The largest city in the UAE, Dubai is known for the astounding landmarks, lavish shopping experience and entertainment that it offers to a large number of tourists and business people that visit it every year. While the ultramodern architecture and the solid economy scream progress, the truth is that UAE is one of the most restrictive places for internet users. Most people can connect to the internet thanks to an advanced infrastructure, but online censorship prevents users from accessing the content that they really want. The state has control over ISPs, including DU, which has an extensive network coverage and shares a duopoly on telecommunications with Etisalat. This results in strict blocks imposed on content that is deemed as inappropriate and offensive.
In the UAE and Dubai, there are many services and content that are subject to online censorship including political news, social media, dating websites, adult content and VoIP services. In order to bypass these restrictions and get access to content around the world, you can use a VPN service. This is an effective solution that will allow you to overcome the restrictions that stop you from using Skype, as well as WhatsApp and Snapchat calling functionality, which is also blocked in the UAE. You will be able to access the websites and news that are not available there, including content that you can only enjoy in the United States or the United Kingdom.
However, it should be noted that the legality of the use of a VPN in the UAE is still unclear, in spite to recent changes in the law. In August 2016, it was declared that while using a VPN to protect your online data is allowed, it would be illegal to use this technology to bypass online restrictions, which is most likely what you would like to use a VPN for. Although the possibility of being prosecuted for using a VPN for circumventing blocks is still in doubt, it is important to consider the risk involved when using this technology. If you live in the UAE, it is advisable to stay up to date with the legal status of using a VPN before deciding to get one.
If you choose to use a VPN, there are a few measures that may help to avoid that the fact that you are using a VPN is detected. While in general, using OpenVPN is the best option due to the security that this protocol offers, since it is very popular, it may be easier to detect. The good news is that with the help of SSTP or Obsproxy, you may be able to conceal the fact that a VPN is in use. Obsproxy can stop Deep Packet Inspection Algorithms that can be used to detect OpenVPN. SSTP can be used to direct traffic through an SSL/TLS channel When you use SSL/TSL over port, SSTP can overcome pretty much any firewall. OpenVPN traffic can be routed over TCP port 443, which disguises it as HTTPS/SSL traffic.
Another option is to use Stunnel, which is an open source software that allows you to create TLS/SSL tunnels to wrap OpenVPN. Since TLS/SSL is the encryption that HTTPS uses, this method can help to make your OpenVPN traffic look like standard internet traffic. In addition, some providers offer stealth servers, which are specially designed to bypass strict restrictions and to prevent that the use of a VPN is detected. These servers can make VPN traffic appear like standard traffic and they are effective to bypass Deep Packet Inspection. The VPN services in our list offer features that will suit users in the UAE and Dubai. However, it is important that you take additional measures to protect your identity, such as using Bitcoin to pay and even to consider using the VPN only when you connect to WiFi in public places. This may sound like a bit too much and even inconvenient in some cases, but it will avoid that the use of a VPN is traced back to you.
VyprVPN is known for providing innovative technology and a good speed and since they run their own network, they can provide a reliable service. Their unique Chameleon technology allows you to bypass firewalls and blocks, as it can disguise your OpenVPN traffic effectively. VyprVPN has servers in over 50 countries, including UAE and many options nearby, if you want to enjoy optimal speeds. With VyprVPN your data is protected with strong encryption and you can enjoy unlimited server switching, unlimited speed and access to thousands of IP addresses
ExpressVPN is an excellent choice for UAE since it offers an extensive selection of servers, top connection speeds and a high level of security. They offer great security features such as DNS leak protection and a kill switch that will prevent that your actual IP address is revealed. ExpressVPN has a stealth server in Hong Kong that is designed to prevent deep packet inspection from detecting the use of OpenVPN. ExpressVPN has servers in 87 countries and it offers fantastic customer support.
NordVPN is also a great option for UAE thanks to its advanced security features and a solid zero logs policy. NordVPN provides options like double encryption, Tor over VPN and stealth servers. The use of shared IPs will also help to keep your identity protected. They have servers in over 50 countries and while the UAE is not one of them, they have options located nearby so that you can enjoy consistent speeds.
VPNArea offers a great set of security features, strong encryption and a fast service that will allow you to browse, stream and play online games without hassle. They have servers in 60 countries and stand out for their powerful combination of DNS leaks, IPv6 protection, kill switch and anti-webRTC protection. All these features will protect your real IP address and will prevent that it is revealed. They don’t keep logs and allow up to 6 simultaneous connections. While they don’t have servers in the UAE, which some may prefer, they have other convenient options that are close and that will provide satisfactory speeds.