In Belgium, the Internet is considered to be free from state interference and total censorship. However, the government won’t hesitate to shut down websites that violate the law. This mainly concerns gambling and torrent sites. Also, regional restrictions won’t let you enjoy certain content to the full. In addition, Belgium is on the way to introduce surveillance programs with a purpose to monitor residents’ and visitors’ activities on the web. The only way to avoid spying and restrictions is through connecting your devices to one of the best VPN for Belgium.
Top 3 Best VPNs for Belgium
Without long forewords, I present a list of the best VPN providers in Belgium. They are equally effective whether you are going to use them for work or entertainment. Each of these services is known for excellent connection speeds, reliable security functions, and multiple servers across the globe.
Here is a brief breakdown of each VPN server on the list.
If a fast connection speed is the main criterion when choosing a VPN provider, then ExpressVPN for Belgium is your number 1 pick. This service guarantees high and consistent speeds throughout the network even if you connect to geographically remote servers. More than 2,000 servers in 94 countries are at your disposal so that almost any territorially restricted content will become available.
The service will also take care of your safety. For starters, you can be sure that ExpressVPN does not retain user logs of any kind. Secondly, it provides a variety of encryption programs including the most reliable OpenVPN protocol. Thirdly, Kill Switch will prevent any data leakage if a selected VPN server is down. And finally, ExpressVPN is under the British Virgin Islands jurisdiction which means that Belgium authorities have no right to demand any information on the service’s clients.
If you are looking for a VPN service focused on security, then NordVPN is one of the best options. The provider supplies multiple online security solutions to protect your digital privacy. This includes one of the widest selection of encryption protocols and special servers with security-enhanced functions. If you are paranoiac about your privacy you may want to try DoubleVPN or Onion Over VPN servers designed to ensure complete anonymity. Totally, NordVPN offers more than 5,100 servers and this is one of the biggest networks in the industry.
The provider is registered under the jurisdiction of Panama that doesn’t obligate VPN services to turn over information about their clients. And if anybody makes such a request the service will have nothing to provide because it exercises a no logs policy.
Despite the abundance of protective functions, NordVPN cannot be called slow. Naturally, when choosing heavily encrypted protocols or DoubleVPN servers connection speed will inevitably drop, but you can still surf the net quite comfortably. In addition, NordVPN has high-speed servers designed specifically for streaming videos and games.
PureVPN is another reliable option for protecting your online activity when using the Internet in Belgium. The service offers 2000+ servers spread out in 140 countries. This geographical diversity is truly impressive especially considering the fact that the company actually owns all of its servers and does not rent them from intermediaries. This allows achieving excellent connection speeds and provides an additional level of security because your data will never fall into the wrong hands. Needless to say that the company keeps no connection or activity logs so there is really no data on your online travels.
PureVPN provides access to numerous top-of-the-line encryption suits so you do not have to worry about your privacy. Thanks to the Kill Switch, there won’t be any leaks if the connection with VPN servers drops.
Censorship and Surveillance in Belgium
Currently, the freedom of speech in Belgium is at a good level. Thus, the Constitution protects traditional media from censorship. At the same time, the Constitution does not clearly define freedoms of digital media. According to the Code of Criminal Procedure, content can be blocked if it provokes a violation of public order or is contrary to morality. For example, the spread of child pornography is not acceptable in Belgium.
The government also tightly regulates the activities of gambling sites, banning those that do not have a license of game committee. Thus, over the past 5 years, the country has blocked more than 100 sites of this type.
The country also actively fights piracy. The notorious torrent site Pirate Bay is not available to users of Belgium. Many other torrent platforms among which are BitSnoop, at.ph, TorrenReactor, H33T, Isohunt, and ExtraTorrent are outlawed. The Belgian Anti-Piracy Federation can contact Internet service providers and websites with the requirements of blocking or removing content without a prior court’s decision.
In the light of the recent terrorist attacks that swept the European Union and Belgium in particular, the country is going to introduce laws on online surveillance. According to the surveillance programs, the government is allowed to collect and analyze confidential information that you send or receive via the Internet. The monitoring is entrusted to Internet service providers since they have access to all connection logs. Moreover, the government has the right to provide information received to intelligence agencies of other countries, such as NSA.
Why You Should Use a VPN in Belgium
Although the Internet in Belgium is considered to be free from restrictions, many residents and especially tourists want to secure their online activity by connecting to VPNs. However, a VPN is not only designed to provide protection on the network. A secure connection and the ability to change the virtual location promise a lot of benefits when using the Internet in Belgium.
Hide Your Online Communication from Big Brother
With surveillance practices taking place across the entire EU, you would definitely want to hide your digital footprint from the law enforcement agencies. When your every word and action on the web is recorded by your ISP, all information can be used against you. Thus, the commission of certain actions is punishable and you may face fines or even imprisonment. Fortunately, a VPN can protect you from Big Brother. When all the information passing through VPN servers is encrypted, neither your Internet provider nor NSA can get their hands on your data.
Get Access to Geo-Blocked Content
Many video streaming services such as Netflix, HBO, BBC iPlayer, beIN Sports, Spotify, and so on, operate in Belgium. Unfortunately, a huge disadvantage of such platforms is geo-blocking. The fact is that a film or show must have a license to be broadcast in a particular country. If such a license was not obtained for Belgium, then the content will not be available for viewing.
However, the situation can be changed with the help of a VPN as you get access to a multitude of servers located around the globe. If you know in which country content you want to watch is available, you just need to connect to one of the VPN servers in this country and voila, you can watch the content on your device.
Avoid Cyber Attacks
Unfortunately, even in such a technologically developed country as Belgium, no one is immune from intruders. By hacking your home networks or by installing malware on your devices, cybercriminals can take over your sensitive information. Knowing your e-mail address, a bank card details or bank account information, they can steal your savings. Even if they do not thieve your financial data, vulnerable networks can harm you in a different way. For example, if someone uses your Wi-Fi connection to download copyrighted content, you will be expecting a huge fee, even if you personally didn’t do anything illegal.
Especially vulnerable are the public Wi-Fi networks. Coming to a restaurant or cafe and connecting to a free Wi-Fi, you can become a victim of thieves. To prevent this from happening, protect your information with the help of a VPN. Security protocols encrypt all data transmitted from your device, reliably protecting you from ill-wishers.
Why You Can’t Trust Free VPNs for Belgium
When it comes to using a VPN in Belgium, free services are also an option. Of course, you may try them out, but with a high probability they will not meet your expectations, and this is why.
Belgium has one of the fastest Internet in the world and when taking good speeds for granted, you will most likely be disappointed by the slow data transfer via a free VPN. This is due to the fact that free VPNs have a limited number of servers. Also, they are often congested because of a large number of simultaneous connections. Moreover, you shouldn’t hope for a geographical variety of servers. Finally, add a limited bandwidth and advertising that infests your browser and you will hardly get a positive impression of using such services.
What is even worse is that these VPNs have outdated encryption protocols that don’t allow you to hide from intruders and the all-seeing eye of intelligence services. Some services even record data about users and sell it to interested parties.
If you don’t want to put up with such inconveniences and compromise your privacy, free VPNs shouldn’t be an option to resort. The only reliable way to protect yourself on the network is through signing up for a trustworthy VPN service for Belgium. They are able to offer a rich choice of encryption protocols, a multitude of servers around the world and they never keep your logs. In addition, some of these services have really attractive offers with prices less than $3 USD per month, for longer subscriptions though. It is really a great bang for your buck. So don’t let yourself settle for anything less than one of the best VPNs for Belgium.