A VPN or a virtual private network provides a lot of security when you are surfing through or making transactions on a public network like the internet. It keeps your IP address hidden from prying and snooping hackers and those trying to launch malicious attacks and also keep your ID as well as data safe from the sleuth of law enforcing agencies.
However, it has to be remembered that nothing can replace personal security hygiene. You will have to be extremely cautious of the sites that you visit, the data that you share and the persons that you make privy to the data and your security measures. A VPN may have to be coupled with other security devices for increasing security further.
What is a VPN and how does it help?
A VPN is a service that allows you to connect your computing device to a secure offsite server through a public network. It encrypts the data transfer to create a safe, tunnel-like connection. If your VPN uses AES 256 bit encryption, it is almost next to impossible to decrypt the code and pry into or steal your data. This means even when you are using public Wi-Fi networks in hotels, airports or cafes, your IP address remains masked and you remain completely anonymous.
It has major implications for business communication, for communication between top level executives who deal with sensitive corporate data, in financial transactions, military data and even for families who expect complete privacy, one that can’t be breached under any circumstances. A good VPN network, in most cases, will protect you from both powerful government regulatory and spy agencies who use the data for internal security purposes, for tracking unlawful activities or for prosecution and also from hackers with dishonest intentions.
Can VPN keep you safe always?
A VPN can more or less keep you safe as long as you are within the tunnel connecting your device to your server so that your identity remains hidden but as soon as the data leaves the exit node of the server on its way to the final destination which is usually website, the data is no longer encrypted. That is why you need to exercise caution is choosing the websites that you visit using VPN. Never use those without secured passwords and which don’t follow secured protocols.
Also, choose a VPN company after much consideration. Ensure that they provide 100% kill switches. Also, if you worry about privacy, make sure that they don’t track your activities and create logs of everything. Even if they do, they should expunge them periodically to maintain professional integrity. Are they trustworthy enough not to exchange your browsing data with a third party, under duress or for personal gains?
VPN networks are useful and do reduce chances of getting hacked considerably. But, they are not full-proof. You are also responsible for your personal security and your VPN can’t be blamed for your slapdash personal security habits.