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Is Popcorn Time Safe? [2022]

Is Popcorn Time Safe? [2022]


Popcorn Time is a popular app that allows people to download torrent videos directly in a dedicated player. Unlike regular torrent clients, Popcorn Time does the hard work for you – allowing you to click on a video and watch it instantly. This automated processing of difficult peer-to-peer (P2P) stuff has made Popcorn Time tremendously popular.

What Popcorn Time users don’t always realize is that free streaming on Popcorn Time is piracy. Thus, the only way to stream on Popcorn Time without fear of repercussions is to use a Virtual Private Network (VPN). Using Popcorn Time without a VPN is a huge risk that no one should take.

Popcorn Time is legal, and it may not be the purpose you’re using it for…

The Popcorn Time app itself is completely legal, and you can’t get in trouble because of the simple process of installing Popcorn Time. However, Popcorn Time provides access to a huge repository of video titles – 99% of them are copyrighted. It is illegal to download and watch this copyrighted content with Popcorn Time, because you are watching it without paying the copyright owner.

What if I get arrested?

In some countries, using Popcorn Time personally will not get you into trouble. However, in most locations around the world, you can be sued. You can also receive speculative billing letters from attorneys seeking damages on behalf of these copyright holders – both of which can be avoided by using a VPN with Popcorn Time. Either way, using Popcorn Time without a VPN is ridiculous – no matter where you live.

Is Popcorn Time Safe?

In general, yes. The application itself is not malicious if you download it from a reputable source (official site – see below). However, there are deceptive versions of Popcorn Time in existence, and these unofficial versions are often filled with malware by hackers. This makes it necessary for users to be very careful about where they download Popcorn Time from.

What time of popcorn should I use?

Popcorn Time is an open source program that was abandoned by its original creator. Since then, many developers have picked up the ball and ran with it, creating their own versions (known as “forks”) of it.

Unfortunately, some branches are intentionally malicious and will install malware on your system. Others simply demand that you pay for what should be free software.

be cerfull!

Reputable Popcorn Time forks don’t cost anything. If you find one that does, run away from it very quickly!

As of January 2022, the only Popcorn Time forks we recommend are listed below – so stick with them when you download the app.


Popcorn claims to be the “most official” version of Popcorn Time, although the meaning of that with free and open source software remains open to question. However, it was approved by Federico Abad (aka “Sebastian” – the original developer of Popcorn Time) before changing its name. promotes the use of its partner service. Please check out our full review. It’s not terrible, but the tl:dr version is that we’d recommend using a third-party VPN service instead. is available for Windows, macOS, Linux (Tarball), Android, and Android TV (5.0+). The default catalog is huge and up-to-date. Steam is also supported via Chromecast, Airplay, and DLNA and worked without a problem in our tests.


Previously, it was called Popcorn, now it is called Popcorn Although it still has the tagline: “This Popcorn Time service will never be removed.” Besides, it has been around almost from the start, and this fork has pioneered many features that are now standard in Popcorn Time.

As with, has teamed up with a VPN service – in this case Anonymous VPN. There are a few inconveniences from this (more than, but they are easily overlooked in favor of using a better third-party option (like the VPNs listed in this article).

Popcorn is available for Windows, macOS Linux, and Android (4.0+). There is also an iOS version, although this requires jailbreaking your device and installing Cydia to run.

Most content is available in 720p and 1080p resolutions. In our personal experience, has a better library than, especially when it comes to TV shows.

Some considerations

Note that different Popcorn Time forks source their libraries from different torrent sites, so the available titles may vary slightly depending on the version you’re using.

It’s also worth noting that the forks listed below have undergone various name changes during their often turbulent histories. For ease of understanding, we simply refer to them by their current names. Due to the constant animosity between the two, both tend to make baseless accusations at each other.

Although rare, Popcorn Time is also likely to cause users to download a virus or malware. For this reason, we highly recommend anyone who uses Popcorn Time to have a good antivirus with real-time protection and a reliable VPN installed.

Does Popcorn Time have a built-in VPN?

There are different versions of Popcorn Time in circulation, all these different “forks” of Popcorn Time are slightly different and some even have a VPN built into their service. has partnered with AnonymousVPN to offer VPN services to its users. However, this VPN is generally slow and unreliable. also provides built-in VPN functionality, via its partner Again, this VPN is not particularly good, and we highly recommend signing up for a third-party service instead.

Using a Popcorn Time VPN is better than not using a VPN at all, however, you are still putting yourself at risk when using these substandard services.

The VPNs we recommend Popcorn Time are all world-class services with strong no-logs policies and military-grade encryption. This ensures that when you use Popcorn Time, there is no risk of your data being intercepted by your ISP or the government.

Can I use Popcorn Time without a VPN?

There is nothing stopping you from using Popcorn Time without a VPN. However, if you do, your ISP will know exactly which TV shows and movies you have pirated. This can lead to fines or even prosecution. The best case scenario is that your ISP may present you with a cease and desist message and possibly cut your network.

Using Popcorn Time without a VPN is not worth the risk

No matter how you look at it, using Popcorn Time without a VPN is incredibly risky, which is why even the developers of Popcorn Time are urging people to only use it with a VPN. On the other hand, it is necessary to remember that not every VPN is created equal.

Some VPNs keep logs, which means that if they are connected, they will have logs about what their users have done online. Other (mainly free) VPNs can contain spyware and have been found to lie about the level of encryption they provide. Some free services do not use encryption at all. Using this type of VPN exposes you to great risks.

Additionally, some VPNs are very slow. This makes it useless for streaming massive amounts of video content on Popcorn Time. For this reason, it is essential that you sign up for a reputable, fast and secure VPN provider. You can use the following link to find more information about the five best VPNs for Popcorn Time. Below, we’ve included the shortlist to give you a quick look:

These are the VPNs we recommend for Popcorn Time

If you want more information about the VPNs listed below, be sure to check out our guide to the Best VPNs for Popcorn Time.

  1. ExpressVPN – a super fast VPN with amazing security – perfect for streaming Popcorn Time
  2. NordVPN – Provides fast speeds, great security, and a dedicated P2P server list to find servers optimized for Popcorn Time
  3. CyberGhost VPN – Easy to use and secure with a no-logs policy
  4. Private Internet Access – Another no-logs VPN that is great for PT
  5. Surfshark – Strong Presence and No Logs Policy

Other ways to stay safe when using PT

A VPN should be your priority when using Popcorn Time. Always make sure your VPN is connected before using the service. Below we’ve included more tips to ensure that you protect yourself as much as possible:

  1. Turn on the Kill Switch. This VPN feature ensures that if for some reason your VPN connection fails, you will not leak unencrypted data to your ISP. If your VPN connection fails while you are using Popcorn Time, your ISP will be able to see that you are downloading content. For this reason, it is important to use a kill switch, which cuts off the internet if the VPN connection fails.

  2. Use an active antivirus with real-time malware protection. When downloading files via Popcorn Time, it is possible that you will encounter malware. An active antivirus will scan all incoming downloads for exploits to keep your system safe.

  3. Set up a sandbox environment on your computer. If you set up a virtual machine on your device to watch Popcorn Time, all downloaded files will be separated from the rest of your system. This will isolate any malware from the rest of your system if you get infected by mistake.

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