Germany is one of the toughest countries in fighting for user rights and privacy. However, that is on the face of it, and they have been fighting for data retention laws over the last few years.
Even if some bills have not been passed in law, it doesn’t mean no online activities are recorded. Besides this, the government also takes a stand against piracy and torrenting in particular.
The country is actively involved with mass surveillance and has worked with the NSA from the USA.
In our guide, you can find four of the best German VPN providers to help anyone in Germany regain their online privacy.
Is a VPN legal in Germany?
Using a VPN service is legal in Germany as there is no legislation for using a German VPN. However, if you conduct any illegal activity whilst using your VPN, that would be classed as breaking the law.
You could face legal troubles for streaming US Netflix into Germany, although there is no evidence that authorities would enforce this. A good VPN will hide the fact you are streaming anyway.
The security service of Germany, BND, has wide discretion to spy on you. And they’re spying on you, which is very clear from the files from Snowden.
Germany signed the 14 Eyes Treaty, and its data retention laws allow the authorities to retain your metadata (including text message content) for up to 10 weeks.
An approximate 220 million metadata sets per day are obtained by the BND, consisting of communication that flows over the Internet, mobile networks, landlines, and satellite links.
Best VPN for Germany
ExpressVPN is a strict zero-logging VPN provider and doesn’t log traffic content or source IPs of users. It uses the OpenVPN protocol by default and the new Lightway protocol rather than Wireguard. (Read 5 Best VPNs That Do Not Keep Logs)
It is among the top for your data’s privacy and security with industry-best military-grade encryption, perfect forward secrecy, built-in kill switch, and DNS leak protection. Servers run in RAM, so no user data is ever written to disk.
This VPN provider reliably unblocks favorite content from most Netflix catalogs from many other countries, along with other streaming services such as Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, and BBC iPlayer.
You can live chat with the company’s excellent 24/7 customer support team in the case of any issue. The company headquarters are in the British Virgin Islands and are outside any jurisdiction.
The VPN has easy-to-use Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, Linux, and WiFi routers. 3,000+ VPN servers in 94 countries around the world. Special deal as you can get 3 months free when signing up for a year. (Read ExpressVPN Review)
ExpressVPN service is a privacy-focused provider, unblocks major streaming services: fast connections, 5 simultaneous connections, strong safety features, and a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Surfshark’s various data protection and security features. 256-bit AES encryption, kill switch, DNS leak security, WebRTC, and IPv6.
It comes with automatic ad-blocking, malware-scanning, and even scrambles traffic.
Surfshark VPN services maintain no logs or user activity information. With headquarters in the British Virgin Islands, they have no regulations.
The VPN service has a smaller global network with 3200 servers in 65 countries, including Germany, but still offers fast speeds and quickly unblocks several big streaming services.
Netflix US or BBC iPlayer in Germany won’t be a problem. Customer service via live chat support is 24/7.
Surfshark has Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, and Linux applications installed manually on supported routers. (Read Surfshark Review)
Surfshark VPN service is affordable, safe, and proficient at skirting geo-restrictions, offers split tunneling, static IP addresses, unlimited bandwidth, with a 30-days money-back guarantee.
It operates 5,697 servers in 60 countries worldwide, including 240+ VPN server locations in Germany.
It also introduces additional features such as double VPN, Tor over VPN internet connection, anti-DDoS servers, and best servers configured for ultra-fast streaming.
It’s convenient to unblock geo-locked content as well. You can check the servers to use for sites such as Netflix, BBC iPlayer, and Hulu on its website knowledge base.
A single subscription to NordVPN services offers up to six simultaneous Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, and some routers. (Read NordVPN Review)
NordVPN is a top choice for Germany. Strong security blazing fast speeds, with a six-device connection limit. Includes risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.
IPVanish is one of the few VPN service providers to own and operate all 1,600 of its own servers worldwide rather than leasing them. It also has over 40,000 IP addresses.
This means data doesn’t pass through third parties, and they retain zero metadata logs. This is ideal to use for torrenting or to use with Kodi.
Military-grade encryption and authentication are as good as many premium VPN services. IPVanish suffers from streaming sites like Netflix and Hulu, which works okay with BBC iPlayer and streaming German TV outside the country.
Unlimited device connections and apps are available for Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android. 24/7 live chat customer service support. Offers a 30 days money-back guarantee. (Read IPVanish Review)
It can be used for unlimited internet users, with unlimited bandwidth, good connection speeds, and top levels of leak protection when torrenting and streaming.
How do I get a German VPN?
It is straightforward for a VPN Germany connection, and selecting from any of the above takes minutes to sign up for.
Head to any of their websites, enter any required information and billing information. You can pay by credit cards, PayPal, and cryptocurrency for most of them.
Does ExpressVPN work in Germany?
ExpressVPN was at the top of the best VPN in Germany in 2023. It is continually the best performer and most secure VPN provider for Germany. To test, you can use the risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee like a free VPN trial.
How can I get a free German IP address?
A VPN in Germany is the easiest way to get a German IP address. On many occasions, this changes to add to security. Or, you can select a static IP address on some servers in Germany with certain VPN providers for Germany. (Read Flixtor Movies Review)
How do I access Netflix in Germany?
Once you select one of our recommended Germany VPN providers, streaming US Netflix is straightforward:
- Download and install the VPN app on your devices
- Log in to the app. Select a US-based VPN server, which can bypass Netflix restrictions. Customer support can help if you have issues.
- Wait for your VPN to connect.
- Open the Netflix website or app as usual. You should see the difference between your favorite content.
Should you still have an issue, make sure to turn off any location settings and clear your cache and browser cookies.
It is vital to use a VPN in Germany as it is in any other country. While they value user privacy, they also carry out more than enough surveillance, which can give them or any of the 9 eyes coalition your IP address.
You may think you can use a free VPN as an option, yet these can often be dangerous or bombard you with ads. In many cases, your data is sold on as you pass through their VPN server, and they can see everything you do.
To be safe and secure with the best German VPN, you can use any of the above and test all their features and performance to ensure they meet your requirements.
While the government respects user privacy, they also do a lot to see what any person in Germany does online.