VPN Guide: The 8 Most Asked VPN Questions Answered
VPNs are in high demand and for a good reason.
As the internet gets older and users get to know more about it, we understand how important privacy and security are. We’ve also understood the value of our data and the fact it should stay our own data. VPNs also allow us to gain access to more corners of the internet.
But let’s take things from the beginning.
1. What Is a VPN?
VPN stands for Virtual Private Network. A VPN encrypts your Wi-Fi connection and allows you to create a secure connection.
Every time you connect to the internet through a VPN, the VPN masks some of your valuable information, thus protecting you and your data.
2. How does a VPN work?
To understand how a VPN works, we first need to understand how things work without one.
Every time you connect to the internet, you do so through your Internet Service Provider (ISP). Υour ISP assigns you a unique IP address. Your ISP is the manager between you and all the places you connect to. As your ISP is your internet connection manager, it knows your information, such as what websites you visit, for how long, etc.
With a VPN, this changes.
When you connect to a VPN, the device establishes a secure connection with a server. Once connected, you share the server’s identity, and the server’s identity now becomes your identity.
Now you are connected through a VPN, you hide your IP address. Even your provider can’t know your IP. What’s more, your ISP doesn’t know your physical location and which websites you visit.
3. Why Do I Need a VPN?
So why would anyone want to use a VPN? What are its benefits?
Protecting your privacy
With a VPN, your ISP is not the only entity that stops peeking at you. The government and even hackers can no longer violate your privacy.
Increasing your security
Security is all about information, and by giving less information, you increase your security. Bad actors and snoopers will find a hard time breaching your security with a VPN.
Changing your location
By changing your IP address, you also change the country you virtually connect from. With a VPN, you can browse the internet as if you were in another country.
Gaining more access to the internet
Access to many websites and places on the internet depends on factors such as your IP address. Thanks to a VPN, you can gain access to the internet.
4. How Can a VPN Help Me In Practice?
Now that you know the significant benefits of VPNs, here are the most common ways that users worldwide take advantage of their functionality.
Most major streaming platforms like Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu don’t have the same content library for every country. Depending on where you connect from, you will have a specific library. With a VPN, you can change that and open up the international streaming catalogs on every platform.
While torrenting itself isn’t illegal, a VPN lets you engage in P2P (person to person) file sharing anonymously and with more security. With a VPN, no one can track your downloads and see what files you are sharing – and with whom.
Did you know that many online stores show different prices to different people, depending on the location of an IP? When you connect through a Virtual Private Network, you can find the best deals in the world – literally.
Also known as ‘corporate VPN’, a VPN can be useful for many professionals. Business VPNs allow every employee to connect to the internet from anywhere as if they were from their company’s headquarters.
Business VPNs differ from commercial VPNs because their role is focused on providing privacy to the company rather than the individual.
5. Can I Use a VPN for Netflix?
Not all Netflix shows are available to every country in the world. Users from Italy don’t have the same options as citizens from Canada, and users from Japan don’t have the same options as citizens from South Africa. And, let us not forget that Netflix is not available in some countries altogether.
A VPN changes all of it. Connecting through a VPN not only can you watch the whole Netflix catalog, but you can also watch Netflix even if you couldn’t in the first place.
Therefore the answer is yes, you can use a VPN to get more options on Netflix. And it’s quite easy, too! Here’s how in 4 steps:
- Download Volta-Protect
- Install Volta-Protect
- Connect to a server in the country you want
- Open Netflix. You can now see all the shows and movies from the country you virtually connected from.
6. How Secure Is a VPN?
With your data and privacy, when using a VPN, you can be sure that information such as your IP address, your location, your browsing history, or your social media identity won’t leak anywhere.
It should be noted that a VPN is not an antivirus alternative, nor does it offer any protection against viruses and malware. A VPN secures your information, data and can protect you from DDoS attacks as well. However, a VPN doesn’t secure you the same way an antivirus software can.
Consider having both an antivirus program and a VPN client installed for maximum security.
7. Are Free VPNs Safe?
So, a VPN can be secure but is it secure? It’s not really a matter of technology – it’s a matter of trust. The real question is, do you trust a VPN more than your internet service provider?
According to TechCrunch, free VPNs are bad for your privacy. But why is this the case especially for free VPNs? As it happens with our digital world, if it’s free, you are the product.
When a service costs nothing, the company offering the service has to make money somehow to stay in business. It makes sense, right? So, many of these free VPN companies sell your data to advertisers to operate and make a profit.
If you need a VPN and are pondering between a free or a premium VPN service, remember that a free VPN is often as good as no VPN.
8. Will a VPN Slow Down My Internet Speed?
Typically, yes, all VPNs decrease your internet speed – and it couldn’t be any other way. To add protection, a VPN has to add an extra step to your connection. Therefore, connecting to a remote server and the encryption process takes a toll on your connection speed.
Server location is the number one factor determining how much slower your speed will be. The farther the server is from the point you connect, the slower the internet speed gets. For example, if you connect to the internet from the US and you pick a server from Canada, you will have a slower connection than connecting to a server in France.
Nonetheless, premium VPNs, like Volta, have kept the latency to a minimum so you won’t notice any difference in speed easily.