Why NordVPN Updated an Old Data Request Compliance Blog Post

You’re using a no-log VPN, right? When it comes to VPNs, it’s essential to use a provider that guarantees no tracking and maximum privacy.

VPN services like NordVPN pride themselves on their no-logs status, reminding us that they will protect your privacy and refuse to comply with law enforcement data requests.

It was, until now. A subtle language change in a NordVPN blog post reveals that it now works with law enforcement, as long as the request received goes through the proper channels and is itself a lawful request for data.

So what gives? Can you still trust NordVPN?


NordVPN Reveals Law Enforcement Cooperation

NordVPN has quietly updated a blog post 2017 detailing its position on law enforcement data requests.

The change to the blog text is small but important.

Previously, the message said:

NordVPN operates under the jurisdiction of Panama and will not comply with requests from foreign governments and law enforcement agencies

The updated version now reads:

NordVPN operates under the jurisdiction of Panama and will only comply with requests from foreign governments and law enforcement agencies if such requests are delivered in accordance with laws and regulations

As you can see, a small change that drastically alters NordVPN’s relationship with its users and law enforcement. Another change reveals that NordVPN will now work with law enforcement and other authorities if the company receives a legitimate request through the proper channels.

We are 100% committed to our zero-logs policy – to ensure ultimate user privacy and security, we never log their activity unless a court orders it in a proper and legal manner

Again, this is a departure from NordVPN’s previous take on the matter, never revealing user data or responding to requests from law enforcement. As NordVPN is based in Panama, it has long positioned itself as a bastion of privacy, dedicated to protecting its users from intrusive data collection.

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Now, it looks like something or someone has forced NordVPN’s hand, and the company needs to do at least some effort to comply with legal data requests.

As of this writing, the blog post states that NordVPN has not received any national security letters, gag orders, or warrants from government organizations. So, rest for now.

What should NordVPN users do? Should you switch VPN providers?

The news that NordVPN will start working with law enforcement when it receives a lawful data request will be absolutely shocking. Despite NordVPN’s size, advertising campaigns, and global coverage, it has remained a popular choice for privacy-seeking VPN users.

Related: These Totally Free VPN Services Will Protect Your Privacy

No doubt some users will switch to other VPN services as a result of this revelation. But, before you start looking for a new VPN service, you should note that the vast majority of VPN providers include similar data collection caveats in their terms and conditions.

Is it good? Probably not. You want your VPN service to protect your data at all costs, even if the authorities knock on the door. But the thing is, many VPN providers have to offer provisions for law enforcement data collection, whether we like it or not.

Related: Bad VPNs you should avoid to protect your privacy

Are there no-log VPNs?

It’s a tough time in the world of VPNs. If it’s not NordVPN changing its terms of service to reveal law enforcement collaboration, it’s a multinational corporation with a murky past buying up other popular privacy-focused VPN providers.

So, are there really no-log VPNs out there?

They’re rare, but TorGuard and ProtonVPN remain dedicated to protecting users at all costs. Of course, you should double-check their user agreement and service information before signing up, but both are well known for their no-log VPN policies.

All in all, NordVPN changes a blog post about data collection isn’t the end of the world. For most users, privacy is important, but global server coverage and access to geo-locked content are just as important. So if the NordVPN reveal bothers you, by all means, switch to one of the aforementioned no-log services.


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