For lovers of TV shows and movies, websites that offer the titles they need for streaming, whether new or obscure, for free are a blessing. And so they are always on the lookout for the free sites that offer the best services, uploading movies and episodes of their TV shows.
Although these sites are ‘free’, the owners have to make money somehow. And as a result, users are often open to a variety of dangers and threats as they navigate and stream.
These threats may come in the form of malware, phishing attacks, data thefts, and copyright breach issues. They also have to deal with pop-up ads which may be intrusive and inappropriate.
To protect yourself from potentially becoming a victim of any of these whenever you access a free streaming site, it is important that you make use of a VPN. What a VPN does is channel your traffic under a safe and private tunnel so that you can stream videos without cyber threats.
Additionally, a lot of the best streaming sites are hidden behind a geo-restriction. What this means is that due to such reasons as copyright licensing, some of the content they offer can only be accessed by people in particular regions. Living outside of the United Kingdom, for example, you will be unable to access content strictly available for United States residents.
That is unless you make use of a VPN. With a trusted and quality VPN like ExpressVPN, you can connect to a server in the UK and trick the geo-block technology into thinking that you are based there. As a result, you would then be able to stream those content previously blocked to you.
The 9 Best Free Streaming Websites
After comprehensively trying out a ton of free streaming platforms, I found out that the majority of them are incredibly unsafe, and are a hotbed for malware, hackers, and scammers. Additionally, they shadow all your activity with trackers that gather up information that is then sold to the highest bidders.
This is a list of the best free streaming websites I found. Although they are safer to use than the rest, it is still important to navigate them under the safety net that a VPN provides.
Sony’s Crackle is a popular free streaming option, and it offers a very substantial list of movies and TV shows. Because it is owned by Sony, you can enjoy Sony’s extensive library of content for free.
It has an intuitive interface, with the titles well-arranged and sorted under different categories so you can easily access the movies and shows you are searching for. It has advanced search features so you can dig up those not-so-popular titles.
Cackle also offers an app for mobile. You are not obliged to sign up before you get to stream, but if you want to create lists and opt for notification on the latest uploads, then you should.
Because it is free, there are ads. It is also geo-blocked to the United States. Fortunately, both of these issues can easily be bypassed by making use of a VPN.
Owned by Screen Media Ventures, Popcorn Flix offers movies and TV shows for free, streaming in a wide variety of genres from horror to romance to drama. It is not the ideal site for movie buffs looking for the latest titles, as it is not very regularly updated. If you are looking to stream classics though, then you should check it out.
It comes with a clean user interface, with different sections for movies and TV shows which are then sorted into different sections. Like Crackle, signing up is not mandatory. It supports resume playback, so you can always resume from where you left off instead of starting all over again.
You should use a VPN when navigating and streaming from this site, to bypass the ads.
Vudu Movies on Us is not entirely free, as some of its titles are available for rentals. Still, a lot of the movies here are offered free for streaming. To see which of the movies you are not required to pay for, you can check the Free Page on the website.
You get to pick from thousands of movies from a wide range of genres, including romance, action, family, comedy, and a lot of others to watch. Some of the movies are in full HD, so you don’t need to compromise quality while on this site.
Like the others on this list so far, you are not required to sign up before using the site. Simply pick a film, and if it is free, click to watch. You will need to watch a commercial first. To bypass the geo-block on this website, make sure you use a VPN.
Tubi has an extensive catalog of movies and shows running into the thousands. Like Vudu, not all of its titles are free, and some have to be rented to stream. Still, there are very many left for you if you are only looking to go free, in a wide range of genres and categories.
Tubi’s interface is easy to navigate and use, with titles in such categories as Featured, New Releases, Trending Now, Movie Night, and many more.
Tubi requires you to sign up and verify your email before you can stream on their site. To watch, you have to watch commercials first.
Pluto TV offers apps for both desktop and mobile, on Android and IOS. It is not the easiest of websites to navigate though and may take some time to get used to.
It stands out from other picks on this list because it works both as a streaming site for movies and TV shows and as a live TV service where you can watch regular TV.
Pluto TV is geo-restricted to the US, UK, Austria, Germany, and Switzerland. If you are based outside of these countries, then you will need a VPN to access the content it offers. All you should do is connect your VPN to a server-based in any of those countries, and you will be assigned an IP address.
CONtv is the ideal free streaming service to head to on those Halloween nights or when you are in the mood for a good scare. Or if you are a fan of science fiction. While it offers movies in such genres as comedy, action and martial arts, it is largely focused on sci-fi, horror, thrillers and cult movies.
It has an easy to use interface, and navigating the website is not difficult. You will be required to sign up to be allowed to stream a movie or event. Like most others, you will also be required to watch a commercial before you see a movie, so it is a good idea to hook up to your VPN first.
As the name suggests, this streaming site is your go-to for the classics, with titles of up to scores of years old. It does not have the best interface you’ll ever see, but it is certainly worth it if you have a preference for ancient movies.
Classic Cinema Online indexes the movies available rather than hosting them. Searching for movies provides you links to get them. For a lot of titles, you will need to torrent. With that being the case, you definitely need a VPN to be able to safely get the movies you want.
You are not required to sign up to use this site.
Veoh actually lets users upload movies, and for that, you will be required to sign up and be verified. Otherwise, it is not mandatory to register on the site before accessing its content.
It has a simple intuitive user interface, with the available titles well sorted into different genres and categories. There are thousands of movies and TV shows available for streaming.
Because some of the content on this site is uploaded by unverified users, it would be wise to make use of a VPN so you are not potentially exposed to malware.
For a lot of people, YouTube is the site they go to see videos of cute cats and an infinite variety of videos. But you can also watch movies there, either rented or for free.
You don’t need to sign up to stream videos on YouTube unless you want to upload videos, curate playlists, and receive notifications. To access the available movies and TV shows, you can search or use the Movies & Shows section in the Explore tab to see hundreds of titles, arranged in different categories.
YouTube is beset by ads and trackers, and to avoid them you should use a VPN.
VPNs to Keep You Safe While Streaming
As previously stated, free streaming websites are not the safest of platforms. By navigating and using them, you are in danger of inadvertently downloading malware to your device or having your data tracked and sold to the highest bidders.
You can bypass these threats by using a VPN whenever you access any of these free streaming websites. Below, you will find a rundown of a few of the VPNs that will protect your privacy and data on these sites.
ExpressVPN is based in the British Virgin Islands. As the name suggests, it is a VPN service that prioritizes speed. It is the fastest VPN app I have tested. It operates over 3000 remote servers in 160 locations across 94 countries around the world. Its servers are excellent for streaming and torrenting needs. ExpressVPN has several servers in US locations.
I tested it on some of the premium streaming platforms and found it to provide excellent streaming services. Netflix, Amazon Prime, and others streamed at high speeds with zero lags on a stable internet connection.
ExpressVPN comes with MediaStreamer. This feature allows users to stream on to devices like smart televisions and game consoles that don’t normally have VPN support.
But speed isn’t all ExpressVPN excels at. It features 256-bit data encryption with an automatic kill switch. It also features a zero-lag policy. DNS leak protection and split tunneling round up a fully packed security arsenal.
ExpressVPN runs entirely on RAM and as a consequence, all data on a server are deleted each time there is a reboot. It comes with its own TrustedServer feature, ensuring that the software on all of its servers is always updated and hence, secure.
NordVPN has an impressive network of over 5,300 servers in over 60 countries, with a lot of those servers located in the United States. It combines blazing speeds and an arsenal of powerful security features to ensure that you are able to stream with people of mind.
With NordVPN, accessing the geo-blocked content on the streaming platforms on this list is a piece of cake. You can also use it to unblock and access a host of premium streaming services like Netflix, HBO, Amazon Prime Video, Sling TV, BBC iPlayer, and Disney+.
This is especially easier due to its SmartPlay feature, which automatically connects you to a server that is based in the country of the blocked content you want to stream.
In terms of security and privacy, you are backed by military-grade encryption to secure your data, a strict no-logs policy, and an automatic kill switch. You also get IP/DNS leak protection. Annoying and intrusive pop-up ads will become a thing of the past with its ad-blocking feature.
NordVPN is based in Panama and falls outside of the 14 Eyes jurisdiction. So, you can be sure that your data will not be handed over to any governments demanding for them.
A single subscription will allow you to connect up to 6 devices simultaneously. New users are offered a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Are VPNs legal?
Yes, VPNs are legal in most countries. You would not be crossing any legal lines by using them to stream free content unless you are resident in some countries such as China and Russia who censor and restrict internet freedom.
Free VPNs? Do they work with these free streaming websites?
I very rarely recommend free VPNs. They are not ideal for streaming because of their severely limited features such as capped bandwidth, a small network of servers, annoying ads, and slow connection speeds.
But even more importantly, they are usually not safe for use. Free VPNs may log your data and sell them to the highest bidders.
If you cannot afford a Netflix or Prime Video subscription, then a free streaming site may be the option for you. These websites host thousands of movies, TV shows, anime, cartoons, and documentaries.
But using them is not always safe. There are threats that come with streaming on free sites such as malware and data theft. To mitigate against these, you should use a VPN. VPNs protect your privacy and ensure that you remain safe and anonymous.