How To Configure VPN On Iphone Or Ipad
Using one of the best VPN services on your iPhone or iPad is streamlined to make it relatively simple. If your company has a private intranet that you need access to while on the road, if you regularly use public Wi-Fi networks, or if you travel the globe and want your iPhone to think it’s still in your home country , a VPN will help you out. Here’s how to configure a VPN on iPhone.
What Does VPN Stand For On A Phone
Lets start by defining what a VPN is.
VPN stands for Virtual Private Network.
Its another way of saying that you will get online through a private connection. By that, we mean a connection that is secure in the way it is encrypted and hidden from other people on the network and your ISP . Your ISP can be AT& T, CableOne, Comcast, etc.
When you use your phone without a VPN all your browser history will be logged and saved by your ISP and they will know exactly which websites you have visited and much more.
More and more people are getting concerned with data privacy and with good reasons. There have even been examples where ISPs have sold information about their customers whereabouts to big advertising companies in order for them to direct ads based on your activity.
But more importantly than that, you can also get much better security when logging unto unsecured wifi networks in places like:
When doing so you are very vulnerable to attacks from hackers and people whore trying to sniff up your passwords, personal data, credit card info, etc. Thats much more common than people think!
But well get back to that in a second.
Lets first see what it looks like when a VPN is active on your phone.
What Does No Logging Mean
No logging means that your VPN provider doesnt keep any records of what you do while using the VPN. A no-log VPN provider wont track or store any information sent over the VPN connection they know only your IP address, payment information, and the VPN server you use while connected.
Whenever an activity happens on a computer, that event is logged. Since servers are computers, they collect information by default whenever theyre accessed by a device such as yours.
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What Does A VPN For Iphone Do
Once your iPhone is connected to the internet, be it through your network connection or Wi-Fi, it’s at risk. In the case of unsecured public Wi-Fi, like at coffee shops, hotels and airports, this risk is even greater. Risk of what? Your data being exposed. That’s is where a VPN works to keep you safe.
What Is A VPN And Why Would I Need One
Chris Hoffman is Editor-in-Chief of How-To Geek. He’s written about technology for over a decade and was a PCWorld columnist for two years. Chris has written for The New York Times, been interviewed as a technology expert on TV stations like Miami’s NBC 6, and had his work covered by news outlets like the BBC. Since 2011, Chris has written over 2,000 articles that have been read nearly one billion times—and that’s just here at How-To Geek. Read more…
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A VPN, or Virtual Private Network, allows you to create a secure connection to another network over the Internet. VPNs can be used to access region-restricted websites, shield your browsing activity from prying eyes on public Wi-Fi, and more.
These days VPNs are really popular, but not for the reasons they were originally created. They originally were just a way to connect business networks together securely over the internet or allow you to access a business network from home.
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An Alternative To VPNs For Iphone
If youre still on the fence about using a VPN on your iPhone, there are free alternatives that will also help to keep you anonymous online. One alternative is Tor, a web browser that relays you through a random series of computers before you connect to the internet.
There are many Tor-powered browser apps available in the App Store, most of which are free. There are also some paid Tor browser apps such as Red Onion, which has a 4.5 star rating based on nearly 1,000 reviews.
Tor was originally created by the United States government to help protect their overseas agents. Today, Tor is used by millions of people who just want to try and stay anonymous on the internet. Tor has become increasingly popular because its free to install on your Mac or iPhone and its fairly easy to use.
What Is A VPN
A Virtual Private Network is a technology that is designed to give you online privacy. A VPN achieves this by doing two important things:
- It encrypts your data so that it is completely secure from prying eyes. It stops snooping on your data, whether its your ISP, government, or hackers attempting to invade your privacy.
- A VPN conceals your real IP address and provides you with an alternative IP address in a remote location of your choice. This stops websites from knowing where you are. Not only does this stop websites tracking your iPhone, but it also means you can pretend to be in a different country to bypass local restrictions or international geo-restrictions.
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A VPN Protects You From Bandwidth Throttling
Bandwidth throttling is when your ISP intentionally slows down your online speeds because youre using up too much data doing stuff like downloading files, watching videos, or playing online games.
They can easily do that because they can see what you do when you browse the web on your iPhone.
If you use a VPN, though, you wont need to worry about that. The service will encrypt your traffic, making sure your ISP will only see that youre using a VPN server, and nothing more.
How Does A VPN Secure My Phone
A VPN will work in the background and make sure that ALL the traffic between you and the internet is encrypted. Other than that it will also change your IP so the websites you visit cannot see who you are or where you come from.
Let list exactly how a VPN will make your phone more secure:
- The VPN encrypts your dataThis makes it MUCH harder for outsiders to snatch your data and information. Your data will be sent by the VPN providers servers, and they add a thick layer of security around your data so its almost impossible to hack you.
- The VPN hides your search history from your Intenet service providerNormally, your ISP will log all your whereabouts so they can see exactly which websites and web services you have used at all times. This can be a problem for many reasons that we will not get into here. Lets just say that there have been many examples where governments and private companies have gotten access to peoples personal data.
- The VPN hides your IPActually, the VPN will give you another IP. This makes it virtually impossible to see who you are and where you are. This can be a big plus if you want to access U.S. websites that are only accessible to Americans. By choosing a VPN server from the U.S. you can change your location to the U.S.
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What Does VPN Mean At The Top Corner Of My Screen
When you see this VPN logo at the top corner screen of your mobile phone it means that you have an active VPN connection running.
A VPN program can be set to automatically start when you turn on your phone or you may have activated it yourself.
The VPN logo is typically shown in a little squared box like the example above. When you see the logo you can do into your phone setting to see where the VPN comes from and which program it is run by.
Heres how you check that on an iPhone:
Here you can see whether it says Connected or not. If you see the squared VPN icon at the top of the screen it means that the VPN is active. It will say on this screen which VPN you are using. Heres how it currently looks on my iPhone as Im using a VPN called ExpressVPN:
You can also see the logo at the top of my screen above.
How Does VPN Work
VPNs use a few methods to make this anonymous data security work:
Encryption scrambles your data in a format that only the destination will be able to read. Tunnelingprotocols are then used to create encryption tunnels within your Wi-Fi or cellular network. These provide protection by isolating and concealing your data from the rest of the users on the network. This is valuable when on any internet network, whether secured or unsecured.
Remote servers act as the destination for your encrypted data tunnel. Your data gets shipped out to VPN servers in other countries to help anonymize your identity. When the data exits and moves to its final target, all the location data is from the remote server and not your own. Essentially, these VPN servers are your protective middleman that disguises your data from interference.
Together, these main methods keep your private information from being sifted and snatched. The result is a level of cybersecurity and privacy that will give you more peace-of-mind.
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Is There A VPN App For My Iphone
You can download the VPN software for your iPhone from the App Store. In fact, the best VPNs have made their app available on the Apple Store. Unfortunately, the market is being eroded by hundreds of VPNs, so it’s not a good idea to search for VPNs in the App Store. Many free VPNs are known to contain malware, malicious ads, and spyware.
How Does It Work
A VPN works using an app that you install on your iPhone. This app allows you to click connect on a server location of your choice.
When you click connect, the VPN app encrypts your data and sends it to the VPN server. Commonly referred to as a secure VPN tunnel, this encrypted information cannot be accessed by anybody as it travels from your device to the VPN server.
Of course, this is just a very brief explanation of what a VPN is and how it works. If you would like to know more, we cover this – in a non-technical way – in our What is a VPN? Beginner’s guide.
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How Many Servers Are There
VPN providers with lots of servers can spread their users out to avoid overloading any one server. This ensures faster and more stable connections for everyone. Wondering how many servers your chosen VPN has? Weve got the numbers right here:
Avast SecureLine VPN: 700+ servers
AVG Secure VPN: 700+ servers
CyberGhost: 6,900+ servers
TunnelBear: Approximately 3,000 servers
Selecting A Secure VPN Provider
It is also important that you choose a VPN provider that you can trust. While your ISP cannot see your internet traffic, your VPN provider can. If your VPN provider is compromised, so are you. For this reason, it is crucial that you choose a trusted VPN provider to ensure both the concealment of your internet activities and ensure the highest level of security.
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What Is VPN Encryption
VPN encryption is the process of using data encryption to create a secure tunnel for your data to travel through. If anyone examines your VPN connection, theyll see scrambled data. Only your device and the VPN server youre using can encrypt and decrypt, or unscramble, your data.
While many encryption methods, or algorithms, exist, most VPNs use the 256-bit AES algorithm. This level of encryption is so secure that its used by banks and governments worldwide as well as by AVG Secure VPN.
How To Set Up A VPN On An Iphone
Here’s how to get a VPN running on your Apple iPhone:
1. On your iPhone, go to your home screen and tap to open the App Store.
2. Tapthe Search tab in the bottom right-hand corner of the screen, then tap the Search box near the top of the screen.
3. Type in the name of the VPN you’ve chosen, and select it from the list that pops up. Then tap the Get button that appears to the right of the app’s name. Like with any other app, you’ll need to confirm the app installation with your passcode, Touch ID or Face ID.
4. Once your install has finished, close the App Store and go back to your Home screen.
5. Just as with using a VPN for the first time on Android, using a VPN on iPhone for the first time means you’ll be prompted to create a new account and select your preferred subscription level. Make sure to check your email inbox for any confirmation links your VPN provider sends you if you’ve signed up using an email address.
Nearly all VPN apps will prompt you to connect to an automatically selected server based on your location to enable the fastest browsing. From here on out, any time you’d like to use your VPN, all you’ll need to do is tap the VPN icon on your Home screen before you start browsing the internet, click the app’s button to connect, then go back to the VPN app and turn it off once you’re finished.
There, now. Didn’t I tell you it was easy?
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What Are The Benefits Of A VPN Connection
A VPN connection disguises your data traffic online and protects it from external access. Unencrypted data can be viewed by anyone who has network access and wants to see it. With a VPN, hackers and cyber criminals cant decipher this data.
Secure encryption: To read the data, you need an encryption key . Without one, it would take millions of years for a computer to decipher the code in the event of a brute force attack . With the help of a VPN, your online activities are hidden even on public networks.
Disguising your whereabouts : VPN servers essentially act as your proxies on the internet. Because the demographic location data comes from a server in another country, your actual location cannot be determined. In addition, most VPN services do not store logs of your activities. Some providers, on the other hand, record your behavior, but do not pass this information on to third parties. This means that any potential record of your user behavior remains permanently hidden.
Secure data transfer: If you work remotely, you may need to access important files on your companys network. For security reasons, this kind of information requires a secure connection. To gain access to the network, a VPN connection is often required. VPN services connect to private servers and use encryption methods to reduce the risk of data leakage.
How Do I Set Up A VPN On Iphone
Once youve selected and signed up with an iPhone VPN provider, check to see if your provider has an app in the App Store. If they do, download the app and it will configure the VPN settings on your iPhone for you.
If your iPhone VPN provider doesnt have an app, you can enter the information manually by opening Settings and tapping General -> VPN -> Add VPN Configuration
Your iPhone VPN provider will give you the instructions you need when you sign up for their service. Once you complete the configuration, a VPN menu item will appear in the Settings app on your iPhone.
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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.
When your connection is running slower than normal, try turning your VPN off for a while. If speed is a common concern, ExpressVPN is one of the fastest VPN providers available.
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 with our best VPNs for BBC iPlayer guide.
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What Are The Benefits Of A VPN And Why Do I Need A VPN On My Iphone