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The proliferation of the internet has seen it encompass the fulfilment of all the needs of an ordinary citizen. But even in today’s world, there are some roadblocks to people’s free and unrestricted access to the internet. In countries like UAE and Dubai, the governments impose severe bans and censorship and curtail the people’s internet usage considerably. Therefore, a VPN for UAE and Dubai seems almost mandatory.
Censorship In UAE
UAE is one of the places where internet censorship works on a whole different level. There is strict government control over what the citizens can access on the web.
The government has strict control over what is shared on the internet from within the country. Anything deemed against them is taken down and blocked. Most VoIP services are blocked.
Social media is severely restricted. All Israeli domains are blocked, and many parts of Wikipedia and other such services are blocked. In addition to the censorship, the citizens’ online activity is closely monitored. Any violation results in penalties.
Ban On Using VPN For UAE
While VPNs for UAE have been helping people have some sort of online freedom, they can no longer do so. As per a new rule active since 2015, it is now illegal to use a UAE VPN. The law clearly states that it is illegal to use a fraudulent or third-party network address for the purpose of perpetrating or hiding the doing of a crime. Those found guilty will face a temporary prison sentence and a minimum fine of Dhs 500,000.
If your first reaction after reading this law is that it has a grey area that can allow one to use VPNs, you should think again. UAE is not a place where one can take a stand against the government and try to teach them a thing or two about their laws. So, in a nutshell, using a software or tool to hide your IP address is now illegal. Since this is what VPNs help you get done, there’s no way you can use a VPN in UAE legally.
This news comes as a blow to the population, which contains a majority of expats. Since expats are used to using the internet with a bit more freedom than when they are in the UAE, they have always relied on a VPN for UAE to solve this issue. This law has indeed changed that. But if you are careful with your choice of the VPN, you can continue to stay hidden from the government radar.
How To Choose A VPN For UAE
As mentioned in the section above, using a UAE VPN is now illegal. However, you can still get away with using a VPN for Dubai and UAE is you are really careful which VPN you go for. There are certain things you should look out for when looking for a VPN for UAE:
- Make sure that the VPN offers incredibly strong encryption. This could take a toll on your internet speed, but it’s better to use a slow connection than serving a prison sentence. Besides, the top VPNs provide good encryption without overly affecting your network speed
- Opt for a VPN that has useful protective features like stealth mode, kill switch, etc., which make sure that you remain anonymous on the internet and your activity remains confidential
Best VPN For UAE
IPVanish is a familiar name in the VPN industry. The VPN has continued to be in business on the back of its stellar and consistent performance over many years. IPVanish gives you everything that you want from your VPN service. The encryption is strong, OpenVPN encryption, meaning you and your online activity are well hidden. IPVanish maintains a strict zero logs policy.
No sort of activity or usage logs are maintained by the service, so there’s never any question of them sharing your online activity with anyone. The only deterring factor regarding customer protection is the fact that it is based in the US, but IPVanish takes adequate steps to keep itself in the clean.
The best part about using IPVanish is that it offers one of the fastest network speeds among all the VPNs available in the market. This is what makes it the best VPN for UAE and Dubai. You get strong protection and enjoy a high-speed connection.
With services like internet kill switch and DNS leak protection, IPVanish ensures that you are always hidden from the government’s ever watchful eye and browse the web freely and securely. It has more than 800 servers across 60 countries of the world, so you have plenty of connectivity options. A seven-day money back guarantee makes up for no-free trial of their service.
7-Day Hassle-Free Money Back Guarantee
ExpressVPN is a close competitor for IPVanish in the best VPN for UAE market. Another giant of the industry, and is well trusted and reputed. Customers are never displeased when they opt for this VPN because all their needs are met with commendable efficiency.
It has high-speed servers in over 94 countries of the world. OpenVPN encryption protects all customers from government trackers. Apart from this strong encryption, ExpressVPN offers features like internet kill switch and DNS leak protection, just like IPVanish.
However, it goes one up from IPVanish in this area as it also offers the stealth mode. When this is turned on, ISPs can’t even see whether you are using a VPN. This is a big advantage for you if you are looking for a UAE VPN. Moreover, the connection speed offered is one of the best in the business.
The only concern one might have when opting for ExpressVPN is that some sort of logs are kept. Although these are aggregated logs, and so make it impossible to determine the identity and activity of each individual user, those who are really concerned about their privacy tend to find this a little uncomfortable. But it more than makes up for it with its 24X7 customer support, 30-day money back guarantees, and the testimonies of their vast user base from all over the world.
30-Days Money Back Guarantee
HMA Pro is third in this list, but there is some ambiguity regarding its true position in the VPN industry. Despite some negative comments from the VPN industry, HideMyAss is no doubt a popular name among the general masses.
HMA offers the standard OpenVPN encryption to its users, protecting them from all eyes as long as they use the VPN service. A 30-day money back guarantee is provided to users. The biggest thing about HMA that continues to bring them customers is their impressive server count. They are like adventurers and treasure hunters, for they have reached nooks and crannies that other VPNs aren’t even close to reaching.
HMA offers more than 700 servers from astounding 190 countries of the world. The connectivity options this VPN offers is unmatched by a long way. The connection speeds offered are pretty decent as well. But there are a few discouraging factors, and quite big ones at that, that tend to eclipse this gigantic server pool.
30-day money back guarantee has footnotes like no Google payments considered, bandwidth shouldn’t cross 10GB, etc., which only creates problems for the paying customer and makes it all a big hassle.
So all in all, HMA offers outstanding connectivity options, good encryption, good speed, but has the past of handing over the internet history of its users on separate occasions.
30-Day Money Back Guarantee
NordVPN has enough security features to satisfy even those who are most paranoid when it comes to online privacy. While it is similar to other VPNs in offering OpenVPN encryption, kill switch, DNS leak protection, and the likes, NordVPN offers other services that make it the most secure VPN for UAE.
For starters, NordVPN offers double encryption. As the name suggests, this is an encryption over the encryption, providing an additional layer of protection for users. It’s quite impossible to penetrate this sort of security.
If you are wondering whether NordVPN shares your activity logs, there’s no reason to worry. While some connection logs are indeed maintained, these are aggregated, like ExpressVPN. So it is impossible to pin down on one particular user’s connections.
No activity logs are kept to provide absolute anonymity to users. In addition to double encryption, NordVPN offers VPN into Tor, which helps you combine Tor and VPN, two of the anonymizing software and tools, and leverage their combined protection.
30-Day Money Back Guarantee
This Hong Kong based VPN is a decent option to consider if you’re looking for a good VPN in Dubai and UAE. PureVPN has a good deal of experience.
For instance, there is a large server pool to choose from. PureVPN offers more than 500 servers from over 140 countries of the world. The locations they cover are seldom covered by other VPNs unless you consider HMA. Other features like split tunnelling and dedicated IPs give some backing to PureVPN making it a good option for UAE.
Split Tunnelling is unique to PureVPN. It allows the user to select what traffic is encrypted under the VPN and what isn’t. This means that you can tweak the speed of your VPN by selecting to keep data-intensive services that don’t threaten your privacy to run outside of your VPN.
This is a big help, but only if it’s used properly, and it’s only available in their premium plans. As for dedicated IPs, it’s not something people in the UAE or Dubai want at this time. Dedicated IPs are your private IPs that you use for specific tasks. They help you get those done but leave a trail of digital footprints for someone to follow.
7-Day Money Back Guarantee
Verdict On Best VPN For UAE And Dubai
The situation in UAE has worsened from its already sodded state. While people could have some respite from the censorship and bans by using a VPN, that’s no longer legally possible. However, if you want to continue having online privacy and freedom in UAE, you can use a VPN that makes sure your activity and identity remain hidden.
The legal penalty facing you, should you be careless in your selection of a VPN for UAE, is severe. It’s a decision you should take with the utmost caution and good amount of research. Always gather as much information as possible regarding a VPN’s security and privacy practices before opting for them.