VPN stands for Virtual Private Network and it is a service that masks your location and encrypts your data to keep it safe. It's the perfect solution for accessing blocked websites, hiding and changing your IP address, getting around geographic restrictions, and bypassing censorship.
But do you need a VPN? A VPN can be a solution to many problems but before choosing one, you need to be sure that it will be useful to you. Let's start this article with all the benefits of using a VPN.
The 11 Best Reasons to Use a VPN
These are 11 reasons in particular in which a VPN is extremely helpful:
1) To keep your internet activity and identity private.
Everything you do on the internet becomes anonymous when you connect to a VPN. You use a virtual identity with an IP address that is not your own, making it extremely difficult to reach you.
If you use a VPN, for instance, your ISP or website only sees the IP address of the VPN server, not your real IP address. Therefore, any activity you conduct through your VPN connection is anonymous and inaccessible to anyone monitoring your traffic (if you use the right VPN provider though). This ensures that your identity remains completely private.
You can use a VPN client on your computer or a mobile device using a VPN app.
2) To bypass geo-restrictions and access content that is not available in your country.
Some contents are only available in certain countries or are only blocked in your country. Using a VPN will allow you to connect to a server in another country to bypass this restriction. Indeed, some VPN users only want to spoof their location to access content that is only available in a specific country.
Here are 3 examples of cool geo-restricted content you can access with a VPN:
Free foreign TV channels live streams (BBC Iplayer, KIJK, CBS, Servus TV, MatchTV, France Television, and so on.)
Any foreign Netflix library (Netflix US or Netflix Japan for anime for example)
Sci-Hub and Libgen websites (to read any scientific resource; these websites are blocked in many countries)
3) To protect yourself from cybercrime and other online threats.
With a connected VPN, cybercriminals who want to know your IP address will come across the VPN server's IP address, not yours. As a result, they won't be able to locate you geographically or engage in DDOS attacks.
4) To download anonymously.
Did you know that there was a website that listed everything you downloaded in torrent with your Wi-Fi IP address? If not, it is IknowWhatYouDownload and I recommend you to go there. When a VPN is connected, all your downloads are anonymous and you won't have any bad surprises.
In some countries, downloading copyrighted content in peer-to-peer (torrent) is severely punished. Using a VPN, your ISP (internet service provider) won't know at all what you're doing and downloading online.
5) To be secure on a public Wi-Fi hotspot at a cafe or the airport.
Generally, it is strongly advisable to use virtual private network encryption when using public Wi-Fi hotspots. A public Wi-Fi network is open to anyone without having to register or log in.
This type of network is typically found in airports, coffee shops, libraries, and other public places. Hackers can easily break in to intercept the personal data of users (email address, password, credit card information, browsing history...) browsing non-HTTPS websites on this hotspot.
A VPN routes all of your traffic through an encrypted tunnel. You will be invisible to them and you will avoid malware that they could inject you.
6) To access securely to your business files anywhere in the world.
When working from a remote location or away from the office, VPNs are incredibly useful for accessing business files. When you connect to a VPN server in another country, you can bypass regional restrictions and access local resources just as if you were physically present in that country.
In these cases, the VPNs used are so-called "security solutions" such as CICSO VPN or NordLayer.
7) To save money online.
Let's take two examples to illustrate this:
Some services like Spotify or Netflix have a cheaper subscription cost in some countries like India or Turkey. You can easily connect to them via a VPN to pay less for your subscription.
Airlines have flexible pricing based on factors such as the location of their passengers. By using a VPN, you will be able to find the same flight at different prices depending on the country you are connecting to.
8) To protect yourself on Tor Browser and prevent a vulnerability.
If you browse Tor and the Dark web on an Android smartphone, iOS device, or computer, you should use a VPN. There have been some vulnerabilities in the past that exposed your real IP address. With a VPN, you have an extra layer of security.
9) To get unban.
Your internet connection may have been blocked by some websites and services such as Omegle, Discord, or Minecraft servers. A VPN changes your IP address in just a few clicks and generally allows you to access services you were previously blocked from.
10) To "unblock" the speed of your internet connection
Some ISPs may throttle your internet connection a little bit if they see that you are using too much bandwidth. This can be the case if you download (even if it's legal), upload, or watch a lot of streaming for example. Yes, your router is constantly monitored.
The best way to get around a bandwidth restriction is to use a VPN. Your ISP won't be able to analyze what you do on the web and you won't have any restrictions.
11) To get a better gaming experience
For some gamers, using a VPN is very important. This can help them get a better ping when playing online. On the other hand, it can help them avoid DDOS attacks from other angry players. It can also allow two players to play in LAN even if they are not physically together.
Last but not least, as we saw in the article about Warzone easy-lobbies, you will be able to play on certain country servers with a VPN.
What kind of people need to use a VPN?
Using a VPN is not useful for everyone but here are 9 types of people who use a VPN:
People who work in dangerous or sensitive industries, such as activists, journalists, or lawyers.
People who want to protect their privacy while having anonymous internet traffic.
People who want to avoid being tracked online by advertisers.
People who are fond of online shopping and deals.
People who are Netflix binge-watchers and want to watch the latest Netflix releases
People traveling who want to access content and shopping websites of different countries
Sports fans who want to watch for example a soccer match that is not broadcasted in their country
Gamers who want to get a lower ping to improve their gaming experience
Academics who want to do advanced research on the web (on Sci-Hub, deep web...)
If you fit one of these types of people, then you probably need a VPN. But if you don't fit into any of these descriptions, then you don't necessarily need a VPN.
Here is an example of how a traveler uses a VPN:
It is also possible that you use a VPN for more than one purpose. I am a traveler type of person and when I was in Mexico with some friends, I used a VPN for 3 different reasons in one day.
We were in a coworking space and I used my VPN to protect my privacy because there were many people connected to the Wi-Fi network.
At lunchtime, my friends and I wanted to watch a soccer match so we connected the VPN in France on the SmartTV of our AirBnb. And we were able to watch the whole soccer match!
Then in the evening, my friend wanted to purchase on Cdiscount, a French e-commerce website. Since we were in Mexico, he could'nt buy on the site but we were able to unblock it by using a VPN. And my friend bought what he wanted.
What's the best VPN to use?
There are several factors to consider when choosing a VPN, including your needs, your location, and the type of VPN service you need. Here are the 5 most important things to think about when choosing a VPN service :
Security: What encryption methods are used by the VPN provider? Are they strong enough?
Speed: How fast is the VPN connection? Are there any restrictions on bandwidth usage?
Price: How much does the VPN cost? Is the price worth it for the features offered?
Server locations: What are the server locations of the VPN provider? Are they in countries with good internet security standards?
Here is a selection of 3 serious VPNs that have military levels of security and very good connection speed:
Cyberghost is one of the most popular VPN services on the market because it provides excellent security and privacy features. It also has server locations in 90+ countries, making it easy to find an appropriate location for your needs.
Cyberghost is a well-known VPN service that allows users to browse the internet anonymously and securely. It also offers many other features, such as a private browser, a leak monitor, and a kill switch. Cyber-Ghost works on Windows PC, Mac, Android smartphone and tablets, iPhone, and on many other devices. There is also an extension on Firefox and Chrome browsers.
Additionally, Cyberghost offers a 45-day money-back guarantee so you can try it out risk-free.
ExpressVPN is a VPN service that provides users with a wide range of features and benefits. Some of the features that make ExpressVPN stand out include:
It has a no-logs policy, which means that the company will not keep any logs of user activity or data. This is important for users who want to remain anonymous and protect their privacy.
It offers military-grade encryption, which makes it extremely difficult for anyone to intercept or decrypt user data.
It has a strict no-logs policy in addition to its military-grade encryption, which makes it one of the most secure VPN services on the market.
It has a very good connection speed, making it perfect to browse Facebook or any other website, watch movies and series on a streaming service and download large files.
Premium VS Free VPN services: Which one is better?
Premium VPN services aremuch more reliable than free VPNs. In all honesty, free VPNs are not recommended for several reasons.
The main problem is that they are not as secure as paid VPNs. They may also have lower bandwidth and data limits, which can make internet access, streaming, and gaming difficult. Furthermore, free VPNs are less reliable when it comes to protecting your privacy since they are not typically backed by a strong encryption algorithm.
According to an Australian research article that analyzed free VPN apps, even the most installed free VPNs were dangerous. These apps are associated with 5 types of malware: Adware (43%), Trojan (29%), Malvertising (17%), Riskware (6%), and Spyware (5%). When run under VirusTotal, these apps had a high VirusTotal AV-rank.
The SuperVPN app you see in the table has been the subject of several articles on major media like Forbes because it was involved in a big data breach of millions of users.
In addition to having viruses, these apps can also sell your data to third parties. And this is also true for free VPNs that you can install on your laptop or desktop computer.
What are the drawbacks of VPNs?
VPNs have a lot of advantages but they also have disadvantages on some points. Here are the top 3 cons of VPNs:
1) It can slow down your Internet speed: when adding a VPN connection, a privacy level is added by the VPN server. Then, you access a site directly through the VPN provider instead of visiting the site directly. While this allows you to hide your IP address and encrypt your data, it also means that the data needs to be transmitted more and more complexly.
If the VPN service you use is not strong enough, your internet speed may be too slow. But this is not always the case and with premium VPN providers such as NordVPN or Surfshark, the reduction of speed is minimal.
2) Some websites blocked VPNs: This is still very rare and it is very difficult to block all VPN servers because even a single VPN can have thousands of servers. But websites like Netflix or RTS are trying to block VPNs.
3) Some countries restricted the use of VPNs: VPNs are not blocked in any specific countries, but some governments have been known to restrict their use. For example, China has been known to block VPNs and other forms of internet censorship. Some other countries that have been known to restrict VPN use include Russia, Turkey, and Egypt.
What is the difference between Personal and Business VPN?
A personal VPN service allows you to connect to the internet through a private network, such as your home or office. This is useful if you want to protect your privacy and keep your activity on the internet private.
A business VPN service, on the other hand, is designed for use by businesses. It allows employees to securely access corporate resources from anywhere in the world. This can be helpful if you need to access files or applications that are restricted or not available from outside of the office.
Is using a VPN legal?
The legality of a VPN depends on the country in which you use it. In most countries, using a VPN is legal. This is for example the case in the United States, Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom, Germany, or the Philippines. But according to PrivacyHub from CyberghostVPN, there are 9 countries where using a VPN is considered illegal: China, Russia, Iran, United Arab Emirates, Oman, Turkey, Iraq, Turkmenistan, Belarus, and North Korea.
Should I leave my VPN on all the time?
There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as the best way to protect your privacy and security while using a VPN depends on your individual needs and preferences. However, generally speaking, it is advisable to keep your VPN enabled by default at all times.
Why? Because a VPN encrypts all of your traffic, which means that it prevents anyone from tracking or spying any confidential information of what you're doing online. This includes not only the websites you visit but also the data you send and receive over the internet.
Furthermore, a VPN can also help protect your identity and location when browsing the web. By encrypting your traffic, a VPN can make it difficult for hackers to steal your personal information (such as login credentials or bank account numbers).
Using a VPN can help protect your privacy and security online. By encrypting all of your internet traffic, a VPN can make it difficult for hackers to steal your personal information (such as login credentials or bank account numbers). Additionally, a VPN can also help protect your identity and location when browsing the web.
But using a VPN is not required for everyone and it may not be necessary. The purpose of this article was to help you decide whether or not you need a VPN. There are many different types of VPNs out there, which can make choosing one a bit confusing. In this article, we have reviewed several popular options to help you choose the right VPN for your needs.
About the Author: Tom
Tom is the founder of DTechClub.com and has been fascinated by VPNs since 2012. He writes about online privacy, is always testing VPNs (both new and existing services), and is highly interested in the challenges of accessing certain sites and content in various regions. In addition to his interest in VPNs, he loves indie films and playing flamenco guitar.