When it comes to surfing the web, there’s a lot of shady stuff out there. You can’t trust everything you see, hear, or read on the internet, despite how trusting you might be.
Unfortunately, there are people out there with their mindset on doing damage, stealing your personal information, and hacking into your system.
Rather than risk all of that, you can use a VPN in Australia to protect yourself, your family, and your computer.
What is a VPN?
VPN stands for virtual private network. It provides you with online privacy and keeps your browser session anonymous by using a public internet connection to create a private network. It can hide your IP address so anything you do online can’t be traced.
Perhaps the most important thing a VPN does is establish a secure connection that’s also encrypted, providing you with better privacy than your secured hotspot.
Benefits of using a VPN
If you’re concerned at all about your privacy online, using a VPN is a smart choice. Here are a few reasons why you might want to enable the use of a VPN on your devices:
- Working at the coffee shop on public Wi-Fi
- Doing a research project at the library on public Wi-Fi
- Checking your account balance at the doctor’s office on public Wi-Fi
Notice a theme? Anywhere you’re using public Wi-Fi, you should be using a VPN to protect your data.
However, there are reasons you might want to use it at home, too. They’re a bit more selfish, but hey, that’s okay!
A lot of websites, cable channels, and other streaming services will block access based on location. If your IP address is in that location, they will place restrictions on what you can watch.
Use a VPN to mask your IP address so that you can access those channels or services. It might be a little unconventional, but it opens up your browsing to literally anything you want to see!
What does a VPN hide?
A VPN hides a lot of your personal information that often puts people at risk. It hides:
- Browsing history
- IP address and location
- Web activity
Your browser tracks everything you do. Your internet service provider (ISP) uses that information for marketing (and who knows what other) purposes. Websites you visit also keep a detailed history.
Your search history is also tied to your IP address. So if you search the internet for treatment options for your chronic illness, you’ve just told your ISP and virtually the whole world that you have a medical condition.
If you are thinking about taking your family on a two week vacation to the Carribean next year and you visit airline websites to price your airline tickets, you’ve just told the whole internet where you live and that you’re going to be out of town.
Devices are popular targets for snoops and hackers. They would just love a chance to unlock your device remotely and steal your information. Passwords, bank accounts, and personal data are all vulnerable.
A VPN can protect your web activity and any personal devices connected to it, as well as give you freedom to roam the internet without restrictions.
How to choose a VPN service
There’s no shortage of VPN services. For instance, if you’re looking for a VPN in Australia, SurfShark is a great option, but it may not be ideal for everyone.
Know what’s important to you and understand how each VPN works before making a decision. Here are some things to look for:
- Does the VPN respect your privacy? Look for no-log policies.
- What protocol are they running? The one with the strongest security is OpenVPN.
- Do they have data limits? If you use streaming services a lot, you need more bandwidth.
- Where are their servers? If you want it to look like you’re accessing the internet from a particular part of the world, make sure they have servers there.
- Can you use the VPN on multiple devices? If you have more than one device in your home, make sure you can connect them all.
- How much does it cost? Budget is always an important consideration.
- Do they offer support? If you need help, you want to make sure someone is there for you.
There are some other things to consider when it comes to choosing a VPN, so make sure you research free versions, the operating systems they support, mobile VPN opportunities, kill switch features, and ad blockers.
While you sometimes need separate services to do all of the things you need, some VPN services are all inclusive. There’s something out there that fits your needs, but it requires time and you may have to try a couple before you find what you like.
If you’re looking for a VPN to protect you while you’re online, use this guide to understand what a VPN is, how they work, why you need one, and what to look for.