CyberGhost is a Romanian and German privacy company and VPN provider trusted by more than 10 million users for a secure and private web experience. With more than 6,000 servers in roughly 90 countries, CyberGhost VPN has grown significantly in recent years. Add to that a powerful desktop client, Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime unblocking, and torrent-enabled servers, and it’s clear that CyberGhost VPN has a lot to offer.
Keep reading our CyberGhost VPN review below to learn more about this provider, and whether it’s the right VPN for you or your business.
- See all the best torrenting VPNs
- Amazon Fire Stick VPNs: compare the best options
- Want to learn more? Read our "what is a VPN" guide
CyberGhost review: plans and pricing
If you're willing to invest a little at the start, you can get some good rates with CyberGhost VPN. At the time of review, a three-year plan costs $99, or just $2.75/mo. That’s one of the cheapest rates we’ve seen. If you're not ready to make that kind of commitment, though, the annual ($5.99/mo) and biennial ($3.69/mo) payments are still decent. The most expensive option is to pay month by month, which will cost you $12.99/mo.
Fortunately, you should have more than enough time to figure out whether CyberGhost VPN is right for you. While it's true the company only offers a one-day free trial (which isn't very useful in our opinion), all plans come with a 14-day (monthly) or 45-day money-back guarantee. You can evaluate the service fully before deciding whether to commit to one of the longer payment cycles to benefit from the cheaper rates.
You can make your payment by credit card or PayPal and, for an added layer of security, CyberGhost VPN also accepts bitcoin payments, which we always like to see.
CyberGhost VPN review: features
Logging & privacy
You’ll be happy to know that CyberGhost VPN is a zero-logging service. According to the company, they neither log nor know who accessed which website, service, or server, or even your original IP address. Our own tests with DNS Leak Test and IPLeak.net were successful and showed no vulnerabilities with either OpenVPN or IKEv2 protocols, or the kill switch functionality.
A few additional security features are also worth mentioning. First of all, you can whitelist any website so it won’t be passed through the tunnel, just in case you need to use your local connection. Next, you can choose to automatically connect to the VPN if your current network is insecure, or choose to never connect on secure networks (in other words: connect in public, disconnect at home). Finally, you can configure launch on startup with automatic connection to a preferred server of your choice.
Other than security, performance is the next leading factor in most people’s choice of VPN service, and this is where CyberGhost let us down.
We had a decent connection in the UK on a 75Mbps fiber broadband line, between 65 and 70Mbps, but when we switched over to a US server, things went downhill. On a 600Mbps connection, we maxed out at 75Mbps, and spent a fair amount of time down in the 30–45Mbps range. Granted, we tested in March 2020, at the onset of the Covid-19 crisis, which saw a sharp rise in internet traffic. However, CyberGhost still didn’t perform as well as some other VPN services we tested under similar circumstances.
Netflix & Torrents
Media fans will appreciate that CyberGhost VPN works on a whole host of geo-blocked media players, like Netflix, Hulu, YouTube, and Disney+, and supports torrenting, a feature that helps set it apart from many other services. Our own tests with regional media players were mostly successful: no trouble with US Netflix, Hulu, or Amazon Prime, although we did get a 503 error when trying to connect to Disney+.
CyberGhost review: interface and in use
CyberGhost VPN is available for Windows, Android, macOS, iOS/iPadOS, Linux, and many others. Both the desktop app and iOS/iPadOS/Android apps are easy to install and use.
The desktop app has a clean interface with the most important elements front-and-center: a list of locations, connection status, and a Connect button. For greater control, a panel on the right side of the app lets you see current server loads, filter for streaming or torrent-enabled servers, and consult your favorites. The systray icon gives you quick access to a list of available servers with sub-menus for torrenting, streaming, and favorites.
The mobile apps are easy to use, but lack a few fundamental features: there’s no kill switch, which is regrettable, and no choice of protocol. The Android VPN app, thankfully, features port randomization and split tunneling for different apps, and we’ll be happy when these are added to the iOS/iPadOS apps as well.
CyberGhost review: support
If you encounter a problem with your VPN, you can head to the user knowledge base…but we’d almost recommend skipping it and heading straight for live chat support.
Granted, there’s a large number of articles, but we weren’t totally convinced of their utility, and we weren’t alone. From a sample of articles taken at random, only 55% of users actually found them helpful, which is unsurprising given that many of the articles are outdated (3+ years), poorly translated into English, and not particularly informative (one article on UMTS boars was 35 words long).
On the other hand, the live chat, while somewhat difficult to find (click Support bottom-right, enter a keyword, then hit Live Chat) was speedy, knowledgeable, and clear, answering our general and technical questions with no problem.
CyberGhost review: the competition
You have the luxury of choice when it comes to choosing a VPN service, with a number of great options available. It’s all about balancing your needs.
While CyberGhost scores very high in our testing, it still doesn't quite match ExpressVPN, our only 5-star provider! Express just seems to function almost perfectly in every discipline. From security and speed, to its apps and support.
One of the best free VPN options out there is Hotspot Shield. While it may not have as many servers as other providers and you won’t get all the best features, you can still enjoy great security at no cost — just be aware you’ll be sharing servers with many other users and you're limited on daily use.
CyberGhost VPN review: final verdict
CyberGhost is a feature-rich VPN provider with zero-logging, very effective unblocking of Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, and others, and more than a few torrent-enabled servers. While the knowledge base needs a serious overhaul, you’ll have no trouble getting help from the live chat support staff. It’s definitely not the speediest VPN we’ve tested out, but if you’re looking for a secure and private connection, CyberGhost has a number of features that will appeal to you.
- See where CyberGhost lines up in our best VPN list