With advancing applications of the internet, it becomes essential to arm yourself with all the information possible regarding networking technology. And with so much important sensitive information flying across the network, there was a need to develop a way of securing this data.
VPN or virtual private network was the answer to this need as this technology provides a safe and encrypted connection that allows users to access a private network and share information over a less secure public network such as the local internet, while sitting on the other side of the world. The way a firewall protects your sensitive data on your computer, the VPN technology helps protect it online. A VPN allows you to access region-restricted or geo-blocked websites remotely, shield your browsing activities on a public Wi-Fi, etc. Most operating systems include an integrated VPN support that helps in accessing local internet services remotely while bypassing local internet censorship codes. VPN is a simple tool and can be used to do a variety of things including:
1. Business travelers can use the VPN to access their business networks while travelling so they can keep up-to-date with work while they are on the move. VPNs connect to the business network including its local resources, without directly exposing them to the internet, thereby increasing their security.
2. A VPN can also be used to access your home network while you are on the move. This will allow you to access your Windows remote desktop over the internet, use local file shares and even play games on the internet as you if were connected to your LAN!
3. The best part is that if you happen to be using a public Wi-Fi connection, you can actually hide your browsing activities from your local service provider by using a VPN. Without the use of a VPN, your browsing activities on a non-https website become visible to anyone nearby who knows how to use the right tools. While using a VPN, your ISP will only see a secure VPN connection which can bypass connection monitoring; however, you should be aware that your VPN provider may choose to keep a log of your activities.
4. In countries like China, VPNs are being used to bypass censorship and have access to the entire internet – even the blocked parts.
5. You can also use VPNs to access geo-blocked websites; for example, you can connect to a VPN located in America to access American sites like Netflix.