Surfshark review vs. PrivateVPN review

⏳ Short on time? Here’s the overall winner.

The better choice between Surfshark and PrivateVPN is Surfshark. Here are all the things which we’ve tested:

  • Privacy: Surfshark has better privacy features than PrivateVPN
  • Features: Surfshark has more features than PrivateVPN
  • Speed: Surfshark is faster than PrivateVPN
  • Countries:  Surfshark has more countries available than PrivateVPN
  • Security: Surfshark has worse security than PrivateVPN
  • Price: Surfshark is cheaper than PrivateVPN
  • Compatibility: Same price
  • Support: Surfshark has more options to contact support than PrivateVPN

1. Privacy

I’ll start with a comparison of the most important aspect of any VPN - privacy. During review I will consider whether VPN logs anything (IP address, traffic, DNS logs, bandwidth, or any type of timestamps) and the jurisdiction of VPN’s country of origin.

IP addressNoNo

Surfshark is located in British Virgin Island which is not part of 5 9 14 eyes countries and is not part of enemies of the internet countries while PrivateVPN is located in Sweden which is part of 5 9 14 eyes countries and is not part of enemies of the internet countries.

It’s important to note that If you are like me and you will be using VPN only to unblock GEO-restricted content, privacy will not be that important factor but it’s still essential for any VPN.

2. Features

The next category I want to compare are features of Surfshark and PrivateVPN such as kill-switch, unblocking of streaming, support of P2P traffic (torrenting). I am a heavy user of various streaming platforms so for me it’s important whether VPN unblocks major streaming services such as Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, HBO or BBC. I don’t do much torrenting but it’s always good to use a VPN while doing so. If this is an important factor for you, definitely look for a VPN which supports P2P traffic.

Streaming (Netflix)YesYes
P2P traffic - torrentsYesYes

As you can see from the comparison table above, Surfshark has kill-switch, supports streaming services, and supports torrenting. On the flipside PrivateVPN has kill-switch, supports streaming services, and supports torrenting.

3. Speed

Being hidden behind VPN shouldn’t limit the speed of your connection. I’ve measured the speed of each VPN against a 100mbps connection - which should be sufficient for any activities including heavy streaming in 4K or downloading large files.

In my test Surfshark was more on the average side while PrivateVPN had fast speed. If there were no limits in speed on a 100mbps connection, I consider VPN a “fast” one. If the speed is limited somehow but still achieving decent values, I categorize it as “average”. The “slow” is usually used for VPNs which limit your bandwidth significantly.

4. Security

I will start by comparing the type of encryption Surfshark and PrivateVPN use, what tunnelling protocols are available, and finally we’ll test whether it leaks the IP address or DNS.

Tunneling protocolsOpenVPN and IKEv2OpenVPN (UDP and TCP), L2TP, IPsec, PPTP and IKEv2
IP leaksNoNo
DNS leaksNoNo

The most important factor of a VPN service is a strong encryption of the traffic which is forwarded through the VPN servers. The most common encryption types in cryptography are SHA encryption or AES encryption which are not really comparable against each other. There might be different lengths of encryptions (eg. 128-bit, 256-bit, 2048-bit) and while usually the higher is the better, for most use cases you will be fine with any encryption. Watch-out if there is no encryption at all. Surfshark uses 256-bit and OpenVPN and IKEv2 protocol and PrivateVPN uses 256-bit and es 256-bit and OpenVPN (UDP and TCP), L2TP, IPsec, PPTP and IKEv2 protocols. I’ve tested both VPNs also for IP and DNS leaks and Surfshark had no IP leaks and No DNS leaks while PrivateVPN had No IP leaks and No DNS leaks. 

5. Price

Probably one of the most important decision factor for the majority of users will be price. Shocking? Not really. We all love to compare things and I am not different. It’s always good to get the best value for your hard-earned money, isn’t it? So let’s see whether Surfshark or PrivateVPN is cheaper.

Trial versionYesYes

6. Compatibility

Surfshark supports unlimited connections at the same time while it works fine on all the platforms below. You can use PrivateVPN on 6 devices at the same time with support of all these platforms:


7. Support

Should you have any problems with Surfshark or PrivateVPN you can reach out to their support via:



Surfshark ranked in our list on 2. position while PrivateVPN. is on 12 position. If you are looking for a better choice, see our rankings here.