What Is VPN?

WHAT IS VPN?

If you aren’t sure if a VPN is something technical or a rock band, then the following info is for you.

Rather than connect directly to the internet, a  VPN, or Virtual Private Network, is a service that allows you to connect to the internet via a server run by a VPN provider. You still have to have an internet service provider, VPN is an extra layer on top of that.

All data traveling between your computer, phone or tablet, and this “VPN server” is securely encrypted. As a result of this setup, VPNs:

  • Provide privacy by hiding your internet activity from your ISP (and government)
  • Allow you to evade censorship (by school, work, your ISP, or government)
  • Allow you to “geo-spoof” your location in order to access services unfairly denied to you based on your geographical location (or when you are on holiday)
  • Protect you against hackers when using a public WiFi hotspot
  • Allow you to P2P download in safety
  • Allow users to securely access a private network and share data remotely through public networks.

VPN services cost between $5 and $10 a month. You can find free providers, but remember you get what you pay for and a service that is free to you is making money somehow.

With VPN your internet provider will not know what you are doing on the internet. It can’t see your data because it is encrypted. It can only see that you are connected to the VPN provider.

Your VPN provider can know what you are up to so it is good practice to pick one that employees technical measures to protect you.

Your internet may slow down – it takes processing power to encrypt and decrypt data. However if you have strong and fast internet, you probably won’t notice a change.

It is legal for US citizens and in most other countries.

When choosing a VPN provider check their reviews.

When you share a VPN connection over a wireless network, every device that is connected to the network is automatically protected by the VPN.

This means there is no need to download and install VPN apps for each one of your devices.

You need:

  • an active VPN account
  • a computer connected to the internet through an ethernet cable or WiF.
  • Wi-Fi switched on on your mobile devices
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