Whether you are an individual or a large company, data encryption and privacy might be significant factors for you. A VPN can provide many benefits while transmitting sensitive data over the network. It could be public Wi-Fi or even just enjoying entertainment on Netflix or just scrolling through social media. In this article, You are going to learn what a VPN is, Its purpose, and the top 10 VPN uses in 2023.
What Is a VPN?
VPN stands for Virtual Private Network. A VPN is a piece of software that protects your information by masking your device’s IP address while surfing the internet. It also encrypts your data and routes it through different secure networks and servers located all around the world. A VPN hides your online identity, allowing you to browse the internet and send sensitive information anonymously.
So basically, when you visit a website such as surfshark.com, TorGuard VPN or NordVPN, the advertisers and website systems track your browser info and history. A VPN can give you a great level of security and privacy by using encryption to protect your online activities from would-be hackers and websites.
How Does A VPN Work?
The VPN providers maintain a number of secure servers in different locations all around the world. When you use the internet, the VPN sends your information through their servers and masks your IP address. This gives you the ability to surf the internet from any server location around the world. It also adds an extra layer of security by encrypting your data.
Uses of a VPN
You’ll be amazed at the things you can do with a VPN. Most people just think that a VPN only encrypts your data and provides you with a virtual IP address, but with their premium VPN services, there is much more you can get with a VPN.
According to a study 30% of the people use VPN for private use while 25% use it for business purposes (source: security.org). Similarly, more than 40% of the users in United States and United Kingdom use VPN once a week. It is estimated that out of five billion internet users worldwide, about 1.2 billions use VPN in 2023.
1. Secure Public Networks
Connecting to a public network is not always a safe idea. Like if you go to a coffee shop or airport and you get free wifi that you can use to get your work done, send an email, attend a meeting or just scroll social media. But what if the network has been set up by hackers, and connecting to it could expose your identity and browser activity? A VPN protects your data and identity by encrypting your internet connection, limiting the risk of getting your sensitive data stolen.
2. Protect Your Privacy
Among all of the uses we have mentioned, Your data privacy and security are the most important uses for a VPN. Every individual has a right to surf the internet and communicate on the internet without risking their privacy.
Your ISP(Internet Service Provider), Apps, and Services can access your information and browser history and sell your data to advertisers. Some apps like Google and Facebook are known to access your data and use it to provide users with personalized ads. They can almost access all the data on your mobile or computer. A VPN prevents apps and websites from accessing your behaviors and IP address by encrypting your data and also limiting the collection of your location and browser history.
3. Access your home network more securely
A lot of people store our files, documents, and large files on their desktop computers and laptops and access those files remotely from other places. To keep your files safe and secure and prevent them from getting stolen by hackers, It’s best to connect and access your data using a VPN.
4. Protect your mobile devices
Nowadays, VPNs come as easy-to-use mobile apps that can be installed on mobile devices like smartphones, tablets, and Smart TVs. And you can use one premium account on many devices which means that you can protect almost all of your devices with just one account. We recommend using VPNs on all your devices to ensure continuous encryption.
5. Protection from DDoS Attack
A DDoS Attack stands for Distributed Denial of Service Attack which is an attempt to disrupt network traffic. DDoS attack means that the attacker attacks the systems or server with artificial requests which makes the server overwhelm, which leads to a late response from the server or not being able to respond to genuine user requests. In order to launch a DDoS attack, hackers need the IP address of the target. Using a VPN can secure your network from such kinds of attacks. User can also protect their networks from DDoS attacks by using dynamic ARP Rate Limiting technique.
6. Security when working remotely
After the COVID pandemic, most businesses have shifted remotely, where employees can work while sitting comfortably in their houses. A VPN can provide an extra layer of security by encrypting the data that is being transferred through the network. A VPN allows you to keep your confidential data and information more secure.
7. Bypass Geo-Blocking
When doing a business trip. You may need to access the internet or your own website during traveling. You may encounter locations that block or censor parts of the website or internet. This can cause a huge blockage in your workflow especially when you can’t access work-related websites. Using a VPN may help you unblock any blocked content.
8. Avoid Social Media Block
There are over 195 countries that support VPN. However, some countries like China, Iran, etc blocks social media sites like Facebook and WhatsApp. If you belong to these countries or are traveling through one, you can use a VPN to access these blocked social media platforms. However there are fines/paneities imposed by certain governments on using VPN services to access websites or online services which are blocked by the country. For example, UAE Law states:
Whoever uses a fraudulent computer network protocol address (IP address) by using a false address or a third-party address by any other means for the purpose of committing a crime or preventing its discovery, shall be punished by temporary imprisonment and a fine of no less than Dhs 500,000 and not exceeding Dhs 2,000,000, or either of these two penalties.
9. Access a Larger Library of Games
Since a VPN reroutes your internet connection through one of your selected servers. You can have far more options in your steam games library. You can also access games that are otherwise banned in your country due to extremely graphic content. Sometimes, you can also access and play games which are not even available in a certain country or not published yet.
10. Watch your Favorite Foreign Films
Some paid subscriptions like Netflix, Amazon prime video, and Disney Hotstar+ have “Geo-Blocking” features that block certain content in some geographical areas. If you are from these countries, you may have restricted access to certain content. Using a VPN can help bypass those features and opens a wide range of content for you to stream no matter where you live.
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