VPN Guide Overview Updated December 15, 2017

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26 'VPN' stories

April 2013 - December 2017

A Virtual Private Network, or VPN, is a method of protecting your privacy and security when using the Internet.

Normally, when you connect to the Internet, whichever service provides that connection will be able to see which sites you are visiting and – if the website is not using https – what you are doing there. This means that your Internet activity could be viewed and logged by your broadband provider, mobile carrier or wifi hotspot service. The same is true of anyone spoofing a wifi hotspot, which is a common way for hackers to steal login credentials.

Early in 2017, both the Senate and the House overturned privacy rules created by the FCC, allowing ISPs to sell your Internet browsing history and location data to advertisers. The government is also planning to do the same to net neutrality rules, effectively creating a two-speed Internet – something mobile carriers already do.

An additional issue is that some companies may limit access to content based on your geographical location. You may not be able to watch your favorite TV shows on Netflix while travelling, for example.

A VPN solves all three problems as it makes it impossible for an ISP or carrier to see which sites you are visiting or what you are doing there. Instead of connecting directly to a website or other Internet service, you connect to a VPN server which creates an encrypted ‘tunnel’ to your destination. All any intermediate company can see is that you are connecting to the VPN service.

Not all VPNs are created equal. Some can’t be trusted, while others may be blocked by Netflix and other services. Check out our review of NordVPN for an example of a service which keeps no user logs and works with Netflix.

VPN Stories December 15, 2017

The FCC may have voted to repeal net neutrality rules – opening the way for Internet service providers to speed up, slow down or even block services depending on who pays them to do so – but some are determined that the war isn’t over.

After a trade group representing companies like Amazon, Facebook and Google vowed to fight the decision in court, a number of states plan to join the battle …

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VPN Stories October 6, 2017

Protect your internet activity with a two-year VPN subscription for $54 ($166 value)

In 2017, it’s more important than ever to have a strong game plan when it comes to cyber security. A part of that puzzle is using a trusted VPN service that adds an extra layer of protection to your data, along with a host of other benefits. All of this, combined with recent legislative action makes it all the more important to find a service that fits your needs.

VPN Stories September 4, 2017

Almost 2/3rds of tech workers now use a VPN, leading supplier reports 300% growth

An international cybersecurity awareness survey found that 65% of U.S. tech sector workers now use a virtual private network (VPN) on either work devices, personal ones or both …

(want to try a VPN? Specials.9to5Toys.com has a wide selection starting from Free Trials to lifetime plans.)

VPN Stories August 23, 2017

NordVPN confirms that using a VPN will bypass Verizon’s throttling of all video streams

NordVPN has confirmed that Verizon’s plan to throttle all video streams on its unlimited data plans can be bypassed by using a VPN connection …

VPN Stories August 9, 2017

Apple has come under considerable criticism following its decision to agree to a Chinese government request to remove VPN apps from its local App Store. Virtual private networks allow people in China to access sites blocked by the government, and to ensure that authorities cannot track the sites they visit.

App-tracking site ASO100.com says that the company has so far removed more than 400 VPN apps. But while Apple is trying to maintain good relationships with China by complying with such requests, analysts and tech commentators believe that its troubles with the country ‘have just started’ …

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VPN Stories August 7, 2017

Hotspot Shield accused of snooping on its users’ VPN usage

A new filing against the company HotSpot Shield, that makes a VPN app exemplifies the user privacy difficulties with VPN services and apps. Even when downloaded from Apple’s own App Store, VPN providers can often present as much a benefit as they do risk.

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