Best VPN for Ad Blocking

These VPN services include a special ad blocking feature that blocks unwanted and intrusive ads
  • NordVPN
    Monthly price
    $11.95/mo.
    Ad blocking strategy
    CyberSec feature blocks ads from unsafe websites
  • TunnelBear
    Monthly price
    $9.99/mo
    Ad blocking strategy
    Has ad blocking app that’s easy to turn on and off
  • Surfshark
    Monthly price
    $11.95/mo.
    Ad blocking strategy
    CleanWeb feature blocks online ads

Personal security is a multifaceted endeavor. A virtual private network (VPN service) can help protect all of your online activity, including file downloads, media streaming, and website travels. By adding encryption and making your connection more secure, a VPN helps ward off hackers and cybercriminals from stealing your personal information (think credit card and social security numbers). Using a VPN means you’re safer online than ever before.

Interestingly, there is one part of online personal security that’s sometimes overlooked, at least by the typical web user. We’re talking about ads.

Advertising on websites is both annoying at times and also dangerous. Few of us who visit a media streaming or file locker site like to see dozens of banner ads sprayed all over the page, but if you visit a disreputable site and click on an ad by mistake, you could unknowingly install a malware client or virus on your computer.

Thankfully, these top VPN services include an ad blocker that not only hides all of the obnoxious ads on a website but also protects you from malicious ads. These top picks for best VPN service for ad blockers also include robust security for the actual VPN connection.

Best ad-blocking VPN services
BrandPriceAd blocking strategy Other security featuresDetails
NordVPN $11.95/mo.CyberSec feature blocks ads from unsafe websites256-bit AES; approved by security expertsView Plans
TunnelBear$9.99/mo.Has ad blocking app that’s easy to turn on and offData encryption uses 256-bit AES OpenVPNView Plans
Surfshark $11.95/mo. CleanWeb feature blocks online adsAES 256-bit keys with optional ChaCha encryption View Plans

Data effective 5/29/2020. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.

1: NordVPN

NordVPN provides an ad blocker called CyberSec for free.

NordVPN is one of our top picks overall for its professional interface, high number of VPN servers available (5,760), and quick speed. As an added bonus, this VPN service includes the CyberSec feature as well. It’s mostly intended to alert you and block malicious sites known to distribute malware and viruses. It also blocks ads, which can be another way to distribute harmful code and unwanted installs if you click on the ad by mistake.

NordVPN plans and prices
PlanPriceAd blocking strategy Other security featuresDetails
NordVPN $11.95/mo.CyberSec feature blocks ads from unsafe websites256-bit AES; approved by security expertsView Plans

Data effective 5/29/2020. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.

Who is NordVPN best for?

  • Powerful malware protection
  • Ad blocked means you can’t see or click on ads
  • Top VPN pick overall for interface and speed
  • Mobile VPN app and browser extension available

Want more info on NordVPN? Read our full review.

2: TunnelBear

A VPN that offers a free ad blocker—even for unregistered users.

There’s something quite amazing about the TunnelBear ad blocker. For starters, it works as a Google Chrome extension and is ever vigilant about ads on every website. Yet it’s also entirely free even if you are not a TunnelBear user. Anyone can grab it from the Google Chrome store. Apart from that, TunnelBear is also a top pick for powerful security protocols like 256-bit AES and a clean and even fun interface.

TunnelBear plans and prices
PlanPriceAd blocking strategy Other security featuresDetails
TunnelBear$9.99/mo.Has ad blocking app that’s easy to turn on and offData encryption uses 256-bit AES OpenVPNView Plans

Data effective 5/29/2020. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.

Who is TunnelBear best for?

  • Completely free ad blocker
  • Runs as a Google Chrome extension
  • Powerful 256-bit AES encryption
  • Mobile VPN app and browser extension available

Want more info on TunnelBear VPN? Read our full review.

3: Surfshark

Surfshark VPN includes a handy ad blocker called CleanWeb

Similar to how NordVPN includes an ad blocker as a security measure, the CleanWeb blocker in Surfshark is really intended to protect you from clicking on ads that are known to distribute malware and viruses. A side benefit is that if a site is cluttered with too many ads, by blocking ads, you can navigate the site faster and easier. Surfshark also offers an optional encryption protocol called ChaCha that can protect all online activity.

Surfshark plans and prices
PlanPriceAd blocking strategy Other security featuresDetails
Surfshark $11.95/moCleanWeb feature blocks online and video adsAES 256-bit keys with optional ChaCha encryption View Plans

Data effective 5/29/2020. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.

Who is Surfshark best for?

  • Blocks ads that could distribute malware
  • Unusual ChaCha encryption
  • Mobile VPN app and browser extension available

Want more info on Surfshark VPN? Read our full review.

Why bother with a VPN ad blocker?

An ad blocker comes in handy if you frequent websites that are meant for media streaming, file storage, or community chat. These websites tend to have lots of ads.

Advertising in and of itself is not the enemy. In fact, most quality websites use a few ads here and there and they are not obnoxious at all. But you never know if an ad is legit (some of them look like a part of the actual website). Ad blockers, like those included with some VPN service providers, can help protect you and also make websites easier to use.

A VPN ad blocker can help protect you from malicious code

Banner ads are a common way to infect computers with malware. You see an ad that promises a discount on a product or some other alluring incentive. When you click, it takes you to a website that can infect your computer by installing malware or a virus. It’s a common play. And it’s a problem.

But with an ad blocker, you don’t even see the ads and can’t click on them. It means you won’t venture away from the website you are using and, in some cases (such as the CyberSec feature included with NordVPN), even if you could click the ad, the site would be blocked.

A VPN ad blocker may come with other security features

What we’ve found is that some of the best VPN services that include an ad blocker—such as Nord VPN, TunnelBear, and Surfshark—also include extra security protocols. For example, it’s unusual that Surfshark VPN lets you enable the ChaCha encryption protocol. As an alternative to AES 256-bit encryption, ChaCha may work faster and more efficiently for mobile web visits and yet protect your connection just as much as AES.

Recap: What’s the best VPN for ad blockers?

NordVPN is our number one recommended VPN overall and it’s no different if you’re looking specifically for a VPN with an ad blocker. NordVPN includes CyberSec malware protection and ad blocker for no additional cost.

On top of an ad blocker, look for a VPN service with a decent number of security protocols available. It’s a leading indicator of security prowess. All of the VPN services on our list provide a wide selection of encryption options and also claim not to record any of your Internet activity on top of providing protection through ad blockers.

  • NordVPN: Ad blocker designed to protect you from malware
  • TunnelBear: Free ad blocker even for unregistered users
  • Surfshark: CleanWeb blockers protect you from malicious ads

Additional contributors

Chyelle Dvorak