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Imagine walking through a busy downtown street. While you’re lost in a sea of people, a bubble of personal information such as your name, address, and credit card number floats above your head like a Sim. This is exactly what it looks like when you surf the web without data protection. Just about anybody with a little technological prowess can identify information you’ve entered while online like a username, password, date of birth, social security number, etc. But with the end-to-end encryption of a VPN, you can hide your sensitive information from nosy onlookers.
So, what is VPN?
In simple terms, a VPN (short for Virtual Private Network) is a blanket layer of security that you can add to your online network for secure web browsing. With a VPN activated, your device’s internet connection becomes encrypted, blocking third-party users from understanding your online activity.
VPNs work by establishing a secure tunnel between your device and the online media (website, app, game, download, etc.) you’re accessing, preventing the information you input and send through the internet from leaking to a third party. Your iPhone, for example is Point A, and Amazon is Point B; when information is entered and sent through the encrypted tunnel from Point A, all of that data is scrambled into an indecipherable code until it gets to Point B, where it is then put back together.
If a hacker did attempt to sneak a peek at your personal information, like the credit card data you entered onto your account, or the website you’re accessing, all they would see instead is a mess of jumbled letters and numbers, making it nearly impossible for them to uncover any information.
How to get a VPN
When dealing with your online information, stick to the old adage: “If you're not paying for the product, you are the product."
There are many different kinds of VPNs that have differing levels of protection. For instance, a top tier, premium VPN provider like IPVanish offers multiple connection types through apps and software in hopes to fit your exact needs between the high speed, heavy encryption, and niche location. That will be as easy as signing up, downloading the app, and turning it on.
There are also free VPNs that are a simple search away, though they come with a history of poor security protection for users. They’ll be more limited in where you can use them and what they can offer you, but if you’re unwilling to invest in your identity protection, it’s worth researching.
Then there’s the highly-regarded OpenVPN, which is open-source and free, but requires a more technical background to even run. Fortunately with most premium VPN providers, OpenVPN is already programmed as a connection-type, which streamlines your access to the best protection.
Why you need a VPN
Security: Free and public Wi-Fi can be a dangerous place, but with a VPN, you can rest assured that all of your activity will be protected. Through total network encryption, everything you do and say online will be indecipherable and anonymous, thwarting malicious hackers.
Privacy: A VPN allows you to surf anonymously and hides your internet activity from your Internet Service Provider (ISP) and the government. ISPs often employ deep packet inspection where they scan packets of information you send and receive over their network in order to spy on your internet browsing habits and throttle your usage. This kind of snooping severely imposes on users’ privacy because it allows ISPs access to all of your internet activity. Sometimes, ISPs will even search out your shopping records, location, and age in order to sell the information to advertising companies so they can better relate their ads to you while you surf the web.
In addition to deep packet inspection, ISPs also spy on users’ activity to monitor their internet usage and throttle their upload and download speeds, which can make it difficult, and sometimes nearly impossible, to stream content or simply initiate a Google search.
Stop targeted ads: Many internet marketers use geo-targeting in order to determine your physical location and provide you with advertisements that are relevant to your location. Without a VPN, internet marketers have access to information such as your IP address, ISP, postcode or zip, county/state, city, and country.
Evade censorship: Some countries and even ISPs block certain websites and content from being accessed, restricting your ability to freely browse the web. With a VPN from IPVanish, you have the ability to mask your IP address with one provided on one of our 700+ servers located in more than 60 countries worldwide. In addition to bypassing government censorship and corporate firewalls, this function also allows you to access content from your home country or region if you travel.
Take it with you on the go: IPVanish offers the security, privacy, and unfettered access you need on virtually any mobile device – giving you peace of mind as you travel and connect to multiple Wi-Fi hotspots on the go. We understand that the convenience of being able to order things off Amazon or check the funds in your bank account while out-and-about is vital, so our VPN also encrypts any sensitive information you enter within a mobile app.
How to set up a VPN
While the idea of a VPN may be a little complicated, setting one up surely isn’t! With premium VPN providers, the process can be as easy as downloading an app and turning it on. With IPVanish VPN, you must first sign up for the security service, and then install the VPN software from their list of devices.
Once you’ve downloaded the appropriate software for your operating system, just open the application and select the server or city that you wish to connect to. If you run into difficulties with how to setup the VPN, IPVanish offers tutorials and visual guides with step-by-step instructions.
Perks of having IPVanish VPN
IPVanish is the only true Top Tier VPN service in the world, meaning that IPVanish delivers the most secure connections, the fastest speeds, and the most competitive pricing. Offering one of the most expansive lists of server locations around the globe, the VPN service providers over 40,000 unique IP addresses on more than 700 anonymous servers.
IPVanish is also one of the few VPN providers that truly does not keep any logs, making your online experience absolutely anonymous and private. With military-grade encryption and the best support, IPVanish offers more than just online protection – it offers online freedom.