Thursday, January 26, 2023

How Do I Know If VPN Is Working

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Check if your VPN is working | NordVPN

If youve performed the VPN tests above and youre still having issues, there are a handful of other reasons why your VPN isnt working properly.

  • Faulty or offline server: If youre dealing with a faulty server, it might be because the server is overloaded or your ISP is almost out of bandwidth. You can do a quick test to check your VPN speed for free here. You can also try connecting to a different server.
  • Your ISP or country is blocking your VPN: Some countries have strict online censorship in place, which can result in a blocked VPN. In China, for example, only a few government-approved VPNs are legal.
  • Dropped VPN connection: Most VPNs come with an automatic kill switch that terminates your internet connection if your VPN connection drops. The kill switch is to prevent you from accessing web pages while youre not connected to your VPN, keeping your personal information secure.
  • Port or protocol issue: Similar to a faulty server, the issue may be tied to your port or internet protocol. You can contact your ISP customer support to troubleshoot this.
  • VPN software issue: If its none of the above, the issue is likely tied to the VPN itself. You can contact customer support, or switch VPN providers entirely.

How To Do A VPN Test For Dns Leak

The DNS leak test is the most common and important of all unless youre using a leak-free VPN like NordVPN. It takes some time since it tests a VPN server, and sometimes your computer may freeze. To run it:

  • Go to dnsleaktest.com and start testing.
  • If you see the VPN IP address and corresponding location, it means theres no DNS leak.
  • Additionally, you may select Extended test for a more thorough check.
  • After the test, check your DNS hostname and IP.
  • Finally, ensure that DNS is not your personal and not related to your ISP. If it is, you are not properly protected by your VPN.
  • How To Set Up Your VPN

    Setting up your own VPN connection is simpler than it might seem. Your VPN provider will do most of the work for you. First, you will need to find a VPN service that you like. On our site you can find reviews of the different providers as well as some recommendations.

    When you find a VPN that fits your needs, you subscribe to their service and download and install the software they provide. Most VPN providers offer software for all types of devices and operating systems. You can download a VPN client for Windows, Mac, iPhone, Android, and sometimes Linux. Within this software, you can choose which protocol to use and which VPN server you wish to connect to. In just a few clicks youll be connected to a server. Now you can use the internet in a safe and anonymous manner, free from any restrictions or censorship that your geographical location might impose!

    Installing a VPN is easy. Below, well tell you how to do this in three steps.

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    Activate The VPN App And Start Browsing The Internet Safely And Freely

    Activate the VPN by pressing the connect button, and the VPN connection will be established. Generally, you wont even notice its activated, since the software runs in the background of your device.

    And thats all there is to it! While the VPN is enabled, youll be able to browse the web far more securely, privately, and freely. The illustration below will shortly review the steps youll need to take to set up a VPN on your computer:

    If you want to learn how to install a VPN on a specific device, such as a smartphone or smart TV, have a look at our VPN setup section. The installation may vary, depending on your device and operating system. If you want to know exactly how a VPN works, keep on reading. Well explain that and more below.

    How Does A VPN Hide Your Location

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    To recap, when using a VPN service the VPN server carries out your internet request for you. Using the example above, Google.com only sees that the request is coming from the VPN server. They dont even know you exist on the other end of the connection to the VPN server.

    Google.com will track the IP address of the system making the request, which in this case is the VPN server. They more than likely know that this IP address is for a VPN server, but this doesnt affect you as the VPN user.

    Other subscribers to the same VPN service will also be using that VPN server to make requests for them. As a result, your internet requests will get mixed in with other peoples. This further muddies the waters for websites that are trying to track you.

    So how does this hide your location?

    When making an internet request, your IP address can be tracked to a specific geographic area.

    Dont believe me? Put your IP address into the search bar on this IP location site. You can use an IP address to get the latitudinal and longitudinal coordinates of your location, which is pretty specific. Although your exact location may not be tracked, its a little too close for comfort.

    Anyway, lets go back to the example above. In this case, Google doesnt know you are the one using the VPN service. They only know the IP address of the VPN server that made the request. If they were to track this IP address, they would get the geographic location of the VPN server. This doesnt do them much good.

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    How To Fix Dns Leaks

    If you find a DNS leak on your device, secure your connection with the steps below.

  • Disconnect your VPN and turn off your WiFi.
  • After a minute, turn your WiFi back on and reconnect to your VPN. If this doesnt fix the issue it could be beneficial to go to your VPN and choose a different server to connect to.
  • After your leak is fixed, perform another DNS leak test to verify that your connection is secure.
  • Why Is Online Security Important

    Maybe youre wondering if the use of a VPN is really necessary. Well, a VPN offers more anonymity, safety and freedom online.

    An increasing part of our lives takes place online. We do our banking, keep in touch with friends, check our medical records and work online. Its important that all this information about you doesnt just end up on the street. After all, you dont just leave your bank invoices lying around. If you do not secure your internet connection, you run the risk that hackers, governments, your internet provider, websites, your employer and others will find out more about you than you would like. A VPN shields your data from all these groups.

    Most people will know that the things you share online, for instance on Facebook or Instagram, can follow you around for the rest of your life. In the same way, almost everything you do online can have a lasting effect. What if a hacker can see where you do your finances online? Or what if your employer knows how you spend your time on social media during work hours?

    A VPN might not offer complete guaranties that youll never be hacked, someone who really wants to know what you do online will find a way. However, a VPN will considerably lessen the chance that anyone can see your personal data, browser history and other online activities.

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    What To Do If You Have A Browser Extension VPN Leak

    Step 1: Go to Chrome://settings in your address bar.

    Step 2: Next go to Search settings and type in predict.

    Step 3: Then disable the options Use a prediction service to help complete searches and URLs typed in the address bar and Use a prediction service to load pages more quickly.

    Using a trusted VPN can enhance your online privacy and security, but its important to make sure that your VPN is not leaking.

    Dont Let A Faulty VPN Put Your Data At Risk

    Check Your VPN Is Actually Working! // Safety Dot

    Checking if your VPN works is simple. Choose from any of the mentioned VPN tests to identify DNS, IP, or WebRTC leaks, or see if you can reach previously unreachable services. If these tests dont work with your VPN on, then something may be wrong.

    Using a VPN provider like Surfshark guarantees a stable connection. It also helps you avoid data breaches and keeps you far from sneaky ISPs and hackers. I recommend that anybody who uses an electronic device stays protected and safe in the cyber world with a VPN.

    Not convinced yet? Then read an independent Surfshark VPN review.

    Try it with a 30-day money-back guarantee

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    How To Test For Dns VPN Leaks

    Sometimes when you are using a VPN, a DNS leak can occur. This happens when your DNS queries are sent outside of the secure VPN encrypted tunnel and your data is sent through your default DNS servers rather than the secure, anonymous VPN server. Often, a DNS VPN leak is due to improper configuration of your network settings.

    Unlike testing for a webRTC leak, the best way to check for a DNS leak is to use a website. There are a number of free websites that you can use to test for a DNS leak, such as DNSleak.com*.

    If you find that youre dealing with a DNS leak, there are several fixes you can try. Visit DNSleaktest.com* to find the best solution for your situation.

    What Are Dns Leaks

    DNS, which stands for Domain Name System, is responsible for translating a websites domain name into an IP address, which is then used by your browser to load the website youre visiting. The default DNS servers your connection uses are the DNS servers operated by your internet service provider, or ISP. When you use a VPN, you switch to using your VPNs DNS servers.

    A DNS leak means that the DNS queries for translation are leaking from the VPN tunnel, and internet service providers again have access to your browsing data. Wed suggest that you test for VPN leaks like this often, and if you find your real IP address even once, consider changing your VPN provider.

    Without a secure VPN, your internet service provider can see which websites youre visiting, but a VPN keeps that data private. All of the services in our best VPN providers list offer DNS leak protection and will keep your data safe.

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    One: Check For Ip Address Leaks

    Your IP address is an essential piece of information. It shows who your ISP is and approximately where youre located. So the first thing to look at is whether your VPN is leaking your IP address. In simple terms, this means that your Internet Service Provider and the sites that youre visiting can see your actual IP address, not your virtual one. The testing process is simple just follow these instructions:

  • With the VPN off, Google Search what is my IP address?
  • Make a note of the IP address presented to you by Google
  • Open your VPN and connect to a server
  • Head back to Google and search again for what is my IP address?
  • Check that the IP address is different
  • If the IP address is different when connected, the VPN is working, and your IP address is secure. However, if it is the same, your IP address is leaking, and you are not protected. This could be an issue with the VPN tunneling process or due to other reasons.

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    Unfortunately, not every VPN comes with WebRTC leak protection, as its considered a premium feature. Only the best in the market have it, such as NordVPN and Surfshark. So it could be that the VPN youre using doesnt have WebRTC leak protection. If unsure, contact customer support and ask. If this is the case, choose a different VPN service to protect you and your IP address.

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    Check For Webrtc Leaks

    Web Real-Time Communication is a technology that lets web browsers directly communicate with one another. By using JavaScript, the WebRTC enables mobile and web browsers to run smoothly without external plugins.

    These capabilities decrease the lag for specific applications when transferring files, using communication services like Skype, etc.

    Many browsers use this technology by default. Thats why the devices using WebRTC need to see each others IP addresses to communicate. This might permit third-party websites to use the WebRTC to find a devices IP address.

    Once someone detects an IP, they can identify the user of a device. This may all sound confusing, but checking for these leaks isnt!

    Just follow these steps:

    Step 1) Perform a WebRTC leak test with the VPN off

    Step 2) Perform the test again with the VPN on

    As you can see, this test indicates any potential WebRTC leaks in red. It also shows that the IP address is different with and without a VPN, meaning its working well.

    What Is An Ip Leak

    An IP leak is the leaking of a user’s real IP address while connected to a VPN service. It can occur in a situation where a user’s computer is unknowingly accessing default servers rather than the anonymous VPN servers assigned by the network such as VPN. Here is simple example to understand IP leak while you are using a VPN:

    Say you want to access some content that is not accessible from your home country. When you log into your VPN account, usually you can choose between servers in different countries. The VPN will pretend” you’re actually located in the selected region. Usually that’s enough to convince you that you are now virtually in a supported country all good so far!

    But, if you go to access that content and are still facing the geo-restrictions, this means that service you are trying to access from a restricted country is actually tracking your original IP rather than the IP from the VPN server. This means your VPN is leaking your original IP.

    Most IP leak types can affect any network protocol at one time or another on your smartphones, but the best VPN providers have built workarounds into their software to minimize the likelihood of an IP leakage. IP leaks arent normally the fault of your VPN service provider. They are often caused by vulnerabilities in existing technology like browser plugins , web browsing software and operating systems on our smartphones.

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    Are Leaks More Likely To Occur With A Free VPN

    Yes, they are. By design, free VPNs come with significantly less privacy and security features than premium VPNs. They do not guarantee leak protection, and some are not even capable of adequately hiding your IP address. If you plan on browsing the internet regularly, we recommend that you avoid free VPNs altogether. They have a limited selection of servers, speed limits, data caps, and youre much more likely to run into issues like IP address leaks.

    Is Using A VPN Legal

    IS MY VPN WORKING? ð¤ How to Know If My VPN Works? âï¸?â Check these few things to know !

    Some people wonder whether its legal to use a VPN. After all, the service enables you to become a lot more anonymous online, which can be quite useful for hackers and online criminals. If those people cant be traced online, its much harder to punish them for their crimes, after all. Even so, this doesnt necessarily mean a VPN is illegal.

    On the contrary: many official companies and businesses work with VPNs and recommend their use. The European Union, too, supports internet freedom, which a VPN can give you.

    Many countries consider the use of a VPN completely legal. Conducting illegal activities while using a VPN, however, remains illegal. Therefore, using a VPN for legal activities, such as browsing, gaming, Netflix, and YouTube, isnt a problem at all. If you use a VPN to, for example, , however, youre most likely going against your local laws. While the VPN gives you more anonymity online and makes it a lot harder for officials to trace you down, the downloading in and of itself is still illegal.

    There are a couple of countries that do consider the use of a VPN illegal. If youd like to know more about these countries and the legal and illegal use of VPNs in general, you can read this article. Using a VPN in most of the world wont get you into any trouble. On the contrary: wed recommend it.

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    If Youre Not Connected To Your VPN

    One very important item to be aware of is that you need to connect to the VPN service before you start using the internet in order to be protected.

    Youll need to make sure youre connected to the VPN each and every time youre going to use the internet. Buying a VPN subscription does not mean your internet traffic will automatically be private and anonymous.

    If you pay for a VPN subscription but arent connected to it when you use the internet, youll be exposed to prying eyes as if you didnt have a VPN in the first place.

    VPN Malware Detection Test

    Its worth noting that not all VPN providers have your best interests at heart, and this is something thats common with free VPN apps that bundle malware with their installation files. Windscribe and TunnelBear are notable exceptions, but with all other free VPN apps, wed suggest testing for malware.

    You can do this with VirusTotal. Simply upload the VPNs installation file and the program will scan the file for malware, then let you know whether or not its safe. If you can, also have a reliable anti-virus running for added security.

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