Why Should I Use a VPN?

VPNs (Virtual Private Networks). You may have heard of them – but why should you consider using one? In order to answer this question, first we should understand a little bit more about what exactly makes up the technology behind a VPN.

A VPN is a virtual network which acts as a third party through which you connect to other networks, like the internet. As such, there are a number of benefits to using a VPN. Firstly, a VPN helps to add security to your browsing. By using a number of different protocols, there are many ways in which a VPN can protect your personal data (for example, through processes like authentication, and encryption). What’s more, in this way you can use the internet with the added safeguard of anonymity, as your personal identity is concealed. Because many VPNs have a number of servers situated around the world, you can assume a number of different IP addresses, again adding to users’ safety and anonymity. What’s more, by using a VPN you can often bypass certain internet barriers, meaning that you can access online content that you might not be able to ordinarily.

With obvious benefits to using VPNs, it can be tricky then choosing which VPN to use. There are some available for free, such as OpenVPN. This is a great open source VPN, and even boasts a custom protocol called the OpenVPN protocol, which is so good that it is often used by other paid for VPNs. Then there are VPNs which require payment to use. Whilst these are (by definition) more expensive, with the added cost comes added benefits. For example, Hidemyass is a premium VPN service available from $6.55 a month, which has added features such as ‘Secure Bind’, which allows you to set which internet applications on your computer or mobile device should run through their VPN service, leaving you safe in the knowledge that your information will not slip away to third parties unnoticed, as these applications will only ever be used behind the safeguard of Hidemyass’s encrypted network.

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