Unless you’ve been stuck in the 1990s computer knowledge, you’ve surely encountered VPNs. Virtual Private Networks are private networks that exist because two (or more) locations need to be connected with each other so that it would appear and they would work like they are in the same network. For us non-technical people, when a VPN is created, people who have access to it can be far from each other and they can use it to access the network itself or another network (that be a public one). Businesses use VPNs so that their private networks can be more secure and so that remote employees, as in people who are not working near or are connected to the network in their office, can have access to company data that are hosted in those office networks. This benefit is highly popular nowadays, with lockdowns forcing employees all over the world to work from their homes.
For individual users, VPNs can be relied on if you want to be anonymous while you are browsing. VPNs are also known to do a good job in securing your data when you are using networks that have poor security, like free WiFi public networks. Thus, when it comes to assessing the pros and cons, you might get swayed that VPNs do provide more advantages than disadvantages. But then, if you are considering using one, you may need to really know what these pros are so that you can maximize its usage.
VPNs provide enhanced security
VPNs primarily encrypt all your network traffic, so its transmission through the network is very secure. Thus, when you are using an unsecured network like WiFi hotspots in malls, airports, and libraries, using a VPN can prevent eavesdroppers on that network you’re using from seeing your traffic and therefore they cannot steal confidential data stored in your devices such as your credit card information or passwords.
Along with being able to hide their IP address and location, users of VPNs also have their personal data hidden, thanks to some sort of encryption system.
VPNs allow you to bypass geo-restrictions
Do you get frustrated when YouTube doesn’t allow you to view the video you so want to watch because “it is not available in your region”? with a VPN, you can forget about these frustrations as a VPN gets all your network traffic through a tunnel, which makes it look like you are accessing the web from another location (the VPN’s), not your actual location. Thus, if you want access to sites that heavily put geo-restrictions on their content, a VPN can transform you into a ghost and give a free pass.
VPNs change the IP address a website sees and can fool them into thinking you’re from a different region or country. If successful, you’ll pay the price intended for that country, which can be less than the price for your real location.
VPNs allow you to download anonymously
Your ISP can put you on a watchlist if you are a heavy downloader because you are maximizing their service to inconvenient levels. When you use a VPN, your IP address can be masked, so you will appear as if you’re accessing sites and torrents from other locations. Your ISP and even some government agencies may not be able to track you. But beware – make sure you only download legally.
To secure your internet connection for the purpose of safety and privacy, it is wise to use a VPN when you download (or do anything online, for that matter).
VPNs allow businesses to let their remote employees work efficiently
As mentioned earlier, VPNs allow connected users to access a network as tough those users were on a local network. If you are a remote worker from home in this lockdown period and would like to have access to files from your office network, ask your IT guys for VPN access.
Another advantage of remote access VPNs is that they provide companies with an affordable way to secure data sent by offsite employees.
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