VPNs can seem confusing, and while the underlying technology can be complex, they’re actually very easy to understand and very easy to use.
Through this guide, you can learn what a VPN is, how it works, and how to find the perfect VPN for you.
It comes from the acronym “Virtual Private Network” in English. VPN is a tool that you can use to protect your information and privacy.
VPNs are especially useful for:
- Protect your device from hackers and minimize risk in public Wi-Fi
- Restores user privacy by encrypting the user’s internet traffic. This makes your Internet traffic unreadable by third parties such as your Internet provider, network management organization and monitoring agency.
There are some technical terms you need to know to understand a VPN:
- VPN Client-Software that connects a user’s computer to a VPN service. This is usually downloaded and installed on the user’s device.
- VPN Protocol-An encryption method used to establish a secure connection.
- VPN server-The destination on the VPN network that the user connects to instead of connecting directly to the Internet.
- VPN Service-An organization that allows users to connect to their VPN. Access rights are usually sold on a monthly basis.
How does a VPN work?
If you normally use an internet connection, your data will be transferred directly from your device to the internet:
Every device that connects to the Internet, from computers to smartphones and tablets, has its own unique IP address. When using the Internet, all online user behavior can be tracked by IP address to physical location and device in use.
Unencrypted connections can allow hackers to intercept your data. If you’re just looking at a fun website, this may not be very important. However, if you are sending sensitive information such as passwords, work emails and banking details, these are the information you should protect.
A VPN provides an encrypted connection between your data and the Internet:
The VPN server hides the user by replacing the user’s actual IP address with the VPN server’s IP address.
This encrypted connection is like a protected tunnel. Through that tunnel, users can access everything online and at the same time make it appear as if they are at the location of the connected VPN server.
This gives users a high level of online anonymity and additional security, as well as unrestricted access to the entire Internet.
Why use a VPN?
A good VPN can provide users with both online privacy and security.
Without a VPN, your Internet Service Provider (ISP) can monitor and record your online activity. Which site you visited, comments posted, and social networking.
Many countries now require Internet providers to keep track of user data and browsing history. VPNs are the best solution to protect yourself from these privacy breaches.
Using public Wi-Fi without a VPN is risky, as hackers can abuse public radio to steal users’ personal information, credit card information, bank accounts and passwords. VPNs encrypt this data and protect it from third parties and hackers.
With VVPN, the use of public Wi-Fi hotspots is once again secure. This is because secure encryption protects your data.
When using a VPN, your Internet provider can only see that you are online to the VPN server. That’s all. Your information is encrypted and protected, making it unreadable to third parties.
Anonymity-No one can (easily) identify the user, the user’s computer, or the user’s behavior. (Which site are you visiting, what data is being transferred by the user, etc.).
Are VPNs safe?
Without a VPN, the user’s connection is completely open. Anyone who uses your internet service provider, cafe Wi-Fi router, server over the connection and suitable tools will be able to see your data.
Many of these problems can be solved by using a high quality VPN. By encrypting the user’s data and making the connecter appear to be a VPN server rather than the user himself.
However, not all VPN providers are equally secure. Many VPN services-especially free VPNs-have flaws, bugs and issues that threaten user security and privacy.
This study is in English, but this study found that as many as 84% of free VPN apps for Android are leaking user data.
Many people know it’s a good idea to stop free VPNs, but millions of people are still using these dangerous apps.
Common problems with low quality, free VPNs include:
- Embedded malware (common in free VPNs)
- Hidden Tracking (Many well-known VPN providers hide tracking that collects user data in your app)
- Access to user data by a third party
- Traffic leak (IP address leak or DNS leak)
- Fraud (stealing personal information or deceiving money)
- See additional information here regarding the risks of free VPNs.
- As a general rule, what you get with a VPN service is what you paid for.
- When considering a VPN, to understand how well your users are protected, you should investigate the following
- Is there sufficient encryption and a secure connection protocol?
Does the service keep logs?
Under what country’s law is the VPN established? In some cases, VPN providers are forced to keep records and are required to delegate them at the request of government agencies.
Does the VPN service keep a payment record? Do those records contain identifiable information?
Not all VPNs protect users in the same way, and I think this seems difficult. To make it as easy as possible, here are some of the best VPNs we recommend.
VPN Protocols and encryption
Encryption is a way a VPN keeps your data secure. A simple process using high performance technology:
- The first is normal data
- Convert the target data using the key (secret code)
- It became encrypted data
Encrypted data can only be read by someone who has the original key used for encryption.
When assessing which VPN provider to use, you should always make sure you are using at least 128-bit Advanced Encryption Standard (AES).
Our recommended VPN provider is twice this and uses the AES-256 method. NordVPN (review), Surfshark (review) and ExpressVPN (review).
A user’s VPN can be extremely secure, but just as important is the connection protocol that processes the user’s data.
What is a VPN protocol?
A VPN protocol is a collection of steps to establish a secure connection for data transfer between a user’s device and a VPN server.
Many commercial VPN services offer a variety of VPN protocols that you can use with your VPN app.
Cryptographic protocols for major VPNs include:
OpenVPN-The most famous and most secure VPN. Since OpenVPN is an open source project, it is constantly being improved by hundreds of developers. OpenVPN uses a library called OpenSSL and a protocol called TLS to provide outstanding performance and strong encryption.
IKEv2 (Internet Key Exchange, Verison 2) -This is a fast and secure VPN protocol. It is automatically pre-configured for many operating systems such as Windows, Mac OS and iOS. A serious flaw is that it was developed by Cisco and Microsoft and is not an open source project like OpenVPN. However, it usually provides some of the best security to the user.
PPTP (Point-To-Point Tunneling Protocol) -This is the oldest protocol currently in use and has significant known security vulnerabilities. For privacy and security reasons, it is no longer considered a secure protocol. Avoid providers that offer only this protocol. L2TP (Layer 2 Tunneling Protocol) -More secure than PPTP, but can be a bit slower due to the way the data is packaged.
Many VPNs allow the user to select the protocol they want to use with the VPN client. When using a VPN on a mobile device, the VPN protocols that can be used may be limited. Especially devices that use Apple’s IKEv2.
VPN Logging Policies
Another major factor in how effective a VPN is in protecting a user’s privacy is the log that the VPN keeps about the user. In general, the less logs your provider keeps, the better. Ideally, the VPN provider should not keep any logs.
Logs maintained by the provider may include:
User activity-The behavior of the user online. Examples are browsing, history and IP addresses. Unless you use a free VPN, it is unlikely that the VPN service will keep your logs.
- Connection time stamp and disconnection time stamp
- IP address
- Device used
- Payment log
Many VPNs claim to be “no logs”, but only a few VPN services have been found to be truly unlogged in real-world testing.
IP Leaks and Kill Switches
Kill Switch is a feature that automatically disconnects a user’s Internet access when an encrypted connection is lost.
If the user’s VPN does not have a kill switch and a connectivity issue occurs, the user’s device will attempt to restore a standard unprotected connection. Your location and actions will be visible until the VPN’s encrypted connection is restored.
VPN performance and speed
One of the most common complaints about free VPN and cheap VPN providers is that they are slowing down their internet connection. This is a common case when their servers are overloaded by users.
All VPNs affect the speed of your Internet, because VPNs encrypt and decrypt data packets and forward them over a remote VPN server. All this consumes additional time and energy.
Here are some tips for maximizing your VPN speed:
- Ensure good performance and high quality VPN service.
- Connect to a server that is nearby and not crowded with other users (there is a lot of line capacity available).
- If the above two options don’t work, try changing your VPN protocol.
Free VPN vs. Paid VPN
In order for VPN providers to provide secure and reliable services, they need to spend money on infrastructure and equipment. Secure servers, employees and data transfer costs are all expensive.
If VPN providers offer free VPNs, they have to make some money to pay for them.
You may sell your data to a third party to earn money. It may also display ads or keep a log of user activity for other purposes. In either case, the privacy and security of the user will be compromised in the end.
A high quality VPN isn’t expensive-sometimes starting at as low as 2,000 yen a month-it’s not expensive because of peace of mind and improved online security.
How do I set up a VPN?
The most common way to use a VPN is through a VPN client (VPN app) provided by your VPN provider. This approach also provides full functionality and maximum leak prevention settings (recommended).
The correct procedure for setting up a VPN depends on the device you use and the VPN service you connect to.
Most VPN providers-especially those recommended on this site-provide a simple installation guide for all major operating systems and devices.
General setup steps:
Choose a high quality and reliable VPN service (see recommended VPN providers here)
After purchasing a VPN subscription, download the VPN software
After completing the installation, let’s log in to the VPN service using the user’s credentials.
Connect to a VPN server and use the internet with privacy and freedom
On Windows, Mac OS, Android and iOS, users also have the option of using the VPN feature built into the OS. We use the IPSec / IKEv2 or IPSec / L2TP protocols instead of OpenVPN, which requires the use of the app. The user needs to import the VPN configuration file from the VPN provider.
Which VPN should you choose
Many people want to know:
“Which is the best VPN service?”
In fact, there is no such thing as a “best VPN” that fits everything in one size for everyone.
Finding the best comes down to the needs of the user and the usage they desire. Some may want an overseas VPN with the highest encryption standards and advanced privacy features, while others may want a user-friendly VPN with secure torrents.
Here are some questions to get you started looking for the best VPN:
- How much privacy and security do you need?
- Which device uses the VPN?
- Does the provider provide support for those devices?
- What do you use a VPN for?
- And does VPN support that use?
- Its uses are, for example, torrents, Netflix streaming playback and Kodi.
There are many other factors to consider, such as legal jurisdiction and log policy, but this is the starting point. Check out the best VPN pages to find the one that best fits your readers.