On this page, you’ll find articles about how you can use a good VPN to enhance your streaming experience, accessing shows and movies you couldn’t see any other way. Our researchers explain why streaming platforms institute geoblocks — and how you can get around them.

VPN Streaming Services Guides

According to current estimates, over a billion people around the world have a VPN installed, and a huge chunk of those people are using it for streaming. Global Web Index reports that a full 50% of VPN users signed up to “access better entertainment content.” Additionally, VPN users are 40% more likely to stream subscription-based content at least once a week.

What’s the connection between VPN usage and streaming video? If you live outside the United States and want to watch Hulu-exclusive shows like The Great, The Handmaid’s Tale or Only Murders in the Building, you may already know the answer.

Tons of great shows and films are locked to specific regions of the world. Hulu in particular is infamous for being totally inaccessible outside the United States, but Netflix is hardly much better. Many of the top shows on Netflix, including NCIS, 30 Rock and Stargate SG-1, are restricted to American viewers only.

It all comes down to copyright law. If a service streams content in a country where it doesn’t own the rights to that content, it could face legal trouble.

Until we get a worldwide treaty on intellectual property (no word on when that’ll happen, but it’s looking like we’ll get cold fusion first), a VPN is the only way to access that geo-restricted content. By masking your IP address with one of its own servers, the VPN makes it look like you’re in another country, neatly dodging the geoblocks.

Proxy Bans

It’s not always that simple. Streaming platforms know they could be liable if people use VPNs to stream shows in the wrong regions, so they often block IP addresses they know are connected to VPN servers. That’s what happens when you see a “proxy error” or similar message when you try to log on.

Nevertheless, hundreds of millions of users connect to their VPNs for streaming every week, lured by the chance to explore entertainment options in other countries. It’s a perfectly legitimate practice (most all of these people pay for the service), and widespread — everyone wants to check out everyone else’s streaming libraries, from Prime Video to Disney Plus.

Everyone benefits from unblocking streaming through VPNs. Americans, too, can access their own content while abroad, or check out what’s available in other countries. In the UK alone, Netflix has The Office, Rick and Morty, Star Trek: Discovery and more.

Unblock Streaming Services

Privacy Journal’s expert-written articles tell you everything you need to know about unblocking streaming with a VPN. We’ll help you pick a service for the job, walk you through getting an international IP address and give you tips on where to access today’s buzziest shows and films. Get ready — a whole world awaits!