UC Browser has more than half a billion users, mostly in China, Indonesia, and until recently, India. Unfortunately, though, security researchers have found several issues in the way the software works, and cite the service’s easily-broken encryption, plain text data transmission, and flawed update procedures as serious concerns.
Simply, this will never be the most secure browser available. However, if you’re still not ready to make the switch to a more privacy-conscious app, you can offset some of the UC Browser’s biggest weaknesses by using a VPN. These not only protect your traffic with stronger encryption but will also automatically reject any suspicious incoming connections, safeguarding you against the aforementioned updating issue.
Take a look below for a brief overview of the best VPNs for UC Browser:
Best VPNs for UC Browser:
- ExpressVPN: The best VPN for UC Browser. Fast and security-focused, with impressive unblocking abilities and a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.
- NordVPN: Our favorite budget VPN for UC Browser. Boasts powerful security features, a strict no-logs policy, and extremely high speeds.
- Surfshark: A no-logs VPN with great unblocking ability, solid speeds, and a wealth of security features. Lets you connect all of your devices at once.
- CyberGhost: Easy to use, with more high-speed servers than any other in this list. Provides comprehensive security in one click. Also works well with Netflix and similar services.
- IPVanish: No-logs provider with a truly impressive security offering. Provides consistently high speeds and allows users to connect any number of devices at once.
- PrivateVPN: This very fast, zero-logs service puts your security first and helps keep you safe while using UC Browser. Has great unblocking potential and works reliably in China.
- Hotspot Shield: Large network of speedy, reliable servers. Strong focus on security. Great at bypassing regional restrictions. Helps you use UC Browser safely, even while in China.
Every VPN is different in terms of the security features it offers, how fast its servers are, and how wide its network is. We recommend rounded, versatile VPNs. This way, you’ll be able to trust that whichever you choose, it’ll be up to just about any task. Here are the criteria we used to pick the best VPNs for UC Browser:
- Offers access to a large server network
- Provides high speeds and reliable connections
- Includes powerful encryption and a variety of other security features
- Does not store any personally identifiable information
- Unblocks many geo-restricted services abroad (bonus points if it works in China)
- Offers apps for a wide range of operating systems and devices
Best VPNs for the UC Browser
Below, we take a closer look at the best VPNs for UC Browser:
ExpressVPN is a reliable, user-friendly service that’s ideal for anyone looking to use UC Browser safely. Of course, with more than 3,000 servers in 94 countries and fast, reliable speeds, it’s also well-suited to unblocking streaming services like Netflix. In fact, unlike many of its rivals, this VPN even works in China. Up to five simultaneous connections are permitted per account.
There’s a strong selection of security features built-in. These include 256-bit encryption, DNS, WebRTC, and IPv6 leak protection, and a kill switch that prevents you from accidentally browsing unprotected. ExpressVPN refuses to keep any logs that could be traced back to you, and allows you to pay in Bitcoin for added anonymity. Users can get in touch with support staff over 24/7 live chat for help with any issues.
ExpressVPN offers MacOS, iOS, Windows, Linux, and Android apps. Further, it comes with custom firmware for routers, which simplifies the process of protecting your home network.
- Fast speeds for streaming and torrenting
- Best in class security and privacy
- Strong unblocking ability (even works in China)
- Pay anonymously with Bitcoin
- Costs slightly more than some others in this list
BEST VPN FOR UC BROWSER:ExpressVPN is our top choice for UC Browser users. This is because it’s fast, security-conscious, and able to handle whatever you throw at it. There’s even a 30-day money-back guarantee included, allowing you to try this service risk-free.
Read our full ExpressVPN review.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
NordVPN is a well-respected provider boasting extremely fast speeds and more than 5,400+ servers in 59 countries. What’s more, it has some of the strongest unblocking ability of any major VPN, and is just as happy bypassing Chinese internet restrictions as it is unblocking Netflix. As you might expect, this makes it a popular choice for travelers or those who stream often. This service allows up to six simultaneous connections per account.
Thanks to a combination of 256-bit encryption, DNS, WebRTC, and IPv6 leak protection, and a kill switch, your activities can’t be read by anyone. If you’d like even greater anonymity, you can use multi-hop servers, pay in three accepted cryptocurrencies, and turn on the malware-scanning and tracker-blocking CyberSec feature. NordVPN is a no-logs provider and can’t reveal details of your activities even if asked to. Further, support is available at any time over email and live chat.
NordVPN provides iOS, Android, MacOS, Windows, and Linux apps. Users can also manually install this service on supported routers in order to secure every device on their network.
- Thousands of high-speed servers
- Offers a vast array of security options
- Unblocks most popular geo-locked streaming services
- Keeps no logs whatsoever
- iOS users can access obfuscated servers via the app
BEST BUDGET VPN:NordVPN is a low-cost provider that comes packed with security and privacy tools. It’s also the fastest VPN we’ve tested, so it’s a solid choice, whatever your needs. This no-logs service works reliably in China and comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Check out our in-depth NordVPN review.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
Surfshark users have the choice of 1,700 servers in 63 countries, which means you shouldn’t have any problems getting a speedy connection, regardless of your location or the time of day. This VPN excels at getting around regional restrictions and can even bypass China’s Great Firewall, so users needn’t worry about unblocking services like Netflix or Hulu. Best of all, Surfshark has no connection limit, so you never have to leave any of your devices unsecured.
On that note, this VPN comes with effectively uncrackable 256-bit encryption, DNS, IPv6, and WebRTC leak protection, and a kill switch, as well as a built-in ad-blocker and malware-scanner. Surfshark follows a strict no-logs policy, something that has been verified by an independent auditor. If you have any issues, support staff can be reached via 24/7 live chat.
Surfshark apps are available for MacOS, iOS, Windows, Linux, and Android. Select wireless routers are supported via manual configuration.
- Solid speeds and good unblocking capabilities
- Plenty of advanced security features
- Connect as many devices as you like
- Some slow speeds recorded during testing
SPEED AND SECURITY:Surfshark has plenty to offer anyone looking to improve their digital privacy. This fast no-logs service has top-notch security features, a 30-day money-back guarantee, and no connection limit. Not only that, but it can even bypass China’s Great Firewall.
Still have questions? You’ll find answers in the complete Surfshark review.
Money-back guarantee: 45 DAYS
CyberGhost is a fast and reliable option, with more than 6,700 servers in 90 countries. Because its network is so large, users are less likely to experience slowdown during peak times. Additionally, you’ll be able to access some of the most popular geo-restricted platforms (such as Netflix or BBC iPlayer) from abroad. This service allows you to connect up to seven devices at once.
If you just want to use UC Browser safely, and aren’t interested in messing around in the settings, this VPN is a great choice. That’s because all of its security features (256-bit encryption, a kill switch, ad-blocking, malware-scanning, and leak protection) are enabled by default. Further, CyberGhost doesn’t log any information that could be used to identify you. Although this is a novice-friendly service, it offers around-the-clock support over live chat, just in case you encounter any issues.
CyberGhost comes with easy-to-use apps for Android, iOS, Linux, MacOS, and Windows. You can configure some network routers manually.
- Very fast and easy to use
- Operates over 5700 servers in 90 countries
- Comprehensive security in one click
- Doesn’t work in China
SIMPLE BUT EFFECTIVE:CyberGhost is easy to use and offers plenty of pre-configured security features. It’s fast, too, and can access popular geo-blocked services abroad. This novice-friendly VPN allows seven connections at once and has a 45-day guarantee.
Read the full CyberGhost review.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
IPVanish is a highly-versatile service with easy-to-use apps and over 1,500 servers in 60 countries. It allows an unlimited number of simultaneous connections, doesn’t restrict bandwidth, and provides consistently fast speeds, making it uniquely suited to families who use UC Browser on many of their devices. As a bonus, this VPN has decent unblocking ability, and can reliably access Netflix US and similar platforms from abroad.
This VPN proves that good things can come in small packages; its lightweight apps boast a huge range of security features, such as 256-bit encryption, a kill switch, a LAN traffic blocker, and protection against IPv6 and DNS leaks. Users can also choose to scramble their data, which can help you bypass stubborn VPN-detection measures. IPVanish is a zero-logs provider, so your privacy is in good hands. Need help? 24/7 support is on-hand via live chat or email.
IPVanish users can install apps for Windows, iOS, MacOS, and Android. Manual configuration is required for use with Linux systems and supported network routers.
- High speeds and unlimited bandwidth
- Great range of security and privacy features
- Connect all of your devices at once
- Apps don’t work in China
NO-LOGS VPN:IPVanish puts your privacy first, while managing to provide high speeds and a low price point. For this reason, it’s great for security-conscious users, especially since you can protect every device you own. A 30-day money-back guarantee is included.
Take a look at our full review of IPVanish.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
PrivateVPN has a pretty small network (with roughly 150 servers in 60 countries), but provides far higher speeds than many other services on the market. It also excels at bypassing regional restrictions, so it’s a great choice whether you’re looking to access the wider internet in China or simply unblock your favorite services while traveling abroad. Since there are no bandwidth limits, users can browse, stream, video call, or even torrent as much as they like.
This service has a fantastic security offering too. It keeps your activities hidden from snoopers using 256-bit encryption, an app-specific kill switch, and protection against DNS and IPv6 leaks. If you’re looking to get around especially stubborn restrictions, you can also turn on the stealth mode, which helps hide the fact that you’re using a VPN at all. Private doesn’t keep any logs at all and accepts Bitcoin payments. Live chat-based support is available most hours of the day.
PrivateVPN has Windows, Linux, MacOS, iOS, and Android apps. If you’d prefer, it can also be manually installed on select internet routers.
- Exceptionally high speeds
- Powerful security features and a true zero-logs policy
- Works with a wide range of streaming services
- Small number of servers to choose from
- Live chat is not around the clock
PROTECT YOUR DATA:PrivateVPN makes online safety easy Better still, it offers very high speeds, unlimited bandwidth, and unblocking abilities that let you access almost anything, anywhere. All plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Interested? Why not read the complete PrivateVPN review?
Money-back guarantee: 45 DAYS
Hotspot Shield boasts very high speeds, great unblocking ability, and access to over 1,800 servers in 80+ countries. These features make it a solid choice for accessing the wider internet in China, unblocking geo-restricted services like Netflix, or just using UC Browser anonymously. Best of all, this service refuses to limit your bandwidth, meaning you never have to browse unprotected.
When it comes to security, Hotspot Shield has a lot to offer. For instance, it includes a kill switch, 256-bit AES encryption, protection against IPv6 leaks, and automatic wifi protection. Most importantly, Hotspot Shield deletes all personally identifiable info once your session ends. If you run into any problems, you can reach support staff, day or night, via live chat.
Hotspot Shield apps are available for Linux, Windows, MacOS, Android, and iOS devices. This VPN can also be manually installed on supported wireless routers.
- Fast and reliable connections
- Strong focus on security
- Strong unblocking potential
- Doesn’t support any anonymous payment options
- Some past privacy concerns
FAST, VERSATILE VPN:HotspotShield offers over 1,800 servers and it isn’t just great for streaming and torrenting; its high speeds, powerful security features, and no-logs policy also mean it’s a fantastic choice for browsing privately on UC Browser. This VPN even provides a 45-day money-back guarantee.
For more information, check out our full Hotspot Shield review.
How to use UC Browser safely with a VPN
Securing your connection with a VPN is easier than you might expect. Below are some simple steps to setting up a VPN so you can keep yourself and your data safe while using UC Browser.
Here’s how to use a VPN in UC Browser:
- First, sign up for one of the VPNs above if you haven’t already (we recommend ExpressVPN).
- Download the VPN app, making sure to install it on any device you use regularly. Usually, you’ll be allowed up to five connections at once, but this varies by provider.
- Log in and choose a server. To unblock content abroad, you’ll have to use a server in the appropriate country. Conversely, for the highest speeds, a nearby server is usually best.
- Your traffic should now be protected from snoopers, and you should be able to access all kinds of geo-blocked services. If you’re having problems, we recommend clearing your cookies, trying a different server, or contacting your VPN’s support team for more help.
TRY IT FREE: Still can’t decide which VPN to use? While you make up your mind, why not make use of ExpressVPN’s 30-day money-back guarantee? This does require an upfront payment, but you can cancel at any time (and for any reason) to get a full refund. As such, this is a great way to try a paid VPN risk-free and see whether it’s a good fit for your needs.
UC Browser FAQs
⭐Is UC Browser safe?
Despite being one of the most popular browsers in the world (with more than 100 million users in India before the government banned it), UC Browser shows a worrying lack of concern for its users’ privacy. Researchers from the University of Toronto found that as well as storing huge amounts of personal information, the service transmits this using very weak encryption. Here’s a short list of the data UC Browser logs that could be easily intercepted by an attacker:
- Your IP address and approximate location
- Any URL you visit, and the time taken to process the request
- Your hard drive serial number, CPU model, and motherboard serial number
- IMEI and IMSI numbers (on mobile)
- Screen dimensions and Android ID (on mobile)
Unfortunately, this isn’t the only problem. Due to the way this app processes updates, it is trivial for an attacker to force users to run malicious code. What’s more, there are indications that the app refuses to delete DNS queries along with other app data, which would allow someone to view your browsing history.
⭐How can a VPN help make UC Browser more secure?
The right VPN can make up for many of UC Browser’s security failings. For instance, normally, anyone monitoring the network would be able to keep tabs on your activities. This is a big enough problem already, but UC Browser includes every URL you visit in easily-decoded data packets, and some sensitive information isn’t encrypted at all. As such, an attacker would be able to see every site you visited, valuable personal information, and system specification details just by observing the flow of data.
In contrast, if you were using one of the VPN’s above, your traffic would be secured with effectively uncrackable encryption. This stops anyone from being able to read any of your data, even parts that were previously transmitted in plain text. VPNs can also help protect you against Man-in-the-Middle attacks, either by filtering out suspicious packets of incoming data, or by blocking them all outright.
⭐Can I use a free VPN with UC Browser?
We strongly advise against using free VPNs alongside UC Browser. In theory, encrypting your data, using privately-owned DNS servers, and automatically rejecting any suspicious incoming traffic should help offset some of the main privacy problems with UC Browser. However, free VPNs are rarely as secure as they should be. In fact, a large percentage fail to use any encryption at all, making them effectively useless in this situation.
There’s also performance to worry about. With fewer servers than their paid counterparts, free VPNs often provide very slow speeds, intermittent connections, and possibly even a data cap. Further, they’re frequently blocked by popular geo-restricted services, which reduces their usefulness even further.
You cannot completely resolve UC Browser’s privacy issues. However, with a trusted, no-logs VPN, you can protect yourself against the software’s man-in-the-middle attack vulnerability, and ensure that snoopers are unable to see the personal information that this browser transmits in URLs.