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What Is ISP Throttling? Why It Happens & How to Stop It | AVG

What Is ISP Throttling? Why It Happens & How to Stop It | AVG

What is internet throttling?
Internet throttling is when your internet service provider (ISP) slows down your internet on purpose. They can limit bandwidth whenever they want, and you might not notice. But when Netflix gets choppy or Facebook takes minutes to load, your ISP may be limiting data transmission over your connection.
Slow loading times don’t always indicate internet throttling — you might be browsing during peak hours, or you might need to do some browser maintenance.
But maybe your ISP is deliberately impeding your connection to those sites. This may happen because you visit those sites frequently, or maybe your ISP’s available bandwidth is overloaded and they need to throttle your connection.
Internet throttling violates the principle of net neutrality, which states that ISPs must give equal treatment to all communications over the internet.
In the worst-case scenario, you might be kept from doing your work or other important tasks. What’s more, your ISP can keep providing subpar service with impunity. That’s an anti-consumer business practice, and it keeps the internet from being freely accessible to everyone.
If your internet connection has a real effect on your daily life, you should pay attention to the issue of internet throttling.
How can I tell if my internet is being throttled?
If your internet is slower than normal, especially on certain websites, this may indicate that data throttling is happening on your connection. If you’re experiencing any of the symptoms listed here, ask yourself: Is my internet being throttled?
Your internet has become slower than usual, or your Wi-Fi connection is choppy or broken.
Certain websites or services load slower than others.
Your download speeds are suffering.
Your videos are constantly buffering or lagging.
Some websites seem to be blocked or non-functional.
If you don’t experience slowdowns often, you don’t need to worry about data throttling. But if you do, the next step is to use an internet throttling test, which analyzes your internet speed and lets you know if it’s being messed with. And there are other services that help you spot connection abnormalities.
Here are the three easiest ways to check if your ISP is throttling your internet connection:
Option 1: Use the Internet Health Test to see how your internet performs over a short period of time. This test checks your connection speed to popular access points and detects any unusual slowdowns. Here’s what good results tend to look like:
This test detects whether your ISP is slowing down streaming platforms like Netflix. The ISP can use this tactic as a bargaining chip to get the streaming service to pay them, which is unfair to you.
Option 2: Check if certain ports are blocked. Gamers will want to go to, click Port Scanners, and then click Game Ports. This advice is relevant only if you use an open port while gaming online and have recently begun experiencing issues.
You should worry only if a game you play is coming back with a “Timed-Out” status. The first step in that case is to try port forwarding, if you haven’t done so already.
If you’ve been comfortably using one of these ports, and it suddenly hits you with a “Rejected” status, you might have a problem with throttling.
Option 3: Check if the speed of your internet changes when using a VPN. The simplest way to see if your internet is being throttled is to turn on a VPN (virtual private network) and compare the speed. Though your VPN may slow down your internet slightly, the difference is nothing compared to ISP throttling — and you can always make your VPN connection go faster.
If your internet is faster with your VPN on, your ISP might be throttling your internet. So why don’t you just keep your VPN on all the time? Great question!
Solving content-based ISP throttling is one of the many benefits to using a VPN. A virtual private network also encrypts your data to prevent your ISP from monitoring what you do. Encryption secures your internet browsing, making any connection safe — including unsecured public Wi-Fi networks — as long as you’ve got the VPN turned on.
AVG Secure VPN is carefully designed to give you world-class online security, keep you anonymous while you browse, and bring the whole internet to your fingertips. Try it today with a 7-day free trial.
How to stop internet throttling
You can stop internet throttling by changing your ISP or hiding your internet activity with a VPN. Here are the best ways to stop internet throttling:
Switch to a new internet service provider.
Self-regulate your bandwidth use.
Upgrade your internet plan to a higher data cap.
Use a VPN.
Your ISP might have a policy on network throttling that you can find on their website — look in the terms and conditions for anything that mentions bandwidth limits, data caps, or similar terms. You can also learn about their throttling policies by reading user reviews. If you can’t or don’t want to switch ISPs, use a VPN.
How does a VPN stop internet throttling?
By encrypting your internet connection, a VPN prevents your ISP from monitoring your online activity and throttling you because of it. While your ISP can still impose limits on your total bandwidth use, you’ll no longer need to be worried about your activity compromising your connection.
VPNs are easy to set up, and masking your activity is a surefire way to stop your ISP from limiting your access to certain websites and services. And by hiding your IP address, VPNs open up your streaming and TV options significantly. (If you’re on mobile, check out our guide to setting up a mobile VPN. )
With military-grade encryption, AVG Secure VPN is the best VPN to stop internet throttling. Your internet use will stay hidden, protecting you against content-based internet throttling by your ISP. Whether your ISP is actually throttling your internet or not, go with the option that ensures they won’t.
Why is my ISP throttling my internet?
Your ISP may throttle your internet to try to minimize congestion by managing traffic on its network. Throttling can also happen if you’ve reached your data cap (usage limit) within a given period. Only when throttling is used against you should you do something about it. In the meantime, you can also try boosting your Wi-Fi signal to see if that speeds things up.
The most common reasons your ISP throttles your internet connection and limits your data transmission speeds include:
Tackling network congestion
Heavy internet usage will slow down the internet speeds of other people in the same area. To compensate, ISPs may throttle the connection of anyone using high amounts of bandwidth. You may experience slower speeds for a little while, especially if you’ve been engaging in bandwidth-heavy activities, but this usually occurs only during short “rush hour” periods.
Usage regulation
Your connection can become deprioritized if you’ve used a certain amount of bandwidth during the billing period — especially if your internet contract has a data cap. Even “unlimited” plans often have unofficial data caps. Your connection could be the first to get throttled in periods of network congestion, or your speeds might stay reduced until the next cycle starts.
If your work or other activity requires a stable, high-speed connection for hours at a time, look closely at your ISP’s policies on data use. Gamers will want the best setup possible, especially if they’re competing or streaming on Twitch.
Deprioritization of certain services
In many places, ISPs are allowed to limit access to streaming services as part of their efforts to manage everyone’s connections. But you shouldn’t be deprived of parts of the internet for arbitrary reasons totally unrelated to you. Likewise, those who want to stream without buffering might want to try a different ISP — if there are options where you live.
Is ISP throttling illegal?
ISP throttling is not illegal, and sometimes, it’s even necessary. Your connection would be much choppier if your ISP wasn’t allowed to manage usage over its network. Throttling allows your ISP to ensure stable service for everyone using the internet. But there are some ways that throttling can be unethical.
Net neutrality in the US
In the US, ISPs weren’t always allowed to throttle particular applications and services. But when the country’s net neutrality rules were repealed in 2018, these limits were removed. Now, ISPs are no longer legally required to treat all internet traffic equally.
ISPs are also allowed to make you pay for the “fast lane, ” something that wasn’t possible under net neutrality regulations. You’re presented with the “choice” to go with a standard connection or a marked-up package.
You might not have noticed the effects of net neutrality’s repeal, but an open and ethical internet provides equal opportunity to all. When the rulebook favors the corporate bottom line, you might be prevented from making a career pivot to online teaching or Twitch streaming. Net neutrality is an issue that concerns us all.
Bypass throttling with a VPN
AVG Secure VPN encrypts your online activity with a single click or tap. No matter where you are, your internet connection will be safe from prying eyes, with everything you do completely hidden.
If you’re looking for the simplest throttle bypass, AVG Secure VPN will prevent ISPs from limiting any online activity they don’t like. And with your IP address masked, you’ll be able to unblock websites, avoid IP-based web tracking, and prevent location-based price discrimination.
Take back the internet for yourself today, and try AVG Secure VPN with a 7-day free trial.
What Is ISP Throttling? Why It Happens & How to Stop It | AVG

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What Is ISP Throttling? Why It Happens & How to Stop It | AVG

What is internet throttling?
Internet throttling is when your internet service provider (ISP) slows down your internet on purpose. They can limit bandwidth whenever they want, and you might not notice. But when Netflix gets choppy or Facebook takes minutes to load, your ISP may be limiting data transmission over your connection.
Slow loading times don’t always indicate internet throttling — you might be browsing during peak hours, or you might need to do some browser maintenance.
But maybe your ISP is deliberately impeding your connection to those sites. This may happen because you visit those sites frequently, or maybe your ISP’s available bandwidth is overloaded and they need to throttle your connection.
Internet throttling violates the principle of net neutrality, which states that ISPs must give equal treatment to all communications over the internet.
In the worst-case scenario, you might be kept from doing your work or other important tasks. What’s more, your ISP can keep providing subpar service with impunity. That’s an anti-consumer business practice, and it keeps the internet from being freely accessible to everyone.
If your internet connection has a real effect on your daily life, you should pay attention to the issue of internet throttling.
How can I tell if my internet is being throttled?
If your internet is slower than normal, especially on certain websites, this may indicate that data throttling is happening on your connection. If you’re experiencing any of the symptoms listed here, ask yourself: Is my internet being throttled?
Your internet has become slower than usual, or your Wi-Fi connection is choppy or broken.
Certain websites or services load slower than others.
Your download speeds are suffering.
Your videos are constantly buffering or lagging.
Some websites seem to be blocked or non-functional.
If you don’t experience slowdowns often, you don’t need to worry about data throttling. But if you do, the next step is to use an internet throttling test, which analyzes your internet speed and lets you know if it’s being messed with. And there are other services that help you spot connection abnormalities.
Here are the three easiest ways to check if your ISP is throttling your internet connection:
Option 1: Use the Internet Health Test to see how your internet performs over a short period of time. This test checks your connection speed to popular access points and detects any unusual slowdowns. Here’s what good results tend to look like:
This test detects whether your ISP is slowing down streaming platforms like Netflix. The ISP can use this tactic as a bargaining chip to get the streaming service to pay them, which is unfair to you.
Option 2: Check if certain ports are blocked. Gamers will want to go to, click Port Scanners, and then click Game Ports. This advice is relevant only if you use an open port while gaming online and have recently begun experiencing issues.
You should worry only if a game you play is coming back with a “Timed-Out” status. The first step in that case is to try port forwarding, if you haven’t done so already.
If you’ve been comfortably using one of these ports, and it suddenly hits you with a “Rejected” status, you might have a problem with throttling.
Option 3: Check if the speed of your internet changes when using a VPN. The simplest way to see if your internet is being throttled is to turn on a VPN (virtual private network) and compare the speed. Though your VPN may slow down your internet slightly, the difference is nothing compared to ISP throttling — and you can always make your VPN connection go faster.
If your internet is faster with your VPN on, your ISP might be throttling your internet. So why don’t you just keep your VPN on all the time? Great question!
Solving content-based ISP throttling is one of the many benefits to using a VPN. A virtual private network also encrypts your data to prevent your ISP from monitoring what you do. Encryption secures your internet browsing, making any connection safe — including unsecured public Wi-Fi networks — as long as you’ve got the VPN turned on.
AVG Secure VPN is carefully designed to give you world-class online security, keep you anonymous while you browse, and bring the whole internet to your fingertips. Try it today with a 7-day free trial.
How to stop internet throttling
You can stop internet throttling by changing your ISP or hiding your internet activity with a VPN. Here are the best ways to stop internet throttling:
Switch to a new internet service provider.
Self-regulate your bandwidth use.
Upgrade your internet plan to a higher data cap.
Use a VPN.
Your ISP might have a policy on network throttling that you can find on their website — look in the terms and conditions for anything that mentions bandwidth limits, data caps, or similar terms. You can also learn about their throttling policies by reading user reviews. If you can’t or don’t want to switch ISPs, use a VPN.
How does a VPN stop internet throttling?
By encrypting your internet connection, a VPN prevents your ISP from monitoring your online activity and throttling you because of it. While your ISP can still impose limits on your total bandwidth use, you’ll no longer need to be worried about your activity compromising your connection.
VPNs are easy to set up, and masking your activity is a surefire way to stop your ISP from limiting your access to certain websites and services. And by hiding your IP address, VPNs open up your streaming and TV options significantly. (If you’re on mobile, check out our guide to setting up a mobile VPN. )
With military-grade encryption, AVG Secure VPN is the best VPN to stop internet throttling. Your internet use will stay hidden, protecting you against content-based internet throttling by your ISP. Whether your ISP is actually throttling your internet or not, go with the option that ensures they won’t.
Why is my ISP throttling my internet?
Your ISP may throttle your internet to try to minimize congestion by managing traffic on its network. Throttling can also happen if you’ve reached your data cap (usage limit) within a given period. Only when throttling is used against you should you do something about it. In the meantime, you can also try boosting your Wi-Fi signal to see if that speeds things up.
The most common reasons your ISP throttles your internet connection and limits your data transmission speeds include:
Tackling network congestion
Heavy internet usage will slow down the internet speeds of other people in the same area. To compensate, ISPs may throttle the connection of anyone using high amounts of bandwidth. You may experience slower speeds for a little while, especially if you’ve been engaging in bandwidth-heavy activities, but this usually occurs only during short “rush hour” periods.
Usage regulation
Your connection can become deprioritized if you’ve used a certain amount of bandwidth during the billing period — especially if your internet contract has a data cap. Even “unlimited” plans often have unofficial data caps. Your connection could be the first to get throttled in periods of network congestion, or your speeds might stay reduced until the next cycle starts.
If your work or other activity requires a stable, high-speed connection for hours at a time, look closely at your ISP’s policies on data use. Gamers will want the best setup possible, especially if they’re competing or streaming on Twitch.
Deprioritization of certain services
In many places, ISPs are allowed to limit access to streaming services as part of their efforts to manage everyone’s connections. But you shouldn’t be deprived of parts of the internet for arbitrary reasons totally unrelated to you. Likewise, those who want to stream without buffering might want to try a different ISP — if there are options where you live.
Is ISP throttling illegal?
ISP throttling is not illegal, and sometimes, it’s even necessary. Your connection would be much choppier if your ISP wasn’t allowed to manage usage over its network. Throttling allows your ISP to ensure stable service for everyone using the internet. But there are some ways that throttling can be unethical.
Net neutrality in the US
In the US, ISPs weren’t always allowed to throttle particular applications and services. But when the country’s net neutrality rules were repealed in 2018, these limits were removed. Now, ISPs are no longer legally required to treat all internet traffic equally.
ISPs are also allowed to make you pay for the “fast lane, ” something that wasn’t possible under net neutrality regulations. You’re presented with the “choice” to go with a standard connection or a marked-up package.
You might not have noticed the effects of net neutrality’s repeal, but an open and ethical internet provides equal opportunity to all. When the rulebook favors the corporate bottom line, you might be prevented from making a career pivot to online teaching or Twitch streaming. Net neutrality is an issue that concerns us all.
Bypass throttling with a VPN
AVG Secure VPN encrypts your online activity with a single click or tap. No matter where you are, your internet connection will be safe from prying eyes, with everything you do completely hidden.
If you’re looking for the simplest throttle bypass, AVG Secure VPN will prevent ISPs from limiting any online activity they don’t like. And with your IP address masked, you’ll be able to unblock websites, avoid IP-based web tracking, and prevent location-based price discrimination.
Take back the internet for yourself today, and try AVG Secure VPN with a 7-day free trial.
Am I being throttled, and what can I do about it - Surfshark

Am I being throttled, and what can I do about it – Surfshark

If you start to notice your internet speed dropping, online videos appearing in low resolution, online gaming becoming laggy, or sites taking a long time to load, you might start to wonder: “am I being throttled? ” Internet throttling is when your internet service provider (ISP) actually takes action to slow down your internet speeds for high-bandwidth activities like streaming, downloading, or playing games. It can be a very annoying thing to deal with, but there are ways around it.
In short: Am I being throttled?
You might have suspicions about internet throttling, but you’ll need to run a simple three-step test to see if your internet connection is actually being throttled by your internet service provider.
Step 1. Run an online speed test
The first step to identify internet throttling from internet service providers is to run a simple online speed test using one of the many free speed test tools available online. This test will tell you your current download and upload speeds.
Step 2. Connect to a reputable Virtual Private Network (VPN)
The next step of identifying possible ISP throttling from your internet provider is to connect to a VPN. The VPN will encrypt your internet connection and reroute it via a secure server in a different location, preventing your internet service provider from monitoring your online activities and affecting your internet speeds.
Step 3. Run the speed test again
Once the VPN connection has been established, run the speed test again to check for data throttling. If the results show that your internet speed has improved, it’s highly likely that you’re dealing with a case of internet throttling on behalf of your internet providers.
Why do ISPs intentionally slow down internet connection?
The simple answer to this question is that internet service providers engage in data throttling to save money. The more data people use, the greater the costs become for internet providers. So, as their networks expand and their number of users grows, they use ISP throttling as a money-saving measure.
ISPs also have a habit of using ISP throttling in certain circumstances or at certain times:
During peak hours
When you’re playing online video games
When you’re streaming videos
When you’re downloading large files
In a way, ISPs throttle internet connections as a kind of punishment for users who are using “too much” data. This may sound extreme, but it’s a fair explanation for why they do it. It can also be a marketing method to push you towards upgrading to a better plan with faster speeds and no data limit.
How do you stop throttling?
So now we know why many ISPs generally throttle users, but what can you do about it and how do you stop data throttling? Well, there’s one clear and simple solution: use a VPN. A VPN is the best option available for people who are dealing with slower speeds and who want to fix internet throttling in their own homes.
So how do you get started? All it takes to stop ISP throttling and move into the internet fast lanes is a few simple steps:
Download a trusted VPN to your device.
Create your account and sign in.
Connect to a server location of your choosing.
Enjoy the internet and all of your favorite online services with no more lag.
How does a VPN stop throttling?
Essentially, a VPN works by encrypting your internet traffic. This means that it secures and hides your connections when your computer or other devices sends out signals to servers and locations around the world.
Since your internet traffic connections are hidden or masked by the VPN, your ISP won’t be able to read those connections and monitor your data usage. In other words, they won’t be able to see if you’re downloading, playing games, streaming movies, and so on.
ISPs need to be able to clearly see what you’re doing in order to throttle connections. If they can’t read your internet information, then throttling your internet is no longer an option for them.
However, it’s worth noting that VPNs are not able to solve slow internet issues that are caused by other factors aside from selective throttling, such as high traffic congestion on the network or a data cap that might be enforced in the fine print of your internet package.
The risks of free VPNs
It might be tempting to pick a free VPN to help with slow internet speed issues. However, free VPNs are unlikely to offer much help. They can have security weaknesses and often come with their own data caps to force users into upgrading to a paid or premium plan. They often have weak network infrastructure too.
It’s important to remember that free VPNs have to make money somehow. They can do this in various ways, such as by selling user data, making them less safe, or by running ads, which can be infuriating to deal with. They might also simply have low standards of performance that are designed to funnel their users towards a paid plan.
This is why free VPNs tend to be slower and lower-performing in general than paid ones, and it’s also why a lot of users simply don’t trust them. The whole point of a VPN is to protect your privacy and help you enjoy better and safer online connections, but free VPNs often fail to adhere to these standards. To truly get more speed from your wireless or cable internet, you need a proper VPN with high-speed infrastructure.
Does bandwidth throttling affect mobile data?
Yes, if an ISP is selectively throttling you, your mobile data on Android and iOS devices can also be at risk. Aside from the regular ISP reasons for slowing down your connection, this kind of throttling is used to push mobile users into getting a plan that offers higher data caps.
Is data throttling illegal?
Not necessarily. It mostly depends on where you live, as countries have different rules and laws on things like throttling your internet. In the US, since the death of Net Neutrality back in 2017, it has been legal for ISPs to throttle data. Meanwhile, in Singapore, throttling is illegal, but ISPs reportedly still do it.
What’s more, data throttling can be quite hard to catch and prove, so lots of ISPs feel that they can get away with it to save their own profits without any real risks. They don’t even need to inform customers or an account holder when engaging in throttling.
It can be very sneaky when an ISP directly throttles your connection. They may slow down specific websites or activities, but the user might not notice any real change in the results of certain speed tests.
So, if you wanted to actually prove that your ISP is throttling you and take action against them, you may struggle to get any real evidence together, and it would be very easy for the company to simply deny the throttling and claim that they don’t engage in throttling at all.
Are there justifiable cases of internet throttling?
Yes, there are certain explanations that can be given to justify the use of throttling. For example, ISPs might want to slow down the speeds of certain users who are accessing questionable sites or engaging in suspicious or illegal behavior.
Yes, a VPN is the cure to internet throttling
Having your connection throttled isn’t fun. It can be really frustrating to deal with tiring loading screens, laggy gameplay, blurry streaming videos, and other issues. But, as this guide has shown, there are options available to help. You can run speed tests to get an answer and then set up a VPN to stop it. Surfshark VPN can help you enjoy the best speeds and beat throttling once and for all.

Frequently Asked Questions about stop throttling my internet

How do I stop Internet throttling?

Here are the best ways to stop internet throttling:Switch to a new internet service provider.Self-regulate your bandwidth use.Upgrade your internet plan to a higher data cap.Use a VPN.May 19, 2021

Is there a device to stop Internet throttling?

A VPN is the best option available for people who are dealing with slower speeds and who want to fix internet throttling in their own homes. … All it takes to stop ISP throttling and move into the internet fast lanes is a few simple steps: Download a trusted VPN to your device.Sep 9, 2021

How can you tell if your internet is being throttled?

The most obvious way to tell if your internet is being throttled would be to run a free speed test available online. Unfortunately, most internet providers can detect speed tests and artificially inflate your speeds to make it appear that they’re not throttling you.Aug 10, 2021

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