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Why Does a VPN Slow Down Your Internet Connection?


A VPN can slow down a user’s internet connection, making it difficult to stream media, load webpages, or even access basic services. This slowdown can range from just a few seconds to several minutes, making it important for users to understand why a VPN is slowing their connection.

The most common cause for a VPN-related slowdown is the encryption process. Every time a user connects to the VPN, their data is encrypted, which can add a significant amount of latency to the connection. This extra time can be especially noticeable on slower internet connections, such as those with low bandwidth.

Additionally, many VPNs use servers located far away from the user, which can add further seconds or minutes to the total connection time. While this may not be a problem in some cases, it can lead to significant slowdowns if the user’s device is on the other side of the globe from the VPN server.

The Impact Of VPNs On Internet Speeds 

The impact of VPNs on internet speeds can be both positive and negative, depending on the type of VPN and its implementation. A Virtual Private Network (VPN) is a method of adding a layer of encryption to your internet service, allowing users to gain access to secure networks, websites, and resources. 

VPNs can generally be used for two main purposes: to shield the user’s identity and to access geo-restricted content. While this technology provides an extra layer of security, it can also decrease the user’s internet speeds, depending on the overall setup and configuration.

In order to connect to a VPN provider, users must first establish a connection, often referred to as a “VPN tunnel.” This process requires an additional amount of data to transmit and encrypt, resulting in slower speeds. Furthermore, some VPNs use older, slower network protocols and encryption methods, which can greatly decrease the speed of your connection. Even though VPNs may slow down your connection depending on the server and protocol used, a reputable provider will often have better speeds when connecting to secure networks. 

The Causes of VPN Slowing

The unfortunate side effect of using a VPN is that it can also slow your connection speeds. Here are some of the possible causes of VPN slowing:

  • Bad server connections: If the VPN server you’re connecting to isn’t reliable or running efficiently, it can cause latency or slow speeds. VPN providers usually offer multiple servers to choose from, so if one isn’t performing well, try switching to another.
  • Heavy traffic load: If too many people are connected to a single server at once, the server can become overwhelmed and slow down. This can be an issue for free VPNs in particular since they are generally more prone to overcrowding.
  • Protocol incompatibility: Different types of VPN connection protocols like OpenVPN, PPTP, and L2TP can affect speeds. Older protocols like PPTP tend to be faster, but less secure, while OpenVPN is slower but much more secure.
  • ISP Throttling: Some internet service providers (ISPs) are known to reduce speeds for customers using VPNs. A trusted VPN service should have encryption that can prevent your ISP from being able to identify whether or not you’re connected to a VPN.
  • Location: Connecting to a VPN server in a distant location can also add to latency and slow speeds. Most VPNs allow you to connect to multiple server locations, so try connecting to a server in a nearby city to improve performance.
  • Outdated hardware: If your computer’s hardware is more than a few years old, the processor and other components may not be able to adequately handle the demands of a secure VPN connection. Consider upgrading your hardware if you’re having VPN speed issues.
  • Network congestion: If you’re on a heavily used or public Wi-Fi network, it can lead to slow speeds and lag when using a VPN. Try using an Ethernet connection, which is usually the most reliable for secure VPN connections.

There are a number of factors that can contribute to VPN slowing, so it’s important to do your research before selecting a service provider. Some VPN companies offer better performance than others and it’s worth experimenting to see which

Solutions To Slow VPN Connections 

Slow VPN connections can be a major issue for many users. Thankfully, there are a few solutions that can help speed up your VPN connection.

  • Upgrade your internet connection: If you are experiencing slow VPN connections, the first step is to upgrade your internet connection. A faster connection will help improve your VPN speeds.
  • Change your VPN protocol: Changing your VPN protocol to one that is better optimized for speed can help improve your connection. Some protocols to consider include OpenVPN, IKEv2, and WireGuard.
  • Use a nearby server: If your VPN provider offers servers in multiple locations, try connecting to a server that is closer to your physical location. This can reduce latency and improve speeds.
  • Update Your APN Settings: You should also update your APN settings if you are facing slow net speed. You can get them all from your carrier’s official site or from Google as well. Just search for APN for straight talk, qlink, dodo, and any other you want and copy them.
  • Limit the number of connections: If you have multiple devices connected to the VPN, try limiting the number of active connections. This can help reduce strain on the server and improve speeds.
  • Use a powerful router: If you are using a router to connect to the VPN, make sure it is powerful enough to handle multiple connections and encrypt data. A weak router can slow down your connection. 

List Of High-Speed VPN 

High-speed VPNs can reach speeds of up to 1 Gbps and more, making them ideal for streaming videos, gaming, and other applications that require a lot of data to be transferred quickly. Additionally, they can reduce latency and lag, making them a great option for businesses that need to transfer large amounts of information quickly and securely. Below we shared the top 3 VPNs.

  • ExpressVPN: ExpressVPN is one of the fastest VPNs available, offering speeds of up to 87 Mbps and unlimited bandwidth. It also has an impressive global network of more than 3,000 servers in 94 countries, as well as strong encryption and security protocols.
  • NordVPN: NordVPN is renowned for its impressive speed and its ability to bypass even the most restrictive geo-blocks. It offers up to 77 Mbps and has an expansive server network of more than 5,400 servers in 59 countries.
  • Surfshark: Surfshark is a solid choice for speed and security. It offers up to 71 Mbps of speed and has more than 3,200 servers in 65 countries. It also has robust security features, including military-grade encryption.


A VPN can slow down your internet connection due to its added encryption and security measures. The encryption process takes extra time and resources, resulting in decreased internet speed. Additionally, a VPN can be routed through a server that is geographically far away from you, which can further decrease your internet speed. It is important to consider the added security benefits of a VPN before deciding whether or not to use one.

Check out: Does NordVPN Work With Netflix?

Read more at: Technology Week Blog