If you’re reading this, I assume you’re searching for how to use NordVPN. Or perhaps you’re even a customer and are looking for instructions on how to take advantage of their generous 30-day money-back guarantee.
Either way, this guide is for you; hopefully, it will answer all of your questions about using the service and getting the most from it.
If you’re new to VPNs or even if you’re just curious about them, this section will introduce you to the concept of a VPN and help you understand what makes NordVPN unique.
What Is a VPN?
Virtual Private Networks, or VPNs, are an increasingly popular way to secure and encrypt your Internet connection while you’re online. Essentially, a VPN creates a secure, private connection between your computer and the service provider’s Internet backbone.
This enables you to securely access your favorite websites and use cloud-based services like Dropbox or Google Drive without worrying about your data being intercepted by hackers or rogue governments. Think of a VPN as your own personal security guard, protecting you from unauthorized access to your sensitive information while you’re online.
When you access a VPN, your computer automatically connects to one of the many VPN servers scattered around the world. From there, your request is sent to the Internet service provider (ISP) that you normally use for Internet access. Your ISP will recognize you via your VPN and know that you’re not an unauthorized user.
For example, if you’re visiting a website that’s blocked in your country, you won’t be able to access it without using a VPN. And because of the encryption that’s built into most VPNs, even the website’s owner won’t be able to decode your activity. In this case, you’re protecting your identity while also ensuring that the website owner can’t track your activity — a common situation when using public Wi-Fi.
Secure And Private
Many people confuse VPNs with secure shell services (also known as terminal servers), but they’re two very different things. A Secure Shell server provides a secure connection between your computer and a remote server through an encrypted channel — exactly what a VPN does, but on a much smaller scale.
This means that VPNs and Secure Shell servers share a lot of the same features, but they’re not interchangeable. For example, let’s say you want to securely access a website that’s blocked in your country. With a VPN, you would go through the following steps:
- Choose a VPN that’s available in your country.
- Connect to the VPN server (this is usually done automatically).
- Navigate to the site that you want to access (in this case, it’s blocked in your country)
- Type in the address for the site (e.g., https://google.com)
- Press Enter to submit the address.
- You’ll see a lock icon in the address bar to indicate that the address is secure. This indicates that your data is protected as it travels to and from the site, and that no one can decode it while it’s traveling.
As you can see above, this process is essentially the same as entering a secure URL, except that you’re using a VPN instead of a secure URL. Once you’ve successfully accessed the site, the encryption used by the VPN ensures that no one, including the site’s owner, can access your data. This is what makes using a VPN much more secure than simply inputting a secure URL.
Why go through this trouble? Well, because most websites and services that you use every day are not secure, and there’s no guarantee that entering a secure URL is enough to secure your data while you’re using those services. For instance, let’s say you use Facebook to connect with people, and you want to access your account from a new device. If you try to connect without using a VPN, you’ll automatically be directed to sign in with your default social media account. This could put your account at risk, depending on how your account is set up. For example, if you’ve linked your bank account to your Facebook or Twitter account, your financial information could be at risk. This is why it’s critical that you use a VPN when you use public Wi-Fi or connect to a network at an unknown place. So there’s always the possibility that you could end up on a fraudulent site if you don’t use a VPN.
If you’re reading this, I assume that you’re already familiar with the basics of why and how to use a VPN. But just in case, let’s run down the features that make NordVPN stand out.
- The industry-leading encryption must be strong enough to stop even the most determined hackers. The same encryption that keeps your data secure while you’re using the service also blocks anyone from decoding your activity.
- NordVPN has a strict no log policy, which basically means they keep no records of your activity. This policy covers all activity, including device and connection logs as well as the content of your communications.
- NordVPN is one of the few services that allow you to connect to multiple servers at once. This is a godsend for anyone who uses public Wi-Fi and doesn’t want to be limited to just one device. Plus, you can easily change your server configuration to connect to a different location if you are running out of data or want to access a site that’s not available in your current location.
- One of the biggest selling points of NordVPN is the amount of data that you’re given for free. Most VPNs will try to pull the wool over your eyes with a bunch of bogus reasons why you should upgrade, but at the end of the day, you’re getting more for free than you would purchasing the premium tier. Plus, the more data you have, the more you can do with it. There’s no data limit with NordVPN.
- For customers that want to remain private and secure, NordVPN offers a no questions asked, 30-day money-back guarantee. This means that you can try the service for free for 30 days and if you don’t like it, you can ask for a full refund without having to explain why you won’t be continuing with the service.
- Like many other VPNs, NordVPN is totally transparent about what they share with third parties, including government entities. So in case you’re worried about your privacy, the transparency of the service is a strong point in its favor.
- Last but not least, NordVPN has a dedicated support team that is available via email 24/7. This is particularly helpful if you have questions about the service or are experiencing problems.
With all of this said, it’s important to keep in mind that not all VPNs are created equal, and while NordVPN is a reputable company, just like any other, it’s still important to do your research and read reviews before committing. Ultimately, the choice is up to you.
Choosing the Right Server For You
NordVPN offers four different locations that you can choose from when connecting to their servers. These are USA, UK, AU, and CA. Let’s examine each one of these options in more detail and determine which one is the best for your needs.
- United Kingdom
First off, let’s dive into the USA option. As the name would suggest, this option provides servers to users in the United States. As a result, if you’re located in the United States, this is the best option for you as you can access all of the sites that you want without facing any restrictions. This is certainly the most popular option among customers, with over 2.7 million users all over the world currently using it. If you’re looking for convenience, the USA server allows you to connect to a VPN server anywhere in the country, as long as you’re within the coverage area of the wireless network.
In addition, if you have a specific interest in getting to work on a farm in the United States as soon as possible, you can also choose to connect to a server located in Central Iowa, where there is a lot of land and not a lot of people. This farm connection feature provides you with a dedicated IP address that is routed through the VPN so that your traffic is hidden while also allowing you to access the resources on the farm.
One of the main reasons why the United States server is so popular is because it offers great encryption. It uses the strong military-grade AES 256-bit encryption algorithm, which is the same as that used by the U.S. government for classified and sensitive information.