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How to Access Blocked Sites in Pakistan Using a VPN

Pakistani Internet users are no strangers to website blocks, but it is possible to bypass government censorship using the encrypting power of a VPN. While the subject is deeply technical, getting started is surprisingly user-friendly, and we’ll be walking you through it all in today’s quick-start guide. You’ll learn about the best VPNs for Pakistan, plus how to use them.

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Pakistan has one of the toughest online censorship policies in the world. Anything considered blasphemous or subversive can be banned with little to no prior warning. Indeed, millions of URLs are added to the already-expansive blacklist every day.

The following VPNs are proven effective at accessing sites blocked by Pakistani censors:

  1. NordVPNBest Pakistan VPN – NordVPN has earned its reputation as the world’s most trusted VPN, with a truly massive encrypted server network capable of beating Pakistan’s site blocking.
  2. Surfshark – Surfshark is an affordable VPN capable of beating the toughest censorship. Unlimited simultaneous connections, Netflix on any server.
  3. ExpressVPN – A top contender for fastest VPN in the world, great for accessing blocked streaming sites.
  4. CyberGhost – This do-anything VPN settings preconfigured for unblocking censored sites.
  5. PrivateVPN – Entirely self-owned network and flexible encryption for true Internet freedom
  6. PureVPN – A VPN, an adblocker, and so much more.

Fortunately, a VPN service can help you overcome these restrictions by giving you a foreign IP, protecting your data, and helping you beat Pakistan’s censorship blocks. In this article, we’ll explain how this works, what to look for in a VPN for Pakistan, and why you should avoid free services that can steal your data (or worse). Read on to learn all of the above and find some incredible VPN deals below.

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First, find the right provider

Pakistani users face website restrictions in Pakistan for two main reasons. The first and most important one is government interference and censorship. Another one is geoblocking by website and streaming service companies. Here are the specific features that will help you beat both and unlock all the websites you want to use.

  • Encryption – specific encryption standards can help beat censorship and keep your data secure at the same time. Look for AES-256 bit encryption for security, and 2 specific standards – SSTP and PPTP – if you want to view blocked websites while in Pakistan.
  • Logging policy – consuming content that’s banned in Pakistan can land you in hot water with the law. Protect yourself by choosing a provider with a no-logging or zero-logging policy that means your data is neither recorded nor stored.
  • Speed and bandwidth limits – if you run out of speed or bandwidth with your VPN provider, you can no longer unblock websites. To make sure this doesn’t happen, go for someone with unlimited traffic and no speed caps or restrictions. Where possible, look for unlimited server switches too.
  • Server networks – the more countries you can get an IP from, the more websites you can unblock. If you want to see Netflix’s full library, watch Canada’s CBC, stream NFL/NHL/NBA games, and more, you’ll want a provider with servers in as many countries as possible.

Comparison of the Best VPNs to Access Blocked Sites in Pakistan

VPNs
Average Speed
191.4Mbps
191.25Mbps
181.11Mbps
137.62Mbps
94Mbps
Countries
60
100
94
91
63
Servers
5400
3200
3000
9022
200
Uptime
99%
99%
99%
100%
99.9%
Log Policy
Logs Present
Logs Present
Logs Present
Logs Present
Logs Present
Live Chat Support
  • 24/7 Live Chat
  • 24/7 Live Chat
  • 24/7 Live Chat
  • 24/7 Live Chat
  • 24/7 Live Chat
Optimized for Torrenting
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Streaming Unblocked
  • Netflix,
  • Disney+,
  • Amazon Prime,
  • iPlayer,
  • YouTube,
  • Hulu
  • Netflix,
  • Disney+,
  • Amazon Prime,
  • iPlayer,
  • YouTube,
  • Hulu
  • Netflix,
  • Disney+,
  • Amazon Prime,
  • iPlayer
  • Netflix,
  • Disney+,
  • Amazon Prime,
  • iPlayer,
  • YouTube,
  • Hulu
  • Netflix,
  • Disney+,
  • Amazon Prime,
  • iPlayer,
  • YouTube,
  • Hulu
Free Trial
30 Day Free Trial
7 Days Free Trial
30 Day Free Trial
24 Hours on Desktop and 48 Hours on Mobile
7 Days Free Trial
Money Back Guarantee
30 Days Money Back Guarantee
30 Day Money Back Guarantee
30 Day Money Back Guarantee
45 Day Money Back Guarantee
30 Day Money Back Guarantee
Connections
6
Unlimited
5
7
10
Works in Your Country
Best Price
$2.99/month
$1.99/month
$6.67/month
$2.19/month
$2.00

Most Secure VPNs to Beat Pakistani censorship

After extensive research and testing, we’ve determined the following VPNs to be ideal for unblocking censored websites in Pakistan and abroad:

1. NordVPN

Works in United States
4.5 / 5
NordVPN
Top Features
Number of Servers
5400
Speed
Average of 191.4 mbps
Countries
60
Devices Supported
Up to 6
24/7 Live Support
Yes
Money Back Guarantee
30 Days Money Back Guarantee
Streaming Sites Unblocked
Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime, iPlayer, YouTube, Hulu
Torrenting
Yes
Exclusive Deals
Best Deal
Standard at $2.99/month
Plus at $4.49/month
Complete at $5.49/month
Apps Available
NordVPN Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Unblocks American Netflix
  • Mind-boggling number of servers
  • Up to 6 simultaneous connections
  • Extra-secure Double VPN for data encryption
  • Money back guarantee policy (30-days)
Cons
  • Some servers can be unreliable
  • Can’t specify City or Province in App.

NordVPN is a security-first VPN service. It’s handy for Pakistan-based users because of the country’s poor track record on data privacy and censorship. The first line of security comes from AES 256-bit encryption, which includes OpenVPN’s cutting-edge UDP and TCP protocols. Cracking your connection would require a supercomputer millions of years – so needless to say, NordVPN is rather secure. In addition to encryption, NordVPN has a range of specialty servers focused on security; from Onion over VPN to Anti-DDoS. These servers add a second layer of security to everything you do online while using this service. Moreover, with one of the toughest no-logging policies in the business, nobody will be able to access your data while you’re using NordVPN.

In addition to the above, NordVPN is easy to use and rich in features. For example, encryption protocols include PPTP, which is compatible with legacy devices (which are common in Pakistan). The server network is one of the biggest in the industry, with over 5,500 servers in 58 countries. The apps are compatible with all modern devices and operating systems, from macOS to iOS to Android and most common routers – and intuitive to use. As an added benefit, users get up to 6 connections free of charge, meaning you can connect all your devices to the VPN without running into any problems.

Read our full NordVPN review.

2. Surfshark

Works in United States
4.4 / 5
Surfshark
Top Features
Number of Servers
3200
Speed
Average of 191.25 mbps
Countries
100
Devices Supported
Up to Unlimited
24/7 Live Support
Yes
Money Back Guarantee
30 Day Money Back Guarantee
Streaming Sites Unblocked
Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime, iPlayer, YouTube, Hulu
Torrenting
Yes
Exclusive Deals
Best Deal
24 Months at $2.69/month
1 month at $17.69/month
12 Month at $4.09/month
Apps Available
Surfshark Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Unblock 15 international Netflix libraries, including the US and Japan
  • All 800+ servers are P2P-friendly, with private DNS and obfuscation
  • 30-day satisfaction guarantee
  • Absolutely no logging of connection data, IP addresses, bandwidth used, or traffic
  • 24/7 live chat ensures maximum uptime.
Cons
  • Speeds occasionally suffer a noticeable drop
  • Young VPN still has plenty of room to grow in terms of advanced functionality.

Launched in 2019, Surfshark specifically addresses the modern reality of government censorship. Thus, it is an ideal choice for accessing blocked sites in Pakistan.

Surfshark uses only the most modern cryptography (256-AES-GCM) and tunneling protocols (OpenVPN, IKEv2/IPSec, WireGuard) to establish its VPN connections. This means you have a ton of flexibility in tailoring your connection to bypass specific restrictions (you can even configure individual Wi-Fi networks to have different settings). Backed by a “strictly never” logging policy, and you already have a complete VPN package.

However, Surfshark offers a lot more: obfuscation on every server, multi-hop connections, static IPs, anti-malware and pop-up blocking, plus anti-adware and anti-tracking. And for getting past the toughest censors, Surfshark will automatically enable the NoBorders method which can punch through even the Great Firewall of China.

Best of all, there are no limits on bandwidth, server switching, or even simultaneous connections. Not bad for a scrappy upstart!

3. ExpressVPN

Works in United States
4 / 5
ExpressVPN
Top Features
Number of Servers
3000
Speed
Average of 181.11 mbps
Countries
94
Devices Supported
Up to 5
24/7 Live Support
Yes
Money Back Guarantee
30 Day Money Back Guarantee
Streaming Sites Unblocked
Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime, iPlayer
Torrenting
Yes
Exclusive Deals
Best Deal
12 Months at $6.67/month
6 Months at $9.99/month
1 Month at $12.95/month
Apps Available
ExpressVPN Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Unblocks American Netflix, iPlayer, Hulu
  • Super fast servers (minimal speed loss)
  • Torrenting allowed
  • Strict no-logs policy for personal information
  • Great customer service via chat
Cons
  • Slightly pricier than competition

ExpressVPN is a service that’s best known for its speed. ExpressVPN has a number of advantages for Pakistani users, whether you’re a permanent resident or a traveler. First, it comes with a series of lightweight, easy-to-install apps that work with most operating systems and devices. It doesn’t matter if you’re using Windows, iOS, macOS, Android, a video game console or a router: installation takes minutes on virtually all common devices. This is handy in Pakistan, which has high-speed mobile internet in many urban areas. Second, there are many unique features that make ExpressVPN easy and safe to use. For example, there’s a built-in speed test that helps make sure you’re not lagging. There’s a DNS leak test that helps make sure your Pakistani ISP can’t see what you’re doing. Another important extra feature is VPN split tunneling, which lets you choose which data you route through your VPN, and which – through your ISP.

In addition to the above, ExpressVPN is – as the name suggests – darn fast. It uses modern encryption protocols, including OpenVPN’s UDP and TCP. This means your VPN connections are just as fast as your regular ones, with minimal slowdown. Moreover, ExpressVPN has a vast server network of 3,000+ nodes in 94 countries, which means that you can get any IP you want with low latency and high download speed. There is absolutely no bandwidth limit, and no speed throttling, no matter how much you use ExpressVPN. All of the above make ExpressVPN one of the best (and fastest) VPN providers on the web.

Read our full ExpressVPN review.

4. CyberGhost

Works in United States
4.1 / 5
Cyberghost
Top Features
Number of Servers
9022
Speed
Average of 137.62 mbps
Countries
91
Devices Supported
Up to 7
24/7 Live Support
Yes
Money Back Guarantee
45 Day Money Back Guarantee
Streaming Sites Unblocked
Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime, iPlayer, YouTube, Hulu
Torrenting
Yes
Exclusive Deals
Best Deal
Best Value at $2.19/month
6 Month Plan at $6.99/month
Monthly Plan at $11.99/month
Apps Available
CyberGhost Pros & Cons
Pros
  • LOW PRICE: 6 EXTRA free months (79% off – link below)
  • Great user experience and easy installation
  • Jurisdiction in Romania
  • Zero logs
  • 24/7 Live Support
Cons
  • Doesn’t work well in China

CyberGhost is a VPN that combines powerful features with an intuitive user experience. Everything starts with the apps, which are compatible with all modern devices: iOS, Android, Windows, macOS, PlayStation, XBox, and more. Unlike many VPN services that ask you to configure everything manually, CyberGhost simply lets you choose from one of 6 simple profiles. These run the gamut from “surf anonymously” to “unblock streaming”, and can help you protect your identity from Pakistani authorities, surf the web without local censorship restrictions, and more. There’s also a number of easy toggles like “extra speed”, “data compression” and “block ads”. These can help you personalize your configuration profiles, putting sophisticated VPN features into your hands without asking you to get techy yourself. All of this is excellent news for VPN newbies and anyone who isn’t an IT expert or hobbyist.

In addition to the above, CyberGhost is powerful on security and privacy. The backbone of its offer lies in an incredibly robust worldwide network, spanning over 5,500 servers in 80 countries. The logging policy is one of the strongest in the history of VPN technologies. Virtually nothing is kept; not even your e-mail address. There is no way to tie anything you do online to your device, identity or IP so long as you use the service correctly. In addition to being strong on logging, CyberGhost uses 256-bit encryption wherein each key has more possible combinations than there are atoms in the known universe. All told, this makes CyberGhost one of the safest services on the web despite its ease of use.

Read our full CyberGhost review.

5. PrivateVPN

Works in United States
4 / 5
PrivateVPN
Top Features
Number of Servers
200
Speed
Average of 94 mbps
Countries
63
Devices Supported
Up to 10
24/7 Live Support
Yes
Money Back Guarantee
30 Day Money Back Guarantee
Streaming Sites Unblocked
Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime, iPlayer, YouTube, Hulu
Torrenting
Yes
Exclusive Deals
Best Deal
36 Month Plan at $2.00/month
3 Month Plan at $6.00/month
Monthly Plan at $9.90/month
Apps Available

PrivateVPN has multiple features to help you unblock general and streaming websites in Pakistan. For starters, it uses 2048-bit encryption with AES-256. This level of security is so powerful a supercomputer would need millions of years to crack it, and the specific encryption protocols include censorship-beating PPTP (which is great for Pakistan). Bandwidth, speed and server switches are all unlimited, meaning you can use the service as much and as often as you want. While the network isn’t huge, PrivateVPN maintains a respectable 150 servers in 60+ countries for a wide variety of IP addresses to spoof. There are even 6 simultaneous connections to let you stay connected on all your devices.

In addition to being able to unblock websites, PureVPN can also help you stay protected and avoid unpleasant run-ins with the law. In addition to the encryption features listed above, it uses the SOCKS5 protocol specifically designed to beat China’s censorship laws. If you need to exchange sensitive information or watch content that might be “blasphemous” under Pakistani law, this is a good option. Other cool features include a tough zero-logging policy and a port forwarding option that helps you find connection options when you’re behind a firewall or otherwise limited in connectivity.

Read our full PrivateVPN review.

6. PureVPN

Works in United States
4.3 / 5
PureVPN
Top Features
Number of Servers
6500
Speed
Average of 90.54 mbps
Countries
78
Devices Supported
Up to 10
24/7 Live Support
Yes
Money Back Guarantee
31 Day Money Back Guarantee
Streaming Sites Unblocked
Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime, iPlayer, YouTube, Hulu
Torrenting
Yes
Exclusive Deals
Best Deal
Most Recommended at $2.08/month
12 Months at $3.24/month
1 Month at $10.95/month
Apps Available

PureVPN is another strong service known for its all-inclusive attitude to features. While some VPN providers (especially free ones) might charge extra for basic features, PureVPN gives you everything you need no matter which subscription plan you choose. For starters, there’s a suite of intuitive, user-friendly apps where everything is always a click away. Then there’s one of the biggest server networks in the world: 2,000+ servers equipped with 1 Gbit connections in 140+ countries. Bandwidth, speed, and server switches are all unlimited, meaning you can do whatever you like without worrying about running out of speed or download capacity.

PureVPN also has some cool security features. In terms of basics, there’s 256-bit AES encryption (including OpenVPN protocols) and a strong no-logging policy. This is enough to give you peace of mind when you’re in Pakistan, no matter what you’re doing online. There are also powerful extra features that many other services don’t have. For example, there are P2P-enabled servers optimized for secure torrenting. There’s split tunneling, which lets you send some data through your ISP, and some – through your VPN. There’s even a proprietary feature unique to PrivateVPN called Ozone, which protects your device, data and identity proactively, even when you’re online.

Read our full PureVPN review.

How can a VPN help unblock sites in Pakistan?

There are two primary reasons you can’t unblock websites in Pakistan without a VPN. The first is censorship. Pakistan is an Islamic country, and like many other Islamic countries, its laws conform to the religion’s moral views. This means that anything considered blasphemous by Pakistan’s ruling class is disallowed. For example, Pakistan banned Facebook in 2010 and YouTube in 2012 for showing content that they felt was disrespectful to Muslims and the prophet Muhammad in particular. These blocks are both hard to overcome and vast in number.

What’s more, Netsweeper (the Canadian service used by the Pakistani government to filter the web) has been shown in a Citizen Lab report to have blocked some 5 billion URLs, with 10 million new ones added every day. This greatly restricts how much of the internet you can view. Even worse, protection against government snooping and ISP monitoring is virtually non-existent.

The other major reason that Pakistan-based users can’t access websites is geoblocking. Specifically, Pakistan’s copyright protection laws are weak – and most western content publishers don’t license their content for the country. This means that the amount of content you can view while in Pakistan is rather small. Whether you’re trying to view Netflix, Hulu, or another service, you’re going to find that the available videos are greatly diminished in number.

VPNs can help you overcome all these problems. For starters, they help you get a foreign IP, which removes geoblocking and lets you watch UK’s BBC iPlayer, Canada’s CBC, the US’s Netflix library, and more. They also help you avoid government tracking, meaning you can enjoy whichever content you please without worrying about the long arm of the proverbial law. Last but not least, a VPN can help you beat local censorship filters with encryption protocols like PPTP and SSTP, as well as SOCKS5 technology. This is how a VPN can help Pakistani residents and visitors enjoy the free and open Internet with no restrictions.

Pakistan Internet Censorship

Pakistan has been rated as “not free” by the Freedom House report on internet freedoms for the past 6 years. There are problems with extreme censorship, not only of pornography but also of political content and other material that is (arbitrarily) deemed inappropriate. There have also been incidents of whole areas having mobile internet simply cut off, such as the shutdown of mobile internet in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas in June 2016. In August 2016, the government introduced the Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act which gave even more powers of surveillance and censorship over online activities, with a lack of oversight from non-governmental bodies.

Most concerning, however, is the intimidation and punishment of citizens by the government for opinions that they have expressed online. And it isn’t only those who write opinions online who are at risk: in September 2016 a teenager was arrested just for liking a post on Facebook that was deemed blasphemous. Bloggers and social media personalities have been arrested and jailed for criticising authorities, and there are even accusations of the torture of people for material posted online.

Due to these extremely harsh restrictions on internet use, a VPN is essential for internet users in Pakistan. A VPN can help to keep users safe and protected by obscuring their identities when they go online.

Protect Yourself From Government Snooping With A VPN

One of the biggest concerns for internet users in Pakistan is that the government will see what they have posted and pursue some kind of criminal action against the user. This is why many bloggers or social media users choose to use an anonymous account instead of using an account under their real name. However, the government can track users through their IP address, even if they have an anonymous account.

IP tracking works through following the chain of servers that an individual has used to connect to the internet. Even if your name is not anywhere on your blog, for example, the government will still be able to trace the origin of that blog to your particular location and pursue actions against you. This is because whenever you connect to any internet network, your device is assigned a unique IP address (a string of numbers that refers to your particular device). When you post onto a website, your IP address is recorded, even if you do not have an account or if you use an anonymous account. Then the government can force websites to hand over the IP addresses of particular users that they want to investigate, and then use this information to trace back to you.

In order to keep yourself safe, you need to use a VPN as well as having an anonymous account. A VPN works by funneling all of the data that your device produces through a separate server before it is sent on to any website. The data is encrypted on your computer and is sent to the server in its encrypted form, which means that no one can trace it or see what you are doing online. Then, at the VPN server, your data is decrypted and you are assigned a new IP address. This way, when you post to a website, your real IP address is hidden and your activity can only be traced to your VPN provider. The government cannot know your real IP address or your real identity. This means that you can post on websites without being tracked by the government.

Why get a Pakistani IP address?

Despite geo-blocks and censorship by the government, there are still plenty of reasons to want a Pakistani IP address.

If you’re a Pakistani citizen who travels often or lives abroad, accessing your home accounts, services, and media can be a pain to do – you run into error messages that tell you that you can’t access that website. Or maybe you’re a language enthusiast or student who wants to improve on your Urdu, Punjabi, or Sindhi by surfing the web just like people in Pakistan do. Or maybe, you just want to keep your online identity safe from the Pakistani government or your local ISP and hackers.

Access Pakistani content, media, and accounts

If you travel or live outside of Pakistan, but maintain accounts there or want to access your favorite local media (the news, newspapers, TV shows, etc.), using a VPN with an IP address from Pakistan can you help you do so.

When you spend a lot of time outside of your home country, it can be frustrating not being able to make bank transfers, keep up on your shows, or even stream music. Sometime these websites are blocked for legitimate reasons (like preventing fraud, in the case of your bank accounts), but other times it can just be irritating when you can’t watch your favorite TV show or keep up with local news. Luckily, by using a VPN with a server in Pakistan, you can bypass these and make it look like you’re surfing from within the country.

Stay anonymous, prevent tracking, and avoid prosecution

With the advent of the PECB in 2016, Pakistani law enforcement gained the power to detain internet users. The new law turned certain digital activities into potentially dangerous pursuits. With its vague wording, PECB can get you in trouble even with seemingly innocent online searches – especially those pertaining to things deemed “inappropriate” or disparaging to the government.

And worse, even if you’re not in Pakistan, if you’re a Pakistani citizen, you’re still beholden to this law. The PECB gives Pakistani authorities the right to track you down and prosecute you for any transgressions listed, or misdemeanors implied in the law – no matter where you are in the world. Even if you’ve never been to Pakistan, or are a foreign company or national, you’re still liable to prosecution under the PECB. It’s one of the most pervasive cybercrime laws around the globe for this reason.

So using a VPN can help make your web surfing anonymous if you accidentally (or intentionally) visit a website that Pakistani law enforcement are tracking. Because of the encryption and location-elsewhere features of VPNs, this works even using a Pakistani IP address.

Practice your Urdu

On a lighter note, are you working on your local Urdu? What about your Punjabi or Sindhi? Whether for school, international work, or just pure interest, if you want to immerse yourself, surfing the web in these languages is a good way to do so. And by using an IP address in Pakistan, you can browse just like the citizens there and improve your language skills.

What about free VPNs?

As you’re researching various VPN options on the Internet, you’re likely to run into a number of free offers. We caution you against these, and here’s why. Every VPN provider needs to make money in order to survive as a business, pay for proxy servers, and more. Free VPN providers are no exception.

The difference is that while regular services charge you money upfront, free services find workarounds to make money off you. This includes showing you ads that interrupt your browsing and streaming experiences. It can also involve prompting you to download the full, paid version of an app, also interrupting your online experience. Last but not least, some providers stoop as low as selling your processing power to criminals. There have been numerous cases of free VPNs harnessing users’ computers for botnet attacks, which is both illegal and unpleasant. If you want to make sure you don’t get in trouble with the law, we recommend you think very carefully before using a free VPN.

If you really want to save money on a VPN, why not just sign up for one of the services on this page instead? Clicking the links above will help you get massive discounts, and moreover, all the services come with no-questions-asked money-back guarantees. If you realize you don’t want or need a VPN service you subscribe to after a few days or weeks, you can always opt out without losing any money.

Conclusion

Usually, the Internet in Pakistan is severaly restricted by businesses and the government. A VPN can help you access the free web and watch whatever you like including full Netflix libraries. What are you going to use your VPN connection for? Leave a comment below and let us know!

How to get a FREE VPN for 30 days

If you need a VPN for a short while when traveling for example, you can get our top ranked VPN free of charge. NordVPN includes a 30-day money-back guarantee. You will need to pay for the subscription, that’s a fact, but it allows full access for 30 days and then you cancel for a full refund. Their no-questions-asked cancellation policy lives up to its name.

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