Getting started with a VPN
A virtual private network (VPN) service is one of the most efficient measures you can take to enhance your privacy and security whenever you are connected to the Internet. Besides showing you the best VPN services in 2017, this article goes a step further to demonstrate why a VPN is essential in your online activities. The articles also give you an insight into the limitations you expect to encounter while using VPN.
VPNs are powerful and essential tools for all your online activities. However, it is important to point out that a single one-stop-shop solution for protecting your privacy and enhancing your online security when using the internet does not actually exist. You should only consider VPNs as essential tools in your browsing toolbox.
So why do you need VPN Service?
There are several reasons why a VPN is actually good for you. Here are a few of them:
Improve your online security
A VPN basically encrypts every piece of data transferred between your computer or mobile device and the VPN server. VPN enhances your security especially when you are using a public Wi-Fi network or a common hotspot. Public internet connections can be compromised but your data will always remain encrypted and secure as long as you connect via a VPN server.
Enhance your online privacy
A VPN conceals your online activities from your local Internet Service Provider. It is quite effective against blanket surveillance by government agencies such as NSA.
Hiding your IP address
Every time you visit any website, you leave a footprint behind which includes your IP address. Your IP address and location are clearly visible to the website owner or webmaster. However, when you visit the site via a VPN connection, the website will see the VPN server’s IP address rather than your actual IP address. This helps to avoid being tracked by websites that you visit while browsing the web.
Accessing geo-restricted content and websites
VPNs allow you to visit and view content in geo-restricted websites. Your IP is not visible to the website which means you can access geo-restricted services including NetFlix, BBC iPlayer, and many others every time you are connected to a VPN server in that specific country or region.
P2P torrent downloads
As long as your real IP is concealed and the fact that your ISP does not see what you are actually doing online, it is quite possible to download P2P torrent without a hitch. However, make sure that your VPN provider allows P2P torrent downloads before you attempt this.
It is quite obvious now that there are many benefits of using VPN. However, not all VPN services provide the same features and functionalities. We’ve therefore made it our duty to help you find a VPN service that matches your needs. The table below shows 3 of the best VPN providers in 2017.
Our VPN Reviews in 2017
We don’t just strive to give you our opinions about different VPNs but go a step further to give our readers a detailed review of each VPN provider. We look at how each company’s software works, how it looks, and the different options each company makes available for their clients. Our reviews also consider important aspects such as pricing plans, performance, and features. Our goal is to make sure readers get a full understanding of each VPN provider to help them make an informed decision when choosing a VPN service.
A Brief Look at VPN Services
When you use the services of any commercial VPN provider, your connection to the Internet goes through the VPN’s server. The connection between your device and VPN server is encrypted too. Here are a few more things you need to understand about VPN services:
- You still have to connect to the VPN via your ISP provider and the ISP can see the amount of data you consume during each connection.
- However, the ISP does not know what data you are accessing since the connection is encrypted.
- The ISP cannot see which websites you visit because the VPN server is like a proxy. The ISP can only see the IP address of the VPN server but not the sites you visit.
- Governments depend on ISPs to collect surveillance data which makes a VPN connection effective against blanket surveillance. However, if you are singled out for targeted surveillance by the government, a VPN connection will not be of great use to you.
WiFi and Hotspot Connections
The encrypted connection between your device and the VPN server protects you from criminal hackers besides hiding your online data from your ISP. A Private WiFi network is usually well encrypted for security reasons but a public WiFi is a major security risk.
Hackers and packet sniffers can easily access your data every time you connect to the internet via an unencrypted network or via an “evil twin” hotspot. Avoid connecting to the net through any free WiFi connection at the airport or hotel unless you are using a VPN service. All the data that goes through a VPN server is encrypted which means even if hackers got access to your data they would not be able to read or decipher the information.
What makes a best VPN?
The best VPN comes with a host of features to enhance your online security and privacy. Here are a few things to look for in the best VPN service.
- It should come with AES-256 encryption as well as OpenVPN protocol for added safety.
- It should keep your private data safe
- Come with additional widgets designed to enhance security such as Double VPN, TOR over VPN, and DDoS protected VPN IP’s.
- The best VPN should have high speed connections and without DNS leak in case the provider has its own DNS servers
- A good VPN should ideally have 500 servers located in multiple countries and continents across the world.
- A free trial is highly recommended. This helps clients test-drive the service before they pay. A standard free trial can be for as little as 7 days or for as long as 30 to 45 days.
Above all else, the best VPN provider should meet your personal needs and preferences.
Best VPN Services Conclusion
If you are a serious internet user, you need the privacy and security provided by VPNs. While free VPNs are readily available all over the net, they are generally useless and may even be a security risk. Remember maintaining a VPN service is expensive and nobody out there is going to do it for free. Find a good VPN service from our top recommendations and enhance your online security and privacy.