In a world where everyone seems to be trying to steal your personal data in the current climate, a VPN can aid you in avoiding that by making your connections safe and secure. But while sweeping claims of military-grade encryption, or total digital invisibility may be tempting, Consumer Reports’ Yael Grauer recommends that you look for more specific indicators that a service is genuine before you make a commitment.

Start with compatibility. The service should be compatible with at least the popular operating systems, such as Windows, macOS and Linux, Android, and iOS. You should also check the number of devices that the service is compatible with, and how many simultaneous connections it provides. Also, you should check the number of servers available and their locations around the world. This can help you pick the closest server to your home or one with speedy speeds when you travel to another country.

Some services provide specific functions, such as dedicated ‘Netflix servers’ which allow access to geo-restricted websites, as well as additional security features, such as RAM-only servers, that wipes data every when the service is rebooted, dark web monitoring, and threat protection. Review the ownership structure of the business and if there have been any data breaches or privacy issues in the past.

The best overall service we tried was NordVPN, which has thousands of servers in 94 countries AES-256 encryption and ChaCha20, an effective kill switch as well as split tunneling and obfuscated servers. It’s also one of the few providers to publish its detailed no-logs policy and engages PricewaterhouseCoopers for annual audits. It’s not cheap, however, you’ll get a lot for your money. A long-term plan that is generous includes a 30-day money-back guarantee.