A Virtual Private Network is a connection method used to increase security and privacy to private and public networks. They are mostly used by corporations to protect sensitive data but are becoming increasingly popular for personal use as people look for smarter ways to protect their data and privacy.
A VPN replaces the user’s initial IP address with one from the Virtual Private Network provider. Subscribers can obtain an IP address from any gateway city the VPN service provides. For instance, you may live in London, but with a Virtual Private Network, you can appear to live in New York or any number of gateway cities.
One of the key benefits of VPN servers are that it serves as an added security measure while online. This tech firstly disguises your IP address which is often used by government, hackers or other third-parties to gain access to your movements online as well as your location. This will also prevent your internet service provider or ISP from storing or logging your online activity and stopping your information from being retrieved. Your IP address can also normally be traced right back to your computer and by using a VPN this will no longer be possible.
- Data Encryption
When utilizing a VPN server all information is sent through an “encrypted tunnel” ensuring your data cannot be viewed by unauthorized parties. This is essential for companies who send or work on sensitive information via the internet and provides peace of mind knowing that it cannot be obtained.
- Geographic Benefits
The majority of VPN servers allow the user to select what country they would like the IP address to display. This has numerous benefits, including the ability to access sites and services that are blocked in certain countries, cheaper travel expenses (as airlines and travel agents prices vary according to your location when making a booking) and even streaming services such as Netflix are not operational worldwide. VPN allows you to navigate around these types of geographical barriers.
- No network dependancy
A VPN operates on any connection or network as well as Wifi hotspots. Once it is loaded on your device you are fully protected regardless of how you are connecting to the web. Certain VPN providers even allow you to link a number of devices to one plan, lowering cost and increasing protection.
- Available on any smart device
The service can protect all types of devices including smartphones, desktop computers, tablets, and laptops so no matter how you choose to connect to the internet once your VPN is loaded, you can be assured you are protected.
VPNs are illegal in some countries and shouldn’t be used if you are living in one of these countries as it could lead to a hefty fine or jail sentence. So, it’s important to check first. Using a VPN does have significant benefits to protect your data in a time when cybercrime is on the rise, as well as, users’ concerns over privacy. Like anything, VPNs can be used for law abiding purposes but unfortunately, sometimes VPNs are be used to commit acts that are illegal, such as, downloading and selling copyrighted information, hacking into computers or networks without authorization, and cyberstalking.
It is important to go with a reputable company as there have been reports that some VPN providers who offer free VPN services have been monitoring users’ activity and using their data. Some free VPN services can also slow down your connection or affect your computer’s performance, so it is important to do your homework and select a provider that can offer a high speed, secure network.
Whether you are concerned over what personal information is being tracked on the internet or want to bump up your security for when you connect to WiFi networks in public places, a VPN can be the answer. Whether you are looking for personal use or for your business, VPNs allow you to initiate anonymous, encrypted browsing sessions over any network connection.