be made illegal.

Republic of the Congo

The government of the Republic of Congo is renowned for actively shutting down, and censoring the internet, especially when trying to prevent protests. While the government actively censors the Internet, the use of VPNs is yet to be made illegal.

Costa Rica

While Costa Rica once made news for its cybercrime law that many experts suggest threaten internet freedom, there hasn’t been any credible documentation of the Costa Rican government trying to censor the Internet. Use of VPNs is legal in this country.

Cote d'Ivoire

There hasn’t been any credible report of the Cote d’Ivoire government trying to censor the Internet. The use of VPNs is legal in this country.

Croatia

There are no credible reports of the Croatia government interfering with its citizens’ access to the Internet. VPNs are also legal in Croatia.

Cuba

While the Internet is heavily censored in this Caribbean country, the use of VPNs is yet to be made illegal.

Cyprus

The Internet is not subject to any known government restrictions in Cyprus, and the use of VPNs is legal in the country.

Czech Republic

Czech Republic recently made news when its government attempted to introduce a form of “internet passport” — a unique identity for every internet user — that will be required before they can access the Internet. Despite this, the use of VPNs is still legal in the country.

D

Denmark

The Denmark government has made news for actively blocking websites in the past, and they just recently introduced law that will make it easy for the Denmark government to actively censor the Internet. Despite this, the government has not made any attempts to make the use of VPNs in the country illegal.

Djibouti

With the only internet service provider in this country owned and controlled by the government, and with an active history of press restrictions, this country is not very friendly when it comes to the Internet. However, the use of VPNs is still legal.

Dominica

There is no report of the government trying to censor the Internet, and the use of VPNs is still perfectly legal in Dominica.

Dominican Republic

There has been no documented reports of the government actively censoring internet users in the Dominican Republic, and the use of VPNs is perfectly legal in this Caribbean country.

E

Ecuador

Just a while back, it was leaked to the media that the Association of Internet Providers of Ecuador collaborated with the Ecuadorian government to restrict citizens’ internet access. However, the use of VPNs is still legal in this country.

Egypt

Egypt has an history of human rights abuse and infringing on its citizens’ rights of press. This was communicated strongly when it came to light that the company blocked Facebook’s free internet service in the country in December 2015, just a few months after it launched in the country, because the company refused to give the Egyptian government the ability to spy on citizens using its internet service. The use of VPNs is yet to be made illegal, though.

El Salvador

While the use of VPNs is perfectly legal in El Salvador, the country’s diminishing freedom of information and government’s interference in the internet keeps getting into the media.

Equatorial Guinea

Equatorial Guinea is featured in several lists as one of the most censored countries in the world, with the government and his family actively monopolizing the press and restricting the press freedom of citizens. The use of VPNs is still perfectly legal in this country, though.

Eritrea

Okay, here you have it. This is officially the world’s most censored country according to several reputable rankings. As expected, the Internet is not spared in the government’s active effort to censor its citizens. However, the use of VPNs is perfectly legal in this country.

Estonia

Ranked as number two on Internet Freedom’s list, Estonia is one of the freest and most wired and technology advanced countries in the world. As expected, the country listed as a “model for free and open internet access as a development engine for society” according to Internet Freedom has not banned the use of VPNs.

Ethiopia

Ethiopia isn’t a very friendly place to be as an internet user, especially considering that the Ethiopian government didn’t just ban the use of VoIP services but they actually criminalized it with up to 15 years in prison.

F

Fiji

There hasn’t been any credible report of the government trying to censor the Internet in Fiji. The Fijian government also hasn’t banned the use of VPNs.

Finland

While Finland doesn’t actively censor the Internet, it made news when the government implemented a policy to filter child pornography that people felt wasn’t properly implemented and was wrongly filtering sites. It didn’t help that the Finnish supreme court ruled that it was legal for a critic of this law to be censored. The use of VPNs is perfectly legal, though.

France

France has policies in place to curb terrorism and hatred by actively monitoring its citizens’ internet. Many people are afraid that these policies are being overzealously enacted and censorship is rising actively, though — over 2,700 websites were blocked by French authorities in 2016 alone. The use of VPNs is legal in this country.

G

Gabon

While we’ve heard about governments imposing curfews during periods of crisis, I’m sure very few of us are familiar with the idea of internet curfews — well, that’s at least until you get to Gabon. The country has been in the news for instituting a 12-hour-a-day internet curfew in which citizens are unable to use the internet at night. Despite this, the use of VPNs is still legal in the country.

Gambia

Just recently, Gambia made news for shutting down internet access and international phone calls ahead of elections. The use of VPNs is still legal in Gambia, though.

Georgia

Georgia made great progress when its Constitutional Court reversed the power of the State Security Service to directly access telecommunications data of its users in April 2016, but the country isn’t exactly blameless when it comes to censorship: the Georgian government once made news for blocking WordPress and Youtube, briefly. That said, the use of VPNs is legal in this country.

Germany

Germany has repeatedly made news for its attempts to censor the internet, and just recently the German justice minister proposed legislation that allows the government to monitor and censor social media sites. The use of VPNs is legal in Germany, though.

Ghana

Being one of the role models for democracy in Africa, the use of VPNs is perfectly legal in Ghana. However, it wasn’t long ago when the world was surprised that the Ghana police chief announced the government’s intention to shut down social media on voting day to prevent social media from being used to “send misleading information that could destabilize the country.” Ghana has long been regarded as a democracy role model in Africa, so many were surprised at this news. The West African country didn’t eventually proceed with the shutdown, though.

Greece

Research revealed that the Greek government recently initiated large scale content blocking that is tantamount to internet censorship. The use of VPNs is still legal in Greece, though.

Grenada

Grenada once made news for passing law that stipulates that people be sent to jail or fined up to $37,000 for insulting someone online, or for using technology to engage in ”mischief.” Regardless, the use of VPNs is still legal in the country.

Guatemala

Guatemala is renowned for routinely violating its citizens’ freedom of speech and press, especially by legalizing several electronic surveillance techniques that threaten online privacy. However, the use of VPNs is legal in the country.

Guinea

There’s no credible evidence of the government restricting access to the internet, and the use of VPNs is currently legal in Guinea.

Guinea-Bissau

There’s no evidence of interference with the Internet in Guinea-Bissau, and the use of VPNs is currently legal in this country.

Guyana

The Guyanese government does not restrict access to the Internet, and the use of VPNs is currently legal in the country.

H

Haiti

About 12 percent of Haitians use the Internet, and there is no documented report of the Haitian government actively trying to restrict the Internet. The use of VPNs is perfectly legal in Haiti.

Honduras

Honduras has a reputation for engaging in media censorship, and the Internet isn’t exempt. The use of VPNs is currently legal in the country, though.

Hungary

It wasn’t very long ago that Hungary passed a law to practically ban end-to-end encryption in the country, and protests once broke out across Europe thanks to a media and internet censorship law Hungary passed. The use of VPNs is legal in Hungary, though.

I

Iceland

Iceland president Guoni Thorlacius Johannesson once made news for saying he’d ban Hawaiian Pizzas if he had the chance, but thankfully the country he leads is yet to ban, or consider banning, the use of VPNs.

India

India recently made news when the government issued a warning to internet users that they could face up to three years in jail plus a fine of about $4,465 for visiting forbidden websites. It didn’t take long before an Indian judge clarified that this was just a miscommunication, and that the act of visiting a “forbidden” website is not illegal. Regardless, the country is yet to ban the use of VPNs.

Indonesia

Youtube, Reddit and Vimeo are just some of the top sites blocked by the Indonesian government. Thankfully, these sites can still be accessed with a VPN as the Indonesian government is yet to make the use of VPNs illegal.

Iran

While you can still use a VPN in Iran, you technically can’t: the Iranian government has made the use of all VPNs illegal, except the ones that are registered with them and that they personally approve. That defeats the purpose of using a VPN, now doesn’t it?

Iraq

Using the pretext of stopping ISIS, Iran has done a series of things from banning VPNs to blocking social media and chat apps. It hasn’t stopped government officials and government-owned institutions from breaking the law and using these tools, though.

Ireland

It is generally agreed that internet censorship exists in Ireland, but the use of VPNs is perfectly legal in the European Island.

Israel

Israel recently made news for introducing a law to enable its government block “inciteful” content. However, very little in the way of censorship or interference with the Internet has been recorded in this country. The use of VPNs is also legal.

Italy

Italy recently made news when it proposed a law that required “site managers” to censor mockery based on the personal and social condition of a victim — experts called out this law as a way to introduce censorship. There hasn’t been much documentation about the Italian government interfering with the internet, and the use of VPNs is currently legal in the country.

J

Jamaica

There hasn’t been any credible report about the Jamaican government censoring the internet. The use of VPNs is also legal in the country.

Japan

Japan has a very high internet penetration rate of over 90 percent, and there have been reports that some legislations “disproportionately penalizes specific online activities.” However, there hasn’t been credible reports of the government trying to censor its citizens using the internet, and the use of VPN in this country is legal.

Jordan

While there have been reports of “light” censorship in Jordan, especially when political issues that are seen as a threat to national security is concerned, the country does really well compared to other countries in the Middle East. The use of VPNs is also legal in the country.

K

Kazakhstan

Kazakhstan is one of the countries in which there is active internet censorship. In fact, at a point, the South Kazakhstan region government disconnected the Internet and blocked mobile phone networks for a while. The use of VPNs is still legal in this country, though.

Kenya

Kenya is one of the few African countries in which there is no form of government censorship. A recent five-month study by OONI found practically no traces of internet censorship in the country. The use of VPNs is also legal in Kenya.

Kiribati

While Kiribati is very low on internet adoption — with just about 11.5 percent of its citizens using the Internet — there are no signs of internet censorship or the government trying to restrict its citizens’ access to the Internet in this Oceanian country. The use of VPNs is also legal in this country.

Kosovo

The Law of Interception of Telecommunication — aimed at giving the government real-time access to all data related to electronic communications — that was introduced by the government of Kosovo a few years was met with mixed feelings. Some believe it is a form of censorship, while others believe it is an effective way to combat crime. Generally, though, there has been little report of government censorship or interference with the internet in Kosovo, and the use of VPNs is legal in this country.

Kuwait

Kuwait is very active when it comes to censoring the Internet, and experts have been critical of its laws that they believe could be used to limit internet freedom of expression and target online activities. The use of VPNs is still legal in the country, though.

Kyrgyzstan

There is active internet censorship in Kyrgyzstan — with online journalists facing sanctions for posting content that criticizes state officials — and reports of the government actively abusing its surveillance powers (by leaking phone conversations between opposition figures, for example). However, the use of VPNs in this country is legal.

L

Laos

Laos is hyperactive when it comes to censoring its citizens and restricting their internet activities — to the point of monitoring citizens’ activities outside of the country’s borders — especially when it comes to what it deems to be “threatening national security.” The use of VPNs is legal in the country, though.

Latvia

Latvia is a free country with no documented reports of internet censorship or government interference in citizens’ internet usage. It even hosts Russia’s freest website. The use of VPNs is also legal in this European country.

Lebanon

When a country bans the movie Wonder Woman because the movie star is an… wait for it… Israeli citizen, do we really need to ask about its stance on internet censorship? If you still need to ask, VoIP usage in Lebanon is also illegal. Thankfully, they haven’t thought about banning VPNs yet.

Lesotho

Internet penetration is low in Lesotho, with less than a quarter of its citizens using the Internet. However, very little has been recorded in way of the government trying to censor its citizens’ internet usage. VPNs are also legal in the country.

Liberia

Liberia’s restrictive internet legislation and active surveillance of citizens led to it being added to the list of the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) list of countries where press freedom is restricted. This country is yet to outlaw the use of VPNs, though.

Libya

With an history of human rights abuse and active internet censorship and interference by the government, Libya is still yet to be free when it comes to government censorship. The use of VPNs, however, is perfectly legal in this country.

Liechtenstein

Liechtenstein is rated very high when it comes to press freedom, and there hasn’t been active efforts from the government to censor the Internet. The use of VPNs is also legal in this country.

Lithuania

Lithuania is a relatively free country when it comes to press and internet freedom, but developments such as a recent amendment to a law regulating gambling on the internet in the country have brought speculations of censorship. The use of VPNs in the country is legal.

Luxembourg

Luxembourg is a generally free country when it comes to use of the internet, and there’s no credible documented report that the government is censoring the internet. The use of VPNs is also legal in the country.

M

Macedonia

There is no evidence of internet censorship or the government trying to restrict citizens’ access to the internet in Macedonia, and the use of VPNs is currently legal in the country.

Madagascar

Madagascar has very low internet penetration, and despite occasional censorship of other forms of media the internet has been relatively free. The use of VPNs is also legal in this country.

Malawi

There is currently no credible report of the Malawian government actively censoring the internet or interfering in citizens’ internet usage. The use of VPNs is also legal in the country.

Malaysia

While the Malysian Prime Minister Najib Razak once promised — in April 2011 — that Malaysia will never censor the internet, Malaysia started blocking sites that reported the Prime Minister’s corruption scandal in 2015. Well, we guess what is good for the goose isn’t good for the gander. The use of VPNs is still legal in the country, though.

Maldives

While the Maldivian government routinely blocks websites it deems immoral or anti-Islamic, they are yet to ban the use of VPNs just yet.

Mali

Internet adoption has so far been very low in Mali, and the country has to deal with extremely slow and unreliable connectivity. The government hasn’t really interfered in citizens’ internet usage, and the use of VPNs is legal in the country.

Malta

It was just recently that thousands of people took to the streets of Malta to protest a defamation bill introduced by the Maltese government because they felt it will be used as pretext to censor Maltese citizens online. The Maltese government countered by saying they have no interest in censoring the internet. So far, the Maltese government hasn’t actively interfered in citizen’s internet usage and the use of VPNs is still legal in the country.

Marshall Islands

While the Island country recently suffered an internet shutdown for more than 10 days, this seems to be an hardware issue instead of an attempt to restrict citizens’ internet usage. The government hasn’t actively attempted to restrict citizens’ internet usage, and VPNs are still legal in the country.

Mauritania

While the Mauritanian government is party to several human rights conventions, there is clearly documented evidence that it actively flouts these agreements. Websites have been actively censored, bloggers have been jailed and even sentenced to death and other forms of human rights abuses have been well documented. The use of VPNs is still legal, though.

Mauritius

The ICT Act of Mauritius gives the government practically express right to block content on the Internet — due to how weakly-worded it is — and the act was indeed once used to block access to Facebook. However, there haven’t been any credible reports of the Mauritian government trying to censor the Internet in recent times, and the use of VPNs is legal in the country.

Mexico

Mexico is one of the freest Latin American countries as far as the Internet is concerned, and while there is little interference in citizens’ internet activities from the government, there has been reports of journalists being threatened by cartels, the government and even other journalists. The use of VPNs is legal in this country.

Micronesia

There have been no reports of the government trying to interfere in the internet activities of citizens in Micronesia. The use of VPNs is also legal in the Oceanian country.

Moldova

While there has been relatively little interference in citizens’ internet activities in Moldova, a recent bill introduced by the government generated criticism from industry stakeholders who claimed it enabled to government to censor the internet. It is also legal to use a VPN in Moldova.

Monaco

Despite the fact that the internet plays a key role in information dissemination and consumption in Monaco — about half of Monaco citizens use the internet — there hasn’t been credible reports of the government interfering in citizens’ internet activities. The use of VPNs is also legal in the country.

Mongolia

If you think you’ve come across censorship, then you need to think again. Mongolia’s government has a database of over 700 words it has blacklisted, including words like “hell,” “drunk” and “dumbass.” It’s easy to guess that the country actively censors the internet activities of its users. Thankfully, the use of VPNs is still legal in the country.

Montenegro

Montenegro doesn’t necessarily have the best reputation when it comes to internet censorship — in fact, just recently, they made news for banning WhatsApp and Viber on election day. However, the use of VPNs is still legal in the country.

Morocco

Morocco has made news for banning Skype, Viber, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and even VoIP access in the country, but the North African country is yet to outlaw the use of VPNs.

Mozambique

The government of Mozambique was recently caught spying on its citizens — the spying included a range of activity including listening to telephone calls, reading text messages, reading WhatsApp messages, monitoring social media activity and essentially telling citizens, “busted! Your secret is in our hands.” Thankfully, they are yet to ban VPN usage.

Myanmar

While Myanmar has once made news for trying to interfere with the internet access of its citizens, even once blocking Facebook and spying on citizens, the country is becoming increasingly free and respective of citizens’ rights, and the use of VPNs is legal in the country.

N

Namibia

While the Namibian government has often been found to threaten journalists, the Internet in the country is generally a much safer place, and there hasn’t been documented attempts by the government to interfere in the internet activities of citizens. The use of VPNs is also legal in Namibia.

Nauru

The government of Nauru recently decided to block certain sites, including Facebook, in order to protect its citizens from “abuse.” Yeah, we know, we also chuckled when we read the news. Thankfully, the government hasn’t decided to ban VPNs to protect its citizens from “malicious hackers and data thieves.” Lol!

Nepal

While the Nepalese government is not known to monitor online activity, there has been little doubt about its intention to censor citizens’ activities online. The use of VPNs is yet to be outlawed in the country.

Netherlands

With almost all of its citizens using the Internet — with a penetration rate of 93 percent in 2014 — the Internet is a core part of the day to day activities of the citizens of Netherlands, and it is a generally free country when it comes to the internet. The use of VPNs is also perfectly legal in the country.

New Zealand

The New Zealand government actively monitors the activity of internet users, with the government installing an internet filter in 2010, but there hasn’t been credible reports of internet censorship and suppression. The use of VPNs in the country is legal, though.

Nicaragua

While the Nicaraguan government hasn’t restricted the internet activities of users, there have been claims from NGOs that the government monitors their emails. The use of VPNs is legal in this country.

Niger

There hasn’t really been reports of the Nigerien government censoring the internet, and this is quite a surprise considering reports of human rights abuse and retribution towards journalists that criticize the government. This makes sense, though, when we consider the fact that just 2 percent of citizens were on the internet in 2014. We guess the internet is still too small to merit the government’s attention. The use of VPNs is legal in the country.

Nigeria

While there is little interference and internet censorship in Nigeria, a recent social media bill introduced by the government has generated controversy has part of a trend in which African nations are focusing on controlling citizens’ internet activities. The use of VPNs is legal in the country, though.

North Korea

North Korea easily ranks number one on every list of every form of censorship, and the Internet is not an exception. The country has blocked Facebook, Twitter, Youtube and other major social media sites. We’ve found mixed reports about whether it is legal to use a VPN in North Korea, and nothing from a credible source. We guess it is good to err on the side of caution, though.

Norway

With about 97 percent of Norwegians using the internet, this country has one of the highest internet penetration rates. There has also been no credible reports of the government trying to restrict access to the Internet, and the use of VPNs in the country is perfectly legal.

O

Oman

The media is actively censored in Oman, and the Internet is not an exception. In fact, they have an “Internet Service Manual” that lists crimes you mustn’t commit with the internet, and the use of VPNs is widely blocked in the country.

P

Pakistan

Youtube, Facebook, Flickr and even Wikipedia have been blocked in this country — a Youtube ban was just recently lifted. Internet filtering is also in place to filter content and search results shown to citizens. The use of VPNs is yet to be outlawed in this country, though.

Palau

There is no documented report of internet censorship in Palau, and the use of VPNs is legal in this country.

Palestine

The Palestinian government have been reported to actively censor the internet activities of its citizens as well as opposition media. Several websites have also been shut down by the Palestinian government. The use of VPNs is currently legal in the country.

Panama

There is no documented report of the Panaman government restricting citizens’ access to the internet, and the use of VPNs is legal in the country.

Papua New Guinea

There hasn’t been any active effort on the part of the government to restrict citizens’ internet access, but a recently-introduced cybercrime law is changing this view — as many believe it is introduced as a pretext to give the government express powers to censor the Internet. The use of VPNs is legal in Papua New Guinea.

Paraguay

Paraguay is a free country when it comes to internet usage and rights, and no active move has been made by the government to restrict users’ access to the Internet. The use of VPNs is currently legal in the country.

Peru

Peru provides a safe and free environment for Peruvians who use the Internet in the country, and the government hasn’t tried to restrict online activities of users. The use of VPNs is legal in the country.

Philippines

No effort has been made in recent times by the Philippines government to prevent Filipinos from accessing the Internet. The use of VPNs is also legal in the country.

Poland

While Poland is generally rated as a free country when it comes to internet usage and respect of citizens’ internet rights, a new counter-terrorism and surveillance law that was introduced by its government — giving the government the right to block websites — has come under heavy criticism. The use of VPNs is still legal in the country, though.

Portugal

There hasn’t been any credible documented report about the government of Portugal trying to interfere in or restrict its citizens’ internet access, and the use of VPNs is currently legal in the country.

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Qatar

While Qatar generally blocks obscene content or content it deems critical of Islam, innocent sites have also been blocked without explanation. The government has repeatedly made it clear that it has no role in blocking any site, though; they set the law and leave things to the ISP. The use of VPNs is legal in this Middle East country.

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Romania

While Romania has been relatively free when it comes to internet rights of its users, it faced criticism for introducing law aimed at controlling gambling websites in the country — many said this law can easily be exploited to censor citizens’ internet activities. The use of VPNs is legal in the country.

Russia

Putin has signed a new law that increases internet censorship dramatically and has been marked as the beginning of the Russia VPN ban, but does the new law actually ban and perhaps punish VPN use as some English language news sites are reporting? Will Russian VPN users find their connections randomly dropped, the way that Chinese VPN users have suffered under the Great Firewall of China for years? There’s been a lot of buzz surrounding how the Russia VPN ban will be technologically implemented and how the Great Firewall of Russia will be built. That largely stems from too-general reporting that the law is a blanket ban on VPN technologies as opposed to a block to the websites of proxies and anonymizers and also of non-compliant VPN services and Tor.

Rwanda

The Rwandan government has been caught blocking independent newspaper websites as well as sites belong to the opposition — the government has also been caught making moves to spy on its internet users. The use of VPNs is yet to be made illegal, though.

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Saint Kitts and Nevis

There has been no reports of the government trying to restrict access to the Internet in this country, and the use of VPNs is legal.

Saint Lucia

There are no reports of the government trying to censor the Internet in Saint Lucia, and the use of VPNs is legal in the country.

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

There has been no credible reports of the government trying to restrict citizen’s access to the Internet in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, but recent legislation introduced by the government has generated criticisms due to clauses that allows it to be exploited to censor content online. The use of VPNs is legal in this Caribbean country.

Samoa

There has been no credible reports of the Samoan government interfering in citizens’ internet rights and usage, and the use of VPNs is legal in this countr

San Marino

San Marino is a free country when it comes to internet rights, and no government interference in citizens’ internet rights has been documented. The use of VPNs is currently legal in the country.

Sao Tome and Principe

There has been no credible evidence of the government trying to interfere with the Internet in this Central African country, and the use of VPNs is perfectly legal.

Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia actively censors the internet activities of its users, and The Guardian once called it the leader of Arab regimes in internet censorship. What’s more interesting, the Saudi Arabian government boasts about having blocked over 400,000 sites. For some reason, and we don’t know why, this government is yet to completely outlaw the use of VPNs in the country.

Senegal

While many regard Senegal to be generally free of internet censorship, many have raised eyebrows about its Cybercrimes Law, its Decree of Encryption and other laws that they believe give the government carte blanche to censor internet usage in the country if they so desire to. The use of VPNs is yet to be legalized in the country.

Serbia

Taking websites offline for criticizing the government’s performance, detaining people for “dissemination of false news and panic” (read: actually criticizing the government on Facebook for poor performance and lying) and lots of other atrocities are not unusual in Serbia. The fact remains that the Serbian government is an abuser of internet rights. They are yet to illegalize the use of VPNs, though.

Seychelles

There have been reports of the government trying to restrict citizens’ access to the internet in Seychelles, especially when trying to suppress opposition activists. The use of VPNs is currently legal in the country, however.

Sierra Leone

There have been no documented report of the government trying to interfere in citizens’ internet usage, and the use of VPNs is legal in this country.

Singapore

Political websites have been shut down, critics of the government have been targeted and other forms of censorship have been documented in Singapore. However, the use of VPNs is still legal in the country.

Slovakia

Little instances of the government interfering in citizens’ rights to use the Internet in this country has been found, and the use of VPNs in the country is legal at the moment.

Slovenia

With over 73 percent of Slovenians using the Internet, internet adoption is quite high in Slovenia. There has been no credible report of the government trying to censor the Internet in this country, and the use of VPNs is currently legal.

Solomon Islands

While internet penetration is very low in this Oceanian country, there has been no documented report of the government trying to interfere with citizens’ internet access. The use of VPNs is also legal in this country.

Somalia

With the Somali government routinely blocking websites critical of its activities, there is no doubt that internet censorship exists. However, the use of VPNs is yet to be outlawed.

South Africa

South Africa made news when its government introduced an “Online Regulation Policy” bill that many claimed to be the worst internet censorship law in Africa. However, the country has been generally free when it comes to citizens’ internet rights. The use of VPNs is legal in the country.

South Korea

South Korea has repeatedly made news for monitoring and censoring the internet activity of its users. The use of VPNs is legal in this country, though.

South Sudan

While internet penetration is low in South Sudan, the government censors citizens’ internet activities. The use of VPNs is legal in the country.

Spain

While Spain is a generally free country when it comes to citizens’ internet rights, it made news recently when the Prime Minister’s party proposed banning social media memes. The use of VPNs is legal in the country.

Sri Lanka

There have been reports of the Sri Lankan government censoring its citizens’ internet activity and blocking websites critical of the government. However, the use of VPNs is legal in the country.

Sudan

Internet shutdowns, raiding of internet cafes and arresting internet users are not uncommon in Sudan. However, the country is improving in terms of internet freedom for its citizens. The use of VPNs is legal in the country.

Suriname

There has been no credible report about the government trying to censor citizens’ internet usage, and the use of VPNs is legal in the country.

Swaziland

While there have been reports of the government actively monitoring citizens’ internet usage, there have been no reports of citizens’ internet activities being censored. The use of VPNs is currently legal in the country.

Sweden

With over 91 percent of its citizens using the Internet, Sweden has one of the highest internet penetration rates in the world. There hasn’t been any credible report of the government interfering in citizens’ internet activities, and the use of VPNs is legal in the country.

Switzerland

While Switzerland is a free country in terms of internet freedom, 65.5 percent of citizens voted in a referendum to support a bill that grants the government powers to spy on citizens’ internet activities. The use of VPNs is legal in this country.

Syria

Syria has a long history of human rights abuse and internet censorship, but the use of VPNs is currently legal in the country.

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Taiwan

This East Asia country proposed a bill a few years ago that will give it similar powers to China to censor the Internet, but so far there hasn’t been reports of the government censoring the Internet or banning the use of VPNs.

Tajikistan

While Tajikistan is renowned for its active censorship of the Internet and constantly blocking access to websites its government does not like, use of VPNs is still legal in the country.

Tanzania

This country has a cybercrime bill, passed in April 2015, that makes it a crime to insult the country’s president on Facebook among other things. However, this country hasn’t banned the use of VPNs… yet.

Thailand

While Thailand is generally free from government interference in the internet, and no laws have been passed to make the use of VPNs illegal, there have been reports of a few ISPs banning selective news outlets and sites like Wikileaks.org.

Timor-Leste

There are no reports of active government censorship of the internet in this Southeast Asian country, and the use of VPNs is legal.

Togo

There is no report of government censorship in this West African country, and the use of VPNs is legal.

Tonga

Since the passage of its Communications Amendment Act in 2015, the Tonga government gave its internet regulatory agency power to block websites without the involvement of a judge. Other laws have been passed that appear to give the government power to censor the internet. However, the use of VPNs is legal in the country.

Trinidad and Tobago

This country seems to be free of internet censorship, and the use of VPNs is currently legal in the country.

Tunisia

Internet censorship significantly decreased in Tunisia in 2011 following the ouster of its dictator president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali. There have been reports of censorship slowly creeping back into the country, though. At the moment, the use of VPNs is still legal in Tunisia.

Turkey

Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey’s 25th prime minister, and current prime minister at the time of writing this, has publicly expressed his dislike for social media, and his administration has initiated the blocking of various sites. It is therefore not surprising that usage of a VPN is illegal in the country.

Turkmenistan

While this government is renowned for its active efforts to censor the internet and monopolize its citizens’ views, law hasn’t been passed to ban the use of VPNs or to make them illegal. However, there have been reports of VPN usage being restricted in the country.

Tuvalu

This is one of the freest countries in the world, and there is no documented report of the government trying to censor the internet. As expected, the use of VPNs is perfectly legal in this country.

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Uganda

While Facebook, Twitter and other major social media sites are routinely blocked in this country that actively censors its citizens’ internet usage, especially during election periods, the use of VPNs is still perfectly legal in this country.

Ukraine

Ukraine recently made news for banning the top social media site in the country, a move that demonstrated active censorship. However, the use of VPNs is still legal in the country.

United Arab Emirates

The UAE recently made the news for announcing a ban on the use of VPNs. By using a VPN, not only could a UAE resident be imprisoned, but a resident could also be fined up to £412,240

United Kingdom

Contrary to expectations, the UK isn’t free in terms of accusations of censorship — having made news for actively banning some commercial VPNs in the name of security. However, the use of VPNs is legal in the United Kingdom.

United States of America

In 2014, the USA was added to Reporter’s Without Borders list of “enemies of the internet” for undermining “confidence in the Internet and its own standards of security.” While the First Amendment protects citizens’ freedom of speech and press, and the U.S. isn’t actively trying to censor the internet, there have been too many leaks about the government’s secret surveillance activities. The use of VPNs is perfectly legal in the country, though.

Uruguay

There is no report of active government censorship of the internet in Uruguay at the moment, and the use of VPNs is perfectly legal.

Uzbekistan

Uzbekistan has banned teaching political science in the country, so we weren’t surprised that Skype, WhatsApp and Viber are also blocked. The use of VPN is still legal in the country, though.

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Vanuatu

While one of this country’s major province recently banned “junk food from overseas,” they haven’t banned VPN use just yet. There isn’t any credible report of this country actively trying to censor the Internet — instead, internet adoption and penetration in the country is gradually improving.

Vatican City

There hasn’t been any documented attempt by the Vatican City to censor the use of the internet, and the use of VPNs is perfectly legal in the country.

Venezuela

WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter, Zello, talk about it! Venezuela has blocked practically every major site and social network before. However, you can thankfully get around this block by using a VPN, legally.

Vietnam

Vietnam already has a poor reputation due to their active efforts in censoring the Internet, and it didn’t help when the country passed Decree 72 — effectively giving the Vietnamese government power to censor any internet user in the name of national security and combating online copyright infringement. However, VPN usage is still legal in this country.

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Yemen

While this country is rife with political crisis, and has had an especially tumultuous time with the Internet thanks to the Houti-backed rebel group, the use of VPNs is perfectly legal in Yemen.

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Zambia

While Zambia has been relatively safe politically since 1991, it still engages in forms of internet censorship — some of its censorship activities (such as banning content the country deems immoral) is justified under the country’s laws but analysis has also shown signs of websites such as the World Economic Forum and the Organization of American states being actively censored. The use of VPNs is legal in this country, though.

Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe is no stranger to censorship controversies. In July 2016, just five days after the United Stations condemned internet shutdowns, Zimbabwe made news for banning WhatsApp. The use of VPNs is still legal in this East African country, though.