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How to Unblock Websites with or without a VPN

Simon Migliano is a recognized world expert in VPNs. He's tested hundreds of VPN services and his research has featured on the BBC, The New York Times and more.

Fact-checked by Callum Tennent

Our Verdict

The easiest way to unblock websites is to use a virtual private network (VPN). VPNs are easy to use and change your IP address to bypass website geo-blocks on a range of devices. To unblock websites without a VPN, you can use a web proxy, Smart DNS, or the Tor browser, although they're less effective.

How to unblock websites

Websites can be blocked by governments, ISPs, copyright holders, website owners, and network administrators at school, college, and work.

Typically, these blocks are based on your IP address, geolocation, or local network.

Fortunately, there are dozens of different tools and methods you can use to unblock a website, should you need to.

We’ve tested over 20 different methods to find the most effective ways to unblock websites from anywhere in the world. Based on our findings, only five methods are worth recommending.

Summary: 5 Effective Ways to Unblock Websites

  1. Use a Virtual Private Network (VPN): The very best way to unblock websites.
  2. Use a Web Proxy: The fastest way to unblock a website without a VPN.
  3. Use a Proxy Browser extension: A beginner-friendly, free tool for unblocking websites.
  4. Use a Smart DNS service: The best tool for unblocking websites on smart TVs.
  5. Use the Tor Browser: A highly secure and anonymous way to access censored sites.

A VPN is the most effective tool for unblocking websites using any browser. VPN software bypasses even the strictest website blocks, is very easy to set up on almost any device, and delivers fast connection speeds.

Quick Guide: How to Unblock Websites Using a VPN

  1. Choose a VPN and install it onto your device. If you need help picking one, read our latest VPN recommendations.
  2. Open the VPN app and choose a server location. If you’re trying to unblock geo-restricted content, select a server in the location you require.
  3. Connect to the server location. You can run an IP address test to verify it has changed.
  4. Visit the blocked website. The site you’re trying to access will now be unblocked.

In this guide we’ll also explain how to unblock websites without a VPN, using alternative tools we’ve carefully tested. We’ll outline each tool’s strengths and weaknesses.

We’ll also explain which method to use depending on your device. We’ll show you how to unblock websites on Mac, Windows, iPhone, Android, Chrome, Firefox and your Smart TV.

To bypass website blocks at school and college, read our specific instructions on how to unblock websites at school.

5 Effective Ways to Unblock Websites

Ultimately, the best method for unblocking a website will depend on the type of block in place and the reasoning behind it.

After testing 20 different methods, we’ve summarized the best methods for unblocking websites, along with their strengths and weaknesses, in the table below.

Method Efficacy Ease Of Set Up Download Required? Connection Speed Privacy & Security Free or Paid?
VPN Very High Easy Yes Fast High Paid
Web Proxy Moderate Very Easy No Slow Low Free
Proxy Extension High Easy Yes Moderate Moderate Free or Paid
Tor Browser Moderate Difficult Yes Slow High Free
Smart DNS Moderate Difficult No Fast Low Paid

Overall, we found that using a VPN is the most effective way to unblock websites at home, at work, or in high-censorship countries.

A VPN is also the most reliable tool to access geographically-restricted content from outside of your country.

However, a VPN won’t be the best option in every situation.

For example, if you’re in a hurry, then the quickest way to unblock a website is to use a free web proxy. If anonymity is your priority, it might be better to use the Tor browser.

Ultimately, the best way to unblock websites depends on how it is blocked and what your priorities are.

In the rest of this section, we’ll take a more detailed look at each method.

1. Virtual Private Network (VPN)

Pros Cons
Bypasses every type of website block Good VPNs charge a monthly subscription fee
Encrypts your web traffic You need to sign up and download the software before you can unblock a website
Offers a wide range of server locations Small impact on connection speeds
Protects all traffic going into and out of your device Low-quality VPNs may log your activity
Often includes dedicated customer support

A virtual private network (VPN) is a type of software designed to improve your privacy, security, and freedom online. According to our tests, it is the most effective and reliable way to unblock websites.

VPN apps are available on a range of different devices, which means it’s also the most versatile method. You can use a VPN to access restricted content on your phone, computer, or even your Smart TV.

ExpressVPN Streaming Channel 4

ExpressVPN unblocks Channel 4 on desktop, mobile, and home devices.

VPNs work by encrypting your web traffic and routing it via a remote VPN server. This has the effect of hiding your IP address and geographic location from the websites you visit.

It also prevents your internet service provider (ISP), government, and Wi-Fi administrator (e.g., at home, at work, or on public Wi-Fi) from being able to monitor your browsing activity.

VPNs are the most effective tool for bypassing website blocks for three main reasons:

1. VPN encryption unblocks websites that are blocked by URL or domain name.

ISPs, governments, and network administrators often block websites using a ‘blacklist’ of specific URLs or domain names. VPN encryption prevents these systems from seeing the websites you’re connecting to, which means they cannot block your connection.

VPNs are therefore excellent for unblocking websites at work and for bypassing online censorship in countries like China or Russia. Often, top VPNs come with obfuscated servers designed specifically for unblocking websites in restricted countries.

2. By hiding your IP address, a VPN unblocks geographically-restricted content.

Some websites host content that is restricted to certain geographic regions. When you visit these websites, they use your IP address to determine your location and then block you accordingly.

When you connect to a VPN server in a different location, you temporarily replace your IP address and spoof your geolocation. This lets you unblock websites that aren’t typically available in your region.

This allows VPN users to unblock geographically-restricted websites like HBO Max, BBC iPlayer, or Hotstar. You can unlock additional streaming material on sites like Netflix or Disney Plus, and bypass copyright restrictions on YouTube and Twitter

3. VPN apps can be downloaded onto almost any device.

You can easily use a VPN to unblock websites and streaming services on a laptop, cell phone, or tablet. Dedicated VPN extensions are also available for specific browsers, meaning you can quickly access restricted content on Chrome, Firefox, or Edge.

The main downside to using a VPN to unblock websites is the cost. A subscription to a good-quality VPN tends to cost around $4.00 per month. Free VPNs do exist, but they are often extremely limited, or even unsafe.

VPNs may not be the best option for unblocking websites quickly, either. The process of signing up and installing VPN software onto your device can take a few minutes, which isn’t ideal if you’re looking for immediate access to a restricted webpage.

EXPERT ADVICE: You may not have permission to install a VPN app if you’re using a public computer or a work device. In these cases, using a VPN is not the best way to unblock websites. Try using a web proxy or Smart DNS service, instead.

Unblocking Sites with a VPN: Step-by-step Instructions

Video demonstration on how to unblock websites using ExpressVPN.

Below are step-by-step instructions on how to use a VPN to unblock websites:

  1. Choose a trusted VPN, like ExpressVPN (our top-rated VPN of 2024).
  2. Select your preferred payment plan. The longer the plan, the cheaper the monthly fee.
  3. Install the VPN. For most devices, you can set up a VPN by simply downloading the corresponding application.
  4. Open the VPN application. You may have to verify your account the first time you open it up.
  5. Choose a server location. Find a VPN server in a location that will unblock the website you’re after.
  6. Press connect. Your connection will now be routed through that VPN server. You’ll be able to unblock websites and browse privately.

Should I Use a VPN to Unblock Sites?

Use a VPN if you are:

  • Unblocking websites on a long-term basis (e.g. traveling).
  • Bypassing geographical restrictions (e.g. on streaming platforms).
  • Unblocking websites on a mobile device.
  • Generally worried about your online privacy and security.

Don’t use a VPN if you are:

  • Trying to quickly unblock a single web page. Use a web proxy instead.
  • Unblocking streaming services on a Smart TV or games console. Use Smart DNS, instead.
  • On a public computer or work device, where you don’t have the necessary permissions to download a VPN application.

2. Web Proxy

Pros Cons
Extremely simple to use Does not work for streaming content, including YouTube and Netflix
Requires no setup or manual installation Most proxies are unencrypted, so ISPs and network administrators can still see your activity
Free to use Won’t protect any activity outside of the browser tab you’re in
Works to unblock geographically-restricted, text-based content Known to inject adverts and sometimes even malware into your browsing session
Good proxy providers let you choose a server location Website owners and network administrators sometimes block web proxy sites
Slower than VPNs due to congestion

The fastest way to unblock a simple website is to use a web proxy. To do this, you simply enter the URL you want to unblock, press enter, and the restricted content should appear.

Hide.me Browser Extension

Hide.me has a free proxy for Chrome and Firefox.

Like a VPN, a web proxy works by routing your web traffic through a remote proxy server on its way to your desired website.

This has the effect of temporarily replacing your IP address with the IP address of the proxy server, effectively hiding your physical location from the website you’re visiting.

Diagram of how a proxy server works

A proxy server hides your physical location.

You can therefore use a web proxy to unblock websites that are not available in your geographic region. Some web proxies even let you choose the proxy server’s location, much like a VPN.

Another benefit is that you don’t need to download or install anything to use a web proxy – just navigate to the proxy website in your browser and enter the URL.

This makes using a web proxy the most viable option for unblocking websites on public computers, such as at work or in a public library.

Web proxies tend to be free to use, too. Unfortunately, this means they often come with some operational drawbacks that you should be aware of:

  • No Encryption: Most web proxies do not encrypt your connection. This means that governments, ISPs, and network administrators can monitor your activity and block your connection, if they choose.
  • Protection In One Tab Only: Unlike a VPN, a web proxy won’t redirect any traffic from outside the browser tab it’s being used in. That means you need to navigate to the web proxy URL every time you open a new tab.
  • Privacy & Security Issues: Some web proxies track your activity and sell that information to advertisers and other third-parties. Many also insert adverts into your browsing session, and some have been known to infect users with malware.
  • No Multimedia Content: A web proxy rarely gives you access to video or audio content. In our tests, we could not find a single proxy that unblocked restricted streaming material on Netflix or YouTube.

EXPERT ADVICE: It’s quicker to unblock websites with proxies because they do not require the installation of third-party software. However, don’t confuse this with faster connection speeds or load times. Our tests show that, on average, a VPN will load restricted content much faster than a web proxy.

Unblocking Sites with a Web Proxy: Step-by-step Instructions

How to use HMA's web proxy to unblock the Orlando Sentinel.

Here are step-by-step instructions on how to unblock websites using a web proxy:

  1. Navigate to a web proxy site in your browser. Popular options include hide.me.
  2. Type in the URL you want to unblock.
  3. Select a proxy location. Pick a country where the website you’re trying to access is unrestricted.
  4. Click ‘visit anonymously’. The website should appear unblocked on your screen.

Should I Use a Web Proxy to Unblock Sites?

Use a Web Proxy if you:

  • Are trying to quickly access a blocked text-based webpage, such as a newspaper article or Wikipedia page.
  • Don’t have permissions to download software or browser extensions on the device you’re using, such as on public PCs, work computers or school Chromebooks.

Don’t use a Web Proxy if you are:

  • Are sharing personal or sensitive information.
  • Want to access blocked multimedia content, such as video streaming websites.
  • Don’t want your work or school WiFi administrator to see what you’re doing online.
  • Are worried about your privacy and security online.

3. Proxy Browser Extension

Pros Cons
Usually free Weaker encryption than a ‘full’ VPN service
Convenient to use after the initial setup process Some proxy extensions display adverts
Can sometimes unblock streaming content Only protects your browser traffic
A range of server locations to choose from Extensions are not available on mobile devices
Available in Chrome, Firefox, and Microsoft Edge

A proxy browser extension is essentially a midpoint between a VPN and a web proxy.

Rather than downloading software directly onto your device or navigating to a web proxy’s URL, a proxy browser extension involves installing an extension or add-on into your browser. You can then use the browser extension to access geographically-restricted websites.

Proxy browser extensions work in much the same way as a web proxy or a VPN. When turned on, your browser activity is routed through a remote proxy server, which has the effect of hiding your true IP address from the websites you visit. This unblocks sites that block you based on your IP address or physical location.

The main menu on CyberGhost's Chrome extension

CyberGhost’s Chrome Extension.

A proxy browser extension is therefore not as simple or as quick to set up as a web proxy, but we found them to be generally more effective and reliable at unblocking websites. For example, we found that most proxy browser extensions let you stream geographically restricted YouTube videos, whereas most web proxies do not.

On the other hand, proxy browser extensions are not as safe or secure as a VPN. Most proxy extensions use HTTPS encryption at the very most, which means the domains you visit may still be visible to third parties.

Moreover, many browser extensions are only free to use because they make their money by selling your browsing data or by injecting adverts into your session.

Google claims to vet all of its Chrome extensions, but unsafe add-ons regularly slip through the net – such as the Hola VPN Chrome extension.

We therefore advise you not to use a proxy of any kind for sensitive activity that involves sharing financial, medical, or otherwise personal information – you can never be sure who’s watching.

That said, good-quality proxy browser extensions are available on Chrome, Firefox, and Edge. However, be aware that mobile users cannot download Chrome extensions. iOS users cannot get Firefox add-ons, either.

Unblocking Sites with a Proxy Browser Extension: Step-by-step Instructions

How to use CyberGhost's Chrome Extension to unblock The Baltimore Sun.

Step-by-step instructions on how to unblock websites on Chrome with a proxy browser extension:

  1. Open Chrome on your device.
  2. Tap the More icon. On Mac, it’s the three vertical dots in the top-right corner.
  3. Under More Tools, click Extensions.
  4. Click the Hamburger icon. On Mac, it’s in the top-left corner.
  5. Select Open Chrome Web Store.
  6. Type in the name of the proxy browser extension you want to download. We recommend CyberGhosts’ and PIA’s Chrome proxies.
  7. Click Add to Chrome.You will then have to confirm the installation.
  8. Once it is downloaded, you can open the proxy browser extension by clicking on its icon in the browser. This should be next to your address bar.
  9. Choose a server location. You may need to register with the service before doing this.
  10. Turn the proxy on. This will connect you to the proxy server.
  11. Navigate to the blocked website. It should now be unblocked.

And here are instructions on how to unblock websites on Firefox with a proxy browser add-on:

  1. Open the Firefox browser on your device.
  2. Go to the Mozilla Add-Ons library.
  3. Search for a proxy browser add-on. We recommend Surfshark’s Firefox Proxy.
  4. Click + Add to download the add-on.
  5. Once it is downloaded, open the add-on by clicking its icon in the address bar.
  6. Choose a server location. You may need to register with the service before doing this.
  7. Turn the proxy on. This will connect you to your chosen server.
  8. Navigate to the blocked website. It should now be unblocked.

Should I Use a Proxy Browser Extension to Unblock Sites?

Use a proxy browser extension if you are:

  • Unable to download VPN software onto your device, e.g., on Chromebooks or work computers.
  • Unblocking websites on a more long-term basis, such as when traveling.

Don’t use a proxy browser extension if you are:

  • Particularly concerned about privacy and security online.
  • Bypassing censorship measures in highly authoritarian countries.
  • Sharing personal or sensitive information.
  • Using Firefox on iOS or Google Chrome on a smartphone.

NOTE: We don’t recommend using a proxy browser extension to unblock websites on Safari. Apple offers limited support for third-party extensions. As such, most of the safe proxy extensions are not available to Safari users.

4. The Tor Browser

Pros Cons
Works unblock websites in highly-censored countries Extremely slow speeds
Free to download and use Not available on iOS devices
Decentralized network maximizes user anonymity Can’t be downloaded on public PCs or work devices
Uses very strong encryption Associated with criminal activity

The Tor browser is a free, open-source web browser that was built to maximize users’ anonymity online. It is available to download on Windows, macOS, Linux and Android devices.

Tor works by encrypting your internet connection and then routing it through multiple volunteer-run servers or “nodes”, known as the Tor network.

Data passing through the Tor network

How the tor network reroutes your data.

Using Tor ensures that websites cannot see your real IP address or geographic location. Instead, they see your connection as coming from the location of the exit node.

You can therefore use Tor to unblock geographically restricted websites, provided the exit node is located in a country where the content is accessible.

Sadly, choosing the exit node’s location is not always straightforward. The browser offers some degree of control, but not as much as you get with a VPN, web proxy, or Smart DNS service.

We therefore don’t recommend using Tor to unblock streaming content, such as on Netflix or HBO Max. Not only is Tor incredibly slow, streaming typically requires much more precise geo-spoofing than the Tor browser can provide.

Instead, you should use the Tor browser to unblock websites if you’re trying to bypass censorship restrictions imposed at the government-level, or to maximize your anonymity online.

Connected to Windscribe free and the Tor browser, we accessed ProPublica’s onion site.

Connected to Windscribe free and the Tor browser, we accessed ProPublica’s onion site.

Tor is designed with journalists and whistleblowers from authoritarian countries in mind. The airtight encryption and decentralized network architecture mean that governments, police and ISPs cannot track your browsing activity and so cannot block you from accessing certain information and websites.

In short, Tor is the most anonymous way to unblock websites that are blocked by your government.

Although using the Tor browser will almost certainly let you access websites blocked by your employer, you should be aware that your network administrator will see that you’re using the Tor network (even if they can’t see what you’re doing on it).

They may not approve of this, due to concerns about the safety of Tor. Indeed, some workplaces, colleges and schools actually block users from downloading the Tor browser on the local network. It’s also banned in certain countries, including China and Russia.

Unblocking Sites with Tor: Step-by-step Instructions

You can only access .onion sites using the Tor Browser.

Step-by-step instructions on how to use the Tor Browser to unblock websites:

  1. Go to the Tor Project’s download page. You can download it onto any Windows, Linux or macOS computer. There’s also an Android smartphone app.
  2. Select your operating system and download the corresponding .exe file.
  3. Open the file and select your language using the drop-down menu.
  4. If you’re happy with the recommended settings, press connect. Tor will set-up and you’ll be able to unblock websites and browse anonymously.

It’s important to remember that using Tor comes with risks. If you don’t configure your browser properly and modify your behavior, it’s incredibly simple to reveal your identity.

Should I Unblock Sites Using Tor?

Use the Tor browser if you are:

  • Primarily concerned with anonymity.
  • Accessing information censored by your government.

Don’t use the Tor browser if you are:

  • Unblocking streaming content, or anything requiring fast connection speeds.
  • Trying to access sites restricted to a specific geographic region.
  • Unblocking sites at school or work.
  • Using an iPhone or iPad.

5. Smart DNS

Pros Cons
Specialized for unblocking geographically-restricted streaming content Doesn’t hide your IP address
Very fast connection speeds Won’t encrypt your web traffic
Works on a huge range of devices, including Apple TV and games consoles Requires a subscription fee, although it is usually cheaper than a VPN subscription
Setup can be complicated for beginners

​​Smart DNS is an effective tool for accessing websites blocked or restricted in your region. It is cheap, compatible with a wide range of devices, and commonly used to unblock streaming services due to its extremely fast connection speeds.

Smart DNS works by rerouting your DNS (Domain Name System) requests through a proxy server in a country of your choosing. It therefore differs from proxy and VPNs, which redirect all of your traffic through the proxy server.

How Smart DNS works

How Smart DNS works to unblock streaming websites.

By only rerouting your DNS requests, Smart DNS services are able to achieve much faster speeds than a VPN or a web proxy.

Speed is prioritized over security, however. Unlike Tor or a VPN, a Smart DNS tool will not encrypt your traffic or even hide your IP address.

This lack of encryption means employers, ISPs and governments can see which websites you visit, and therefore can still block you whenever they want. It also means personal IP address bans will still be enforced.

In this sense, Smart DNS services are only really useful for unblocking geographically restricted websites or changing your Netflix region. We don’t recommend using Smart DNS for bypassing censorship or accessing restricted websites at work.

Streaming US Netflix with MediaStreamer

ExpressVPN’s MediaStreamer unblocks US Netflix.

For unblocking streaming content, however, Smart DNS is often an excellent option. Smart DNS is usually cheaper than a VPN, offers faster connection speeds, and is compatible with a wider range of devices.

Unblocking Sites Using Smart DNS: Step-by-step Instructions

How to use MediaStreamer Smart DNS to unblock HBO Max on Apple TV.

To unblock websites with a Smart DNS service:

  1. Subscribe to a Smart DNS service. Popular ones include MediaStreamer , Control D, Smart DNS Proxy, and Unlocator.
  2. Register your IP address with the provider. Your chosen provider will have instructions for how to do this on their website.
  3. Find the DNS server addresses for your desired server location. These should be under ‘My Account’.
  4. On your device, go to Network Settings > Advanced > DNS Settings.
  5. Enter in the Smart DNS server addresses. Click confirm.
  6. Restart your device. Your traffic will be routed through the Smart DNS service once you reconnect to the internet.

Should I Use Smart DNS to Unblock Sites?

Use Smart DNS if you are:

  • Only interested in unblocking streaming services, such as Netflix, HBO Max, BBC iPlayer.
  • Streaming on a device that doesn’t support VPN apps, such as an Xbox One or PS5.

Don’t use Smart DNS if you are:

  • Trying to access non-streaming websites.
  • Concerned about your privacy and security online.
  • Reluctant to make manual configurations on your device.

How to Unblock Websites on Different Devices

Unless you can quickly fix the problem by changing your device settings or switching to mobile data, the overall best way to unblock a website on almost any device is to use a VPN.

This is certainly the case for devices where native VPN apps are supported, such as on macOS and Windows PCs, iPhone and Android smartphones, and on some streaming devices like the Amazon Firestick. Not only is a VPN the most effective option for these devices, it is also extremely easy to set up and use.

For devices without native VPN support – such as Chromebooks, Roku, Xbox One, PS5, and most Smart TVs – the simplicity of other methods may outweigh the efficacy of a VPN.

On games consoles and Smart TVs, for example, a Smart DNS tool will work to unblock most geographic restrictions without the hassle of having to set a VPN up on your router.

Below is a table summarizing the unblocking method we recommend based on the device:

Device Unblocking Method
iPhone and Android VPN App
Chromebook Proxy Browser Extension
MacOS or Windows PC VPN App
iPad and other tablets VPN App
Amazon Firestick VPN App
Apple TV VPN App & Smart DNS
Other Smart TVs Smart DNS
Roku VPN Router
Xbox and Playstation Smart DNS

Ultimately, the method to use depends on your own personal preferences. You’ll have to balance efficacy, ease of use, privacy, security, and anonymity. The information in this guide will help you make the right decision.

Why Are Websites Blocked or Banned?

Websites are blocked using a variety of different technical measures, for lots of different reasons.

Some blocks are entirely legitimate, such as preventing children from viewing obscene material online. Others are more questionable, such as government-endorsed internet shutdowns that threaten citizens’ safety or freedoms.

Website blocks tend to originate from three main groups:

Governments and ISPs

Most governments censors their citizens’ internet usage to some degree. In most countries, this means stopping children from accessing harmful websites, and upholding national law, such as intellectual property rights or gambling regulations.

However, some governments also use internet censorship for political reasons. This can range from controlling the information citizens can access online, to full-scale internet shutdowns during moments of civil unrest and political instability.

These forms of government censorship are most commonly enforced through the country’s internet service providers (ISPs), which are the telecommunication services that connect your device to the internet.

When compelled to do so by law, these ISPs will set up firewalls in their network, which scan your traffic as it passes through. The firewall then blocks your connection if it detects activity that fits a certain description.

Firewalls can be set up to detect particular URLs, IP addresses, port numbers, protocols,and even certain types of website content (using a method known as Deep Packet Inspection).

We recommend: To overcome censorship by your ISP, use a VPN. It will hide your IP address and encrypt your connection, so your ISP can no longer see the websites you’re visiting.

Network Administrators at School, College, or Work

Schools and businesses often place restrictions on the internet use of their students and employees. The same is true for parental controls and other restrictions on home WiFi networks.

This type of website block is usually intended to reduce distractions and increase productivity, although they might also be used to protect children and prevent malware.

Typically, blocks at work and school apply to gaming and gambling sites, social media platforms, adult websites, and video streaming services. In theory, they can apply to any website the administrator decides to censor.

These website blocks tend to be implemented in the form of URL-based or IP-based blocklists. If you try to access a blacklisted URL or IP address while connected to the local network, your connection gets blocked.

We recommend: If you’re using a personal device, you can easily overcome local network-based website blocks with a VPN or a proxy server. If you’re using a work or school-issued device, try using a web proxy or proxy browser extension.

Be aware that your network administrator may have implemented the website blocklist onto the device itself. If this is the case, your only option is to use a method where you don’t actually visit the site directly, such as a web proxy or a mirror site.

Website Owners and Copyright Holders

The final type of website block comes from websites themselves. There are many reasons why a website might choose to prevent you from accessing it, including operational costs and GDPR compliance, but by far the most common is to do with copyright laws and licensing regulations.

Streaming websites such as Netflix, YouTube, or HBO Max have to block visitors from countries where their content is not licensed, in order to comply with the law.

To do this, these websites use your IP address to determine your physical location and then block you accordingly. This is referred to as a ‘geographic restriction’.

This is also how some websites impose personal bans on users. Common on video-sharing and gaming websites, personal bans target users who have violated the website’s Terms Of Use in some way.

We recommend: To overcome geographic restrictions on your computer or phone, use a VPN. On devices that do not support native VPN applications, use Smart DNS. For general browsing and for bypassing personal IP bans, it is best to use a VPN.

FAQs

What’s the Best Way to Unblock Websites?

Generally, the best way to unblock websites is to use a VPN. They are the most effective tool for the job, and offer an unparalleled mix of privacy, security, and performance.

With a VPN, you can easily bypass geographic restrictions and access censored websites at school, home and work. The only downside is the cost, but with an average price of $4.00 per month, it’s unlikely to break the bank.

How Do I Unblock Websites without a VPN?

The best way to unblock websites without a VPN is to use a web proxy or a Smart DNS tool.

A web proxy is the easiest way to unblock a website, but it will only work for text-based content and isn’t a safe option for private or sensitive browsing.

Meanwhile, a Smart DNS tool is the best way to unblock streaming services, but you won’t be able to use it to bypass government censorship or any other type of content block.

Is It Legal to Unblock Websites?

In the vast majority of countries, unblocking websites is completely legal.

However, keep in mind that you may be breaking school or workplace policies by accessing restricted websites.

Using a VPN to unblock Youtube, Netflix, and other content platforms is also legal — although you could be breaking the service’s Terms of Use.

The situation is not as clear in high-censorship countries, though.

In some countries, such as China and Russia, VPN use is restricted and using Tor is banned. We advise researching local laws before using any method to bypass government internet filters.