A virtual private network or VPN is a type of internet connection that offers privacy and security to users, and allows them to work remotely without having to worry about whether or not their activity is being monitored. In this article, we will discuss what is a VPN, the different types of VPNs available, and why you should use one.
What Is a VPN?
A VPN is a type of internet connection that allows users to remain anonymous and secure while online. This is achieved through the use of encryption and secure tunnels — which we will discuss in greater detail below. The goal of a VPN is to provide users with a safe and private place to connect to the internet, and allow them to work remotely without having to worry about whether or not their activity is being monitored by third parties.
Types Of VPNs
There are various VPNs available to users today, each with its own set of features and benefits. To ensure you choose the right VPN for your needs, it is important to familiarize yourself with the various types of VPNs available, and the differences between them. We have compiled a list below of the most commonly used and versatile types of VPNs, along with a description of each.
Slim VPN (Apache License)
A slim VPN is basically just what it sounds like: it’s a small, lightweight version of a traditional VPN. These kinds of VPNs are perfect for users who are constantly on the move and who have limited data plans. Users who sign up for a slim VPN will enjoy increased speeds and superior performance compared to when they are connected to a traditional VPN.
Most importantly, connecting to a slim VPN means your activity will not be monitored by third parties. Since this type of VPN only provides minimal functionality compared to a traditional VPN, connecting to a slim VPN does not require you to give up any privacy or security measures you might have in place.
Tunnel VPN (Apache License)
A tunnel VPN is a bit like a combination of a traditional VPN and an encrypted proxy server. When you connect to a tunnel VPN, you are provided with a fully functioning web browser (Chromium-based) that is used to access the internet. Like a traditional VPN, connecting to a tunnel VPN also provides you with privacy and anonymity, and like an encrypted proxy server, it can also be used to work remotely.
L2TP/IPSec VPN (Apache License)
An L2TP/IPSec VPN is a type of VPN that uses IPSec for encryption instead of the more traditional RSA asymmetric algorithm. This type of VPN provides many features and is commonly used by large businesses. In addition to traditional RSA encryption, IPSec also provides authentication and data integrity checks. Therefore, an L2TP/IPSec VPN can be considered a more advanced version of a traditional VPN.
Users connect to an L2TP/IPSec VPN through a secure tunnel. The tunnel is configured through the use of advanced settings within the VPN client, and is encrypted using a key pair generated by the VPN. This key pair is then used to encrypt all traffic between your device and the VPN server.
PPTP VPN (Apache License)
A PPTP VPN provides a combination of privacy, security and performance that is suitable for users who need an encrypted connection for their work. It is possible to set up a PPTP VPN through the use of a simple-to-follow wizard, and the service is completely free. This type of VPN is widely used by businesses and institutions for their remote employees.
PPTP VPNs can provide additional security through the use of a dedicated server. If you are a business customer and want to ensure your data is kept private, then a PPTP VPN is a very compelling option. As with other VPNs, connecting to a PPTP VPN means your activity will not be monitored.
Why Should You Use A VPN?
The benefits of a VPN are pretty self-explanatory; it gives you a private place to connect to the internet.
The most notable feature of a VPN is its ability to encrypt and protect your data as it travels over the internet. This capability is provided by the use of strong cryptography algorithms — such as OpenVPN — that work in conjunction with secure tunnels to provide strong encryption. Your data is then protected along the entire data path, from your device to the other end-point (usually a web server).
If you are searching for security within your internet connection, a VPN is an ideal choice. In order to achieve security through a VPN connection, most providers will ask you to input a password or create a login credential before granting you access to the network. This ensures that your traffic is encrypted as it travels over the internet, and that no one can eavesdrop on your activity without your permission.
There are numerous reasons why you might want to use a VPN. Below, we will discuss five of the most compelling arguments in favor of a VPN.
Anonymity (With Shadows)
One of the primary reasons why you might want to use a VPN is to remain anonymous. If you are searching for ways to keep your online activity private, a VPN is an ideal choice, and one of the main reasons why.
The internet is a large and ever-expanding place, and while many people try to remain anonymous while online, the reality is that all internet activity is never truly anonymous. The use of a VPN means your activity will be encrypted as it travels over the internet, and no one will be able to track your online activity or glean any personal information about you.
Even if you use a virtual private network for anonymizing your internet activity, your geographic location will be recorded when you make requests to Google Maps and other location-based services. While this information might not seem like a great deal, the fact is that your anonymity does not guarantee complete privacy, as your IP address will always be tied to your identity.
Security (With Shadows)
Another major benefit of connecting to a VPN is increased security. If you are looking for a way to protect yourself against hackers and cyber-criminals, a VPN is a great option, and one of the main reasons why you might want to use one.
By default, all internet connections are not secure. This means that anyone who is able to intercept your network traffic cannot guarantee that you are not jeopardizing your personal information or that of your business. A VPN adds an extra layer of security by encrypting your traffic, providing you with a secure connection to the internet and shielding you from network attacks — such as Man in the Middle (MITM) attacks.
This increased security comes in several different forms. First, when you connect to a VPN, your traffic is automatically secured as it travels over the internet. There is no need to employ additional security measures such as proxy servers or anti-virus software because a VPN takes care of providing you with a secure connection.
This is different from simply choosing a secure website, which only offers a basic level of security. Remember, no matter how safe a website might seem, there is always a chance it could be compromised.
Privacy (With Shadows)
Users who want to maintain their privacy while online must also consider private information a potential security threat, especially if they are using unsecure wifi connections. A VPN offers a level of privacy that allows users to browse the web privately, and not have their activity monitored or recorded by third parties.
This is especially useful for users who value their personal privacy, and want to protect their online history from unauthorized individuals and companies who might want to sell or use their personal information for marketing purposes. If you value your privacy, then a VPN is a great option, and one of the main reasons why you might want to use one.
Mobility (With Shadows)
If you are often traveling or moving around, then you might want to consider a VPN for increased mobility. As mentioned above, a VPN provides a private place for users to connect to the internet, which can be helpful when traveling or moving around. This means you can take your VPN with you wherever you go, and continue working remotely without having to worry about your connection being unavailable or insecure due to no wifi coverage.