While the most recent (2020) Freedom House Freedom on the Net report on Malaysia rates the country’s internet freedom as “partly free,” that means Malaysian users still have plenty of issues involved with accessing all of the content available on the internet.
While the Malaysian government recently unblocked local and international websites that were critical of the previous regime, criminal prosecutions for social media posts and other types of online expression continues.
And while Netflix and other video streaming services are available in the country, the available content varies significantly from that found in other countries, due to content contracts and local laws.
Malaysian internet users need not worry about online blockades or the lack of varied content in their country thanks to the existence of a tool called a Virtual Private Network (VPN).
A VPN encrypts your internet connection, preventing the government or other nosy folks like Internet Service Providers from monitoring and blocking your online travels.
A VPN can also make it appear as if you and your connected device are located in another country, providing you Internet access to content that is normally blocked to users in your area of the world.
In this article, we’ll be taking a look at 5 VPN service providers that offer the best protection and enhancement for your Malaysian internet activities.
How to Use a VPN in Malaysia
It’s easy to use a VPN inside Malaysia. Just do the following:
- Subscribe to a VPN provider. (NordVPN is my top choice.)
- Install the provider of choice’s app(s) on your device(s).
- Sign into the VPN service.
- Select a VPN inside of Malaysia to protect your internet activities while inside the country or to access Malaysian content from outside of the country. If you’re looking to access content in another country, select a server in the country of your choice.
- Enjoy your newfound internet freedom!
Best VPN Service Providers for Use in Malaysia
The following 5 VPN service providers offer the best protection and enhancement for your online activities while residing in or visiting Malaysia. The condensed version is:
- NordVPN: NordVPN ranks as #1 thanks to its top-notch connection speeds, solid security and privacy protections, excellent app support and more. The provider offers its premium service for a reasonable price.
- Surfshark: Surfshark charges a pittance for its fast connection speeds, a wide global server network and unlimited simultaneous connections policy, making it best for budget-minded users.
- ExpressVPN: ExpressVPN offers fast, well-encrypted connections on its extensive global server network. You’ll want to check out this provider if you especially want access to geo-blocked content around the world.
- CyberGhost: If you’re new to VPNs or don’t have much experience online, I strongly suggest you opt for CyberGhost for your VPN service. The provider’s easy-to-use app provides quick access to server locations around the globe, including streaming- and downloading-optimized servers.
- PrivateVPN: While this provider’s global server network is lacking when compared to others on this list, it does a good job of working with what it has. The provider offers fast connections that deliver reliable access to geo-blocked content.
When ranking the providers on this list, I considered the following factors:
- Global server locations with servers in Malaysia
- Security and user privacy protection offered
- Speed of provided connections
- Native app support
- Customer support features offered
Here is my list of the 5 best VPN service providers for Malaysian residents and visitors.
NordVPN is a top-tier provider, offering solid security and privacy protections and fast connections in Malaysia. The provider’s app support and global server coverage are also noteworthy.
With 5,200+ servers in 59 countries around the world (including Malaysia), the network provides reliable access to geo-blocked content
There are no worries when it comes to online security, thanks to the provider’s military-level encryption, kill switch, and DNS and IPv6 leak protection. Ad and malware blocking come along as part of the protection package.
No server logs and a cryptocurrency payment option keep your privacy well protected.
NordVPN’s connection speeds are some of the fastest I’ve ever measured. So, depending on your usual connection speeds, the provider can handle HD video streams, online gaming and sharing files with ease. No data caps to worry about here.
App support from the provider includes native apps for the following platforms: Amazon Fire, Android, Android TV, iOS, Linux, macOS and Windows. Chrome and Firefox browser extensions are also available. Router protection is present and accounted for. Up to 6 devices can connect concurrently on the same login.
Customer support is always available thanks to around-the-clock live support chat, email support and a support knowledgebase.
- Servers in 59 countries, including Malaysia
- Lightning-fast connection speeds
- Supports all popular device platforms
- Budget-minded multi-year subscription pricing
- Excellent privacy and security protections
- Apps aren’t as user-friendly as they could be
BEST VPN FOR MALAYSIA:NordVPN offers the best VPN service for Malaysia because of its speedy connections, excellent app support and strong security and privacy protections. It doesn’t charge too much for its premium service. A 30-day money-back guarantee is available.
Read my full review of NordVPN.
Surfshark may be a recent addition to the VPN ranks, but it has proven to be a reliable VPN provider. Perhaps the best thing about Surfshark is the fact that it offers its service at a budget-friendly price.
The provider appears to be working to expand its global server coverage. The server count of more than 3,200 servers in 65+ countries is double what it was a year ago.
All Surfshark connections are protected by military-level encryption, a kill switch, and DNS leak prevention. The provider’s apps can also block tracking cookies and ads. Plus, a “Multi-Hop” server option routes a user’s connection through two VPN servers, delivering added encryption and anonymity.
A no-server-logs policy and a Bitcoin subscription payment option preserve your internet-related privacy.
Surfshark offers the fastest connection speeds of any VPN provider on this list of 5, ensuring that you’ll have an excellent experience while streaming, gaming or file sharing.
App support is well-handled by the provider thanks to app options for the Android, Android TV, iOS, Linux, macOS, Windows and Amazon Fire device platforms. Chrome and Firefox browser extensions are also available, as is router protection. The provider offers a somewhat unusual unlimited simultaneous connections allowance.
24/7 live agent chat, a contact form and a searchable knowledge base make up Surfshark’s around-the-clock support.
- “Multi-Hop” VPN option doubles anonymity
- Unlimited simultaneous connection allowance
- Fastest connection speeds
- Great security and privacy protections
- Not many advanced options
BEST FOR BUDGET:Surfshark offers its service for a low price, making it attractive to users on a budget. The provider allows unlimited simultaneous connections, and its “Mutli-Hop” ability is an excellent part of an already excellent suite of security measures. A 30-day money-back guarantee is available.
Read my full review of Surfshark.
ExpressVPN ranks 3rd on my list thanks to its extensive global server network, which delivers fast access to content around the globe.
The provider has an extensive global server network, with 3,000+ servers spread among 94 countries, including Malaysia.
Your online travels are kept undercover thanks to the provider’s banking-grade encrypted protection. Kill switch and IPv6/DNS leak protection features add to the protection. A split-tunneling advanced feature allows users to select which apps will use the provider’s encrypted tunnel of protection. The provider’s Lightway protocol is designed for improved speed, security and reliability.
A strict no-server-logs policy, as well as a Bitcoin subscription payment option, keep your privacy well protected. And, the provider’s “TrustedServer” technology wipes a server’s data each time it is rebooted, as all ExpressVPN servers run in RAM only, never writing data to a physical hard drive.
ExpressVPN delivers more than enough bandwidth for 4K and HD streaming, online gaming and file sharing. (Of course, your results may vary, depending on your usual connection speeds.) No data caps limit your online enjoyment.
No matter which connected device you prefer to use, you’ll likely find that ExpressVPN offers app support for your device. The provider offers apps for the Amazon Fire, Android, Android TV, iOS, macOS, Linux and Windows device platforms.
All of your browser sessions are well-protected, thanks to the providers Chrome and Firefox extensions. Meanwhile, extensive router compatibility keeps all of your connected devices protected. Up to 5 devices can connect simultaneously on a single set of login credentials.
Around-the-clock customer support offers 24/7 live support chat, a trouble ticket tracking system, email support and a searchable support library.
- Servers around the globe
- Swift connection speeds
- Reliable access to most content
- Excellent privacy and security
- Priced higher than some other VPN services
- Only 5 simultaneous connections
ACCESS TO WORLDWIDE CONTENT:Malaysian residents and visitors looking for reliable access to international content will appreciate ExpressVPN’s fast connection speeds, wide global server network and excellent content-unblocking abilities. A 30-day money-back guarantee is available.
Read my full review of ExpressVPN.
If you’re an online user rather new to the scene, or a user with little to no VPN experience, have I got the VPN provider for you – CyberGhost!
CyberGhost has an above-average global server network consisting of over 7,200 servers stationed in Malaysia and 90 other countries. Many of the provider’s servers are optimized for video streaming and sharing files.
All CyberGhost-provided connections are shielded using bank-grade encryption, DNS and IPv6 leak prevention, and a kill switch. Plus, ad and tracker blocking are available, as well as the ability to force websites to serve up secure versions of their pages.
The provider recently added a number of new features, including antivirus protection, a password manager, and an app that scans for outdated and/or vulnerable apps. The provider’s “ID Guard” feature alerts you if your email address was exposed in a data breach.
No privacy worries either, thanks to a strict no-server-logs policy and an acceptance of Bitcoin as payment for services rendered.
CyberGhost’s download speeds are very fast, delivering more than enough power for 4K and HD video, online gaming action and large file sharing. No data cap restrictions to be found here.
App support is another strong point with CyberGhost, with offerings for the Amazon Fire, Android, Android TV, iOS, macOS, Linux and Windows device platforms.
The provider’s easy-to-use apps are the main reason I recommend this VPN to newbie online or VPN users. The apps offer one-click access to reliable VPN protection, without the need to deal with a load of complicated settings.
The provider’s router feature can protect all of your other connected devices, and Chrome and Firefox extensions protect your browser activity. Up to 7 devices can connect simultaneously on a single set of login credentials.
24/7 support includes always-available support chat, email support, a trouble ticket tracking system and a searchable support library.
- Servers in Malaysia and 86 other countries
- Easy-to-use apps for all popular platforms
- Servers optimized for streaming and file sharing
- Advanced users may want more options
- Doesn’t work in China
BEST VPN FOR NEW VPN USERS:Newbie online users will appreciate CyberGhost’s easy-to-use, yet powerful app lineup. The provider offers fast connections to streaming- and file sharing-optimized servers around the globe. A 45-day, no-risk money-back guarantee is available.
Read my full review of CyberGhost.
While PrivateVPN performs quite well in many VPN service categories, it lacks a bit in a few others.
Global server coverage is a category where the provider comes up short. It has only a little over 200 servers, but they are strategically located in Malaysia and 62 other countries.
Online protection is one of the categories where PrivateVPN excels, as it uses military-grade encryption, a kill switch and IPv6/DNS leak protection to protect its users’ connections. Plus, a “Stealth VPN” option hides your VPN activity, making it appear to be regular browser activity.
The privacy end of things is well taken care of thanks to a Bitcoin payment option and a no-server-logs policy.
Fast connections can handle all of your favorite online activities, including gaming, streaming sites and more. The provider imposes no data caps of any kind.
App support is a bit limited, with offerings only for the Android, iOS, macOS and Windows device platforms. That said, most folks will be fine with those options.
Manual Linux setup instructions are available, and the provider’s router features will protect your other devices. Up to 6 devices can connect at once on the same username.
While around-the-clock support chat is supposedly available, the chat balloon isn’t always green, indicating that someone is running the chat box. You also have the option of email support and an FAQ help section.
- Fast connections
- Stealth VPN feature hides your VPN usage
- Up to 6 simultaneous connections
- Thin global server coverage
- App support could be better
HIDES YOUR VPN ACTIVITY:PrivateVPN may be a mixture of the good and bad, but overall the provider offers above-average VPN service. The provider’s well-protected, “stealthy” connections can handle any of your favorite online activities. A 30-day money-back guarantee is available.
Read my full review of PrivateVPN.
Methodology for Assessing VPNs for Malaysia
Especially considering that Malaysia’s internet is only “partially free,” you need a VPN service provider that will offer optimal online security and privacy protections, in addition to reliable and speedy performance. Never select a VPN provider without first considering its features and service offerings.
These are the categories that I carefully consider whenever I assess VPNs for a particular purpose, in this case, for protecting and enhancing your internet connection while in Malaysia:
- Connection Speed: Connection speeds are always an important factor to consider. Thankfully, if you choose one of the VPNs on my list, you’ll have no problem with connection speeds, as they all performed extremely well in my most recent round of connection speed testing.
- Server Network: If you want to connect to a server in Malaysia, make sure you choose a VPN that offers servers there. In addition, take a look at how large the global server coverage is, as well as how many servers are located in your preferred region. The larger the number of servers, the better the performance, as no individual server will be overloaded with users.
- Value: You can figure out a VPN provider’s value by taking a look at the features and functionality it offers, and considering whether the price is commensurate. All of the VPNs on my list offer an excellent value, given what they offer.
- Ease of Use: Not only is it important for a VPN to offer apps for your favorite devices, but also for the apps to be easy to use. Each VPN on my list offers apps for important device platforms, and those apps are easy to use.
- Security and Privacy: A VPN’s primary purpose is to protect your digital security, so make sure that the VPN offers, at least, banking-level encryption, an automatic kill switch and DNS/IP leak protection. Having a no-logs policy in place will also protect your online privacy, and all of the VPNs on my list never save any logs of your online activities.
- Streaming: Since video streaming is such a popular activity for VPN users, it made sense to assess the VPNs I recommend for their ability to unblock and stream video streaming services. Each VPN I include on my list offers reliable access to popular streaming sites, including Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu and others.
Check out more information about my VPN testing methodology.
Why Not Use a Free VPN?
While you can probably find free VPNs that would work from inside of Malaysia, I’m willing to bet that you won’t be super happy with it. Freebie VPNs lack privacy, convenience and performance.
As for user privacy, there is very little of it when using a “free” VPN. While you may get the VPN service for free, rest assured the VPN provider still needs to pay its bills. Many providers do this by monitoring their users’ online travels and selling that info to advertisers and other Nosy Nellies.
Others will insert tracking cookies and ads into their users’ browsing sessions. So much for the “private” part of “Virtual Private Network.”
Convenience is also missing from the free VPN equation, as when you attempt to connect to a free VPN’s servers, you may be forced to cool your virtual heels waiting in a queue until you’re finally allowed to connect to a server.
Once you’re good to go, you’ll then likely find that your options are limited to a few select servers, or that you’re automatically connected to a server of the provider’s choice.
Now for performance, or the lack thereof. You’ll find that many free VPN providers will throttle their users’ connection speeds to preserve bandwidth for their paying customers’ usage. Plus, most sans-payment VPNs will place daily or monthly data caps on free VPN usage.
What Advantages Does a VPN Provide?
A Virtual Private Network is arguably the best way to protect and enhance all of your online activities.
A VPN protects your online travels by encrypting your internet connection, placing it in a protective tunnel of sorts. The encrypted tunnel prevents any third party from monitoring and tracking your online travels. This means your Internet Service Provider (ISP), the government and hackers cannot see anything you do while using a VPN service provider.
The encryption particularly comes in handy when you’re using an unprotected public Wi-Fi hotspot like are found in hotels, airports and other public locations. Since most public hotspots are unencrypted, they make their users an attractive target for hackers who would love to glean your personal information as you bank, shop and pay bills online.
That same encryption prevents your ISP from throttling your internet connection if they discover you are sharing files or are viewing video from “unapproved” streaming services.
Last but not least, a VPN opens access to a world of online content that might normally be unavailable to users in your region. With geolocation spoofing a VPN can temporarily assign a new individual IP address to your connected device.
Since IP addresses are used to detect a device’s geographical location, a new IP address makes it appear to the rest of the internet that you’re in another part of the world. This fools popular streaming providers, gaming servers, and other geo-restricted content providers and websites into serving up all of their geo-blocked streaming content.
Residents and visitors to Malaysia will find that a Virtual Private Network can both protect and enhance all of your internet activities while inside Malaysian borders.
My #1 choice for optimal VPN protection is NordVPN.
NordVPN offers top-notch service in every important VPN service provider category.
Their wide-ranging global server network delivers well-encrypted connections that deliver blazing speeds, while providing access to geo-blocked content around the globe. Apps for all popular device platforms and 24/7 customer support add up to the best available protection for your online travels.
For more information or to purchase a subscription, visit the NordVPN website.
Malaysia VPN Q&A
Is VPN Illegal in Malaysia?
Using a VPN in Malaysia is completely legal. You are certainly allowed to use a VPN to protect and enhance your internet activities while inside Malaysian borders. However, keep in mind that using a VPN for committing illegal purposes is prohibited and you can be charged with a crime.
Can a VPN Be Hacked?
Although a VPN could be hacked in theory, they are totally safe in the majority of all use cases. VPN service from a reliable service provider will protect you from hackers who may attempt to target you and your valuable personal and business information.
Can I Watch TV1 Malaysia Online With a VPN?
Watching TV1 Malaysia online is as simple as running your VPN provider’s app, connecting to a server inside of Malaysia and visiting the TV1 streaming website. A VPN’s ability to temporarily assign a Malaysian IP address to your connected device opens access to TV1 and other Malaysian video streaming services.
How Can I Stream Astro Go?
Streaming Astro Go from outside of Malaysia is a simple matter. Load your VPN provider’s app on your favorite viewing device and log into a VPN server located in Malaysia. Then, load the Astro Go app or visit the Astro Go website, and log in there. Enjoy the show!
- How to Use a VPN in Malaysia
- Best VPN Service Providers for Use in Malaysia
- 1. NordVPN
- 2. Surfshark
- 3. ExpressVPN
- 4. CyberGhost
- 5. PrivateVPN
- Methodology for Assessing VPNs for Malaysia
- Why Not Use a Free VPN?
- What Advantages Does a VPN Provide?
- Malaysia VPN Q&A
- Is VPN Illegal in Malaysia?
- Can a VPN Be Hacked?
- Can I Watch TV1 Malaysia Online With a VPN?
- How Can I Stream Astro Go?