Want to ensure internet privacy? A Virtual Private Network Aka VPN will come into your rescue. This tool encrypts your connections and keeps you hidden while browsing, shopping, or doing transactions online. In this blog, you will understand how exactly does VPN’s function and what’s the use of learning how to utilize it.
What is a VPN?
Firstly, let’s understand what a VPN is. It is a Virtual Private Network that is secure and enables an encrypted connection between two networks or between a single user and a network. IT companies/Institutions can access critical applications remotely or from anywhere through this secured network.
At Micronova, We offer VPN services to connect your servers across geographies seamlessly.
They allow you to stay invisible while surfing the web.
VPNs in the earlier days were novel solutions for tech, but now, they are necessary tools. For starters, VPNs protect online privacy so that there is no possibility of being targeted or discriminated against based on the current location.
Just to make it more clear, imagine that the internet is a real highway, and we travel around it. We do many actions such as visiting our favorite spots (websites), making purchases, checking out multiple stocks, reading news, playing games, and more.
While doing all of these, you can be completely visible. Anyone with the intention of knowing your actions can easily follow you along these digital highways, get to know about you and also invade your privacy. One can know your online activity, who you are, where you like to visit, and more by just looking or worse following you home. Meaning, you are trackable.
Instead of traveling on the vast internet highway, one can use a private tunnel instead, a VPN. A Virtual Private Network acts as one’s personal tunnel that encircles only the person using it, masking them in anonymity and not allowing anyone from seeing our online activities.
In simple terms, a Virtual Private Network hides an IP address and encrypts connections.
How do VPNs work?
The VPN was first initiated and developed by Microsoft in the year 1996 to allow remote employees to securely access the internal network of the company. Once it started showing promising results and increased company productivity, other companies started to follow the practice. In the global business landscape, it is now a standard feature for Corporate VPNs to allow remote work.
Even an average person today uses VPN to connect securely to the largest network: the world wide web. VPNs now are the cornerstone for ensuring privacy online in the consumer sector.
But what does a VPN do, exactly?
All of your internet traffic (online searches, uploads, downloads, and more) is routed through the VPN server instead of being sent to ISP (Internet Service Provider). This way, when the data is transmitted to the internet, it shows to have come from the VPN server and not from one of your personal devices.
If one is not using a VPN, then your IP address- a unique number to your home network, will be visible on the web. A Virtual Private Network can mask your IP address by acting as an intermediary and rerouting your online traffic. In addition, it also encrypts or creates a tunnel around your identity, as you connect.
VPN server and the encryption tunnel combined can block your ISP, hackers, and anyone else from spying on you as you navigate through the web.
Different types of VPN
For VPNs, there are two types:
- Remote-access VPN
- Site-to-site VPN.
A remote-access VPN enables users to connect to another network, be it their company’s internal system or the internet, via a private encryption tunnel.
The second type, a site-to-site VPN, also called router-to-router VPN is mostly used within the corporate environments, specifically when an enterprise is having its headquarters in multiple locations. This VPN creates a closed, internal network allowing multiple locations to connect with each other. This is known as the intranet
Why use a VPN?
If you really have a question about the need for a VPN, then the answer would be Yes! With the main reasons being access and privacy, there are several other important reasons too.
Public Wi-Fi networks, for instance, the ones you come across in coffee shops, railway stations, shopping malls, airports, and other public places are incredibly risky. If a hacker is connected to the same network, they can easily spy on your activity. In such cases, using a VPN can act as an invisibility cloak, hiding everything one does on their personal devices (computers or phones).
With the use of VPNs, you can easily avoid price discrimination, censorship, or even geographical restrictions on media. This is because VPNs hide from ISPs, advertisers, governments, and many more…
Additional benefits of a VPN
Allows you to stream from anywhere
If you are traveling internationally and trying to access a streaming account that you have in India, you might find shows that are not available to that particular region. In such a case, if you chose India based IP address, you can stream every show that you would at home.
Websites blocked can be accessed
Few institutions, schools, libraries, and companies restrict access to specific web pages. With the help of your VPN, you will be able to view these pages.
Beat price discrimination
Price discrimination is made by businesses based on geographical locations and their standard of living. People in cities with a higher standard of living need to pay more for a particular product when compared to the lower or the average ones. With the use of a VPN, one can easily beat discrimination by staying anonymous.
VPNs are definitely worth the try if one is looking for data privacy online.