How to be 100% Anonymous using QBittorrent in 2023️

QBittorrent VPN
Written by: Per-Erik Eriksson

qBittorrent is a multifunctional free, open-source BitTorrent client widely used because of its speed, ease of use and safety. However, despite its general reliability, potential leaks could expose your identity and torrenting history.

If you do not wish to gamble with online privacy, get a trusty VPN or a SOCKS5 Proxy. In this article, you can learn more about the difference between these two and how to choose the right VPN for qBittorrent. You will also read about how to set up qBittorrent with a VPN or a proxy and ensure everything functions properly.

In case you don't want to read the entire article, here’s a quick summary of the best VPN services according to our independent tests and research:
  • NordVPN Best VPN for general work and entertainment purposes. I found it to be reliable, high-speed, and easy to set up, and it's one that I use daily for work.
  • ProtonVPN (Free Version) Proton is often referred to as the single most trustworthy company in the VPN business. They focus on security over anything else and offer the best free VPN available. This is the company behind ProtonMail.
  • CyberGhost VPN was voted as the best gaming VPN for 2023 and is one of the cheapest VPN services among the whole top 10.

Best qBittorrent VPN 2023

NordVPN Logo

6 simultaneous devices.

  • Fastest VPN 2023
  • Servers: 5300+
  • Countries: 60+

WHY I LIKE NORDVPN NordVPN has long been regarded as one of the strongest brands in cybersecurity. With one of the largest server offerings on my list and support for most, if not all operating systems, making NordVPN an obvious choice for many. They have 24/7 customer support if you need help getting started. Their app is one of the most well-designed apps I have ever used. NordVPN even accepts cryptocurrencies as payment for extra anonymity.

Surfshark logo

Unlimited simultaneous devices.

  • Best Cheap VPN 2023
  • Servers: 3200+
  • Countries: 65+

WHY I LIKE SURFSHARK: Surfshark VPN is perfect for those who want a cheap and reliable VPN that also has many extra features. "Camouflage Mode" hides your usage from your ISP, "Kill Switch" suspends your connection and protects your information if you temporarily lose Internet access, "MultiHop" to connect from multiple countries at the same time just to name a few. My favorite feature of Surfshark is "Whitelists" which allow the user to exclude specific apps and programs from the VPN connection.

Cyberghost VPN Logo

7 simultaneous devices.

  • Best Torrent VPN
  • Servers: 7400+
  • Countries: 91+

WHY I LIKE CYBERGHOST CyberGhost VPN is the first choice of many other cybersecurity experts, and the reason is clear; they have the most complete VPN service. An incredible number of extra features that are best suited for the more advanced users but also work flawlessly for every-day purposes like P2P-filesharing. Cyberghost VPN also has the longest stretching money-back guarantee at a full 45 days.

Private Internet Access VPN Logo

Unlimited simultaneous devices.

  • Best Netflix/Streaming VPN
  • Servers: 35500+
  • Countries: 84+

WHY I LIKE PIA VPN: PrivateInternetAccess is at the top of my streaming tests, which is a great combination with their easy-to-use UI, Open-Source software and built in adblocker. PIA is also perfect for those who want to be able to pay with PayPal which for some reason, many other VPN services do not support. 30-day money-back guarantee, multiple Netflix libraries, and extremely affordable are the three main selling points for this VPN service.

Atlas VPN Logo

Unlimited simultaneous devices.

  • Robust/Security focused
  • Servers: 750+
  • Countries: 43+

WHY I LIKE ATLAS VPN: Atlas VPN is one of the best new free VPN services. With the free version, you get unlimited data, no ads and zero logging. During my speed tests, Atlas VPN performed very well and could compete with mainstream services. Kill Switch, Ad-blocker, and P2P support all included with a regular subscription, which is incredibly cheap for such a robust service.

ProtonVPN Logo

10 simultaneous devices.

  • Best Free VPN 2023
  • Servers: 1713+
  • Countries: 63+

WHY I LIKE PROTONVPN: ProtonVPN is based in Switzerland and is most known for their e-mail service ProtonMail. They currently offer the safest free VPN services on the market. There is also support for TOR usage and P2P file sharing. I highly recommend ProtonVPN if you are intending to do some extensive online sharing. It goes without saying that Proton does not collect logs of any kind and is completely safe to use.

PrivateVPN Logo

10 simultaneous devices.

  • Best VPN for Gaming and Streaming
  • Servers: 200+
  • Countries: 63+

WHY I LIKE PRIVATEVPN: PrivateVPN is the strong underdog in the world of VPNs. With a shy number of servers, it is evident that they are focusing on quality over quantity. Overall, PrivateVPN is a very decent choice of VPN, especially if you had enough of the excessive advertising by some of the other more known brands in this list. Setting up the VPN requires extremely little intervention, and you can even pay with Bitcoin.

ExpressVPN Logo

30 day money-back guarantee.

  • Best Mobile VPN app
  • Servers: 3000+
  • Countries: 94+
Orchid VPN Logo
One-time fee.


  • Pay for that you use
  • Unlimited devices
  • Pay in Crypto
Hotspot Shield VPN Logo

45 day money-back guarantee.

  • Fastest free VPN
  • Servers: 3200+
  • Countries: 80+
ZoogVPN Logo

7 day money-back guarantee.

  • Great free VPN
  • Servers: 1000+
  • Countries: 26+

10 day money-back guarantee.

  • Best reputation
  • Servers: 91+
  • Countries: 17+
Trust.Zone Logo

No money-back guarantee.

  • Best new VPN
  • Servers: 202+
  • Countries: 41+
iTop VPN Logo

15 day money-back guarantee.

  • Great adblocker included
  • Servers: 1800+
  • Countries: 20+
Speedify Logo

30 day money-back guarantee.

  • 5 devices simultaneously
  • Unlimited usage
  • 50+ locations
HideIPVPN Logo

30 day money-back guarantee.

  • Unlimited traffic
  • Up to 1 Gbps
  • Free trial
VeePN Logo

30 day money-back guarantee.

  • 10 devices
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Countries: 60+
18 Logo

30 day money-back guarantee.

  • 5 devices
  • Free trial
  • Countries: 45+
19 Logo
$5.00 /user

14 day free trial/money-back guarantee.

  • Simple Cloud VPN Setup
  • Site-to-site VPN Tunneling
  • Easy Server & User Management
BullVPN Logo

No money-back guarantee.

  • 2 devices
  • Countries: 28+
  • Locations: 100+
SymlexVPN Logo

7 day money-back guarantee.

  • 5 devices
  • Locations: 65+
  • 24/7 live support
iProVPN Logo

30 day money-back guarantee.

  • 10 devices
  • Countries: 20+
  • P2P Optimization
SecureVPN Logo

Basic, advanced, and pro plans.

  • Countries: 22+
  • Locations: 36+
  • 24/7 live support
Hola VPN Logo

30 day money-back guarantee.

  • Best multi-device VPN
  • Servers: 1000+
  • Countries: 200+

What Should I Use: A VPN, a SOCKS5 Proxy, or Both?

VPN (Virtual Private Network) has two main functions: hiding your IP address and encrypting your Internet traffic. The first is highly useful when you wish to bypass certain website restrictions. The second measure, encryption, serves to keep your traffic private. Thanks to encryption, no other entity (save the VPN server) can decode your Internet traffic and use it to commit fraud. Encryption also hides your online activity from your ISP, which can help you avoid bandwidth throttling.

SOCKS5 Proxy is the fifth and latest version of the SOCKS (Socket Secure) Proxies. It is the ‘middleman’ between a user and a website – a server through which Internet traffic is run to assign it a new IP address. Unlike a VPN, however, a SOCKS5 Proxy does not encrypt Internet traffic, which makes it faster and more suitable (though far less safe) for torrenting.

If you wish to have absolute online anonymity and safety, you can purchase both services separately or find a VPN provider that includes a SOCKS5 Proxy in the subscription. However, using both in the hopes of adding an extra layer of protection is unnecessary, as a VPN already does a great job hiding your IP.

How to Choose the Right VPN for qBittorrent?

Although some VPNs allow you to use a proxy as part of their service (e.g., Hotspot Shield VPN), not many VPNs have a SOCKS5 Proxy. Here is the list of those that do:

  1. NordVPN
  2. Surfshark
  3. Private Internet Access VPN (PIA VPN)
  4. PrivateVPN

These VPNs are already at the top of the list of the best VPNs out there. Take a quick look at some of their features:

 ServersCountriesEncryptionKill SwitchAdditional safety features
1. NordVPN5600+59AES-256✔️Double VPN, Onion over VPN, Dedicated IP, DNS leak protection, split tunneling, Threat Manager
2. Surfshark3200+100AES-256✔️MultiHop (double VPN), Bypasser (split tunneling), Camouflage Mode, DNS leak protection, Clean Web
3. PIA VPNN/A84AES-128, AES-256✔️Advanced split tunneling, ad/malware blocking, Dedicated IP
4. PrivateVPN200+63AES-128, AES-256, 2048-bit encryption✔️Stealth VPN

Our first three choices have thousands of servers, top encryption, additional safety features and a SOCKS5 Proxy. Our fourth pick, PrivateVPN, has a few extra features and a solid safety profile. In addition, the subscription with it includes a SOCKS5 Proxy.

How to use a VPN with qBittorrent?

Using a VPN with qBittorrent is very simple. All you need to do is choose a VPN (we suggest one from our list above), download the app on your device and connect to a P2P server. 

NordVPN allows torrenting on all servers, but it also has special P2P servers that provide better torrenting speeds. Surfshark’s servers are P2P-friendly, as are PIA VPN’s, but since PIA is located in Denver, USA, you are advised to use servers outside of the US when torrenting. PrivateVPN also supports torrenting but is less likely to provide steady speeds as its server network is somewhat limited.

Make sure to enable the kill switch and DNS leak protection when using qBittorrent, as both will protect you from unwanted online exposure. 

How to Use a SOCKS5 Proxy with qBittorrent?

Step 1: Go to qBittorrent’s Tools → Options → Connection.

You will find three items: Listening Port, Connections Limits, and Proxy Server. Do not change any of the settings in Connections Limits.

Step 2: In Listening Port, choose ‘Port used for Incoming Connections’. Then, choose any port or click on the ‘Random’ button. Next, check ‘UPnP/NAT PMP’ and ‘Use a Different Port on Each Startup’.

Step 3: In Proxy Servers, fill out ‘Host’ and ‘Port’. Next, contact your chosen VPN to find out what its credentials are (or find the information in your VPN’s FAQ section). Finally, to fill out Authentication, ask your VPN to give you the username and password used to set up the proxy server.

How Can I Know That My VPN/Proxy Is Working?

The easiest way to check if your VPN is working is by looking at your external IP address (running a speed test will do the trick). If your IP address is different from your real one, your VPN works.

To see whether your proxy is working, you need to check the magnet link – when the torrent starts downloading, you will see which IP address is downloading the file.

How Can I Know That My Kill Switch Is Working?

A kill switch is important because it disconnects your device from the Internet if, for some reason, your VPN connection fails. The best way to see if your kill switch is working is to start the qBittorrent and wait for it to begin downloading. When it does, disable your VPN. If downloading is immediately discontinued, the kill switch is working.

In Conclusion

Even though no VPN provider will encourage you to download copyrighted content, the fact remains that many users do it. So, if you wish to protect yourself from getting into any legal trouble while torrenting with qBittorrent or Qtorrent, make sure to choose a reliable VPN. 

Trustworthy VPNs employ strong safety measures to protect your privacy. These measures include strong encryption and various additional safety features. Additionally, NordVPN and Surfshark, located in Panama and the British Virgin Islands, respectively, also have the strictest possible no-logging policy and are based in countries that are not required to store and share sensitive information with other countries. 


Can I use a free proxy with qBittorrent?

If privacy is your concern, do not use a free proxy. Free versions collect your torrenting history, are frequently slow or do not work properly, and have a lot of ads.

Doesn’t qBittorrent provide its encryption?

Yes, it does. Unfortunately, this encryption is weak (not AES-256). Plus, your IP will still be exposed. 

What is the best VPN to use with qBittorrent?

Our #1 pick, NordVPN. It has an extensive server network, military-grade encryption, a strict no-logs policy and an abundance of additional features, and a SOCKS5 Proxy in the subscription.

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