VPN Beginner’s Guide
What is a VPN?
A VPN (Virtual Private Network) is a security service available which allows you to access the web in the most private and safest manner possible. A VPN encrypts your online activities and redirects your connection to the Internet or rather, switches to another server in order to mask your online identity.
You can utilize a VPN for two purposes; for personal or corporate use. Personal VPN allows you to unlock geo-restricted websites by making the VPN provider’s servers secure enough to act as access points.
For a corporate solution, you can employ the VPN for accessing your company’s network in a stealthier and secure way. Your database and company traffic will be entirely encrypted and could only be shared with your staff.
What does a VPN do?
So this is what a VPN does for you; when you boost up the VPN application or software, the service starts encrypting your entire data and activities even before your Internet Service Provider or WIFI starts linking with your device to seize any of your data.
Without a VPN, when you try to access a website, your Internet Service Provider receives your request and grants you access. A VPN comes to the rescue and spares your online traffic from getting into the ISP’s grasps and protects your online identity.
Typically, the ISPs track and store your data and give way for advertising parties, government surveillance or corporations to nag you. A VPN enables your data to become undecipherable to anyone who tries to read it and also seals your IP address from being transparent.
Is it really secure to use a VPN?
The security provided and the limitations of technology solely depend and fall entirely into the hands of your VPN provider. VPN protocols play a crucial role in this factor. Data transmission is important and online protocols help us determine whether your VPN provider can handle censorship and firewalls.
In addition to bypassing censorship, there are other factors by which one can ensure security with the help of a VPN. You must use public WIFIs regularly; therefore, a VPN is an excellent approach to protecting oneself from internet theft and snooping.
What would I need a VPN for?
A Virtual Private Network can be used for a variety of causes. It serves various solutions and security measures. When you open lots of websites on a daily basis, you’re more likely to attract trackers and snoopers your way. A VPN helps you gain anonymity and masks your identity from the world.
If you cannot unlock a site or platform, the VPN provider will grant you entrance to its own server from which you can access the restricted website. Similarly, a VPN enables you to stream and play games online without ever being watched. It also protects your browsing data, traffic, or personal information from getting stored by websites.
Is it legal to use a VPN?
The term ‘legal’ is a broad concept where a VPN is concerned. Well, technically yes; a VPN is legal to optimize. Although, if a user ever decides to abuse the authority of a VPN, then you could get into trouble with the law.
Whether or not a VPN is legal depends entirely upon the consumer. If you are prone to stick by the guidelines and stay farther from government surveillance, you should be fine. If, however, you test the waters and try to use VPN in high censored countries such as China, Iran, UAE, or North Korea, you’d be traced and sink knee deep in trouble.
Can I use a VPN for anonymous Torrenting?
A VPN doesn’t make you fully anonymous over the Internet but the extent with which it does rests solely on the VPN provider. Similarly, many VPNs shy away from allowing torrenting but there are ones which still do it confidently.
So yes, a VPN can allow you to transfer and download files IF you have the right to them. If, however, you try to engage in piracy, most VPN will block your access to P2P.
Can I use a VPN for unlocking Netflix?
Most VPNs are used only so people like you and me can watch our favorite series and movies restrictions-free. But like most things, whether or not you can unlock geo-restricted Netflix content, depends on the particular VPN provider you’re using.
If your VPN has powerful servers which can withstand not being tracked by Netflix; then yes, you can. If however, your IP ends up being traced even after switching different servers at a time, I suggest you steer away from that VPN provider and consider purchasing a new one.
How to install a VPN on my router?
If you install the VPN on your Internet router, everything that’s connected through that router automatically becomes VPN protected. It’s the best and most effective way to conceal everything that has web access in one go.
Installation is fairly simple and if your router is VPN-compatible, all you have to do is go to the Setup Page of your VPN and go through the router settings, copy/paste the activation code into the router and change the server location from default. It’s nothing you wouldn’t be able to manage.
How does a VPN mask my IP address?
A VPN masks your IP address by switching your default location to one of its own servers. That particular server then grants you a unique IP which goes with the location of the server. If your VPN provider is powerful enough to avoid being tracked, then your IP will be protected. Otherwise, the VPN cuts your Internet connection through the Kill Switch and shows you offline so even though you were traced, your identity wouldn’t become entirely available.
When I shouldn’t use a VPN?
If you followed the Privacy and Logging policy of your current VPN provider, make sure they do not store any of your data, except your subscription details and email. If the policy does not mention as such, do not use that particular VPN as it can be fraudulent and can seize your sensitive data such as the browsing history, traffic, passwords, bank account details, etc.
A VPN can slow down your Internet speed a tad bit, but if you notice your speed being questionably low, hit the kill switch to avoid any IP leaks.
If your VPN takes your privacy and security seriously, you should be fine.