3 Best alternatives to VPN

VPNs are not the only way to get anonymity on the internet and avoid geo-restrictions. Let's us see the other technology solutions available to you to use as alternatives to VPNs

There's no doubt that you've heard all about Virtual Private Networks (VPNs). VPNs are useful for those who wish to improve their browsing security by hiding their IP addresses and encrypting their device's connection to Wi-Fi networks. Furthermore, it provides access to popular streaming services that would otherwise be unavailable to you like https://www.hbomax.com/ which is a geo-restricted website available only to US visitors.

VPN providers like to advertise their services as a one-stop shop for cybersecurity that will solve all your concerns about being tracked or hacked while browsing. But, not really. However, VPNs aren't the only way to hide your digital footprints.

Why Would You Want to Use VPN Alternatives?

The question arises that why would you want to use an alternative to VPN while they are offering so much. We feel VPNs are not perfect for you. Sometimes, they offer unstable connections, causing you to be blocked from certain sites.

Money could be the other reason that you are looking for an alternative. There are several cheap VPNs on the market, and even a few free ones, but most of them are scams. $90-$100 annually is the least you are going to spend per year to use a good VPN.

Companies must recognize and implement alternative security methods that are better suited to protecting mass remote working, either by replacing VPNs altogether or supplementing them with other options. A company's willingness to explore these strategies will vary depending on several factors such as its posture and risk appetite. However, most security experts believe that the following are the most universally effective security measures for companies.

1. A Proxy Server

Proxy servers were the main method by which internet users could hide their IP addresses and stay safer online before VPNs became commonplace. In other words, proxy servers act as a gateway between you and the internet.

These servers have their IP address, which receives your internet traffic. Therefore, if someone were to look up your IP address while using this intermediary, they would only be able to find the proxy server's address. Proxy servers are similar to VPNs in this regard.

One of the major differences you will find between the two is proxy servers do not encrypt your internet connection, as a VPN would. The use of proxies is perfect for accessing geo-restricted web resources and content. Despite this, they are not the best option for providing highly secure access to the internet.

2. Tor

Tor or The Onion Router is an open-source service that provides anonymity on the internet. Tor is made of several layers just like an onion. It encapsulates traffic with multiple layers of encryption in a similar way, providing increased security and anonymity. Its network is run by volunteer servers, which help reroute the entire traffic through a relay network that includes over seven thousand relays to transfer information over the public network. The servers on the Tor network act as nodes that bounce the traffic from the sender to the receiver in an encrypted manner. To do this, the service utilizes the Onion Routing protocol to encrypt the information (data + header) en route from sender to receiver.

Ideally, the traffic travels through three nodes: entry node, middle node, and exit node. In this way, the exit node masquerades as the source, allowing the user to remain anonymous.

Tor is also useful for bypassing internet lockdowns, unblocking geo-restricted content anywhere in the world, and protecting your internet activity from the prying eyes of your ISP or advertisers.

3. Smart DNS

The DNS system is used to translate domain names into their IP (Internet Protocol) addresses. A SmartDNS service allows you to access websites that are usually geo-restricted to your location. This Domain Name Server (DNS)-based proxy service redirects your internet traffic through a remote server so that your IP address and location cannot be determined. However, SmartDNS can't redirect the entirety of your internet traffic, as a proxy server does. Instead, most of your DNS queries are redirected by it to its remote servers. In DNS queries, the device of the user requests information from the server. SmartDNS, however, does not hide your IP address, unlike proxies.

You can access geo-restricted content using SmartDNS that changes your device's location. A SmartDNS can offer a considerably faster connection speed than a VPN because it doesn't involve any encryption. This is great when you need to get work done online without constant buffering. But mind you, this isn't the best solution for those who want to increase their online security because it doesn't help you to hide your IP address or encrypt your data. The service is great for those who want to access geo-restricted sites and content, but not for those who want to increase their security and privacy.

End Note

These are some of the best VPN alternatives to protect your information online. You can perform several privacy and security-oriented operations with these services, such as preventing your ISP from tracking your online activities, bypassing geo-restricted websites, and circumventing internet censorship. However, while these services address some of the concerns that VPNs (as a complete solution) come with, no service can provide a foolproof solution against all the threats to internet privacy and security. Therefore, it is the end-user who should take extra precautions while browsing the web or performing actions online.


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