There are multiple reasons why people choose to use a VPN. These belong, for the most part, to the categories: privacy, safety and freedom on the internet. This article explains the added value of a VPN-connection by illustrating the most important benefits of a VPN.
What can You do with a VPN? A Summary of the Benefits of a VPN
Using a VPN has a number of advantages. A quick summary:
- The IP-address is hidden and the user becomes anonymous
- Data traffic is encrypted, which allows you to safely connect to public WiFi hotspots.
- Geographic restrictions can be bypassed.
- Users can download information safely and anonymously.
- Government censorship can be bypassed.
- It is possible to save money while shopping online.
1. The IP-address is Hidden
Because the user is using the IP-address of an VPN server, and therefore hiding their own IP-address, the user becomes anonymous on the internet. This is because the IP-address is an unique code which allows people to be identified on the internet, and allows others to track our online behavior step-by-step. With the use of a new, incognito IP-address, it is no longer possible for governments, hackers and the websites that we visit to link us to our personal identity. The observed IP-address (the address of the VPN server), is no longer linked to us.
2. Date Traffic Becomes Encrypted
A VPN encrypts the data traffic. This prohibits hackers and other malicious parties from intercepting our data. This also allows the user to safely connect to, otherwise insecure, public wifi hotspots.
3. Geographic Restrictions can be Bypassed
With a VPN it is possible to connect to a server in a different country and to therefore allow all of the data traffic to pass through this other country. This often allows certain blocked websites, streaming services, VOIP-services and social media to become accessible. To do so it is necessary to make a connection with a VPN server in a country that has not been restricted.
4. Users are Able to Download Safely and Anonymously
Because the IP-address is hidden and the connection is encrypted, it is no longer possible to exactly know what is being downloaded through the secured VPN-connection, and by whom. When sensitive or important files are being downloaded (say for work), nobody has an insight to this information. Privacy and anonymity are guaranteed.
5. Government Censorship can be Bypassed
In countries where the government regulates the internet, most often not all websites are available. This is how totalitarian regimes make a habit of silencing critical media outlets by blocking them in a country. These restrictions can be bypassed like all other geographical restrictions using a VPN. A VPN is therefore an important tool in the battle for press freedom.
6. Shopping Online for Less Money
Prices for shopping online can sometimes differ based on the country someone is shopping from. When visiting an online web shop from an internet connection within England the prices can sometimes be drastically more expensive for the exact same product or service than shopping from another country. A VPN connection allows the user to connect with VPN servers from around the world. This causes websites to register users as visitors from the country where the VPN server is located, thus allowing the user to profit from the best international rates.