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SOCIAL MEDIA YOUTUBE

Can YouTube Detect VPN?

VPNs—virtual private networks—are a great way to ensure privacy when using the Internet, as well as gain access to region-restricted content that you would not otherwise have been able to view. When it comes to using a VPN with YouTube, there are many questions arise. Things like “is watching YouTube through VPN allowed?”, and “can I inflate my view count using a VPN?” We’re going to touch on those questions in this post, but first, let’s tackle the title question.

YouTube can certainly detect VPNs, though it is not an immediate process. Detecting VPNs involves the tracking of multiple data points across many users, but it can be done, and it is in YouTube’s best interests to do it.

How VPNs Work

This being a site primarily for YouTubers, we won’t try to explain VPNs in technical detail (nor are we qualified to!) so feel free to search yourself a more detailed explanation, but a base understanding of how VPNs work is necessary in order to understand how YouTube can detect VPNs in the first place.

Essentially, a VPN is an encrypted network within the wider network that is the Internet. The data travelling back and forth in that VPN is only visible to users who are part of the VPN. Think of it as similar to entering the subway, tube, or another underground transport network of your choosing. A person watching you come out of the transport network knows you have exited at that point, but has no way of knowing where you entered.

This allows users to get around things like geographical restrictions on content since their connection is routed through the VPN and emerges at a node that is in a geographical region where the content is available. This can also help users to have a greater degree of anonymity. While you can use things like “incognito mode” in Chrome, there will always be ways in which your online identity can be guessed at—if not outright locked in—because you are still accessing the web from your computer in the same geographical location. VPNs can throw any interested parties a little further off your scent by masking your geographical region.

How YouTube Can Detect VPNs

One of the key points about using a VPN is the IP address you appear to be connecting from. That is, the IP address that YouTube thinks is yours. Many VPNs—especially free ones—use the same IP address for several users. Depending on the popularity of the VPN, there could be thousands of users connecting through the same IP address. For YouTube, this would be a big giveaway, especially if many of those users are logged in.

This can be avoided by using a VPN that will grant you a dedicated IP address, meaning you will always be connecting from the same remote IP address and you will be the only one using it. This isn’t the best option for anonymity, but it’s great for getting around regional content restrictions since YouTube can’t reliably distinguish between your dedicated VPN IP address and a regular IP address.

If you are using a free VPN service—or a paid one that uses shared IP addresses) and YouTube (most likely YouTube TV specifically) is blocking you, you can always try another service in the hope of finding one that YouTube hasn’t cottoned on to yet, but the only way to be relatively sure that YouTube won’t catch you VPNing them is if you get a dedicated IP address.

Why Use A VPN For YouTube?

The main two reasons to use VPNs to view YouTube content are regional restrictions and anonymity. Regional restrictions we’ve covered—some content is made unavailable in certain parts of the world, mostly because of licensing but also sometimes because of political matters. Whatever the reason, using a VPN can allow you to access that content. Whether you see this as an unethical practice will depend entirely on your own worldview. We’re not here to judge.

There is also a version of regional restrictions which is almost the precise reverse of what we have just described. In some parts of the world—such as China, North Korea, Iran, and more—YouTube is blocked by the government. Again, where you stand on the ethics of this is your business, but using a VPN can enabled citizens of countries that block YouTube to get around the censorship.

Anonymity is pretty self-explanatory. Some people value their privacy, or perhaps have a pressing reason why they need to ensure they remain anonymous. In any case, using a VPN will make it considerably harder to identify that person when they are using sites like YouTube… assuming they don’t log in to their account, of course.

Do VPN Hurt YouTubers? 1

Using VPNs To Inflate YouTube Views

If you peruse threads about YouTube and VPNs, you’ll invariably find someone asking about using a VPN to boost their view count. This is a non-starter for a couple of reasons.

Firstly, it is one hundred percent not worth the time it would take to make any meaningful boost to your view count. If you had thousands of people working at it, you may be able to make a meaningful difference, but if you can get thousands of people to do that, why not just get them to watch your video legitimately?

Secondly, even if you fool YouTube regarding your VPN access, the platform still has ways of ensuring that every view is legitimate. If you watch your own video a thousand times, even if you do it through a VPN, YouTube will likely scrub those views from your view count, meaning you’ll have wasted your time.

Final Thoughts

Ultimately, YouTube is only concerned about VPNs when they affect the platform’s ability to generate revenue. Thousands of users coming from the same IP address makes it harder to track individual users, and thus display relevant ads. A dedicated IP address gives YouTube something to track, meaning they can advertise to you even if you are technically anonymous, so they’re not likely to clamp down on that kind of VPN access.

Top 5 Tools To Get You Started on YouTube

Very quickly before you go here are 5 amazing tools I have used every day to grow my YouTube channel from 0 to 30K subscribers in the last 12 months that I could not live without.

1. VidIQ helps boost my views and get found in search

I almost exclusively switched to VidIQ from a rival in 2020.

Within 12 months I tripled the size of my channel and very quickly learnt the power of thumbnails, click through rate and proper search optimization. Best of all, they are FREE!

2. Adobe Creative Suite helps me craft amazing looking thumbnails and eye-catching videos

I have been making youtube videos on and off since 2013.

When I first started I threw things together in Window Movie Maker, cringed at how it looked but thought “that’s the best I can do so it’ll have to do”.

Big mistake!

I soon realized the move time you put into your editing and the more engaging your thumbnails are the more views you will get and the more people will trust you enough to subscribe.

That is why I took the plunge and invested in my editing and design process with Adobe Creative Suite. They offer a WIDE range of tools to help make amazing videos, simple to use tools for overlays, graphics, one click tools to fix your audio and the very powerful Photoshop graphics program to make eye-catching thumbnails.

Best of all you can get a free trial for 30 days on their website, a discount if you are a student and if you are a regular human being it starts from as little as £9 per month if you want to commit to a plan.

3. Rev.com helps people read my videos

You can’t always listen to a video.

Maybe you’re on a bus, a train or sat in a living room with a 5 year old singing baby shark on loop… for HOURS. Or, you are trying to make as little noise as possible while your new born is FINALLY sleeping.

This is where Rev can help you or your audience consume your content on the go, in silence or in a language not native to the video.

Rev.com can help you translate your videos, transcribe your videos, add subtitles and even convert those subtitles into other languages – all from just $1.50 per minute.

A GREAT way to find an audience and keep them hooked no matter where they are watching your content.

4. PlaceIT can help you STAND OUT on YouTube

I SUCK at making anything flashy or arty.

I have every intention in the world to make something that looks cool but im about as artistic as a dropped ice-cream cone on the web windy day.

That is why I could not live on YouTube without someone like PlaceIT. They offer custom YouTube Banners, Avatars, YouTube Video Intros and YouTube End Screen Templates that are easy to edit with simple click, upload wizard to help you make amazing professional graphics in minutes.

Best of all, some of their templates are FREE! or you can pay a small fee if you want to go for their slightly more premium designs (pst – I always used the free ones).

5. StoryBlocks helps me add amazing video b-roll cutaways

I mainly make tutorials and talking head videos.

And in this modern world this can be a little boring if you don’t see something funky every once in a while.

I try with overlays, jump cuts and being funny but my secret weapon is b-roll overlay content.

I can talk about skydiving, food, money, kids, cats – ANYTHING I WANT – with a quick search on the StoryBlocks website I can find a great looking clip to overlay on my videos, keeping them entertained and watching for longer.

They have a wide library of videos, graphics, images and even a video maker tool and it wont break the bank with plans starting from as little as £8.25 ($9) per month.

Categories
SOCIAL MEDIA TIPS & TRICKS YOUTUBE

Best VPNs For YouTube

Whether you have a pressing reason to use a VPN for YouTube or you just like to maintain your privacy, you’ll want to make sure you have the best VPN for the job… or at least a VPN that’s up to the job.

This isn’t as straightforward as you might think (for reasons we’ll get into below), so it can help to know what you’re looking for. We’ll explain a little about why it matters which VPN you choose before getting into our top picks.

Why Your Choice of VPN Matters

We won’t spend valuable characters explaining how a VPN (virtual private network) works as you can easily find that information (including on this very site!), but you do need to know that a natural and unavoidable consequence of the way VPNs work is a certain degradation of things like latency and speed.

When your connection is being routed through several other locations before reaching its destination, it’s going to cause a bit of a slow down. Video is a bandwidth-hungry medium, and the slower your connection, the poorer your video-watching experience is going to be.

Latency can also be an issue if you are trying to watch live streams, as you can quickly find yourself out of sync with the video feed, meaning you are essentially not watching the stream live any more.

Now, if you are using a free or cheap VPN, you can be almost guaranteed to not get the kind of service you need to have an enjoyable YouTube watching experience. Of course, if you are going to be paying for your VPN service, you want it to be sure it’s going to deliver on what you need.

With that in mind, let’s get into our best VPN YouTube picks!

Best VPNs For YouTube

Before get into, it’s worth noting that any prices we mention are the best-case prices, which are typically the effective monthly cost when you pay for a full year up front. For example, our first suggestion, SurfShark, is $2.50 a month but only if you pay for 24 months at once. If you want to pay monthly, you’re going to be looking at $12.95 per month. Something to bear in mind. Now, in no particular order, here are our picks;

Surfshark

SurfShark is the first suggestion we’re going to offer, largely because it is the most affordable. At $2.50 per month, SurfShark is almost free, yet still offers the speeds necessary to stream video. Of course, you can’t expect something for nothing, and there are certainly areas where SurfShark is going to fall flat compared to the other VPNs on this list, but purely for use with YouTube, this is as good as you need.

It allows for unlimited connections, meaning you only need the one account for all your devices, even if you have a lot of devices. You get full AES-256 encryption, however there are question marks over the security, as SurfShark has not performed an external audit of its servers and clients, only the browser extensions running on the VPN. It should be fine for getting around content restrictions on YouTube, but we would probably use a different VPN for anything involving sensitive information.

NordVPN

If you’ve been on YouTube at all over the last few years—and we’re pretty sure that includes anyone reading this blog—you’ve probably seen or heard an ad for NordVPN. This VPN has been the subject of a mammoth advertising campaign.

Still, they have a lot to talk about. Their network consists of over 5,000 servers, making it possible to get a quick connection in your desired location when you need it. For your money, you’ll get full high-level encryption and an instant kill-switch, instantly making NordVPN a more secure option than SurfShark.

Of course, you get a connection quality that is more than capable of handling video streaming.

Best VPNs For YouTube 1

ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN is seen by many as the top option when it comes to the quality of service. You don’t have quite as many servers to choose from as NordVPN, but you do get strong encryption, a wide variety of protocols to choose from, and amazing reliability and speeds.

Probably the biggest con for ExpressVPN to your average YouTuber is their device limit. You can only get five simultaneous devices running on a single ExpressVPN account, so if you have a lot of devices, one of the other VPNs may be a better option.

Hotspot Shield

HotSpot Shield is the very definition of a single-purpose VPN. You don’t get much in the way of features, but you do get lightning fast (in VPN terms) speeds. If all you want to do is stream video, Hotspot Shield is likely the best choice for performance, with over 400mbps speeds. In reality, most users will be bottlenecked by their own connection rather than the VPN.

It is a very straightforward VPN to use, largely owed to the fact that there aren’t many options to mess around with. There are also some concerns about how secure it is, so you might want to keep your sensitive information off for now.

CyberGhost

While not as fast as Hotspot Shield, CyberGhost is still a very fast VPN, and with over 6,000 servers, you can be sure of a satisfying experience using this VPN for YouTube.

CyberGhost even includes a data compression tool to reduce the amount of bandwidth being used, making VPN’ing on the go a feasible option. It’s also P2P-optimised, so if you do a lot of torrenting, this could be a good option for you.

Final Thoughts

Ultimately, the the speed of your chosen VPN will be the primary concern if you want to use it with YouTube. This does not mean you should disregard other concerns, however. For example, if you are going to be using the VPN for sensitive tasks, you should make sure the security is up to scratch, even if that means sacrificing some of the speed that a less secure VPN offers.

Top 5 Tools To Get You Started on YouTube

Very quickly before you go here are 5 amazing tools I have used every day to grow my YouTube channel from 0 to 30K subscribers in the last 12 months that I could not live without.

1. VidIQ helps boost my views and get found in search

I almost exclusively switched to VidIQ from a rival in 2020.

Within 12 months I tripled the size of my channel and very quickly learnt the power of thumbnails, click through rate and proper search optimization. Best of all, they are FREE!

2. Adobe Creative Suite helps me craft amazing looking thumbnails and eye-catching videos

I have been making youtube videos on and off since 2013.

When I first started I threw things together in Window Movie Maker, cringed at how it looked but thought “that’s the best I can do so it’ll have to do”.

Big mistake!

I soon realized the move time you put into your editing and the more engaging your thumbnails are the more views you will get and the more people will trust you enough to subscribe.

That is why I took the plunge and invested in my editing and design process with Adobe Creative Suite. They offer a WIDE range of tools to help make amazing videos, simple to use tools for overlays, graphics, one click tools to fix your audio and the very powerful Photoshop graphics program to make eye-catching thumbnails.

Best of all you can get a free trial for 30 days on their website, a discount if you are a student and if you are a regular human being it starts from as little as £9 per month if you want to commit to a plan.

3. Rev.com helps people read my videos

You can’t always listen to a video.

Maybe you’re on a bus, a train or sat in a living room with a 5 year old singing baby shark on loop… for HOURS. Or, you are trying to make as little noise as possible while your new born is FINALLY sleeping.

This is where Rev can help you or your audience consume your content on the go, in silence or in a language not native to the video.

Rev.com can help you translate your videos, transcribe your videos, add subtitles and even convert those subtitles into other languages – all from just $1.50 per minute.

A GREAT way to find an audience and keep them hooked no matter where they are watching your content.

4. PlaceIT can help you STAND OUT on YouTube

I SUCK at making anything flashy or arty.

I have every intention in the world to make something that looks cool but im about as artistic as a dropped ice-cream cone on the web windy day.

That is why I could not live on YouTube without someone like PlaceIT. They offer custom YouTube Banners, Avatars, YouTube Video Intros and YouTube End Screen Templates that are easy to edit with simple click, upload wizard to help you make amazing professional graphics in minutes.

Best of all, some of their templates are FREE! or you can pay a small fee if you want to go for their slightly more premium designs (pst – I always used the free ones).

5. StoryBlocks helps me add amazing video b-roll cutaways

I mainly make tutorials and talking head videos.

And in this modern world this can be a little boring if you don’t see something funky every once in a while.

I try with overlays, jump cuts and being funny but my secret weapon is b-roll overlay content.

I can talk about skydiving, food, money, kids, cats – ANYTHING I WANT – with a quick search on the StoryBlocks website I can find a great looking clip to overlay on my videos, keeping them entertained and watching for longer.

They have a wide library of videos, graphics, images and even a video maker tool and it wont break the bank with plans starting from as little as £8.25 ($9) per month.