VPN or Virtual Private Network is software that protects your privacy on the internet.
When you go to any website on the internet, you leave traces behind. Your IP address, your browsing habits, your likes and dislikes – this information is pieced together by software to sell you ads and other BS.
These websites get ahold of this information about you because you visited them directly.
VPN software helps you reach them indirectly – protecting your identity, your information, and your passwords.
An easy to understand physical world explanation would be:
Let’s say you want to receive a package – normally you give the sender your home address (this would be your IP address) – sender sends you the package, so he knows both who you are and what was sent to you.
But let’s say you don’t want to give away your address. You ask your neighbor (VPN service provider) for help.
You give the sender your neighbor’s address, the sender delivers it to your neighbor (this way the sender does not know who you are), your neighbor then hands your package over to you.
The communication between you and your neighbor is encrypted so that no one can intercept and read your data.
The neighbor knows who you are, and what she gave you, but your neighbor has very short term memory loss, so she forgot everything that happened just as soon as it happened (most VPNs don’t maintain any logs).
So essentially, you were able to protect your data and identity by using your neighbor, or a VPN service provider.
Plus, all the communication is encrypted when you use a VPN, so it’s impossible to snoop or eavesdrop on you.
Marketers are going to try to target you wherever you go. It’s your job to protect yourself.
Have you ever gone to Amazon and looked for a product, and then you start seeing ads for that very product on other websites? What a coincidence, correct?
Almost every large company actively mines your data, whether you like it or not.
Corporations know more about you than you know about yourself.
Amazon knows how quickly you’re going to finish that jar of instant coffee, so they can show you an ad for a new jar just when it’s about to get over.
Your Internet Service Provider (ISP) knows what pages you go to, which website you buy from, which banks you use, and even which health problems you have.
You might think, okay, so what? I don’t care who does what with my data. I have nothing to hide.
While privacy is not something that the regular average office worker guy cares about – judging by the fact that they spill their entire life’s history on Facebook for everyone to see, here’s something everyone should care about – Security.
You’d have to be insane to not care about the privacy of your banking and investment information, sensitive passwords, and even personal pictures and media.
Why you (and everyone) should use a VPN:
(and it’s much easier than you think – just download and install like any other software)
1. You use Public WiFi at hotels, airports, restaurants, coffee shops, etc.
Public WiFis have hundreds of users that you don’t know – and some of them are malafide.
Most people don’t know that the WiFi at the hotel, airport, restaurant, and the coffee shop is not safe for confidential email and browsing.
Even a junior-level hacker can steal your banking information and other passwords with simple one-click software such as Firesheep.
Public WiFi is inherently insecure and is one of the most popular ways hackers drain bank accounts, install ransomware on your computer, and in some cases, it’s a horny teenager just trying to steal the pictures from your phone.
2. You use your work internet connection for private uses
Most employers maintain heavy logs and records of internet usage by their employees.
You might have noticed that some websites are blocked and inaccessible.
A VPN creates a secure encrypted tunnel at your work connection – which lets you bypass all restrictions, prevents IT and HR from eavesdropping on you, and enables you to work on your side business while you’re at work, without raising all sorts of red flags.
Unethical? Sure. Necessary? Yes.
Don’t be naive. Those records sometimes contain your passwords that they over-zealously captured, and those records are only used as a reason to fire people.
Don’t hate the game, beat the game.
3. You don’t like censorship
You’ve gone to YouTube or any of those video streaming sites.
They block you on geographical grounds.
“Unfortunately, this video is not available in your country.”
Sucks, right? Well, it doesn’t have to.
With a VPN, you can simply change your location.
Doesn’t work in the USA? Let’s try France.
Yes, bypassing censorship is that easy when you have a VPN.
4. You value your privacy
Maybe you have something to hide, maybe you don’t, but hey, it’s none of their business.
I have been using VPN software for years to protect my privacy and to keep evil data miners and hackers away from me.
And trust me, if you travel a lot or use public WiFi, whether at airports, restaurants, hotels – you need a VPN.
Okay, so which VPN should I use?
There are a lot of companies that sell VPN software, but unfortunately, that means that there are a lot of shady companies too.
I recommend this one:
I have used Private Internet Access for years.
They have amazing customer service, and their apps just work.
Just install and use – no setup and effort required on your part.
Plus, they also have an in-built malware and ad blocker.
You only need one account to use it on your computer, your phone (available for both Android and iOS) and any other devices that you own – you only have to pay for one subscription.
And it’s surprisingly cheap for the amount of privacy and security it provides. There’s also a 7-day money back guarantee.
They maintain no logs, so you can be sure that you’re safe no matter what you do on the web.
With all my years of using their service, I’ve faced no outages, and I have no complaints.
I highly highly recommend that you get it for yourself.
If this article helped inform you enough to grab yourself a VPN subscription too, I’d love for you to show your support and buy through this link.
See you around.