Disclosure: OneHourProfessor is reader-supported. When you buy through links on my site, I may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more

Recent stats show that there are currently over 1.5 billion VPN users in the world, and as one of the fastest-growing VPN providers, Surfshark is now one of the most popular market players in the world. 

Using a VPN (virtual private network) helps you cloak your identity as you browse websites online. The VPN connection hides your real IP address and encrypts all your web data to keep it private from curious eyes.

In this Surfshark review, we’re going to look at all the features offered by Surfshark VPN, and by the end of it, you’ll know whether or not Surfshark is the best VPN service provider to meet your needs.

Surfshark Summary

surfshark logo

9.6 out of 10

Ron’s Thoughts

Surfshark has become a household name in the world of VPNs and they’ve expanded their selection of services in the past few years. Nowadays, there’s plenty to admire about Surfshark, including camouflage mode (which masks your usage of a VPN), unlimited simultaneous connections, fast WireGuard connections, and more. You get all of that for a pretty affordable price so it’s definitely a good VPN choice!

  • Biggest Pro:

    Camouflage Mode (Hide VPN Usage Activity)

  • Biggest Con:

    Slow OpenVPN Speeds

  • Annual Discount:

    Yes - Up to 71% Off (or 86% Off for 2 Years)

  • Price:


  • Promotion:

    7-Day Free Trial is Available

Is Surfshark Worth it?

If you’ve been on the internet for any length of time, then you know that dangers lurk everywhere. 

Whether it’s the government or your internet provider looking to see what you do online, or the websites you visit collecting information to sell to the highest bidder, there are plenty of reasons to hide your activities wherever you go online. 

Not to mention the possible scams and fraud being conducted by cyber criminals… Every hour, thousands of people are hacked or have their information stolen online and you can avoid becoming part of the statistics by taking a few simple steps to protect your personal privacy during online activity. 

Surfshark is a fast-growing secure online VPN service that includes data leak detection, antivirus, private search, and personal data removal tools. Founded in 2018, the company merged with well-known Nord Security in 2022, but both companies still operate independently.

Surfshark certainly is worth the investment for anyone who wants to access the web while having the peace of mind of knowing that they cannot be tracked online.

The software is designed to be secure and fast, and it works perfectly to keep your personal data private no matter where you are in the world. 

It comes with many VPN protocol options, which means you can connect seamlessly and continue doing everything you normally do online. Surfshark also offers double VPN, split tunneling, and unlimited connections. We take a closer look at all these amazing features below. 

Not only will using a VPN save you the effort of having to deal with data privacy or cybersecurity issues in case of hacking, but it will also save you money on flights, online shopping, streaming subscriptions, and hotel accommodations. 

It’s worth having a VPN for all your online activity, and it’s clear to see that the subscription will maximize your savings, enhance your overall online experience, and pay for itself in no time at all.

Who is Surfshark Good For?

Surfshark is good for anyone who requires robust data and privacy protection online. The service comes with a wide range of features to suit different types of users. 

Below, I’ve listed a few use cases to help you determine what Surfshark can and cannot do for you.

  • Budget Users: Subscribe to Surfshark VPN if you are looking for a quality VPN service on a tight budget. Starting from just $1.99/month, you’ll get amazing value for the price.
    NOTE: Grab SurfShark during the Black Friday deal while it lasts! Up to 86% off + 5 months free for a limited time (Until 11/26). 
  • Users That Require Speed: If you have a need for speed, Surfshark is for you. It’s the fastest VPN in its category, peaking at speeds of around 950Mbps. 
  • Users with Multiple Devices: If you have lots of devices that require protection, you’ll love Surfshark’s generous unlimited simultaneous connections policy which allows you to use a single plan on as many devices as you want.
  • Serious Torrenters: Surfshark has a lot to offer hard-core torrent users, so if sharing P2P is your main use case, you’ll find this VPN service to be a capable solution.

Now that you know who can benefit from using Surfshark, let’s break down the features of the VPN software to give you a better understanding of what this service can do.

Surfshark Functionality

1. Ease of Use 

Surfshark has a clean, minimalistic, and intuitive user interface. The design is simple to understand and easy to navigate, making it ideal for beginners. 

As an internet user, you know that there’s danger lurking around every corner. With each click online, you make yourself vulnerable to all types of online data breaches, not just from malicious actors, but also from your own government, internet provider, and the websites you visit – all of whom can see exactly what you do online, collect your data, and sell it for a profit. 

Trying to protect yourself from all this would be a massive challenge even for the most tech-savvy among us. Luckily, Surfshark takes care of all the technical nitty-gritty so you don’t have to worry about anything other than downloading the software, installing it, and tweaking a few easy settings. 

After testing Surfshark on various devices, I gained some helpful insights into the VPN software, including how easy it would be for non-tech-minded people to use it on various devices.

Step #1: Sign-up. Signup is easy, and there are multiple ways to pay, including most major credit cards, various cryptocurrencies, Alipay, PayPal, Amazon Pay, and the recently added Google Pay.

Step #2: Install. Once you sign up, there are clients to install the desktop or mobile apps with just a click. In addition to using the Surfshark app, you can also use Surfshark VPN on your browser. The Microsoft Edge browser extension has been added to the Chrome and Firefox options to cater to an even broader base of users.

Here’s what the Surfshark dashboard looks like:

Step #3: Connect. Once the installation is done, you can now start using the service from your simple interface. You can connect to a VPN in just a couple of clicks, and the VPN instantly starts to hide your IP address and web activity. 

To start the VPN, all you need to do is tap the “Connect” button, after which a desktop notification will appear to tell you that you’re now connected to Surfshark’s VPN server. Once selected, the interface will then display your IP location.

Now, you’re ready to benefit from the platform’s many features, including private DNS technology, malware blocking, split tunneling, and CleanWeb. 

One of the best things about using Surfshark VPN is that you can resize the app interface. Prior to resizing it, the app only displays the “Connect” button, server locations, and current server status. 

Once you expand it, the interface shows you different options and clickable panels for even more settings. 

The company has over 3000 virtual servers in 100+ locations across the globe. You can store the most used locations in the “Favorites” tab. Here, you’ll also have the option to use the static IP addresses list to connect to any server in your country of choice whenever you connect to the VPN.

2. Performance

Surfshark is one of the fastest and most reliable VPNs you’ll find out there. When it comes to performance, the VPN service is unparalleled in its category, thanks to some of the platform’s unique features, such as unlimited simultaneous connections. 

Reviews on sites like Trustpilot give it an average rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars, and according to tests conducted online, the software maxed out a 1GB connection when using Surfshark’s default protocol, WireGuard. It’s likely that it’ll deliver even faster speeds on a faster line. 

At 130Mbps, the other option, OpenVPN, has speeds that aren’t as fast, but still relatively okay compared to other similar VPNs, which still makes it a viable option for those who want to use the old legacy protocol.

Unlike many other VPNs that slow down your internet speeds, Surfshark VPN manages to encrypt your online traffic and route it through its servers without sacrificing speed. 

Of course, your speed is also determined by a number of other factors, such as the distance to the VPN server, the make and model of your device, your operating system, and your browser type. Keep this in mind when conducting your own speed tests.

All in all, Surfshark offers solid performance and delivers impressive download speeds, high upload speeds, and consistent latency.

3. Dedicated IP Address

The way most VPNs work is that when you connect to the service, it changes your IP address to that of the VPN server. 

While that is beneficial for your privacy, it may not be ideal for times when you require an unchanging IP address. 

For example, if you wanted to use a web service that identifies visitors based on their IP address, that’s when you’d need a dedicated IP address. Fortunately, this is one of the features offered by Surfshark. 

You can connect to one of many servers with dedicated IP addresses whenever you need a fixed IP address. There are servers in the US, UK, and the Netherlands, and the company is working to provide more locations soon. 

Just keep in mind that dedicated IP addresses are considered an add-on, which means you will have to pay an extra monthly fee if you want to maintain access to one of them (See Pricing for more).

4. SurfShark for Streaming

How good is Surfshark VPN for online streaming? Although primarily for online security purposes, Surfshark also offers excellent streaming performance. 

When using sites like Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, and iPlayer, the software allows you to unblock the site easily so you can enjoy smooth streaming with no interruptions.

Many sites like Netflix continue to find ways to block VPNs. However, Surfshark has been extremely capable when it comes to circumventing VPN-blocking tech for every Netflix region, including the US, UK, Canada, Japan, and Australia. 

Users can also watch content from US YouTube without any problems. All in all, the streaming VPN software allows users to get the most out of their subscriptions in terms of entertainment. 

5. Surfshark for Torrenting

Surfshark works just as well for torrenting as it does for streaming online. Again, this is not one of the software’s primary functions (especially seeing as torrenting is frowned upon for piracy reasons) but Surfshark does a pretty good job of enabling P2P support on its servers for users that want to use the torrenting VPN. 

If you want to use the VPN service for torrenting, you can even get additional anonymity by paying through services like Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

Torrenting users can also take advantage of the whitelisting capabilities to single out their torrent clients and enable them to drive traffic through Surfshark VPN while all other internet traffic is sent through a standard connection.

6. Split Tunneling Feature

This feature comes standard with all of the plans offered by this VPN company. It’s excellent for separating your connections through the feature called “Whitelister” on your dashboard. You’ll be able to configure different apps and websites to bypass the Surfshark VPN tunnel. 

This is a useful feature whenever you use services that don’t allow you to connect through a VPN. So, instead of turning off your Surfshark VPN, and compromising all your other open tabs in your browser, you can simply white-list the specific site to access it outside of the VPN’s encrypted tunnel.

7. Dynamic MultiHop Feature

If you require additional privacy and security, the multi-hop feature (also known as a Double VPN) allows you to connect to not one, but two VPN servers. This way, you get double the privacy and data encryption capabilities of the platform. 

The dynamic multi-hop feature goes even further to provide you with an enhanced experience. Unlike many other VPNs that offer multi-hop with limited, pre-selected server pairings that choose the first and second servers for you, Surfshark allows you to select your own from a list of servers in your chosen area that support dynamic multi-hop.

8. Privacy Protection

Right about now, you may be wondering “How private is Surfshark?” Well, the platform has a range of core privacy features that come standard with any VPN, and a few unique ones that make it stand out from the rest.

For example, it has AES-256 encryption, as well as the secure protocols WireGuard, OpenVPN UDP, and TCP, IKEv2.

The platform also has advanced features such as the use of a private DNS for each of its servers which allows users to add an extra layer of protection. This helps to prevent malicious third parties from intercepting the user’s browsing sessions.

Another Surfshark privacy feature is the VPN chaining mechanism which routes user traffic through two consecutive servers. 

This feature can be accessed via the MultiHop button on your dashboard and essentially allows you to connect to a single location and exit from another. This way, if a cybercriminal has found a way to access the exit server, they still won’t be able to track down your IP address.

If you choose the Nexus feature when subscribing, you’ll be able to automatically route between two servers at will. This feature is similar to NordVPN’s Double VPN feature, and offers you more flexibility, especially when using the service from some of the less traveled locations.

9. Security

Privacy and security go hand-in-hand together. So, there is a bit of an overlap in the features offered under each section.

The process of protecting your online privacy can be a complicated one. VPN services like Surfshark use servers to which your web traffic is routed and encrypted to keep outsiders from seeing your information. They have security measures in place to keep your data secure. 

Here are some examples of the security protocols Surfshark has in place to protect your data online:

Industry-Standard AES-256-GCM Encryption

Surfshark uses modern encryption methods to secure your data, which is what you would expect from the best VPNs on the market. The traffic is also encrypted through multiple servers to help hide users’ web traffic further.

Whitelisting Feature

Surfshark also has an integrated Whitelist panel that allows you to create a white list of apps, websites, and IP addresses that you want to redirect around your VPN service. The process is somewhat similar to split tunneling, and if you notice that your VPN isn’t playing nicely with any other website or app, you can use the whitelisting feature to fix the issue. 

In fact, you also have the option to set up the feature so that your chosen websites and apps are routed through your Surfshark connection whether on desktop or mobile.

CleanWeb Feature

Ads, web trackers, and malicious content are blocked using the platform’s CleanWeb feature which allows you to surf the clean cyber ocean without having to contend with trackers, ads, malware, or phishing attempts. 

This feature also takes away the need for you to use a dedicated third-party tool like uBlock Origin, but you may still consider such a tool as it allows you to block more content so you can have greater control over the action.

You can toggle between different security protocols depending on your needs, but the software also has a handy option that allows you to activate the VPN automatically whenever you start Windows.

Kill Switch

This is among the most important security features on the platform. It allows you to automatically disconnect from the internet if the connection to your VPN is severed with a kill switch.

Surfshark recently made an improvement to how the kill switch works. Rather than being an all-or-nothing tool that entirely blocks the internet as soon as you are no longer connected to a Surfshark server, the feature now functions in a better way. It cuts the internet if your VPN drops, but allows you to browse normally if you just decided not to activate the service.

The kill switch is available for both Mac and PC. However, the stress testing showed small issues with the kill switch. Of course, this is unlikely to happen in real-world use, but it’s something to consider for anyone who truly relies on the kill switch.  

Reliable Auditors: Cure53

Another one of Surfshark’s privacy protocols is the auditing of the platform’s servers by the German company Cure53. 

So far, the VPN provider has been audited twice: once in 2018, and again in 2021. The auditing company has proved the claims made by Surfshark in their marketing material, including their server and browser features, speed and performance, and more. 

According to the company’s report, not many problems were found, and whatever few issues there were have since been rectified.

10. Surfshark Logging Policy

It’s clear that Surfshark has ticked all the boxes in terms of basic online privacy.

But, the company still has access to your data as they own the servers. So the big question is, can you trust your data to them?

Surfshark is located in the Netherlands, a country that has a privacy-friendly data policy. Unlike countries like China and India, VPN companies in the Netherlands aren’t required to retain data. In other words, the local laws don’t require Surfshark to log many VPN-related activities which allows them to uphold a “zero-log” policy.

Why is this important? 

Well, the Netherlands is a member of Nine Eyes, an international alliance of countries that share intelligence information among themselves. So, if the US government wanted to access your data, it would be possible for the Netherlands government to force Surfshark to share that information since the company falls under the jurisdiction.

Surfshark’s zero-log policy means that the company doesn’t collect any data that could identify how you use the service. This includes things such as:

  • Internet activity history
  • Your originating IP address
  • VPN server location history
  • Session information
  • Timestamps
  • Bandwidth usage, etc.

Surfshark only records your email address, billing information, and anonymous statistical data, such as crash reports, performance data, etc. 

However, your user ID and/or IP address are actually logged whenever you connect to a Surfshark server and only deleted 15 minutes after you disconnect the service. 

For some, this could be a dealbreaker. Still, you do get the peace of mind of knowing that Surfshark is audited by a reliable German cybersecurity firm, Cure53. But for many other regular users, it may be enough to know that Surfshark follows its protocols of deleting logged information after every session.

You’ll find the complete rundown of Surfshark’s logging policy on the website’s FAQ page.

11. Additional Features

In addition to the flagship product, Surfshark VPN, the company also offers the following additional features:

  • Surfshark Antivirus: A malware detection and destruction tool that is lightweight yet powerful enough to protect all your devices. 
  • Surfshark Alert: Surfshark’s additional password tech warns you about data leaks that involve your personal information. 
  • Surfshark Search: An unbiased, ad-free, and completely private search engine that provides truly organic results to avoid tracking. 
  • Alternative ID: This tool creates a brand-new email and online identity for you to maximize your safety online. 
  • Incogni: This feature removes your personal information from big data companies and data brokers. 
  • “Invisible to Devices” Mode: This feature lets you hide your device from other devices on that same network.
  • Nexus Feature: The new IP rotating tool, Shark Nexus, rotates your IP address seamlessly.
  • Camouflage Mode: The Camouflage Mode lets you connect to obfuscated servers. It makes your internet traffic look like normal traffic so no one detects that you are using a VPN.
  • NoBorders Mode: The NoBorders mode automatically kicks in whenever the VPN detects that you are in a restrictive country or territory. It’ll limit your selection of Surfshark servers to the ones that are specifically designed to bypass this type of censorship.

Camouflage and NoBorders mode is a smart technology that allows you to log onto the VPN server when you’re in countries where VPNs are typically prohibited and is ideal for China VPNs.

Surfshark Pros and Cons

Like all other VPN providers, Surfshark has its own pros and cons. Here are some of the software’s most prominent benefits and drawbacks to give you a clearer picture of what you can expect from it as a user.


  1. Excellent Prices: Surfshark’s introductory offer is packed full of value, especially with their current black Friday deal.
  2. Camouflage Mode: Surfshark doesn’t just hide your browsing activity, it also hides the fact that you are using a VPN, as well.
  3. Unlimited Simultaneous Connections: You never have to worry about the number of devices you have connected at any one time, even on a single Surfshark plan.
  4. Powerful VPN Connections: Surfshark offers robust and versatile VPN protocols, including WireGuard, IKEv2, and OpenVPN.  
  5. Fast WireGuard Connections: The connections from Surfshark’s default protocol, WireGuard, are superfast, making it an excellent choice to keep up with any internet connection.


  1. IP Address Logging: Although it’s a “no-logs” VPN, Surfshark still records your IP address whenever you connect to its service until 15 minutes after you disconnect.
  2. Kill Switch Issues: Heavy stress testing of the VPN caused the kill switch to fail.
  3. Increased Renewal Price: After the first term, the subscription price increases significantly.
  4. Slow OpenVPN Speeds: OpenVPN speeds are not the fastest you’ll find on other VPNs.

Surfshark Competitors

There’s no denying that Surfshark is a real bargain. It has excellent streaming performance and tons of features for most devices – all offered at a cheap price. Also, the company’s development team continues to add more features and innovations with impressive regularity.

However, depending on your needs, the software may not have what it takes to compete with the very best. If you’re considering an alternative to Surfshark, here are three of its top competitors to look at.

Surfshark vs ExpressVPN

Both Surfshark and ExpressVPN are reliable VPN solutions with a lot to offer, including features like powerful encryption, a kill switch, DNS leak protection, and more. However, there are some important differences that make one a better choice than the other depending on your needs. 

For example, Surfshark is a lot cheaper and offers an ad blocker, whereas ExpressVPN is costlier, and it limits the number of devices that you can use to just five. However, the platform does offer high-speed internet connection and it also has more than twice the number of server locations Surfshark has.

Another difference between the two VPN services is that while Surfshark offers P2P support on just some of its servers, ExpressVPN offers P2P support on all its servers. The platform even has in-depth features, such as port forwarding, which makes for a better experience for avid torrenters.

Surfshark vs NordVPN

Surfshark and NordVPN both have blazing-fast speeds and a wide range of features. They are nearly equal when it comes to privacy and security decisions. The main difference between the two is that Surfshark is less expensive for the introductory offer while offering an additional layer of authentication to applied encryption ciphers. 

Like Surfshark, NordVPN offers superfast speeds in excess of 950Mbps. In fact, if you use faster speeds, it’s likely that the VPN will max out your connection. As previously mentioned, Surfshark’s OpenVPN speeds are less than stellar, at just 130Mbps. However, these may still be adequate for casual users. 

Surfshark vs IPVanish

IPVanish is yet another Surfshark alternative with comprehensive features. However, a head-to-head comparison shows that Surfshark VPN offers more features, more servers and locations, and faster speeds. 

On the other hand, IPVanish slightly edges out its competitors with better customer support options, including live chat, email, forums, online guides, and more. 

With regard to pricing, Surfshark still comes in strong with its cost-effective plans starting from just $1.99. In contrast, IPVanish costs $2.49/month for the two-year plan. While there doesn’t seem to be a huge difference in that price, you’ll find it in the features on offer. For example, Surfshark offers multi-factor authentication and dedicated IP addresses – features you won’t find on IPVanish.


Surfshark has a free 7-day trial for Mac, iOS, and Android users. 

The Surfshark Starter plan costs $13.99/month, but when billed annually, the price goes down to just $3.99/month. If you opt for the 24-month subscription, you only pay $1.99/month, which is billed as $53.73 for the first 27 months. 

Not only does the Surfshark VPN cost go down, but you also get three extra months free. All the premium plans to safeguard your online privacy come with a 30-day money-back guarantee. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a better VPN for this price.

Here are the features you get on each plan (based on the 24-month subscription):

  • Surfshark Starter: $1.99/Month: This plan comes with a secure VPN, an ad-blocker, and a cookie pop-up blocker to safeguard your online privacy.
  • Surfshark One: $2.69/Month: This plan comes with all the features in the Surfshark Starter plan, as well as additional features to keep your devices secure, including a private search engine, 24/7 antivirus protection, webcam protection, and integrated antivirus, anti-spyware, and malware protection.
  • Surfshark One+: $3.99/Month: This plan has all the features in the Surfshark One plan, as well as advanced features to protect your identity online, such as real-time email breach alerts, data removal from company databases, and removal from people, search sites.

Surfshark’s price is one of its biggest draws. But it’s important to note that after the initial two-year term, the price goes up when you renew your subscription. You must check the small print before you renew – or, you can always cancel your subscription and sign up for a new plan to save money.

Product Support

Surfshark customer support is excellent, with 24/7 email, live chat, and VPN guides available on the platform’s well-curated knowledge base. 

The articles, guides, and tutorials contain answers to most of the frequently asked questions, and if you like the self-service route, you’ll be able to find solutions for most issues here. However, if you need to interact with a real person, then you can get in touch with support through live chat or email.

The support team is always on hand to answer your questions and show you exactly how you can use the software to encrypt your online traffic. The live chat support, in particular, is very helpful.

Surfshark recently introduced a new learning course that users can access for a one-time fee of just $29.99. The course, titled “Social Engineering 101: Cyber Security Course on Scam Spotting”, includes everything you need to know about how to spot social engineering scams, such as AI phone calls, phishing, and scam emails.

Platforms/Protocols Supported

Surfshark supports the following platforms and protocols: 

Platforms Supported by Surfshark: 

  • Windows
  • Mac
  • iOS
  • Android
  • Linux (GUI)
  • Fire TV, Apple TV, and other TVs
  • PlayStation, Xbox consoles
  • Chrome,  Firefox, and Microsoft Edge browser extensions

Protocols Supported by Surfshark: 

  • WireGuard
  • OpenVPN UDP
  • OpenVPN TCP
  • IKEv2

Is Surfshark Legit?

I hope this close-up look at Surfshark has helped you determine whether or not this VPN is the right option for you.

There are many things that make it a tempting VPN provider, such as high streaming performance, robust privacy protocols, and the ability to unblock streaming apps and get around censorship. The platform also has robust security and privacy protocols in place and offers 24/7 customer support, as well as tons of helpful articles.

All of this is offered at an affordable price tag which makes it a popular VPN solution among both novice and experienced users alike

The bottom line is that Surfshark is a powerful, reliable, and highly secure VPN that holds its own against many of the premium providers currently out there. It has a lot to offer at an extremely affordable price. 

If you’re ready to give Surfshark a try, sign up right now to start enjoying the many benefits of this powerful VPN service.

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}