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Next-generation encryption with NordVPN

Protect your personal data by encrypting it.

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NordVPN encryption

What is VPN encryption and why should I encrypt my online data?

VPN encryption scrambles your online data so that third parties can’t view nor misuse it. You need an encrypted VPN service to close that window.

Internet service providers

They may track your internet traffic and sell your data to advertisers.

Hackers

They exploit unsecure connections to get inside your phones and computers.

Governments

They can demand logs of your online activity.

Here's how your data can be exposed

Your data can be at risk even if you're smart with it.

Data exposing without encryption


Your data is vulnerable by default


Once you’re connected to the web, every piece of your traffic goes through your internet service provider (ISP). That’s just how the internet works. To reach a website you have to send a request to the ISP, which directs you towards your destination. As a result, all that you do online is an open book for the ISP.


No technological barrier prevents the ISP from tracking and logging your online behavior, selling the data to advertisers, or handing it over to the authorities. Ethical ISPs that protect the privacy of their clients are few and far between. And even if your ISP is trustworthy, the government can compel it to give up your browsing history.


Unless you use a VPN


Virtual Private Network (VPN) routes your internet traffic through a VPN tunnel – an encrypted connection between your device and the destination on the web. Not only does a VPN tunnel encrypt your data, but it also and hides your IP address and location. Like an armored van, it takes you from point A to point B in total secret, shielding you from any dangers that lurk outside. Read our What is a VPN primer to learn why you absolutely need a VPN stay safe online.

How does NordVPN encryption work?

The nitty-gritty of online security.

NordVPN encryption workflow diagram

Your device (computer, smartphone, tablet, etc.) initiates a connection to a VPN server. Once the device is authenticated, NordVPN creates an encrypted tunnel.


Any data sent over the internet needs to be split into packets. So your private data is split, encapsulated and passed through the encrypted VPN tunnel. When the data arrives at the VPN server, the outer packet is removed to access the data within through decryption.


Your encrypted data looks like gibberish to any third-party observer:


Neither ISPs nor hackers can read it, even if they manage to intercept it.


No government can get logs of your browsing history since there are none.


You have something to hide, even if
you think that you don’t

You're not a criminal for wanting privacy.

ISP tracks user online through IP

You may trust your government or the ISP, but it would be foolish to trust every single person on this earth. Cybercriminals exploit all kinds of vulnerabilities to get to your data. If you do nothing to protect it, you might as well hand it over to them directly.

To put it simply, if you use the internet, you need next-generation VPN encryption.

You get top-tier encryption with NordVPN

Trusted by the world's leading tech and security experts.

Best Overall ProPrivacy Awards 2019

NordVPN has built its reputation through years of hard and diligent work, striving to make your online experience as private and secure as possible.

Security and tech experts like CNET, PCMag, and BestVPN have praised NordVPN for providing next-generation encryption that is virtually uncrackable.

Unfortunately, without VPN encryption, your traffic is simply not safe. Third parties can easily access it through various lawful and unlawful ways. Your data is public by default. You have to take measures to make it private. And with NordVPN, you can.

Advanced Encryption Standard (AES)

A billion years' worth of online security.

AES VPN encryption for maximum security

What is AES?

AES is an encryption standard used and approved worldwide by governments, cybersecurity experts, and cryptography enthusiasts. NordVPN uses AES with 256-bit keys, which is recommended by the NSA for securing classified information, including the TOP SECRET level.

VPN servers which operates with AES encryption

How secure is AES?

No known practical attack can break this encryption. If you used a brute-force attack – which means checking all possible key combinations – you would need more resources than humanity currently has at its disposal. Right now, there is not enough time in this Universe to crack AES 256-bit encryption.

The number 256 refers to the encryption key size, so 256-bit has 2^256 possible combinations. While theoretically no encryption cipher is truly impregnable, AES with 256-bit keys is absolute overkill when it comes to security. To break it, you would need to build supercomputers – which cannot yet be built – that would work on decryption for billions of years.

NordVPN utilizes three different VPN protocols

NordVPN creates a tunnel to transmit your data to VPN servers securely. NordVPN uses three different security protocols to determine how that tunnel is actually formed.

NordVPN through IKEv2/IPsec protocol

IKEv2/IPsec

Internet protocol security (IPsec) operates with the newest version of the Internet Key Exchange (IKEv2) to enhance security, stability, and speed. IKEv2/IPsec employs powerful cryptographic algorithms and keys, which are unbreakable by supercomputers.

With computing power continuously increasing, and cryptography breakthroughs always around the corner, it’s important to stay one step ahead. That’s why NordVPN uses the very adaptable Next Generation Encryption (NGE) with IKEv2/IPsec. No matter how fast the world changes, you will get state of the art encryption.

NordVPN through OpenVPN protocol

OpenVPN

OpenVPN is an extremely versatile security protocol, which you can use both for UDP and TCP ports – for safe browsing, gaming, and live streaming. To guarantee the protection of your sensitive data, NordVPN uses AES-256-GCM encryption algorithm with a 4096-bit DH key.

The whole global cybersecurity community has a stake in OpenVPN since it has an open source code, which is freely available for review and modification. With every new bug report, with every new-found vulnerability, with every line of code, this security protocol gets stronger and better. It thrives on transparency.

NordLynx through Wireguard protocol

NordLynx

When it comes to VPN technology, Wireguard®* is at the cutting edge. It’s an incredibly fast protocol, which uses top-tier cryptology and consists of just 4000 lines of code (100 times less than OpenVPN). It’s easy to deploy, audit, and debug.

The chink in Wireguard’s armor is it can’t ensure complete user privacy. That’s why we developed a double NAT (Network Address Translation) system on its backbone. It allows a secure VPN connection and does not store any identifiable data on the VPN server. That’s NordLynx — the fastest secure VPN solution on the market.

*WireGuard® is a registered trademark of Jason A. Donenfeld.

The triple-S VPN experience — speed, security, simplicity

Fast internet speed while all data is encrypted

You don’t need to be a cryptographer to use NordVPN – just download the app, log in, and connect to one of our servers. One click encrypts your private data.

NordLynx, our newest VPN solution that marries super speed with solid security, is available on all major platforms. In addition, iOS and macOS users can also choose between IKEv2/IPsec and OpenVPN protocols, while those on Windows, Android, and Linux can use OpenVPN.

Every protocol has its pros and cons, but all are dependable and highly recommended by NordVPN. If you’re worried about your privacy and security, any of them is a safe option.

Secure your private data with next-generation encryption

Frequently asked questions