5 Surprising Things You Can Do With a VPN
A VPN offers a lot more than just your data privacy. Allowing you to bypass geographical restrictions on websites, security on public Wifi, ability to shop while abroad and many more benefits that come with a VPN are described in this article.
Though the internet has been a regular feature of our lives for over two decades now, many of us only know the very basics. Keeping our networks secure, as well as the finer details of getting what we want from the internet is very much still a work in progress for the vast majority of people, but what many people still don't know is that there's a surprisingly simple solution to the bulk of problems users face.
Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) actually date back to 1996, when most of us were still relative cave dwellers to technology that we now take for granted. A VPN works by jumbling up and encrypting your device's data, making your Internet Service Provider (ISP) unable to locate where you are, unable to read what you're doing, and sometimes even placing you in a completely different place at the click of a button. VPN reviews usually help to choose an app which will protect you when using public Wi-Fi
This might sound like some serious cloak and dagger stuff, but VPNs are becoming an indispensable part of everyday cyber life and reputable VPNs such as well-recognized VPN provider NordVPN will help you out in myriad ways. Not convinced? Here are the top five surprising things you can do with your VPN.
1. Access the websites of a specific country from anywhere
Ah, the World Wide Web. That must mean you can access content from the entire world when you surf, right? Well, actually, you'd probably be surprised to find out that most countries on earth sensor web pages and block content, with some blocking entire websites such as the BBC, or entire search engines, such as Google.
Online streaming sites also block content, known as 'geo-blocking'. For example, going on Netflix in the US will retrieve vastly different results than users from the UK, India or France will find, and they too will have different content. Having a VPN means that you can essentially 'trick' your ISP into thinking, you are in a different country, so you can access their content.
This is, for the time being, completely legal in most countries, and means that you can have access to the sites, networks and streams that users in a different country have access to. This also means that whilst you're on holiday or working abroad, you can have access to the shows, podcasts and sites that you're used to at home. Great, right?
2. Browse securely in public Wi-Fi zones
You might not know it, but the Wi-Fi you're using when at a café, hotel, or public park, might be opening your personal and financial information up to theft. You don't even need to be a particularly sophisticated hacker to access someone else's information on a public Wi-Fi network; the "[url=https://nordvpn.com/blog/evil-twin-wifi/]Evil Wi-Fi Twin Hotspot[/url]" technique is particularly popular.
This could mean that your bank information, your passwords, your files and images could all be vulnerable to attack from rudimentary cyber hackers whilst you're browsing online using a public Wi-Fi. Public Wi-Fi's are generally unsecured and are common in public places in big cities across the world. Public Wi-Fi's generally have no, or very basic sign-ins, meaning that almost anyone could hack the network and steal information.
But, not with a VPN! With a VPN, your data is jumbled and encrypted, meaning that potential hackers cannot read your data. This means that you're free to check your emails, make financial transactions and enter sensitive information safely at the airport, on a train or in your favourite coffee shop without hackers stealing and exploiting your information.
3. Play games and stream videos faster
VNP's can even be used to enhance YouTube and other streaming experiences. YouTube, in particular, is responsible for as much as 37% of all Internet traffic (as of 2015), which can make browsing your favourite videos [url=https://www.le-vpn.com/bypass-traffic-shaping/]jumpy and slow[/url]. # ISP's will often intentionally slow connection speeds to cut back on bandwidth in order to boost connection to other sites. This effectively reduces your connection speed!
When you use a VPN, your data is repackaged and encrypted, and a dedicated server runs your internet connection through a remote handful of VPN tunnelling protocols. The very nature of the VPN stops your ISP from detecting your connections; this means that there's ultimately no traffic contract to deliver, no traffic profile to meet, and ultimately no throttling of your bandwidth. So, you can stream to your heart's content!
4. Shop online when abroad
In the same way that geo-blocking can offer different shows in different countries, you might find that someone from one country will be offered different products, deals and prices than someone from another. Shopping across country borders is not uncommon; according to data from InternetRetailer.com, 24% of Internet shoppers have bought something from a company in a different country.
This means that, if you're smart, you could save a lot of money by shopping abroad with a VPN. You will get access to products, shops and even services that you won't find at home, and for vastly different prices depending on where you look. For example, you might find that that flat screen TV is significantly cheaper in a country with a lower GDP than in a country with a higher one, as companies know that people from certain countries make more money on average, so they can charge more for their products.
5. Save money booking airline tickets and hotel rooms
So, it makes sense then that airline and hotel companies would change their prices depending on where a device is located. Travel websites, car rental agencies and transport companies can use information gathered from cookies and geo-location to target specific customers. This also means that they can tell what kind of customer, from where to charge certain prices to and to which ones they can offer deals.
These companies will also target you based on what you have previously searched for. So, if you've been looking for flights to Madrid, the next time you try to book your flight the prices might be higher because the travel company knows you're interested. However, with a VPN, you never have to worry about this targeted selling again! Your VPN will keep you anonymous, and ensure that you can avoid higher fares by changing your location. What's not to love?
So there you go! VNP's can be useful for a whole host of reasons that go far beyond simple encryption. For a fast, reliable VPN, why not choose NordVPN – our customers love us!