If you’re reading this, I assume you’re either the vendor, the buyer, or the user of a Virtual Private Network (VPN), all of which are likely to be interested in this topic. So let’s dive right in, shall we?
A Little Background On VPNs
To put things into perspective, Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) are network appliances or solutions that allow clients to connect to a private network via a public network (i.e. the internet).
There are two primary uses for vpns: secure remote access to private networks and data (i.e. securing remote work), and to provide security for private networks (i.e. protecting your private network from network attacks).
Secure remote work is more of a specialized use case for vpns, though. For the purposes of this article, we’ll focus on comparing the two primary uses of vpns: protecting private networks and data, and providing secure remote access. We’ll also discuss some of the advantages and disadvantages of vpns compared to traditional networking solutions (i.e. wired and wireless networks), and touch on what you might need to consider when selecting a VPN provider.
Why Choose A VPN To Protect Your Data?
It’s a common misconception that a VPN is only useful for secure remote access or to prevent throttling. Although those are the most common use cases for vpns, that’s certainly not what they were designed for. The following sections will debunk that myth and provide some insight into the use cases and benefits of VPNs for protecting data.
The Differences In Quality Of Service (QoS)
Data traffic (i.e. the flow of data from one device to another) is largely subjective to the QoS (Quality of Service) supported by the network infrastructure. That is to say, the type of service you get from a network depends on what type of device you’re using and what type of activity you’re engaging in (i.e. whether you’re streaming video or just browsing the web).
Most people assume that anything less than the best quality service available is practically unusable. However, that couldn’t be farther from the truth. For the purposes of this article, let’s assume that your home network is built on an Ethernet network platform (i.e. a wired network), and that you’re using a personal computer (PC) as a client. Your PC will have a hard time sustaining an average connection due to limited processing power and limited network resources (e.g. RAM and hard drives). That’s why high-performance computers (HPCs) require specific protocols and custom networks to function optimally (e.g. Wi-Fi Direct, NVMe, etc.). And on that note, let’s discuss some of the benefits of VPNs when providing QoS to your data.
VPNs provide better security than traditional networking technologies because when you connect to a VPN, your traffic is encrypted. Your VPN provider will almost certainly have a policy against the use of weak passwords (i.e. those that can be found easily using any number of online password finders), and will most likely require you to change that password at regular intervals. Moreover, depending on the strength of your encryption, you may or may not need to supply a decryption key to your VPN provider to be able to connect.
There’s also the issue of man-in-the-middle (MITM) attacks, in which a person pretends to be a trusted connection between two other parties. With a VPN, the risk of MITM attacks is greatly reduced because your traffic is not decrypted until it reaches its destination. In other words, the person at the other end of the connection does not have access to your data until you authorize them to do so. And as if that weren’t enough, you also have the option to authenticate yourself to the VPN provider when connecting to ensure that only legitimate connections are allowed to access your data.
In most cases, VPNs provide increased availability because when you connect to a VPN, your computer will look for available VPN servers (i.e. networks) in the area near you, ensuring that you have a smooth connection even if there are network hiccups or outages. And to further enhance your experience, you can also choose to have your computer connect to a VPN server that’s closest to you in terms of network latency (i.e. the time it takes information to travel between two points).
The Differences In The Range Of Services Provided By VPN Providers
One of the significant differences between VPN providers is the range of services they provide. Most companies that provide VPNs only offer wired and wireless VPNs, and some only provide end-to-end encryption, while others offer security, bandwidth and QoS. When selecting a VPN provider, make sure that they have the necessary infrastructure in place to provide the type of service you need.
No Logging Policy
The no-logging policy of most VPN providers is a significant security benefit because most companies that provide VPNs store very little, if any, network logs. That should not come as a great surprise because when you connect to a VPN, your traffic is encrypted, which prevents the VPN provider from knowing exactly what sites you visit or what type of data you’re transferring (i.e. bandwidth usage).
However, despite the lack of logs, there still remains the issue of third parties (i.e. hackers) monitoring your internet activity. To that end, make sure that your VPN provider maintains a secure and private environment, and doesn’t have any serious security issues.
Where To Buy?
As with most technology-related articles, we’re inevitably going to hit upon one of the most significant questions: where to buy?
If you’re looking for a secure and private way to access your data remotely, then the best place to start is with a VPN. That’s because they provide the best security for your data and give you the ability to remotely access your private network via a public network (e.g. the internet). Moreover, if you’re looking for a secure connection to a private network (i.e. your home network), then you should look into purchasing a dedicated hardware VPN device. That option will provide you with the fastest possible connection speeds and the best overall experience. You can find out more at vpornow.com.
Hopefully, this article has provided you with a more clear picture of what VPNs are and why you might select them for your needs. For more information, you can consult the following resources:
What Are VPNs?
– Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virtual_private_network
– CNET: https://www.cnet.com/products/vpn/what-is-a-vpn/
– PC Mag: https://www.pcmag.com/how-to-use-vpns-to-your-advantage/
Why Should You Be Careful With The Technology You Use?
As we’ve established, not all technologies are created equal. That is to say, some technologies are better than others at performing a specific task, and some are simply designed to do that task better than other technologies. With that in mind, let’s now look at a few more disadvantages of VPNs compared to wired and wireless networks so that you can have a better idea of the tradeoffs you’re making when selecting a particular type of network solution.
In most cases, VPNs are expensive compared to wired and wireless networks because there’s a bit more to them than meets the eye. When you purchase a VPN, you’re not just buying a network appliance or solution, you’re also getting the necessary infrastructure in place (i.e. virtual routers, gateways, and VPN servers) so that you can connect to a private network.