With our dependency on the internet ever-growing, the question “is a VPN worth it?” has become redundant. A VPN (Virtual Private Network) is now essential:
As companies and governments all over the world are developing new tools and technologies to track everyone and everything, VPNs are the only thing standing between you and true privacy.
So let us talk about what VPNs are exactly and why you need one in this day and age.
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What is a VPN?
VPN stands for Virtual Private Network. The function of the VPN is hinted in its name, it is basically a ‘virtual proxy’ of yourself:
What VPNs do is mask your internet traffic by rerouting it through their own servers. Meanwhile, it is also encrypting all the traffic between their servers and your computers.
This is important because, when you are browsing the internet without a VPN, your traffic is visible to your Internet Service Provider and by extension to governmental agencies and regulatory bodies.
A VPN service makes a tunnel between you and their servers. Once connected, it is as if you magically teleported to the geographic location of that server and whatever you do is from that server and not the computer in front of you.
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Why do you need a VPN?
So, you may be wondering, why do you need a VPN. You are not a bad person? You have nothing to hide? Well, not every user uses a VPN to just hide their traffic from their governments, as there are many advantages of using a VPN.
VPNs can be used to access content that is blocked in your country. For instance, most people in China can’t access the regular internet available to everyone else. So, they use VPNs to dig under the great Chinese firewall and get access to the regular internet.
Similarly, if you want to watch a particular show, but that streaming service is not available in your country. Then you have to use a VPN to bypass that restriction. Some people even use VPNs to get better routing to gaming servers and reduce latency as well.
But one of the most important uses is as a tool to protect your privacy. If governments can track you on the internet, it means other people can do it as well. A VPN makes sure that you are always hidden and protected.
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Should you subscribe to a VPN?
Even though there are hundreds of free VPNs available on the market. They are either very insecure, very slow or are behind a data limit. This makes them hard to use and even harder to recommend.
This is why it is always a good idea to subscribe to a VPN service. This way there are no data caps, plus paid VPNs are usually much faster and have better encryption and security.
And the best part is that most good VPNs are very cheap. Starting for as low a price as $5 a month. This is a very small price to pay for privacy on the internet.