Everything you need to know about virtual private networks

In today’s article, I’ll better explain what VPN is, what it’s used for, and how it can make our connections more secure.

VPN is the abbreviation of Virtual private network.

This network is the technology that establishes communication between your machine and the Internet, but unlike standard networks, VPN determines secure communication by encrypting the data transmitted.

Basically, VPN creates an encrypted tunnel so that your machine can access the internet without your provider being able to log your activities.

With a VPN, your browsing is anonymous and untraceable

The VPN is basically used to guarantee data protection and to establish safe virtual browsing.

Other uses of a VPN are to change your IP location, access blocked websites in your country, protect your privacy, and increase your security when accessing the internet through Wi-Fi networks. Public Fi, for example.

VPN is also a feature widely used by businesses that need to protect their data when communication between remote points and the technology matrix is ​​required. VPN can also be used on Android with the help of officials VPN apps for Android.

Is it safe to use a VPN?

There are different companies that offer VPN services, and there are different protocols for connecting to a private network.

Paid VPNs are generally more secure than free ones. Indeed, when using a free service, it is not possible to guarantee that the data collected by this service will not be sold or distributed to other companies.

Paid networks also tend to have higher connection quality and less impact on browsing speed.

How does the VPN work?

Quite simply, VPN works by creating a kind of tunnel between your machine or device and the Internet. Through this tunnel, information is transmitted anonymously and privately and without the possibility of being intercepted by pirate invasions.

I will explain to you in more detail to better understand:

When you visit a website or app, your device or smartphone connects to a provider, informing them that you want to go to a particular website or app.

It is this provider that communicates with the Internet and sends the information back to your machine, allowing you to view these pages.

However, all the activities you perform within this network are traceable and recorded by this provider. This is also how websites are able to demographically map who their visitors are and extract other analytical data.

Imagine that all this communication, besides being traceable, happens openly and could possibly be invaded during certain data transmissions.

When you access the internet connected to a VPN, the only information your provider will have is that you are connected to a remote server, which can be located anywhere in the world, and nothing else.

All your steps from the moment you connect to this server will be protected, and all the data provided will be kept under encryption and will be transmitted through this tunnel which will isolate them from possible intrusions.

No VPN

Basically, without a VPN your internet connection is not secure and your ISP knows everything you are doing while you are browsing.

It is because your IP adress, which is used to identify your machine, will be provided to suppliers and all activity will be linked to it.

With VPN

On the other hand, with a VPN, your IP address will be masked and only IP providers will be able to see the IP of the remote server to which you are connected.

This IP address is shared by many users and changes regularly.

Representative

A Proxy is also an intermediary between the user and the Internet and can often be mistaken for a VPN.

The difference between the two is that the proxy transmits all the necessary information to the website requested by the visitor when accessing the Internet, such as the proxy IP address of a specific machine; while VPN only transmits the IP address of the remote server used.

A VPN acts like a online proxy which allows a user to browse anonymously.

Authentication

Authentication is the process by which the VPN client and the remote VPN server ensure that they are only communicating securely.

dig a tunnel

Tunneling is what we call the method by which a data packet is encapsulated to be sent to the ISP.

The VPN encrypts this data before transmitting it, preventing third parties from being able to understand it.

Cryptography

Encryption is the practice of encryption data so that it is only assimilated by the specific destination to which it is sent.

In the case of VPNs, data sent to the ISP is encrypted so that information sent by a user cannot be tracked or intercepted by intruders.

Encryption of this data protects it and can only be decrypted by the requested provider.

What are VPN protocols?

A VPN protocol is a method by which your machine or device will connect to the server over a private network.

What changes from protocol to protocol are encryption standards, authentication procedures, speed, etc.

Some of the most common VPN protocols on the market include OpenVPN, IKEv2, Lightway, WireGuard, SSTP, PPTP, among others.

To choose the best protocol for your navigation, you must define what you want to prioritize in this navigation.

Protocols have an impact, for example, on the speed of your connection, so some of them are more suitable for those who want to download.

Why use VPN?

There are many reasons for using VPN, whether for business or for personal use of home connections.

I will detail the most common below.

For your safety

Protecting the security of your data is often the number one reason to adopt regular use of a private network.

A VPN can offer more security and peace of mind for those who work with large data flows or just want to raise the standards of security inside their home.

Protect your privacy

For many people, protecting their privacy online may seem like overkill, but the truth is that taking certain precautions shouldn’t be an afterthought.

Extracting and selling the private data of millions of users is one of the most marketed products behind the scenes of the internet today, and if you don’t want information about your browsing flowing, a VPN can help you.

By hiding your IP address, the remote server that you use to browse the internet through a VPN prevents the tracking of your virtual activities, thus protecting your privacy when you make purchases or access applications that contain personal information.

Access websites blocked or censored by the firewall

Due to legal differences, it is common for certain sites to be banned in certain countries, such as Google is banned in China; or some artistic content is not accessible worldwide for various reasons.

A VPN can bypass this type of prohibition because, when connecting to a remote server in the United States for example, the IP address transmitted to your Internet service provider will be hosted in the United States, allowing you to access to all content available in that country.

If you want to go to a page that is not available in your country, all you need to do is choose a server hosted in the country where that content is available.

Sites censored by the firewall are also allowed to access through a VPN.

To change location

As noted above, a VPN changes the location of your IP, making an Internet service provider understand that your browsing is from another country.

If for some reason you need to access an online service from another location, using a private network is your solution.

When to use a VPN?

Even if you don’t want to use a VPN on a recurring basis for day-to-day internet use, there are some situations that require greater concern for the security of your data.

public wifi

Connecting your device to a public Wi-Fi network can lead to a lot of data interception.

If you need to work remotely or use a public Wi-Fi network to perform an activity, it is highly recommended that a VPN protect your browsing.

To use a private network on your smartphone, look for an app that bridges this and has this feature always at your fingertips.

Traveling

If you are traveling and need to connect to your hotel’s Wi-Fi networks, access websites unavailable in some countries, or if you just want to protect your privacy by hiding your location, use a VPN is essential.

With it, you surf the Internet through a private network anywhere in the world, including the country you live in outside of it.

watch streaming

Have you ever tried to follow your favorite series abroad and found it unavailable? If you are used to traveling frequently, probably already.

Solving this problem with a VPN is very easy. Simply access a remote server hosted in your country of residence and return to Diffusion site to have access to all the content available in your country.

If you want to listen to music or watch a movie blocked in your country, the reverse is also valid: just look for a server hosted in countries where this content is accessible.

How to choose the best VPN

The best VPN is the one that best suits your needs.

However, it is important to ensure certain things such as: the legitimacy of the supplier company, the market value, the availability, the protocol, the impact on the browsing speed, among others.

The point is, while there are many different types of VPNs, there are VPNs for all categories of utilities.

Are there other alternatives?

Although it is the most popular alternative for data protection, VPN is not the only technology capable of providing anonymous browsing of the Internet.

TOR

The TOR , very commonly associated with the depth Web, is a open source software that allows a user to surf the Internet with his identity protected.

Unlike VPN, which encrypts data transmitted to a provider, TOR communicates through a complex network that passes this data through many machines before reaching its recipient.

A common point between these two technologies is the hiding of the IP of the user who uses them.

By allowing millions of people to travel the internet without leaving any traces, this software is widely used by those who wish to access the non-indexed part of the internet.

Proxy

The Proxy , as noted above, is an intermediary server for queries made by a user over the internet, but it is not capable, like a VPN or TOR, of hiding information to track a user on the web.

Conclusion

When choosing a form of protection for surfing the Internet, it is necessary to keep in mind that, on the web as we know it today, nothing is 100% secure.

Still, stepping up efforts to make your connection as less vulnerable as possible is always the right decision.

When traveling, access unknown and unprotected Wi-Fi networks, post confidential information or manipulate third-party data, always have a good protective network on your machine.