Who can benefit from a VPN?
Security Conscious Consumers
Those who would like to keep their data secure it is important that you have a secure VPN to help protect it.
This year, threat actors will steal over 33 billion files from unsuspecting users. Identity theft alone impacts over 60 million Americans — and these numbers don’t include the millions more that are affected by phishing emails and cyber-blackmail attempts.
With the growing digital market in 2020 and beyond it is becoming a necessity to protect all your online data.
How VPNs keep your data secure?
A VPN encrypts or scrambles data so that a hacker cannot tell what a person is doing online. Fundamentally, a VPN makes a type of tunnel that prevents hackers, snoopers, and internet service providers (ISPs) from looking at your messages, browsing history, credit card information, downloads, or anything that you send over a network. This tunnel cannot be penetrated, and your transmissions cannot be viewed.
What is a VPN protocol?
While you don't have to know what a protocol is to use a VPN it is still a good idea to understand how your data is encrypted. A protocol is a set of established regulations to secure a tunnel for your data to transmit privately. The industry standard for the best protocol currently is OpenVPN. It allows for the most flexible and secure protocol. OpenVPN is open-source which enables anyone to actively look and fix security flaws. Often open source solutions are much more secure than proprietary solutions due to being able to leverage many great security minds alike to strengthen the source code.
Type of Encryption
The stronger the encryption method the safer your data is from being compromised. You should consider a VPN company that uses the latest and strongest industry-standard encryption technique. The industry-leading and military-grade encryption method is AES 256-bit encryption, which has a key length of 256 bits, supports the largest bit size and is practically unbreakable by brute force based on current computing power, making it the strongest encryption.
256-bit keys means 2^256 or 1.1 x 10^77 possible combinations. That’s 115,792,089,237,316,195,423,570,985,008,687,907,853,269,984,665,640,560,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 combinations! A brute-force attack on a 256-bit keyspace is simply infeasible, even if all the world’s most powerful supercomputers ran for as long as the universe has existed so far, billions and billions of times over.
Can VPN protect against cyber crimes or credit card fraud?
There is no doubt VPNs can help with security. Some VPNs offer more security features to protect against fraud and phishing attempts. Malicious malware can infiltrate your system and infect your device. A great VPN will provide their customers with an ad blocker that will intercept all pop-up ads, malicious websites, and phishing attempts preventing undesired problems. There are many malware-infected websites and great VPN companies update their database of malicious websites so they block these and prevent users from being infected.
Another great feature for your security is a VPN kill switch.
If your VPN connection is ever interrupted, a VPN kill switch will immediately stop traffic from entering or leaving your device. By halting all online activity, the kill switch keeps your personal information from being exposed to any prying eyes. This means you never have to worry about a failed connection compromising your security. Not even for a moment.Here are some of the most secure VPNs
Privacy Conscious Consumers
There are few types of groups that can invade on your privacy without the consumer even knowing. These are:
- ISPs (internet service providers)
- Tech Companies
Your ISP (internet service provider) can see everything you do online. They can track things like which websites you visit, the content you browse, how long you spend on them, the device you’re using, and your geographic location. Your ISP can sell your browsing history to the highest bidder and often they sell this data to 3rd party advertisers looking to profit off your tendencies. Tech companies analyze and build a profile of you and this may dictate the digital traffic you view. If you live in a highly censored country your information can be handed to imposing governments. The scary part is not many people know about this truth.
Points to consider
- Data retention laws
In some countries there are data retention laws where ISPs must track and record specific information about their users. This of course includes all your search activity, messages, emails, location, and operating system. The information is used for various reasons but governments indicate it is used for anti-terrorism purposes but revelations revealed a breach of trust especially between the 14 eyes, 9 eyes, and 5 eyes countries. While your data is subject to prying eyes some governments censor and restrict the type of content its citizens can access.
Data equates to dollars and that means your ISP can profit off your data by selling the information they retained from all your activity. Even more so, advertisers collect this information and are able to build a profile on you including shopping, banking, eating, marital status, health issues, and even sexual preferences. In doing this they dictate which ads are shown to you and what you will be more likely to click on equaling more profits for the advertiser.
Can VPNs help secure your privacy?
VPNs (virtual private networks) provide an excellent way to enhance your privacy. This is because VPNs use encryption technologies to create a virtual encrypted tunnel between your device and a VPN server so no one can see what you are doing or the data being sent to the private server, not even your ISP. This is great because your ISP will not be able to collect and sell your data and therefore companies will not be able to build a profile of you with your personal information in the cloud. This will effectively hide your IP address and the location linked to that device making you anonymous.
Privacy factors when selecting a VPN
- VPN Jurisdiction
- Zero log policy
Countries have data retention laws as required by the government to retain and log user related information however some countries do not have these laws and are privacy friendly. A country considered a privacy haven, is one that is legally and politically friendly for user privacy. This includes data retention laws, surveillance, and not sharing information with other countries. Privacy havens are the ideal spot for a VPN company to be incorporated in as the best VPNs for privacy are not subject to retention laws and do not have to hand data to a government if issued a subpoena.
Zero logging policy
Zero logging policies are just as important as the VPNs jurisdiction. Companies that have a strict no logs policy make your online activity truely anonymous. This means their is no way to match any personally identifying data to your online activity.
With those factors in mind here are some of the best privately friendly VPNs:
Gamers can take adavantage of vpn benefits:
- Reduces latency by rerouting traffic to less congested networks
- Improve lag and reduce ping by using a faster server connection.
- Prevents bandwidth throttling by ISPs, providing you with an uninterrupted connection while playing
- Allows you to change your virtual location so that you can purchase restricted or geo-locked games
- Enables you to connect to any gaming server and gives you the chance to play with your friends anywhere in the world
- Protects your online identity from hackers by encrypting your data and gaming files
- Protect yourself from a DDoS attack, particularly important in online competitive gaming and tournaments.
Those who love or planning to travel regardles of personal or business use can take advantage of vpn benefits. Make sure you don’t compromise your security and use a VPN on public networks. VPNs encrypt and secure your data so it is not compromised. Another advantage is finding better deals on travel because your not subject to location bias and price gouging you can simply switch the vpn server locations to find the best deal.
Movie & TV Show Streamers
Movie and TV show fans can take advantage of entertainment benefits. You can unlock the full potential of your streaming subscriptions. Meaning if you have a subscription to Netflix you could gain access to other countries neflix libraries where content may not be available in your region. This not only works on Netflix but all popular streaming platforms like BBC iPlayer.
BBC iPlayer is a top-rated streaming service, unplagued by commercials. Even though it’s free, it’s available only for people within the UK. This means that, for unblocking BBC iPlayer, you must use a Virtual Private Network and connect to one of its UK servers. With the help of a dedicated VPN IP, you’ll get around BBC iPlayer blocking. You will be able to access the service from anywhere in the world.
Bypass network limitations with a VPN. Workplaces, schools or universities could decide to block content with filtering software. This is something you can work around with a virtual private network.
Another benefit is saying goodbye to bandwidth throttling from some ISPs (Internet service providers)
Some VPNs offer dedicated or optimized servers for streaming while certain VPNs are able to unblock more Netflix libraries. You can check out our top rated VPNs for Netflix.
Here are some of reccomendations for streaming:
Sports with no borders?
Sports are a highly-regulated industry subject to copyright restrictions. If you have a tv subscription and access to sports networks you are able to stream local games but are restricted from viewing non local teams. If you have any type of sports package it may be subject to blackout restrictions.
Ever miss a sports tournament, match, or big game due to restrictions and wishing you were able to watch?
This is where VPNs come in as they allow you to connect to servers in many locations allowing you to view the regional sports content from the server region.
What should a sports fan look for in a VPN?
- VPN server network - this is important as you want to make sure you find a VPN that has servers around the world where you want to access regional content. More specifically, if you want to stream a match in Europe you want to make sure the VPN provider has a servers located in Europe.
- Fast speeds - this does not need much of explanation, but you want to find a VPN that offers fast local and international speeds so you can stream buffer free content.
- VPN Logging policy and VPN jurisdiction - look for a VPN that has a strict no logs policy and based in a privacy haven, this means a VPN that will not log any information about its users and jurisdiction where there are no data retention laws. Disclaimer: streaming any type content by using a VPN to gain access to geo-blocked content is still a breach of copyright that is why it is important to get a VPN that has a strict no-logs policy. Lastly, do not use a VPN for any type of online piracy or distribute copyrited content without permission as this is illegal and are subject to penalties. Use a VPN wisely and keep out of trouble.
See our top recommendations for sports
Human Rights Activists
Growing with alarming rates is the infringement on user privacy with mass surveillance, personal data retention, and censored content. Many activists are aware of some sort of intrusive mass surveillance by the government but if you want to learn more and to what extent we highly recommend checking out the 14 Eyes, 9 Eyes, and 5 Eyes mass surveillance sharing.
Edward Snowden is an American whistleblower who leaked highly classified information from the National Security Agency (NSA) in 2013 when he was a Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) employee and subcontractor. His disclosures revealed numerous global surveillance programs, many run by the NSA and the Five Eyes Intelligence Alliance with the cooperation of telecommunication companies and European governments, and prompted a cultural discussion about national security and individual privacy.
His revelations have revealed highly unethical spying on citizens utilizing members of the 14 Eyes, 9 Eyes, and 5 Eyes to monitor each other’s citizens and collect information. The information can include your browsing activity, location history, phone calls, text messages, and more.
Todays update, governments have ramped up mass surveillance to combat COVID-19 by tracing our cells phones location. While this may help prevent the spread of COVID-19 for the interim, history has proven the excessive abuse of privacy by many world governments and especially the 14 eyes. What might the future hold for us now that mass surveillance programs have ramped up? Can the future of privacy be in geopardy if we don't take back our privacy rights?Let's bind together, spread awareness, and stop mass surveillance. Here are our top recommendations for VPNs:
For a detailed recommendation check out our top VPNs for 2020.
Shopping online requires access to a lot of your personal information including your bank information. By filtering your data through an encrypted VPN tunnel, you will ensure that no unauthorized person will have access to your personal information.
Find better prices
Prices vary based on location, this means pricing automatically adjusts depending on your browsing history and location. Companies charge you more for the same products and services depending on where you are accessing their website and how many times you view a product. This is done by tracking "cookies" and accessing your location by your IP address that is linked to your physical location. This is not only an invasion of privacy but it is costing you more money.
How to shop and save the most money?
Before you start shopping make sure to delete your browsers cookies so companies cannot track how often you visit the site. This can be done via the settings menu of your browser. You can also use incognito mode or private mode for your web broswer.
Incognito mode means any cookies a site tries to upload to your computer are blocked or deleted, no browsing is recorded in your local search history, and other various trackers, temporary files, and third-party toolbars are disabled.
Finally, use a VPN and check the price for the service or product by connecting to a server in another location to compare prices. This ensures that you get the best deal for the item.
See our recommendations for our top VPNs for 2020.
A VPN is the ultimate soilution for torrenters. A VPN hides your real IP address while also encrypting your data, making it nearly impossible for law enforcement or your ISP to link any activity to your IP and thereby identifying you. These are the primary benefits you can expect:
- IP Address - By connecting to a VPN server your real IP address is hidden and you are assigned the IP of the VPN servers location
- Data Encryption - Bullet proof encryption from top VPN providers is the best way to keep your torrenting safe
- Location - By connecting to many VPN server locations, this ensures you are not always connected to the same IP address while torrenting
- VPN no-logs policy - Top VPNs have a strict no-logs policy, this ensures you do not have to worry about the VPN retaining any of your information
- VPN Kill Switch - This prevents your data from leaking to the web. If your VPN connection is ever interrupted, the kill switch will immediately stop traffic from entering or leaving your device. By halting all online activity, the kill switch keeps your activity from being exposed to any 3rd party snoopers.