How Do VPNs Work?

Most everyday internet users aren’t particularly concerned with online safety. Simply fire up your laptop or mobile device and you can connect to the internet in just seconds. With so much of our lives happening almost entirely online, why aren’t we all taking online privacy and security more seriously? If you’re new to online security, it’s time to consider a Virtual Private Network (VPN).

VPNs create a secure ‘tunnel’ for your internet traffic to flow through. By connecting first to a remote server that masks your online identity and sensitive information and then connecting to the destination website, your online presence is completely anonymous. While that all sounds secure enough, how do VPNs really work?

In our guide, we’ll show you exactly how VPNs work and why you should consider purchasing a subscription.

Designed for Maximum Security

VPNs are designed to keep you safe online. When you connect to the internet without a VPN connection, your sensitive information can very easily become exposed. Even worse, you may not even realize that your information is compromised until it’s too late.

By assigning your connected device a new IP address, which is a unique identifying number tied to your specific device, your traffic is masked when you browse online.

VPNs and Your Internet Connection

Connecting to the internet via VPN is a two-step process. First, your connection is routed through one of countless servers around the world. Depending on your specific VPN provider, you may have the option to choose which server you connect to or you may be auto-assigned based on your location.

Before you even start the process of connecting to the internet, the VPN software installed on your device actually encrypts your data, keeping your connection completely safe and secure. Most leading VPN service providers also have an automatic kill-switch, meaning your internet connection is immediately terminated if your connection to the VPN service drops.

Once your encrypted data is passed through the VPN server, it makes its way to its final destination. The website that you’re connecting to sees the information from that server, not your specific device. If there happens to be someone looking in on your internet data, they’ll only see encrypted data.

Multiple Security Protocols

The security of a VPN provider depends on the security protocol and other features of the service. There are multiple security protocols available, each with their own advantages and disadvantages.

Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol (PPTP) is the oldest VPN security protocol available, and is the least secure and doesn’t provide much more security than a typical open connection. L2TP/IPsec protocols are also very ineffective when compared to other security protocols.

When looking for security protocols provided by various providers, always go with an Internet Key Exchange, Version 2 (IKEv2) or OpenVPN connection for the highest level of security and reliability. We prefer OpenVPN because it is in constant development. The open source project allows countless developers to update and improve the protocol, meaning it will always be up to date with the highest level of security possible.

Why You Need a VPN

There’s a lot that goes into a high-quality VPN connection, but what it truly boils down to is staying safe and secure online. Browsing the internet or streaming your favorite television show doesn’t require a high level of security, but when you’re banking or sending business emails, you need to stay secure online.

Signing up for a VPN service takes no time at all, and with a dedicated desktop app, you can connect to your service instantly, ensuring that every internet session is safe, secure, and anonymous.