VPN Security is Changing the Game

The Internet is a jungle. You never quite know what’s hiding under this or that rock, or when you will or won’t end up finding yourself face to face with a panther. Similarly, when you’re surfing the web, you never really know exactly what’s happening with the information you’re sending to and from the websites you’re surfing. Sure, it might be getting there safely, without any interruption – but it also might be getting diverted to someone else, so they can read all the information you’re sending, identify your computer, and learn who you are.

All kinds of bad things can happen after that – identity theft, virus installation, etc. So, how do you protect yourself? These days, it’s easy. Using VPN security software is a great, relatively easy way to protect yourself on the web.

computer security concept

Package Sending Basics

Every time you open up a new website while surfing, your computer sends a request to the server the website you’re accessing is hosted on; the server responds by sending information; and then the website is displayed on your computer.

This is great in theory, and it is extremely efficient, in fact, but there’s one big problem: Anyone who can grab ahold of the information coming from your computer will know your IP address, your operating system, your browser, and just about everything else in the package you send. Sound good? It shouldn’t – you never know who’s watching.

VPNs: Changing the Game

When you use a VPN – or, virtual private network – things get shaken up a bit. Now, instead of sending a request directly to the server, you send an encrypted request to an intermediate server. This intermediate then sends its own request to the target server, which responds to the intermediate, and the intermediate server finally responds to you, with a (still encrypted) package. This sounds complicated, but it is in fact a relatively straightforward process, and it affords quite a bit of protection.

Just think: This way, when you send a request, no one intercepting it, even right away, can tell what’s going on. Why? Because your request is encrypted! Unless the eavesdropper has the key – which, by the way, they can’t – they can’t read your information.

Option two: They intercept the request after it gets to the intermediate server. Well, this still doesn’t matter, for two reasons. First, the message is still encrypted. Second, even if they could decrypt it, they’ll only get information regarding the location and nature of the intermediary server, because it’s communicating with the target server on your behalf. This means that, nowhere along the way, can anyone interested in figuring out what you’re doing or where you are actually determine any of that information. Brilliant.

Effectiveness of VPNs

This sounds great in theory, but how effective is it really? Well, in reality, it’s extremely effective. The encryption used on your outgoing requests is military-strength, meaning that no one without serious cryptographic training is going to be able to crack your message; and those who do have such training won’t be interested in intercepting small-scale communications like this.

That aside, the intermediate servers are usually themselves very, very fast, so they can handle lots of package exchanges without slowing down. This means your Internet connection won’t be noticeably slower even if you install a VPN client, even though you’ll be distinctly safer.

Ease of Use

Words like encryption and package request tend to scare off the standard user, since they’re concepts that require a lot of technical experience to really understand in full. While this is true, it’s also unnecessary that you get the nitty-gritty details of what’s going on at the level of the CPU on order to make good use of a VPN client. Simply install it, fill in the information it asks for, and then start surfing safe. This is the best way to do what you need to do – protect yourself – while still enjoying the Internet as the free information repository that it is.

The Verdict

At the end of the day, the million dollar question is: Is it worth it? Well, if you value your privacy on the web, it definitely is. The thing that most people forget – or, perhaps, that they don’t realize – is that privacy on the web really doesn’t exist these days. It’s not as simple as privacy, in the sense of what you do or don’t put on your Facebook profile. Privacy, in this sense, runs deeper. Every time you open a web page, you share information about where and who you are, what your surfing habits might be, what you buy, and where you live. None of this is information you’re likely to want floating around in arbitrary hands – so protect yourself, and look into obtaining strong VPN security through one of the VPN providers we recommend here today.

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