What Does A Consumer VPN Service Do
A consumer VPN service is, fundamentally, a software-as-a-service offering. The VPN service provides a secure tunnel between your computing device and the provider’s data center.
This is important to understand. Consumer VPN services protect your transmission from your location to their location, not from your location to the destination application you’re using. If you think about it, this makes sense: A consumer VPN service is operated by a completely different company than, for example, Facebook or your bank.
The VPN service gives you an app that you run on your local device, which encrypts your data, and it travels in its encrypted form through a tunnel to the VPN service provider’s infrastructure. At that point, the data is decrypted and sent on its way.
Two things happen here: First, if you’re using an https connection, your data is encrypted by your browser and then by your VPN app. Your data is decrypted only once at the VPN data centre, leaving the original encryption provided by the browser intact. That encrypted data then goes on to the destination application, like your bank.
Tips For Using Your VPN Router
- Avoid unnecessary double coverage. With NordVPN working on your router and out of sight, you may forget its switched on. If you use NordVPN on another device while at home, your NordVPN encrypted tunnel will still be sent through the encrypted tunnel set up on your router. This can be a powerful and useful feature when using our Double VPN setting, but NordVPN was not designed to function this way through your VPN router. To avoid significant speed reductions or instability, use one method or another to connect to NordVPNs servers.
- Bookmark your router settings page. Connecting to your router to change the settings might be inconvenient, but you can bookmark the address to make this part just a bit easier.
To avoid double coverage, set up a separate router. Heres how it works.
Most devices that you carry with you throughout the day will be able to support a VPN app. This will keep you safe while outside the house, but if you forget to switch the app off in your home, the two overlapping VPN connections can cause a drop in internet speed.
If you have two routers, you can connect your phone or tablet to the one that isnt configured with a VPN. Meanwhile, any devices that dont support a VPN app can run on your VPN router. All your hardware will be protected, without risking any reduction in speed.
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Optimizing A VPN Service
To make the most of a VPN, pick a server that best fits your needs. Want to maximize speed? Pick a server nearby. Want to experience Netflix on other continents? Pick a server in the host country for that streaming library. Want to get around government censorship? Pick a server in a country with more online freedom. Many VPN services also offer maximum security options, which send web traffic through multiple servers and make us even harder to track. Its a helpful tool when we want to feel extra secure, but the trade-off is even slower internet.
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VPN Uses: Spoof Your Gps Location
While this VPN use isn’t as well-known as others and won’t be useful for everyone spoofing your GPS location can be made extra reliable with a VPN
As the best fake GPS VPN, Surfshark combines solid VPN performance with a GPS spoofer on Android, which means you don’t have to rely on any third parties to change your location. This isn’t just good for Pokemon GO, though, and can be very handy for ensuring your exact location isn’t being tracked by any number of apps.
Hide Browsing Activity From Isps
This is one of the main reasons why people using home internet supplied by an ISP opt to subscribe to a VPN service. Some ISPs may collect customer data and sell it to whoever comes asking for it.
For instance, in the US, Congressvoted to allow ISPsto sell user data. While this practice is required to maintain anonymity, US citizens are not very comfortable with it hence the reason many continue to use VPNs when browsing the internet from a home network.
In addition, following Snowdens revelation years ago that the National Security Agency also collects data from US residents intrusively, the use of VPN when browsing the internet could come in handy to keep away from those who pry.
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How To Set Up Your Own VPN On Your Router
No two routers have the same firmware with all the same options, so its hard to provide universal steps. Here are some general guidelines:
- Most routers cant create VPN servers. If this is the case, youll need to try another approach like a cloud-hosted server.
For more information, read our full guide on how to install a VPN on your router here.
Is A VPN Really So Secure
It is important to note that VPNs do not function like comprehensive anti-virus software. While they protect your IP and encrypt your internet history, a VPN connection does not protect your computer from outside intrusion. To do this, you should definitely use anti-virus software such as Kaspersky Internet Security . Because using a VPN on its own does not protect you from Trojans, viruses, bots or other malware.
Once the malware has found its way onto your device, it can steal or damage your data, whether you are running a VPN or not. It is therefore important that you use a VPN together with a comprehensive anti-virus program to ensure maximum security.
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How To Choose The Right VPN
Which VPN to choose depends on the needs of the user. When choosing a VPN, there are some simple questions to ask:
- How many devices will connect to the VPN? Most VPNs have device caps, so be sure the service can include all the devices within your network comfortably.
- How much will the VPN impact internet speed? All VPNs slow down internet speeds to varying degrees because instead of going directly to the router, data moves through an encrypted tunnel. Look at what our VPN comparison says about slowdowns with different VPN services to get a better idea.
- Do you need a VPN with torrent capability? If so, make sure the VPN service allows torrenting.
- Where is the VPN service located? Depending on where the VPN service has their headquarters, they will have to obey certain data retention laws. Before signing up for a service, check what user data they have to provide their host government. Through communications and data sharing alliances, your user data might be shared with your own governments intelligence agencies, if part of the same alliance. The biggest alliances among western countries are called Five Eyes, Nine Eyes, and Fourteen Eyes.
- Five Eyes: U.S., U.K., Australia, New Zealand, Canada
- Nine Eyes: Five Eyes nations and France, Netherlands, Norway, Denmark
- Fourteen Eyes: Nine Eyes nations and Germany, Italy, Spain, Belgium, Sweden
Note:Free VPN trials are a great way to learn about what to expect from different services.
The Disadvantages Of Using A VPN
Whilst the downsides of a VPN are relatively few, it is still important to consider them in conjunction with your specific circumstances. Know what your priority is – are you after heightened security or a tool to unblock content?
A VPN has an effect on your internet speed, and unfortunately, this is inevitable. The good news is that theres an important reason for it. Your VPN takes extra steps to create encryption protocols that secure your data packets, and whilst you should expect a dip in speed due to this, it should never exceed 10-20% loss.
The downsides of VPNs:
- Slightly slower speeds because of the encryption process .
- Some record activity logs if you don’t use a zero logs service.
- Cost is a factor for premium features and reliable security features.
Some VPNs log your activity, which isn’t ideal if your goal is to protect your privacy. Activity logs can be relinquished to intrusive governments with a simple warrant. Fortunately, we have seen a rise in “no logs” services, which keep your browsing history, IP address, and other personally identifiable details off the record. However, some logging can be beneficial in order to enforce necessary restrictions, like bandwidth monitoring or keeping an eye on how many devices you have connected, but sticking with a true zero logs provider will keep you safe.
Written by:Hannah Hart
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Secure Your Financial Transactions
Working from home also means that you have to make online transactions to your colleagues or your vendors as well. In order to stay safe while doing it, you must connect to a VPN provider first otherwise, hackers or other cyber thieves can compromise your payment processor data.
Considering the devastating impacts of cyber attacks and other privacy hassles, using a VPN is a must to secure all your official financial payments.
Also Read: Why Should You Start Using a Reliable VPN?
Advantage : Fight Online Censorship
In a lot of countries governments heavily censor the internet. These countries block access to certain internet services and websites. Examples of apps and websites that are often blocked are WhatsApp, Google, Instagram, YouTube, Skype, Spotify and Facebook. Moreover, news websites and journalist platforms are often blocked because they are seen as a threat to the sitting government. In these countries this censorship heavily impacts the freedom of speech of their citizens.
In some western countries there are also online restrictions. For example, many countries block the Pirate Bay website because they do not want their citizens to download illegal materials.
A VPN can help you bypass censorship and restrictions by allowing you to connect to a server in a different country. By doing this you can go online as if you were in that other country. This way you can gain access to websites and services that are not available in your own country.
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Create Your Own VPN In The Cloud
- member serviceAccount:$.iam.gserviceaccount.com \
- role roles/iam.serviceAccountUser
- gcloud services enable compute.googleapis.com
Setting Up Your Own VPN Server
To create your own VPN for personal use, you have a few specific hosting options:
- Run the software on a cloud virtual private server. All cloud providers, from titans like Amazon Web Services to smaller operations like Vultr, offer cloud-hosted servers called VPSs. This approach allows you to select a city with a data center in which to host your VPN.
- Use your home routers VPN server functionality. If you have a router with the feature built-in or with the ability to use third-party firmware, you only need your router. With this approach, you can even access your home network remotely. At the same time, this option isnt useful while youre at home.
- Other solutions like hosting on dedicated physical machines. Enterprises commonly have dedicated VPN servers on their internal networks to allow employees to securely work from home. For home use, this solution is overkill: your router can do the same thing. However, you could have a second network that you want to access remotely . In this case, you can follow many of the same steps for creating a cloud VPN server but with a spare desktop or single-board computer left on 24/7.
In the following sections, youll learn how to set up a VPN in the cloud and on a router.
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VPN Uses: Keep Your Online Chats Private
While there are a number of secure messaging apps available , many popular apps don’t offer encryption, or require you to opt-in rather than opt-out. If your messaging isn’t encrypted there’s a chance it could be intercepted by an outsider.
Also, while it won’t affect your regular cell signal, a VPN can help protect your VoIP calls. And, even if your service provides encryption as standard, using a VPN as an extra layer of protection will give you the reassurance that you really can speak your mind.
Read more about the best mobile VPN apps available today
Why You Might Not Want To Do This
If youre like the vast majority of home internet users, youve got extremely limited and possibly slow upload bandwidth, and you might even have bandwidth limits or capsunless youve got gigabit fiber at home, setting up your own VPN server is going to be the slowest option you can choose.
The other problem is that some of the biggest reasons to use a VPN are to shift your geographic location to somewhere else to bypass geographical locks on websites or streaming services or mask your location for privacy reasonsand a home VPN server isnt going to really help you with either one of these scenarios if youre connecting from your home area.
Using a real VPN service is going to give you the fastest speeds, geo-shifting, and location masking, without any of the trouble of setting up and maintaining a server for yourself. The only downside of a real VPN service is that itll cost you a few dollars a month. These are our favorite picks for the best VPN services:
- ExpressVPN: This VPN server has the best combination of ease-of-use, really fast servers, and supports streaming media and torrenting, all for a cheap price.
- Tunnelbear: This VPN is really easy to use, is great for using at the coffee shop, and has a free tier. Its not good for torrenting or streaming media though.
- StrongVPN: Not quite as easy to use as the others, but you can definitely use them for torrenting and streaming media.
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In A Hurry Here Are The Best VPNs To Bypass Blockers
All three of these VPNs can help you unblock content restricted to the US and protect your data and traffic with AES 256-bit encryption. You can try them out for 30 days with a money-back guarantee, so there is no reason not to subscribe today.
How Remote Access VPN Software Works
How exactly does Access Server accomplish this?
How remote access VPN works is this: you start with an already existing connection. The most logical and popular method of transporting info is the public internet so a VPN carries information there. But anything you send over the internet that isnt protected can be seen by any other people along that path. Anyone on your wifi network could eavesdrop on what youre doing. The only way to prevent that?
Thats what Access Server uses. Whatever you send out on your own Wifi, at your office, or somewhere in between, gets encrypted. That means only your device and the Access Server in your office know how to read it. To everyone else, its just a garbled mess.
Encryption is a pillar of VPNs. When connected to AS with your phone, any information you pull up becomes encrypted and unreadable only then does it goes on its merry way across the internet
While its in transit there, no one can understand it its simply garbled nonsense. Access Server, however, has keys to un-encrypt it, which is how it can read it. Any info then sent back to your device from Access Server is encrypted as well, so that anything that goes over that connection in either direction is unreadable to anyone else.
Lets look at an example.
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