What Is a VPN, and Why Would I Need One?

VPN – Virtual Private Network is a proxy technology that enables you to make a private, encrypted ‘tunnel’ connection to a server OTHER than your Cell or Wifi network for browsing in public or private sessions. All traffic flows to and from your VPN server then direct to you – and you only! Your VPN server address is hidden from all routers on the Net once implemented. Recommended when on Public Wifi in restaurants, bars or wherever you feel the need for secure privacy. Here’s the full story..

  @chrisbhoffman 
UPDATED 

A VPN, or Virtual Private Network, allows you to create a secure connection to another network over the Internet. VPNs can be used to access region-restricted websites, shield your browsing activity from prying eyes on public Wi-Fi, and more.

These days VPNs are really popular, but not for the reasons they were originally created. They originally were just a way to connect business networks together securely over the internet or allow you to access a business network from home.

VPNs essentially forward all your network traffic to the network, which is where the benefits – like accessing local network resources remotely and bypassing Internet censorship – all come from. Most operating systems have integrated VPN support.

What Is a VPN and How Does It Help Me?

In very simple terms, a VPN connects your PC, smartphone, or tablet to another computer (called a server) somewhere on the internet, and allows you to browse the internet using that computer’s internet connection. So if that server is in a different country, it will appear as if you are coming from that country, and you can potentially access things that you couldn’t normally.

So how does this help you? Good question! You can use a VPN to:

  • Bypass geographic restrictions on websites or streaming audio and video.

  • Watch streaming media like Netflix and Hulu.

  • Protect yourself from snooping on untrustworthy Wi-Fi hotspots.

  • Gain at least some anonymity online by hiding your true location.

  • Protect yourself from being logged while torrenting.

Many people these days are using a VPN for torrenting or bypassing geographic restrictions to watch content in a different country. They are still very useful for protecting yourself while working at a coffee shop, but that’s hardly the only use anymore.

How Do You Get a VPN, and Which One Should You Choose?

Depending on your needs, you can either use a VPN from your workplace, create a VPN server yourself, or sometimes host one out of your house — but realistically the vast majority of people are just looking for something to protect them while torrenting or help them watch some media online that they can’t seem to access from their country.

The easiest thing to do is simply head to one of these sites, sign up, and download the VPN client for your Windows PC, Mac, Android, iPhone, or iPad. It’s as easy as that.

  • ExpressVPN – This VPN server has the best combination of ease-of-use, really fast servers, and supports streaming media and torrenting, all for a cheap price.

  • Tunnelbear – This VPN is really easy to use, is great for using at the coffee shop, and has a (limited) free tier. It’s not good for torrenting or streaming media though.

  • StrongVPN – not quite as easy to use as the others, but you can definitely use them for torrenting and streaming media.

All of them have free trials, so you can easily get your money back if you change your mind.

https://www.howtogeek.com/133680/htg-explains-what-is-a-vpn/

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