As we all know that our data or information is not safe on the internet. But we all are using the internet daily. What we can do to stop our information from getting leaked or revealed. There is one thing that I believe, every person who owns a smart gadget and using the internet should know: VPN, which stands for Virtual Private Network.
Let’s dive in this article together and find out.
Why a VPN?
Almost every day we can find some news about somebody’s email getting hacked, identities stolen or privacy exploited. We should get used to it: It is a new reality. It’s more important for us to secure our computers nowadays than it is for us to lock our doors.
It’s not easy to survive with a stolen identity. It takes a lot of time, in some cases more than a decade to recover your identity.
So, How can you protect yourself? There are a number of methods or measures you can take, such as make some updations in your Facebook security settings or creating long enough, secure passwords, but one of the easiest or we can say the simplest thing you can do today is to start using a VPN(Virtual Private Network).
It’s not full proof and despite the marketing, I don’t believe we’re ever completely anonymous or totally safe on the internet, but it is the best step you can take to secure yourself online.
VPN (Virtual Private Network)
Well then that begs the question, what exactly is a Virtual Private Network? A VPN, again a virtual private network, is a means to encrypt, or secure, your data to keep it safe and add a layer of privacy to protect your identity.
Normally, your computer accesses the internet directly via your internet service provider. This type of direct connection may be fast but, it’s not secured and it’s very easily tracking you.
When you access the internet via a VPN, imagine that your connection is routed through the internet via a secure tunnel to a server in another location – like in a different city, or maybe in a different country.
Here, the server will access the internet for you. Keeping your data safe is not the only benefit here, you’re also hiding your location by making the internet think that you’re located where the server is, not your actual home or office.
VPNs were developed for big corporations to protect their sensitive data being sent over public and private networks, but ever since Wikileaks became a household name, the personal VPN market has rightly grown by leaps and bounds.
What most people don’t realize is that not all VPN encryption is similar. You might hear terms like OpenVPN versus PPTP or 256-bit encryption versus 128-bit encryption.
It’s not important for you to understand all of these connection protocols, just know that a higher bit encryption rate is better than a lower bit encryption rate and, something is better than nothing.
VPN in the real world
Now, How does it look like to use a Virtual Private Network in the real world? With a VPN, you can jump on the internet at any public place and be confident that all the passwords you are typing or the websites you are visiting can’t be intercepted by a hacker.
You can use Virtual Private Network to spoof your location also. For example, you may be logging on to my computer in Bangkok, Thailand but with a VPN you can spoof your location to Chicago or Paris.
This is important if you travel a lot and like to use services like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, Pandora, any type of streaming service that restricts content based on geo-location.
Why Virtual Private Network is important
Now let’s stop for a moment and consider the reasons not to use a Virtual Private Network. I mean, if a VPN is so important, why isn’t everybody using a VPN? This is the big question. There are a few reasons why this is the case.
First, most people don’t realize that something as simple as using a public Wi-Fi network outside their home puts their security at serious risk. I’m not being an alarmist here. It is very easy to hack computers over a public Wi-Fi network.
Second, some people don’t like using a VPN because it naturally slows down your internet speeds. You cannot use a VPN without having any loss of speed in your connection. Finally, personal VPNs cost money.
There are some free VPNs out there but in reality, nothing is “free”. These free VPNs, either display a lot of ads or sell your sensitive information like login credentials, which is exactly the opposite reason for using a Virtual Private Network! The paid services are not that much expensive, but for some reason, people hesitate to purchase one.
And the conclusion of this explanation of a Virtual Private Network is: First, a VPN is not a connection to the internet. It is a secure, safe, and easy way to access the internet. Good thing is that A Virtual Private Network is really very easy to use, even if you are not “tech-savvy”.
Finally, if you use public Wi-Fi at places like a coffee shop, an airport, a church, your local grocery store, or anywhere, you should seriously consider a VPN.
Thanks for reading. I hope this article is informative. Safe Surfing 😊