The Need for a VPN

Imagine this: You're in a coffee shop and they have free (unsecured) WiFi. You can browse without needing a password, but so can everyone else. With the right tools, anyone could intercept your data. An easy (and cheap) way to prevent this, is the use of a VPN.

Virtual Private Networks

Imagine this: You’re in a coffee shop and they have free (unsecured) WiFi. You can browse without needing a password, but so can everyone else. With the right tools, anyone could intercept your data. An easy (and cheap) way to prevent this, is the use of a VPN. The VPN hides your computer from others on the network, and allows you to continue using the WiFi securely.

What is a VPN?

A VPN extends a private network across a public network, enabling users to send and receive data across shared or public networks as if their computing devices were directly connected to the private network.

Are VPNs difficult to set up?

No! Many companies provide VPN services with easy to install apps for computers and phones. Simply download the app, create an account, click connect, and you’re ready to go!

How do I choose a provider?

Free or paid?

  • Free VPN services (like other free services) need to make money somehow. These companies usually serve you advertisements. You never know what else they might do to make enough money to operate.
  • Paid services can cover operation costs through your monthly or yearly subscription. Don’t worry, this usually comes out to about $3 a month.

Country of operation

  • Different countries have different laws on privacy. Depending on what country your provider operates from, they might be obligated to collect and share your data with their government.
  • Countries with pro-consumer privacy laws are Switzerland, Iceland, Panama, to name a few. Look for a VPN that operates out of these!

When do I use a VPN?

  • If you’ve got an easy-to-use service, you should be able to leave it on at all times. This ensures that you’re protected from snoopers no matter where you are or what website you visit.

What are the drawbacks?

  • Your internet speed might take a slight dip. Depending on the provider, this dip is usually negligible.
  • Some (very few) services won’t work with a VPN. The only ones I’ve ran across so far are some banking apps.

What do we recommend?

  • We use NordVPN because they are affordable, reliable, and secure. Learn more about them here.

Don’t Stop Here

Learn More!

Facebook

Everybody uses Facebook, right? Read on to find out why that isn’t an excuse to use it, and why Facebook has engineered their “service” to keep you hooked.

Email

In this section, we’re going to learn about good alternatives to Gmail, Yahoo!, Hotmail (really?), and other data-leaching email providers. Not sure why to quit using Gmail? Check the Google section of the guide for more info.

Internet Tracking

Whether you know it or not, you’re being followed on the internet. Most people have a general knowledge of this, but don’t know the full extent. When you go online, you’re leaving behind more than just your internet security.