VPNs are growing in popularity, perhaps as a reaction to security fears online, but also because it can help you watch streaming services like Netflix or BBC iPlayer from another country.
First, let us briefly explain what a VPN is and how it works, to get you started.
VPN stands for virtual private network and there are several reasons why you might want to use one.
A VPN prevents people from spying on you while you use the Internet, and this is useful if you travel with a laptop, smartphone or tablet and access Wi-Fi hotspots in public places. It does the same thing when you are using the Internet at home, or in the office.
A VPN can also be used to make it appear as if you are located in another country. This can unlock services that are blocked from your real location, for example, you can watch catch-up TV like BBC iPlayer while on holiday or a business trip abroad.
As for how it is to be used for security-related issues, here are a couple of use cases for your consideration.
Unlock the Internet
VPN gives you the ability to unlock the Internet. Not a lot of people know the Internet is on lockdown. Geo-restrictions prevent users in different regions from accessing content in other regions. Why? There is no clear reason for doing so. Some claim it has to do with licensing issues, but the Internet was never meant to be walled off this way.
If you want to experience and browse the Internet as it was originally intended, a VPN will help you do just that. All you need to do is to connect to a VPN server of a specific region, and this way you can access localised content of every region you are connected to. It may be a hassle, but it is worth it considering how much content you end up getting access to.
What is even more interesting is the fact that you can do so without compromising your security or anonymity online. No matter what site you visit or access content from, you will remain invisible through and through.
If you have ever felt like banging your head against the wall due to the hassles you had to face while streaming your favorite content, you are not alone. Some ISPs intentionally resort to throttling so that Internet users opt for a specific service instead of the one they prefer. The reason for doing so can vary, but it has to do with monetary benefits. The good news is you can enjoy effortless streaming with a VPN.
When you subscribe to a reliable service, and when you are connected to a VPN server, even your own ISP will not be able to track your online activity.
Carry out transactions securely
When you are banking or shopping online, you never know who is monitoring your online traffic. Apart from your ISP, it is possible that a hacker may keep tabs on you without making his/her presence known.
With a VPN, not only is your IP address hidden, but features like military grade encryption and secure DNS protection ensure you are covered on all fronts. This means you will never have to worry about cyber-criminals, hackers and third parties ever again.
Become invisible on public Wi-Fi networks
While travelling or on the move, you may need to connect to a public Wi-Fi network. Regardless of the reason for doing so, you need to understand that public Wi-Fi networks are not at all safe. These are essentially breeding grounds for hackers and cyber-criminals, always on the lookout for unsuspecting victims that do not know what is headed their way. Unless you want to become a victim, it would be wise for you to up your security game while connecting to public networks using a VPN.
Protect private networks with dedicated IP
Whether it is a private network at work or at home, if the right steps are not taken, your information could fall in the wrong hands. Fortunately, you can protect these networks by using a dedicated IP.
The feature gives you the ability to connect to your private network using a dedicated IP. Using any other IP will not give you access to your network no matter how hard you, or anyone else for that matter, tries.