How Does A VPN Protect You
When you use a VPN, your data is encrypted. This means that the data is converted from a readable format to a format that cannot be read unless you have the decryption key. The encryption and decryption are built into the software. This means that even if your data is intercepted, it cannot be read.
The other feature of VPN, which is arguably the most significant feature is that your device will connect to a VPN server and then only connect to the internet from a VPN server. This means that your device is shielded by the VPN. If a hacker attempts to follow your internet connection back to your device, they will encounter the VPN server. They will not be able to trace it back further than that. This is explained in more detail in our article How does a VPN Connection work.
We recommend NordVPN, but if you are on a tight budget, then ProtonVPN is also a good choice in our opinion. The reason why we prefer these, apart from the features that they offer, is the fact that both are based in countries with strict privacy policies. These privacy policies will then also benefit you in the protection of your data.
Stream Foreign TV Channels
Foreign TV channels such as the BBCs iPlayer are geo-restricted so that they are only available in that country, which is another factor in international licensing agreements. With a VPN you can become a digital globetrotter by watch any regional TV channel that you want. Find out more in our best VPN for BBC iPlayer guide.
Why Use A Mobile VPN
Today, much of your digital life exists on your mobile phone, whether iPhone or Android mobile banking, online shopping, chatting with friends on Skype, or sharing life moments on Instagram. We may not be at Black Mirror level , but theres no denying were almost always connected. Despite its convenience, living online can also make you vulnerable to privacy threats, and without proper protection, information about you and your online habits could fall into the hands of third parties such as your Internet Service Provider , businesses, or even hackers. Using a virtual private network on mobile helps you maintain privacy online, whether youre at home or connected to public Wi-Fi.
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Is Your Internet Slow
A VPN can either help or hinder your connection when it comes to speed. If youre experiencing ISP throttling or a congested network, using a VPN connected to a nearby server will speed things up again.
However, if youre experiencing other speed issues, its possible that connecting to your VPN will slow you down even more. This is due to the distance that your data needs to travel to the remote server and the time it takes to encrypt and decrypt it.
How Do VPNs Work
VPNs encrypt your entire connection. Encryption protects you against snoopers, third-party advertisers, and cybercriminals.
When your VPN is on, your browsing data is encrypted, sent to a secure VPN server, and decrypted, before being passed on to its original destination. The same process occurs when information is sent back to you. Even if a hacker intercepted your data along the way, all they’d see would be a jumble of indecipherable code.
Since even your ISP won’t be able to monitor you, you dont need to worry about your browsing habits being logged and sold off to advertisers. Its a simple and effective way to maintain your privacy.
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Stream Netflix Us From Wherever You Want
Have you ever been frustrated because people in the US have access to more content on Netflix?
Its well known that Netflix US has more series and movies than any other location.
A VPN makes it possible for you to access Netflix US on your mobile no matter where you are. So if youre Americanand plan to travel in the near futureyou should consider getting a VPN.
Why Do You Need A VPN Service
Surfing the web or transacting on an unsecured Wi-Fi network means you could be exposing your private information and browsing habits. Thats why a virtual private network, better known as a VPN, should be a must for anyone concerned about their online security and privacy.
Think about all the times youve been on the go, reading emails while in line at the coffee shop, or checking your bank account while waiting at the doctors office. Unless you were logged into a private Wi-Fi network that requires a password, any data transmitted during your online session could be vulnerable to eavesdropping by strangers using the same network.
The encryption and anonymity that a VPN provides helps protect your online activities: sending emails, shopping online, or paying bills. VPNs also help keep your web browsing anonymous.
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Data Privacy From Your Government
While many ISPs, apps and internet data hubs suggest they dont sell your browsing data to governments, the information nonetheless finds its ways into their handseven in the U.S.
Since 2013, when Edward Snowden first revealed that Verizon had been selling users internet and phone data to the NSA, Americans have become more aware of the different ways the government surveils and collects their data. Following the Snowden leaks, and subsequent outrage, several laws were enacted to curb government surveillance.
However, as recently as January of this year, the Defense Intelligence Agency bypassed a law demanding that government agencies produce warrants before compelling phone companies for their user data by paying third-party data brokers for that same data, according to the New York Times.
If you have qualms about governmental overreach, a VPN is a good investment in protecting your data.
Access To Any Content In Any Place
While Hulu may frown upon your use of a VPN to stream the latest Criminal Minds episode in a country where the content isnt offered, this VPN usage is not illegal , and it helps provide a useful workaround to content restrictions.
VPNs spoof your location, making it seem as if you are browsing from another place. That means you can get your Criminal Minds fix even if its not available locally.
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How Many Devices Can Connect To The VPN At Once
Think of how many devices in your home connect to the internet. You have your laptops, tablets, smart phones, and voice assistants. You might even have smart appliances that access the web.
Thats why its important to work with a VPN provider that allows several devices to connect to it at one time. That way, you can have both your laptop and your childrens tablets routed through a VPN at the same time.
Some VPN providers might offer different plans that allow for a higher or lower number of simultaneous connections. In general, you can expect to pay more for a greater number of connections. Top providers allow you to connect 10 or more devices simultaneously.
Number of simultaneous VPN connections:
- Norton Secure VPN 1, 5 or 10 based on plan level
- PureVPN 5
- Tunnel Bear 5
Do I Need A VPN On My Phone At Home
Most people wont need to log into a VPN service when accessing the internet from home, whether from an Android phone, a Windows computer, or other connected device. That doesnt mean, though, that VPNs arent important online privacy tools, particularly when youre accessing the internet on the go.
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Stop Google From Tracking You
Chances are you already know Google keeps track of all your searches. They let advertisers target their ads based on that information. However, thats not the only thing they keep track of.
Did you know they also know your location whenever youre using the search engine? It has also been shown that Google gives up your private data when the government requests for it.
If you dont want Google to know everything about you, then a VPN is a good investment. A VPN will prevent Google from being able to link your searches to your IP adress.
When To Use A VPN
VPNs offer other specific uses that might make your life much easier and safer. Some include:
Accessing region-locked libraries in video streaming services is possible if you use VPN server-switching. Spoofing your location means streaming services will believe you are in another country, allowing you to see movies and TV content unavailable to you locally.
You can view true prices when booking travel accommodations. Flights and hotels use trackers called cookies to see what accommodations you’re browsing. With your interest attached to your identity, they are known to increase prices artificially. It’s a trick used to increase your urgency to buy quicker, and it earns the business more money. Using VPN can anonymize you to avoid these increases giving you better prices.
When you want to avoid being tracked by your ISP and other businesses. Businesses have been known to use your demographic data to improve their marketing and services. It’s not necessarily malicious, but you might not always want this info exposed. Some services gather and sell this data to third-party businesses that might not be as protective of your data. The more places your information is stored, the more vulnerable you are to data leaks. A VPN hides the demographic data sent with your internet activity, so you can’t be tracked.
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How To Install A VPN On Your Android
A VPN app is not harder to install than any other. Firstly, you need to choose which company you wish to use there are many providers out there, from free VPN services to premium ones. Make sure that the company you choose offers mobile VPN as well, and has an Android application. For example, .
If you want to get a better deal, you can look into brands that offer services that work on several devices, so you can protect your computer at the same time as well. Some also offer family deals.
In terms of price, paid VPNs are generally better because they lack the underlying worry that the free ones do the fact that they might put you at risk, since they may compromise your privacy by selling your data to make money. Even if that rather extreme scenario is not the case, free VPNs will make their money through ads or by limiting your features, while a subscription-based account will always make sure that you can enjoy the benefits of a VPN with no interruption. This does not mean that all of them are inherently bad just make sure you do your research before using a free VPN.
Once you have considered all the factors and have chosen your provider, you can install their mobile application following the guidelines you receive when creating your account.
Your Web Activity To Maintain Internet Freedom
Hopefully, youre not a candidate for government surveillance, but who knows. Remember, a VPN protects against your internet service provider seeing your browsing history. So youre protected if a government agency asks your internet service provider to supply records of your internet activity. Assuming your VPN provider doesnt log your browsing history , your VPN can help protect your internet freedom.
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Pros And Cons Of Using A VPN At Home
Using a VPN at home is preferable, advised even, but it isnt always essential. The main reason it may not be necessary, is that your internet activity should already be shielded by your password-protected Wi-Fi network. The other concern is connecting to a remote server can slow your connection speed.
However, the pros of using a VPN at home largely outweigh the negatives. The main benefit is completely securing your internet from external hackers, as well as preventing your own ISP using your data against you by selling it to third-party companies. It also allows you to watch geo-blocked content at home at your leisure.
A VPN On Your Phone Provides You With Significant Protection
Check out exactly what is a VPN and youll see that their primary purpose is to add extra security. A VPN adds an extra layer of protection between you and the internet. It tricks websites and even your ISP into thinking youre browsing from a different location ensuring that your activity cant be tracked.
When using your phone on a public Wi-Fi network, this is even more important as it means you dont have to rely on the security level of the unknown network. A public Wi-Fi network is open to abuse with hackers potentially using it to infiltrate systems that arent well defended i.e. ones that dont use VPNs. Remember theres no guarantee that the public Wi-Fi network youre connected to is as secure as it should be. Even when visiting a chain cafe, the network can be quite weak compared to your home security.
If you plan on using your phone regularly on a public Wi-Fi network, you need to keep it secure with a VPN. Thats even more so the case if you regularly use your phone to check your online banking or other sensitive accounts.
If you solely use your phones data plan, the risk is lower but its still there. Using a VPN means you wont have to worry about any potential dangers. Its great peace of mind and should help you stay secure.
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Is It Worth Downloading A VPN On My Android
There are two major reasons why a mobile VPN app installed on your Android phone can be of benefit: internet security and circumnavigating geographical restrictions.
If you travel a lot and want to enjoy your favorite streaming services, like Netflix, BBC iPlayer, or Amazon Prime while on the road, a VPN app for your smartphone could be very useful. A good VPN app will trick the streaming service you’re trying to access into thinking that you are still in a legitimate geographical location by routing your request through an intermediary server in the desired region.
What Can A VPN Do For Me
VPNs are built for privacy. However, they arent the quintessential solutionthey do have their limits. Most VPNs boast the superiority of their speedy encryption over the competition, but their ability to completely stop sites from tracking user data is questionable, however adamantly they argue otherwise. A VPN will stop sites tracing your IP address, but they arent always able to stop sites from collecting behavioral data. So, what exactly can a VPN do for your Android device?
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Along with keeping your data encrypted wherever you are, no matter your point of connection to the internet, VPNs offer you the ability to access the web from virtually anywhere in the world. This means that you can maintain a cohesive online presence, no matter where you go.
If youre traveling to a country where certain websites are blocked, or youre visiting Japan and you find that your favorite show is absent from their Netflix catalog, a VPN will allow you to connect to servers across the globe to access sites and their content from other countries.
There are plenty of other reasons to use a VPN service, but you should know that there is another option available to you thanks to Androids built-in client.
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A VPN Keeps Your Phone Hidden
When you connect to a new Wi-Fi network you’re given an IP address that identifies you. From this, information about you can be attained, like your location and even details like your address. If you’re on an open Wi-Fi connection potentially malevolent entities can get to that. This is where a VPN comes in and protects you.
A VPN will pass your signal through a set of private servers, dotted about the globe. These then make the request to the website, say, and return the answer to your phone. By acting as a middleman the VPN is able to make you appear to be an IP you are not, in a location you aren’t. This effectively keeps your identity and data safe. Most of them allow you to pick the location of the server you connect to as well, giving you even more control of your privacy.
What Using A VPN Is Like
Mobile VPNs make the setup process simple. To demonstrate how you do it, weve picked a couple of examples, and well walk you through installing those apps on your Android or iOS device. Both platforms let VPNs run happily in the background, so when you use these apps, you wont notice much of a difference in your phones function.
Many VPN apps, including the two we covered below, will start by connecting you to a recommended server, usually the one closest to you, since it will provide faster speeds. If you want to change your virtual location to a different country, you can do so easily, but be aware that the further away a VPN server is from you, the more the connection speed will lag.
Once youve activated your new VPN app, it will filter all the internet traffic on your phone, whether youre using a web browser or a connected app like Facebook. It will not affect any apps that dont drain your data, so your phones SMS and calling apps should remain unaffected. That way, you wont suddenly receive unexpected data roaming charges, because your phone will still connect to a local tower before jumping to the VPN.
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