Really How Safe Are VPNs?
While most online users think that they're special for using their own virtual private networks to stop loads of websites from tracking everything they do online, they’ve never really asked themselves how safe their VPN really is. While using a VPN has its advantages and benefits, there are certain things that even the best VPNs can't protect you from.
Knowing as much as you can about VPNs is especially important and beneficial today in an era of continually diminishing internet privacy. More and more online users are now looking for the safest VPN to protect their online privacy and personal data.
VPNs are excellent tools for such a task, as they can keep both your device and online privacy protected and secured. The purpose of these tools is to block any websites, advertisers and so on from tracking your online activities by hiding your IP address and location while also providing access to restricted and blocked online content.
Still, not every VPN is safe and just like anything online, unsafe VPNs are prone to VPN scams. Fortunately, there are well-known examples of safe and unsafe VPNs so let's go through them in detail. The best thing to do to in order to find out more about unsafe and cautionary VPN examples is by visiting the VPN Warning List.
There are 7 perfect examples of unsafe VPNs, including:
►► Free VPNs – everything online that's free is actually nothing more than a way to monetize the free products or services. Well, free VPNs are just like that. A simple business model that promises a variety of services, free of charge.
What online users don't know is that their private data is actually tracked and recorded in order to be sold to third parties such as advertisers. On the other hand, some free VPNs are even worse and they embed tracking and malware directly into your VPN application to steal your personal data.
If you want a free and safe VPN service, go with the safest one, Tunnelbear or the like.
►► Fake VPNs – the best examples of VPN scams, fake VPNs offer services that don't actually exist and are used only to take your money and track your online activities.
►► User data sharing VPNs – your personal data is precious. While VPNs should protect you from data recording and sharing, there are VPNs that do exactly the opposite: record and share user data when online users use their services.
The purpose of recording and sharing is profit. User data sharing VPNs will claim that their browsing services are secure and private while in truth, they'll actually record and share your personal data.
►► VPNs with features that don't work – the only way to make sure that your VPN is fully functional is by testing it. These test results are the best confirmation that you're using a safe and regular VPN that will keep your data and device protected and secured.
Nowadays, there are a lot of VPNs out there that offer features that simply don't work. Make sure you test your VPN before you start browsing.
►► Malware VPNs – the name already says it all: instead of getting a virtual private network to keep your online privacy protected, you're actually getting an embedded malware that steals your data.
►► Tracking VPNs – similar to malware VPNs, VPNs that contain tracking libraries will also steal your data.
►► VPNs that steal your bandwidth – just like your data, bandwidth can also be stolen to be resold to third parties
If you're wondering how to determine if a particular VPN is safe, there are six things that a proper VPN should contain. The first one we’ve already mentioned – a track record of good customer service and solid performance.
Since it's possible to test your VPN record, these are the characteristics that will assure you that your VPN is safe. When we're talking about the safest VPNs, we have to mention the top five:
#1. Nord VPN
#2. Express VPN
#5. Hotspot Shield
The other five things to look for are:
►► Jurisdiction – The location of your VPN, its legal base of jurisdiction is a thing that directly affects you and your privacy. Australia, the UK and the US are known for conducting their mass surveillance on a global scale.
These countries go so far that they force and target companies and data centers to hand over all customer data and information. That only means that if you want a really effective VPN, you should avoid any of these countries.
►► Fair prices – Nothing in this world comes cheap and the same goes for high-quality VPN services. While these services shouldn't be cheap, they shouldn't be way too expensive either. The price should be normal and reasonable for the quality of service you receive.
If someone is offering lower prices when compared to all others, that VPN is probably making profits off your data. It's better to pay a higher price for better protection than go with a cheap solution.
►► Transparent policies – A trustworthy and safe VPN should be honest and transparent about their policies. There are countless VPN providers that are completely dishonest about this, especially when it comes to logging policies. Only VPNs that put their policies transparently on display are the ones to take into consideration.
►► Server details – While being a generally underrated aspect of recognizing a good VPN, server details are crucial in your quest for the best and the safest VPN services. Many VPN providers use the cheapest virtual servers where they don't do logging but the server companies do it for them.
The best VPNs use the highest quality virtual servers that keep your browsing activity and personal data fully secured while additionally providing reliability and good speed.
►► Test Results – The best way to verify the claims made by the VPN providers is by checking the actual VPN test results. These tests check that the VPN providers really provide their claimed security and features.
While most VPNs look great judging by what they claim to provide, the test results show something entirely different. That's exactly why these results are so important in determining the right VPN provider for your online needs and requirements.
Fortunately for you, it's quite possible to find the best and most secure VPNs online as there are many popular VPNs that have already been tested and analyzed. Choose your VPN carefully and take time with it, as you need the most effective option located in privacy-friendly jurisdictions. This will ensure that you get nothing but the best protection for your browsing and personal data.