Following on from our previous VPN topic, if you don’t already know, it is becoming increasingly important to focus on your online security, privacy and anonymity. In fact, you could say that ‘important’ might even be an understatement. One could easily get away with calling the situation dire. Every day, there are new attacks to personal freedoms, hackers are getting smarter and more sophisticated, governments are infringing on the rights of their citizens, and the list goes on and on.
You might be asking yourself how everyone is able to cope with all of this and keep themselves safe, and you would be right to do so. The answer, of course, is the ever-increasing popularity of virtual private networks (VPNs). So, what is a VPN, or as they ask in France, “Qu’est ce qu’un VPN”.
In a nutshell, a VPN is a service offered by a company which is intended to protect the connection and data flow of their users. VPN services create encrypted connections between user computers and the VPN servers. Through that encrypted connection, users are able to send requests to the internet and receive responses without governments, ISPs, and hackers being able to see any of their online activity. Because the connection is encrypted, even if someone were to access the data flow going to or from the VPN servers, the information would be unreadable and, therefore, unusable. One thing to pay attention to when first starting to compare VPN services is the quality at which the VPN service handles that encrypted connection. Some, naturally, are better than others.
Types of VPNs
There are many types of VPNs available today. You can find many free VPN services which are supported by ads and often owned by questionable companies, you can find moderately priced VPNs which provide good basic services, and you can find full-fledged security-focused solutions which turn complete anonymity and security into child’s play. As with many other things in life, the quality of service you get is often tied to the amount of money that you pay for the VPN. However, there are many fantastic options available that will not break the bank.
What to look for
One of the main things that you want to consider when shopping for a VPN what you’re going to be using that service for. Some VPNs are perfect to have running all the time to secure everything you do online and do not slow you down in any noticeable way. Some VPNs are more robust, and tend to be a bit slower, but offer far higher levels of security. There are even some VPNs that are focused on streaming geo-blocked online content, as well as services geared towards downloading torrents. If you happen to reside in a country which works hard to block Internet access, there are also VPNs which help get through countrywide firewalls.
Which type of service is right for you?
Settling on the perfect VPN service for your needs comes down to a simple equation. How advanced are your needs, where do you live, and how much per month you are willing to pay for online privacy. The good thing is the VPN market these days has become so competitive, most of the top tier VPN services offer complete packages at very fair prices. Our advice to you would be to read through reviews for your preferred service before paying the subscription. That way you can be sure you’re getting the perfect VPN for your needs.