Is using a VPN with my Fire Stick illegal?

Is using a VPN with my Fire Stick illegal?
(Image credit: amazon)

Are you considering getting a Fire Stick VPN, but are unsure of its legality? You've landed in the right place to learn more.

If you get yourself the best VPN for Fire Stick then you will be able to appear to be somewhere you're not. This means you can get access to content which may otherwise be geo-restricted to a certain location.

Want to watch BBC iPlayer in the US, or Korean Netflix in Europe? It's all possible with a Fire Stick VPN. Possible and legal are not the same, though.

Largely, a VPN is legal and its use is allowed. However, there are certain instance where this is not strictly the case, since some countries, like China, have restrictions on VPNs. Dive into more specific details below.

If you're unsure which service is for you, our favourite is ExpressVPN because it does everything you could want, does it well, and works especially well on Fire Stick. But when is it acceptable to use a VPN on your Fire Stick?

NB: Using a VPN to circumvent Netflix's geo-restrictions is against its Ts&Cs, so you do so at the risk of having your account terminated.

What is a VPN and why would you use one on a Fire Stick?

A VPN, or virtual private network, is a service which gives you a 'false' IP address when online. This makes you appear to be where that server is based. That means you can not only get access to geo-restricted content but you are also kept hidden and anonymous.

For streaming this means you can watch US Netflix shows when in the UK. Or any other location combination you can think of, presuming the VPN you use has servers in that country. 

Is it illegal to access blocked content with a VPN?

VPNs are entirely legal in the US, the UK and almost every other country in the world. That means you're freely able to download and use the services without worry of repercussions.

However, in some countries VPN use is restricted. Russia and Iran, for example, have banned VPN use, and in China their use is very restricted. However, since the technology itself is almost indispensable for global business, the rules are not clear and are often changing. The bottom line is that very few people have been prosecuted for person use of a VPN – and those that have been are almost always citizens, and not travelers.

Will I be breaking any terms and conditions?

This is one area that you are at risk. Despite being legal, VPNs are actively blocked by lots of services, including Netflix. As such, you could be in breach of your terms and conditions if you use a VPN to get access to Netflix content outside of your country. Plus, other free services like BBC iPlayer and Peacock also have restrictions on use, so it's worth checking them out before you use a VPN.

The reality, though, is that these services have never prosecuted anyone for using VPNs. Netflix hasn't even closed any accounts based on VPN use, even in the case of repeat uses.

If you are detected as using a VPN, then Netflix and iPlayer will both simply display a message saying that, and you won't get access to the content you're looking for. This is why it pays to get the nest Netflix VPN or iPlayer VPN, as these are able to avoid detection where lesser services cannot. 

What VPN should I use on my Fire Stick?

Our top-rated VPN for Fire Stick is ExpressVPN. In fact, we reckon it's best for just about any device. This service has lots of server locations for high-speed connections, and it also runs high-grade encryption meaning you're kept very secure and hidden when online.

A useful 24/7 live chat feature means you can always ask for help should you ever need it and trained professionals will guide you to get what you need.

ExpressVPN is the best Fire Stick VPN available.

ExpressVPN is the best Fire Stick VPN available.
ExpressVPN offers a huge number of servers in more than 90 countries and boasts lightning-quick connection speeds, top-notch security, and split tunneling. So you can watch anything on your Fire Stick while browsing the web through your regular connection.

ExpressVPN can also be installed on a wide range of devices beyond the Fire Stick including Smart TVs, PlayStation or Xbox, PC, phone, or tablet. ExpressVPN can even be installed directly on your router, making it even easier to watch shows and movies on all your devices.

And now, Tom's Guide readers can claim three free months of ExpressVPN, plus you'll also get a 30-day money-back guarantee so you can make sure it's the right service for you.

Luke Edwards

Luke is a freelance writer and editor with over two decades of experience covering tech, science and health. Among many others he writes across Future titles covering health tech, software and apps, VPNs, TV, audio, smart home, antivirus, broadband, smartphones, cars and plenty more. He also likes to climb mountains, swim outside and contort his body into silly positions while breathing as calmly as possible.