Virtual Private Network, or a “VPN” as many people like to call it, is a tool that we use when we want to make our identity anonymous on the internet for whatever reason. Not many people know how this works, or when they should be using it, but this is exactly what we’re going to talk about today, so feel free to read until the end if you are interested in learning more. Let’s take a look.
Everyone deserves privacy
Browsing the internet anonymously is something that everyone should be able to do. However, many people think that by simply going into “incognito mode” on their browser they are able to hide their traffic and search history from others. The truth is, they’re wrong, and even if you are browsing in incognito mode, anyone that puts a little effort in this can find out what you searched. By using a VPN however, it’s a completely different case, and this takes us right into our next part.
What is a VPN?
A VPN is a Virtual Private Network, and it is used by many people in order to stay anonymous while browsing the internet. The way it works is by transferring your search request to a completely different country through an encrypted tunnel, making the website think that someone from that country is trying to access the website instead.
Let’s say that you’re from Austria, and you’re given an IP address from your ISP (Internet Service Provider). That IP address will be visible to the website that you’re trying to access unless you’re using a VPN. If you are using a VPN, you can set your country of choice to be anything other than Austria, let’s say Germany for example, and when you’re going to access a website it will look like someone from Germany is doing it, completely hiding your identity.
Of course, it gets a little bit more “techy” than what we explained here, but it’s enough to know if you’re a beginner and simply want to learn how it works. Feel free to read more if you like a detailed explanation.
When should I be using a VPN?
Let’s say that you want to browse something anonymously without anyone else finding out about it. It’s your right to do so, and allowing someone to find out about it is just not right. Your privacy is valuable, so use a VPN. A common reason why people use VPN is that some online services, such as Netflix and Spotify for example, are unavailable in certain countries, even if you already registered and paid for an account.
Using a VPN in this kind of situation will “Trick” the website into thinking that you’re from another country, and you will be able to enjoy the services that you’ve already paid for. There’s nothing forbidden about this, so feel free to consider it as an option in case you run into a situation like this. You can also use a VPN in order to download various things from the internet, and for casual browsing as well. Some people just feel a lot “safer” when behind the encryption, so if you are one of those, feel free to use it. VPNMash has an amazing article that talks about cybersecurity that we wholeheartedly suggest you check out to learn why you should protect yourself.
On another note, if you have something that you want to share with other people but would like to remain anonymous, you can opt for online platforms such as the Doe, where your identity will be hidden. You can write about anything so that you do not only relieve your stress, but you will also be helping other people learn from your experiences.