The Internet is an open network. While being able to transmit data quickly and efficiently is a beautiful thing, it’s also inherently insecure. Even home users worry about who might be able to see what they are browsing on the web. Governments monitor web traffic, and some block access to websites they don’t want their people to see. Virtual Private Networks (or VPNs) help protect your privacy and security.
A Private Connection Over A Public Network
Traditionally, businesses use Virtual Private Networks to connect multiple locations. If a company has several offices, they connect them via a VPN. All users at those offices, even if they are many miles apart, feel as if they are on the same network.
Using hardware or software, a VPN sends its traffic over the public Internet. But, it’s encrypted, so it acts as if it is a private secured network, not a public one. This encryption prevents a third party from being able to know the contents of that traffic. Strong encryption makes it very difficult for someone to read your emails or see what websites you’re visiting.
VPN Usage Around The World
While large corporate VPNs are usually built using expensive routers, there are VPN services that allow anyone to use a similar secure connection from their own PC or device.
Virtual Private Networks have been in the news mainly due to their use in countries like China and Syria. China has its “Great Firewall” that blocks its citizens from viewing websites the government doesn’t approve of. In Syria and other oppressive regimes, opposition parties and resistance movements communicate over VPNs to avoid government surveillance. By installing VPNs, people in these areas can bypass government controls and protect themselves.
Virtual Private Networks In The United States
You don’t need to live in a dangerous country to benefit from a Virtual Private Network. If you use the Internet in public places, like your coffee shop’s wi-fi, a VPN will secure your web browsing. If you’re concerned about government agencies like the NSA monitoring what you do online, a VPN is a way to protect yourself.
Selecting A VPN Service Provider
Installing a VPN is like any other app or software application. Good VPN providers have customer support to help with installation and configuration questions to ensure everything works properly. Once the VPN is up and running, there is a monthly fee to use the service.
There are many different VPN services available. A VPN provider has servers located around the world that the VPN connects to. The location and type of these servers determines the speed of the Internet connection. Good VPN services are stable and reliable, so the connections don’t drop during use.
Using a VPN service protects your Internet traffic from being monitored by a third party and your personal information from being stolen. There are lots of options available to find the best service in your area to provide fast and stable connections to preserve the integrity of your Internet.