Using a VPN or a Virtual Private Network may sound intimidating or highly technical - especially for the average internet user. The truth is, VPNs are a simple and effective security tool for businesses and individuals alike. Anyone who transmits sensitive information of any kind across the internet can benefit from the added safety that a VPN offers.
Simply put, VPN providers protect you (and your information) by hiding your IP address and encrypting your data as it travels through secured channels. This safeguards your online identity and allows you to browse the internet in secure anonymity.
Virtual Private Networks provide you your own encrypted server that hides your IP address from potential hackers, corporations, and government agencies.
The beauty of a VPN is that you can use it even when you are using a public or shared wifi connection!
The way it works is that the VPN actually circumvents your internet service provider, digitally relocating you in order to keep your data safe. By encrypting your data (that is, by hiding information in complicated, indecipherable code) you can enjoy enhanced security when traveling, gaming, or streaming on the internet.
You are most vulnerable when browsing on public wifi like at the airport or coffee shop. When connected to public wifi, things like emails, bank information, account passwords, and browsing history can be tracked by bad actors. Using a VPN eliminates this vulnerability.
Even when connected to your home or work password protected networks, your browsing data can still be collected by your internet service provider (e.g. Comcast, Spectrum, Verizon, etc.). Did you know that this data can still be collected and sold to advertisers even if you are using “incognito” mode? In the event of a data breach (they happen all the time) these private data can be exposed. The VPN connection obscures your IP address from your service provider as you user the internet.
One of the main reasons people choose to use a VPN is to prevent their favorite apps and internet services (like Facebook) from attributing user behavior back to their IP address, which is essentially how these services “spy” on you.
Many people are also weary about overly curious government actors tracking their online activity. If government surveillance is a concern, you may want to consider investing in a VPN
By masking your location, VPNs can also allow you to access content that is not offered in particular locations. Don’t worry, VPN usage is not illegal in most countries, including in the U.S.
If you are working remotely, VPN data encryption allows you to keep sensitive and confidential information safe when off-site.
Note that whole most VPN use is
Ever notice that airlines and hotel bookings seem to change their prices based on your location? If you haven’t noticed, they absolutely do. An added benefit of a VPNs location “spoofing” feature is that you may save on booking travel and accommodations by changing the appearance of your location.