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What is VPN, The Benefits and Available Services?

22 October 2020

A virtual private network (VPN) is a way to create a private network from a public internet connection. It will create a safe ‘tunnel’ for your data to pass through without detection between your device and the target server via a VPN server. So the server you connect with will identify the VPN server and not your device. This is especially important if you are handling sensitive data and you need to protect it from any interception. VPN use encryption to scramble data which makes it unreadable so preventing anyone else “eavesdropping” on your internet activity.


Benefits of using VPN

  • Your browsing history: Everything you do will be tracked online. Your ISP may be able to sell your browsing history. Or when you use a search engine on a topic, you will end up getting targeted ads as the information is tied into your IP address. AVPN will prevent this data being gathered, viewed or sold.
  • Your location: if someone captures your IP, they can know your location as the Ip leads back to your device. With a VPN, the IP address is not your own so you can maintain online privacy.
  • Your devices: a VPN will help protect your devices from hacking as they cannot watch your activity.
  • Identity theft: a VPN will protect the data you send and receive from your devices, so giving you protection from cybercriminals.

How can a Business Benefit?

The current pandemic has accelerated the shift to remote working that has become gradually more popular in recent years. To provide employees with a secure connection is vital to protect any sensitive data that is being shared. A VPN is the best way to make this happen. Employees can access their computer at the office, or shared company drives through a highly secure connection and work anywhere in the world. Which has many benefits to businesses, including reducing cost for travel and office space and allowing for flexible working.

Another benefit for businesses who advocate for BYOD (Bring Your Own Device), while this reduces the infrastructure costs, it potentially can have significant risks for your business if the device is connected to unsecured connections, outside of the workplace, and so exposing your data.


What to consider when Choosing VPN Service?

  • No Log policy – the reason to use VPN is to ensure privacy so they should not track or log your online activities.
  • Data limits – depending on your internet usage, you need to check whether any data limits will affect you or you may opt for unlimited data usage.
  • Server location – if you need to be seen to access from a specific location, ensure there is a server located in that country.
  • Multiple devices – How many devices will you need to be able to connect to the VPN service at the same time, what limits are placed by the VPN service.
  • Cost- while there are free VPN services, they may collect personal data and sell to third parties, lower broadband speeds, no support, servers in fewer countries. So choosing a paid service will bring greater benefits.

What are the Best VPN Services available in 2020?

Here are 3 of the best VPN services available;

  1. NordVPN is also a service that has a zero-logging policy. The company has more than 5700 servers across 60 countries, with 650 servers located in the UK. They are rated well for download speed and security.
  2. IPvanish is different from other companies as it owns and manages its own servers rather than renting other peoples hardware, which gives them a greater level of control over the network and server setup and running. They also have a zero-logging policy, so they don’t collect or store any internet activity. IPvanish has 1500 servers across 55 countries.
  3. ExpressVPN Is one of the top-rated VPN services due to their customer service, fast connection speeds, minimal downtime and a large network of servers available. They have over 3000 servers across the 94 countries. ExpressVPN does not store any traffic logs but does extract minimal information such as date and time of connection, choice of server location and bandwidth used. Individual IP is not logged, and the service won’t be identifiable to you.