Getting the most out of your VPN
Most people who have a paid VPN provider use it for a few simple reasons, the most common one being security. If you’re going to be paying for your VPN though, you want to make the most of it, so we’ve put together some great ways to make your VPN work for you.
The most common uses for a VPN
As mentioned above, the most common use for a VPN is for security, especially in the way it can protect your identity. The other really common use is for watching certain “geo-blocked” content, which is content you should only be able to watch in certain countries. While these two uses make it worthwhile to have a paid VPN, you may not have thought of the following uses:
Access your ‘local’ website when overseas
When we travel, we all like to keep up to date with what is happening back home. However, so many websites differ based on your location. So, next time you’re travelling, connect to your VPN via your home country to see what you would normally see.
Keeping your mobile device safe
If you are using a paid VPN service, you might only have set it up for your computer, laptop and tablet devices. However, many VPNs will include protection for your mobile devices too.
Avoiding some “throttling” from your ISP
Did you know that your internet service provider might be limiting your speed based on what you are doing online? For example, some heavy bandwidth activity like gaming will be slowed down by certain ISPs. Activate your VPN to potentially avoid being put in the slow lane as your ISP will no longer be able to determine what you are doing with your connection.
If you come from a relatively ‘open’ country in terms of internet freedoms, then you may not be aware of how useful a VPN can be for bypassing censorship. This can mean you might simply want to access certain websites when you travel, or you might be involved in some form of activism in a country with restricted internet access.
Bypass internet filters
While your government may not be censoring you, you might still be experiencing restrictions in terms of what you can access. A VPN may bypass wider restrictions in place by your network administrator, ISP or even a parent. Keep in mind, if your parent has put restrictions in place, then they won’t be happy if they find out you’re bypassing them!
Protecting yourself on public wifi
While public wifi can be a lifesaver sometimes (especially if your phone data is low), they also present a huge security risk. Before you connect to a public wifi connection, make sure you have your VPN ready to protect your identity.
Different pricing based on location
Some websites offer different pricing depending on where you are. A good example would be checking prices for a rental car for your holiday, only to find out that the pricing is different depending on where you are searching from.
Using VPNs for torrenting
This is definitely not an endorsement of torrents, but the reality is, that if you are going to do it, then a VPN shouldn’t be optional. Not only are you putting yourself at risk by potentially downloading malware, but you are also at risk of exposing your identity when you connect to a torrent.
While all of these different uses for a VPN are great, it’s also important to differentiate between a free and a paid VPN. While your connection may be protected on a reputable paid VPN, there are also some less than reputable ‘free’ VPNs out there, so make sure to check reviews and do your due diligence too!