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What is a VPN & Its Uses?

What is a VPN
Credit: geralt / Pixabay

What is a VPN? VPN is the acronym for Virtual Private Network; it is a method of adding privacy and security to public and private networks. A Virtual Private Network is helpful in protecting sensitive data and is most commonly used by corporations, however; recent events show that VPN is becoming more and more popular because of the increasing cyber threats. A VPN assigns the user a virtual IP address and also a different geographical location in the process thus, increasing anonymity and privacy of the user.

A VPN service provider has servers located in different places or countries so, whenever a VPN user wants to connect to the VPN network he can choose any of the servers located in the various countries, and this provides the user with a virtual location other than his original position. For example, you are living in China but with the help of a VPN, you can appear to be residing in the US or any other gateway country.

VPN for Security

VPN is known to provide unbeatable security, and this is one of the reasons why corporations have used Virtual Private Networks for years. Data could be intercepted by any third party before it reaches you, and there are very simple methods to do it like Firesheep and WiFi Spoofing. It could very well be said that a firewall protects your data on the computer, and a VPN does the same job over the web.

VPNs incorporate advanced encryption and tunneling techniques thus, protecting your data from getting eavesdropped by any third party. VPN is also a useful method to bypass geographical restriction and thus used as a proxy as well.

Considering the current scenario of the internet where cyber crimes are rampant, VPN has become an important tool to protect yourself from such crimes and for safeguarding your online identity and anonymity.

VPN Setup

Most VPN services come with an easy to setup installation client thus making the whole process an straightforward one; the whole process is as simple as entering username and password. Where a VPN client is not available, the manual process is also very easy, and the user can configure VPN using PPTP and L2TP/IPsec protocols.

Protocols Supported by VPN

Different VPN providers are known to support different protocols, however, the more the better. Most commonly supported protocols are

  • PPTP or Point to Point Transfer Protocol and it is backed by GRE protocol. Unfortunately, in recent years questions have been raised over the security of PPTP protocol and it now stands as a less secure protocol.
  • L2TP/IPsec – comes next and offers more security and features than PPTP, L2TP/IPsec incorporated two different protocols in order to provide best features.
  • VPN also supports SSL encryption which adds more safety and reliability to the network.
  • UDP and TCP are two such protocols which provide maximum flexibility and support.

Top VPN Service Providers

There is a huge range of VPN service providers but not all are the same, where some offer free service others charge for their services. Paid VPN service providers are the best when it comes to maximum internet speed, proven security, robust gateways, and unmatched reliability. HideMyAss VPN provider is one such VPN, which offers maximum internet speed, the gateway in multiple countries, support for various protocols and devices, unparalleled support and unbeatable speed with affordable price tag.

Conclusion

A VPN service is best to protect your online anonymity and privacy, considering the present state of affairs in the internet world, a VPN is a must-have service to protect yourself from threats of identity theft and several other types of cyber crimes.

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