Do you want to protect yourself and your data online? Do you want to prevent your ISP (internet service provider) from tracking your every move? Well, one of the best ways you can do this is by using a Virtual Private Network, or VPN for short.
I’m sure most of you will be familiar with VPNs, for those of you who are not, well, VPNs can be considered as an intermittent service between you and your host site. Your connection to the VPN server is encrypted, the network is secure, and it’s difficult for anyone to spy and snoop on your data. Even your own ISP can’t access your data or track your activities .
With that said, let’s take a look at 8 reasons why you should be using a VPN:
- Keep Your ISP From Tracking Your Internet Activity
I don’t know if you know this or not but your ISP has complete access to your internet browsing history, it knows which URLs you’re visiting. You need an internet connection to surf the web which is provided by your ISP, so you definitely cannot do without it. But, what you can do is to get yourself a VPN service, as mentioned above, everything is end-to-end encrypted with VPN thus allowing you to easily avert this kind of surveillance.
So, get yourself a great VPN and surf the internet without having to worry about someone spying and snooping on your data whether it’s your ISP provider, or hackers and cybercriminals.
- Bypass Online Censorship
Blocking of websites is a very common thing, it happens all around the globe, this can happen for all sorts of reasons such as political, social, religious, and so forth. These restrictions, which are usually done on an ISP level, can be easily bypassed with the help of a VPN. So, get yourself a quality VPN and access content that would have otherwise been blocked from you.
- Access Content From Other Countries
There is no limit to the amount of entertainment and infotainment sources that internet provides but unfortunately, these sources are not accessible for all. I’m sure most of the readers would have at least once came across a video online that says that it is not available in your region. The fact that most of the content on the internet is geo-restricted is very very annoying, I mean don’t you agree in this day and age of globalization, geo-restrictions should no longer be a thing.
Pandora, Hulu, Netflix, Amazon Prime, and other such popular on-demand entertainment services can’t broadcast all their catalogs outside the US due to their copyright agreements. So, what’s the solution, well, a VPN service has the power to change the IP address of your computer, so by using a VPN, you can easily trick these services into thinking you’re in the US and thus granting you access to content that may not be accessible in your region.
- Safely Use Public Wi-Fi
I love free stuff, you love free stuff, everybody loves free stuff, there’s no doubt about that. The same is true for the free internet being provided at public places such as cafes, restaurants, airports, and so forth. We just connect to such networks without thinking much.
Although, public Wi-Fi is very convenient, but it also has several security threats associated with it such as data breaches and attacking malware, thus making it completely unsafe for personal and business use. It’s one of the biggest reasons why you must consider using a quality VPN service and make a wise investment.
- For Whistleblowers/Journalists/Activists
If you’re a whistleblower or a journalist or an activist and you’re doing online research about potentially sensitive topics, not using a VPN could be dangerous as sometimes what you search for online can be flagged, especially if it’s being passed through your company’s servers.
VPN can also be handy for journalists working or living in countries with oppressive regimes or heavy censorship, by helping them protect their identities and online activities.
- Bypass Restrictions In Office/School/College
If you’re frequently logging onto the web at school or office, you may experience restrictive network controls. Many organizations believe in blocking social networking websites (especially Facebook), torrent connections, YouTube, etc. to “boost the productivity” of their employees. Similar reasons are given for blocking many services in schools and colleges.
Although, I don’t recommend that you go against the policies of your organization or school but still if you want to you can easily get around this sort of restrictive network, by using a VPN. Not only will it help you get past the restrictions, but will also encrypt and keep your browsing data private.
- Secure Your Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP) Phone Calls
VOIP, or Voice over Internet Protocol, also called IP telephony is one of the most cheapest ways one can use to call people. Now, it’s a great thing and I personally love it, but since it’s an internet service and like any internet service, it can be hacked too. VPN can easily help you out here too by preventing hackers from tracking and intercepting your phone conversations. But, note that your usual VOIP speed might get a little slower.
- Stop Google From Tracking You
Google is the most popular search engine on the web, everyday millions of people across the globe uses it for all sorts of purposes, some use it to complete their school work, some for research, some for entertainment and so forth. But, have you ever noticed that if you search for a term that you will occasionally see ads for that same term or product later?
Well, let me tell you something it’s not accidental, our data is collected by Google to sell targeted kind of ads tailored to our search history, a better targeted ad will bring more clicks and more clicks means the company who bought the ad has to pay more to Google and so they get even more richer at the expense of our privacy.
By using a VPN not only will you be able to hide your Web tracks from your ISP, but will be able to hide it from Google too.
A Word Of Caution About VPNs
Well, I think I’ve given you enough reasons why you should use a VPN, but before you opt for a VPN let me also give you a word of caution about VPNs.
As mentioned above, VPN will help you to hide your Web tracks from your ISP and Google, but now it will be accessible to you VPN provider. Who can then (if he wants too) sell it to 3rd parties, so in that way you could be right back where you started. That’s why when choosing a VPN provide, you should be especially cautious of “free” VPNs. Those services still need money to keep going, and there are good enough chances that your data is the primary revenue source.
So to be on the safer side, you should go for a paid VPN. There is still no guarantee that the paid VPN will not log your data but at least it’s a little safer than the free ones. All-in-all, a VPN is a great option for you if you’re concerned about your online privacy but just make sure you read the terms and conditions of the VPN provider you go with (but don’t take their word for it as they can still lie to you).
That’s all folks!