The best offshore web hosts and VPS for privacy and anonymity

Dateline: Lodz, Poland

If you maintain an online presence or run an online business, you should be using Flag Theory to make sure you are well diversified. Common examples like internationalizing your email and your website are important.

You should already know that owning a “.com”, “.net”, “.org”, “.co”, .or “.us” domain means that your domain name is subject to US laws, no matter where you are based. The US government has said that no such domain name is safe from government confiscation, which is why less standard domain extensions like “.co.uk”, “.de”, or “.com.au” may suit your website better.

However, where you host your website is also important. Offshore web hosting services are far superior to those based in the United States, where hosting companies will often shut down your website for the slightest of infractions involving the DMCA or anything else.

The country your website is based in also determines which freedom of speech laws you are subject to. Americans may not know that the United States is actually behind countries like Suriname and Jamaica when it comes to freedom of the press, so don’t rest too easy thinking your government won’t ever come after you.

On top of that, an outdated, yet still upheld, US court decision from the 1990s states that the location of your server is actually the basis of where you are taxed.

That means an offshore business can fall under US tax law — even if the owner is a qualified expat — if you have a US web hosting company rather than having a server offshore.

There are plenty of offshore hosting services out there. Some are good, some are just plain bad.

Once I narrowed down the best countries to host a website offshore, I went through and found which offshore web hosting companies and VPS services were best about maintaining their customers’ anonymity and privacy.

Then, I had my chief developer finish the research by comparing technical specifications. Some of the links below are affiliate links; buy from these hosts and help keep our pirate ship afloat. As always, remuneration has no effect on our rankings.

My favorite free speech offshore web host

Winner: Orange Website

My favorite offshore web host for free speech offers shared hosting, VPS, and dedicated servers. And it ticks almost all of the boxes. The only box it doesn’t tick is price; it’s a little more expensive, but if you have a serious website, it’s worth the small increase in cost.

And with the latest European Union VAT nonsense, a server in Iceland — outside of the EU — gives Orange Website an advantage.

Orange Website is based in Iceland and is fast becoming one of the most talked-about offshore web hosts for privacy and data protection. Jeff Berwick, editor of The Dollar Vigilante, said that he moved all of his websites to Orange earlier this year.

In my opinion, Iceland is the best country to host a website. The country, shocked by the global financial crisis, has come up with a strategy to be a truly independent voice when it comes to freedom of the press and data privacy. Iceland is not a member of the European Union and, as such, can go its own way.

Orange Website benefits from this because its only presence is in Iceland; it maintains no US or EU ties that would cause it to be influenced by those governments.

I’ve spoken with the owner of Orange Website (who I’m told is an anarchist and vociferously in favor of freedom of speech). He and the web hosting company are opposed to SOPA and PIPA and have a great track record of defending their clients against nonsense. Orange does not hand over any data on their clients without an Icelandic court order.

That means US courts — and other imperious courts around the world — can take a hike unless they can get a judge in Iceland to agree with them.

One thing I like about Orange is that their customer service is actually based in Iceland, 24/7/365. They don’t sub it out to India to save a few bucks, which may justify the slightly higher cost in and of itself. They also keep pretty good equipment and actually upgrade it as necessary. Plus, they are entirely “green”.

Orange Website also prefers Bitcoin, although it accepts any method of payment. They don’t require anything but a valid email address, so you can remain as anonymous as you like. So long as your website does not violate Icelandic laws or their TOS, you’ll be secure with Orange Host

My favorite anonymous offshore web host

Winner: Liberty VPS

Liberty VPS prides itself on anonymity. Their website isn’t flashy, nor is their range of web hosting packages particularly broad. But everything about Liberty VPS screams… well, liberty.

Liberty VPS was one of the first offshore web hosts to accept Bitcoin, which is central to their strategy of keeping your data anonymous. Heck, they take practically every cryptocurrency and alternate payment available, from Litecoin to Namecoin to Perfect Money.

Just like my overall favorite web host (below), Liberty VPS doesn’t require your name, address, or other personal information. They just need an email address to deliver your services and let you know when you need to pay again. Their rates are pretty cheap to begin with, with VPS hosting starting at under $20 a month.

Liberty VPS uses outsourced data centers in the Netherlands, which is one of my favorite countries for website hosting. The Netherlands’ inclusion in the European Union makes them less desirable than non-EU free-speech countries like Iceland and Norway, but they do have some of the strongest laws to protect websites in Europe.

Liberty VPS also has no US staff, which is a requirement in my book. The owner there said he has yet to receive any notices from a foreign government, but would work with any effected customer to “find a solution.” It’s not the anarchist solution of my favorite web host, but it’s better than your average US host which won’t flinch at supplying your local government anything it wants.

My favorite offshore web host for business

Winner: EuroVPS

If you’re running a serious business and can’t afford to mess around, EuroVPS is a great option. Like Orange, they’re not exactly cheap, but you get what you pay for.

EuroVPS servers are located in the Netherlands. While I prefer Iceland, or even Norway, for server hosting, the reality is that the Netherlands is the most popular jurisdiction for server hosting. That’s why there are so many web hosts simply reselling hosting services that use other companies’ data centers.

EuroVPS, however, runs it own infrastructure. They use things like premium bandwidth to make your websites run really fast. They’re about more than just privacy; they offer really solid services, too. Unlike some VPS companies, they’re more than happy to answer support tickets (usually within a matter of minutes) and are willing to get in and actually help you.

While EuroVPS touts “no Patriot Act” due to its location in Holland, I believe they attract a lot of large businesses who need seriously reliable hosting. For about $100 a month, you can get a top-quality VPS with “proactive monitoring,” which means the company will fix issues that arise with your site, even if you’re not aware of them.

My favorite cheap offshore web host

Winner: Icy Evolution

When I first launched Nomad Capitalist, it was just a few opinionated articles on liberty and living abroad. As such, it was hosted on a cheap offshore web host.

We used a company called Icy Evolution, based in Mauritius. Mauritius is an island nation in the Indian Ocean, about 1,200 miles off the southeast coast of continental Africa. Mauritius has a history as an offshore jurisdiction, as does nearby Seychelles.

Icy Evolution is a good web host for basic websites. If you run a business and need a simple shared hosting service, you’ll do just fine there. Web hosting with Icy Evolution costs as little as $3 a month. There is no phone support, and I doubt it would be that useful anyway, but email support is excellent. The staff there frequently helped us out with minor (and even one major) technical issues.

While some observers claim Mauritius is “losing its glow” as the top spot for freedom of the press in Africa, it is still one of the most free jurisdictions in the region. And I don’t suspect they care too much about your website hosting on some server on their island.

There are a lot of offshore web hosts and VPS services for webmasters who understand the value of keeping their data private and maintaining anonymity. Finding the ones that aren’t just located offshore, but understand your need for privacy and anonymity, are key.

Andrew Henderson
Last updated: Jan 8, 2020 at 10:49AM

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22 Comments

  1. Nomad Capitalist

    Apparently they moved their operations. We’ll replace them with a better choice.

    Reply
    • era_uma_vezz

      What’s the best choice to replace Icy Evolutuion.

      And thanks your our site, I am loving it.

      Reply
      • red

        +1

        Reply
  2. jimmyjs

    Hi! is Liberty VPS can ignore any DCMA problems (like the others offshore hosting do)? and have you been try that? thanks 🙂

    Reply
    • Nomad Capitalist

      Offshore hosts will typically not comply with DMCA.

      Reply
  3. OnlineRefugee

    Great article Andrew.

    Reply
  4. Jowcol

    Should you own an offshore domain name in your name, in your company’s name or does it not matter? (I’ve yet to incorporate.) Can you still own the “.com” domain just to have it routed to your new offshore domain or does that also compromise everything?

    Reply
    • Matthew Harris

      That puts you in a legal grey zone. The US can take away your .com address, which will make your customers a bit pissy.

      But they don’t gain magic rights to your server. So you can have two domain names, a .com and a .something-not-regulated-by-the-usa

      Then just let your customers know about your rollover plan. Or if there is no customer base, then you’re golden either way.

      Reply
  5. Lala72

    Nice article, but .Co does NOT belong to the U.S.; it’s administered and regulated by .CO Internet in Bogota.

    I think you meant to include .Pro instead.

    Reply
  6. Lala72

    PS. Thanks for the heads up about Orange. I just ordered a hosting package. 🙂

    Reply
  7. Simon Köhler

    Just checked out the EuroVPS website after reading the article and had a nice chat with the support. They really seem to know something about servers.

    Reply
  8. Jacek Poleszak

    Hey Andrew. Great article, thanks for sharing! I’d love to hear you say something about what sort of solution (as to a secure domain name, protected hosting solution) would you recommend for somebody wanting to share (HD) videos with the world? Self hosted, streamed videos using le’s say Liverty VPS, or is it possible to host it elsewhere (does any of the video hosting providers offer offshore hosting)? We currently have a .love domain name and it seems to be in CentralNic (London based) hands, I assume it’s better than any US government controlled company? Thanks!

    Reply
  9. hosting account

    I really appreciate this post. I have been looking everywhere for this!
    Thank goodness I found it on Bing. You have made my day!
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    Reply
    • Irina Loncar

      Thank you 🙂

      Reply
  10. Ghost Mixer

    Great blog! This blog nicely explained about the best offshore web hosts and VPS for privacy and anonymity. Thanks for sharing the valuable information.

    Reply
  11. Gregory Mclain

    I will tell my story: About 7 months ago I hired them for my website, during the first week everything was fine, I made the payment but upon finishing my page it was found without service , they canceled everything and did not inform me the reasons, they kept the money. I tried to contact them but they did not give me an answer. Be careful with this Icelandic hosting.

    Reply
    • Joe curtin

      You’re talking about Orange? Was your website adult or anything else controversial?

      Reply
  12. Bullhost

    Great information!! I really enjoy reading this information. Thanks for sharing this informative information.

    Reply
  13. Alexandra Zapata lol

    I live this!

    Reply
  14. Larry

    Thank you for this!

    Reply
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