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In short, yes. VPNs are legal to use in Russia. However, Russia falls into the group of countries where VPNs are government-controlled, and there are several laws and regulations that construe the use of VPNs in the country. The Russian government introduced a new law in 2017 which allows them to decide which websites to block and take measures against disobedient VPN providers.
VPNs provide access to restricted websites, so this new legislation required VPNs to place a hard block on websites blacklisted by Roskomnadzor, Russia’s censorship agency. If a VPN provider failed to comply with the Roskomnadzor’s requirements, that VPN’s services are locked in Russia.
Geo-blocks work so that the IP addresses from certain areas or countries are blocked. If you don’t have a Russian IP address, it would be impossible for you to access Russian-based websites unless you use a VPN.
Using a VPN allows you to change your IP address easily to a Russian IP address. Here’s how a good VPN can get you a Russian IP address:
Once you follow this process, you can now enjoy your Russian IP address and have access to Russian-based websites.
Not all VPNs can provide you with a Russian IP address due to all of the censorship and privacy violation concerns in Russia.
Yes, it’s legal to use a Russian VPN for geo-blocking. Russia’s VPN law doesn’t include an all-out VPN ban; VPN providers are only required to block certain websites which are not sanctioned by the Russian government. Those VPN providers who comply will be able to function properly. However, those who don’t will face penalties and will see their services restricted in Russia.
There is a general rule in the world of VPNs: you get what you pay for. While going with free Russian VPNs can be tempting, doing so can have major consequences. Free vs. paid Russian VPNs is a debate that can be settled in only one way—go with paid Russian VPNs all the time:
Using a free VPN in Russia comes with huge risks, with security being the top concern. Given that security is actually the top need for those who need VPNs, it makes no sense to use a free Russian VPN.
A Russian VPN can help you circumvent geo-blocking restrictions in two instances:
Large websites (like YouTube, Netflix, Hulu, and BBC iPlayer) are using geo-blocking to make sure that their content is not viewable in some countries. If you want to bypass this geo-restriction, a VPN can mask your real IP address, and give you a virtual IP address from a country of your choosing. You just need to make sure you pick a good Russian VPN provider, like the ones that we have reviewed above.
Russian VPNs are government-controlled—they have to comply with regulations set by the government if they wish to have their servers on Russian soil. Other than that huge issue, which is avoided by simply not having Russian servers, Russian VPNs work perfectly normal. A Russian VPN can help you bypass content restrictions in the following way:
Your data will be encrypted, and the recipient of your online data will think that your real location is the one that you choose from the VPN.
There are a lot of good VPN providers out there, but not all of them comply with Russian VPN laws… which is a good thing, considering how oppressive these laws are. We personally tested many VPNs, and we found the ones we listed above are the most reliable Russian VPNs for geo-blocking. Read our reviews above, and choose the right VPN for your needs.
Choosing a quality VPN provider is not only a matter of personal preference, but also a matter of reliability. You need to choose a VPN that has good customer support, offers quality services, has the latest features, and has promising protection policies. Other than that, here are some of the common features that a good geo-blocking VPN provider should offer:
A good VPN for geo-blocking should have a lot of servers in a lot of countries. It should offer a stable and speedy Internet connection, and have quality customer support. Most of all, it should protect your privacy and security. With Russian laws the way they are, this is tricky and must be navigated with some knowledge. That’s why our reviews are so important as we’ve taken the time to look at all of this.
VPNs operating in Russia are required to comply with Russia’s government censorship agency and block access to banned websites. Those VPNs that comply with these demands will be able to continue offering their services in Russia and place VPN servers within the country’s borders. However, those who don’t obey these requirements will see their services being restricted in Russia. Many have wisely pulled out of Russia as their servers faced censorship and even seizure by the government.
Our ratings for best russian vpn providers are based on our professional experience and extensive tests with VPN providers between April 2014 – July 2014, taking into account user feedback and reviews we receive. As a friendly disclosure, some VPN providers do compensate us for customers we refer them, but this in no way effects their ranking on our website, nor our reviews.
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