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What Is VPN & How To Choose A VPN Service Provider

VPN stands for Virtual Private Network. It adds a layer of security to the regular data transmissions happening over the public networks. This virtual network makes sure that the data that is transmitted is secure and encrypted so that anyone who listens in on the transmission will not be able to use the data. The main benefit of using VPN services is that it provides a convenient and secure way to use the internet. It is undeniable that snooping, spamming and identity thefts have become a part of the internet. It is usually the big organizations that use a private network as an intranet. When an organization uses VPN, it gives the firm a way to have a private network that nobody else can get access to. This also enables the employees of the organization to be a part of the network even when traveling to other cities or countries. Also it can be used to extend intranet so that offices across the country and even abroad can be covered in the same network. To access the network, the user will have to hold the authentication details. IP, SSL / TSL, L2TP and PPTP are the common protocols used by VPN servers to secure the network. PPTP and SSL are the protocols that are widely used.

While corporate businesses and universities prefer to use VPN for securing their networks and giving their employees and students an easy and secure way to connect, individuals prefer to use VPN for many other purposes. There are many times when people prefer to remain anonymous when using internet. The price of a VPN service depends on what the user wants to achieve by using the server. The use of VPN has become popular especially as the different VPN solutions are capable of performing on any OS including Windows 7, XP, Vista, iOS, Android and Mac OS. Some people buy VPN services simply to get the advantage of anonymity, some people use VPN to add security to their online transactions and some people use it to access sites that are geo blocked.


Factors To Consider To Choose The VPN Provider

Not all VPN providers are equal. There are different factors to consider when choosing your provider.

The speed offered by the VPN network – The speed of your internet connection will depend on the VPN servers used and the location of these servers. You need to choose a speed that is at least equal to the speed provided by your ISP.

Locations of exit servers – If you want to use the VPN for getting an USA IP address, you have to ensure that the provider you choose has exit servers on the required US area. Similarly if you want to access geoblocked content in any other country, you should look out for a provider who has exit servers on the country so that you can get a local IP address and you can access content on all blocked sites. Many popular VPN service providers like SunVPN cover a dozen or so exit locations.

Data Retention & Logging policies – when you use a VPN service, you trust that you are getting a secure connection away from all prying eyes. But as it happens, your service provider will still have the ability to log the data and retain it. You have to choose a provider who has strong policies on not sharing the data with any agency. You can choose a provider who does not log data. If there is no data logging, the chances of compromising your identity are miniscule.

Transfer caps – There should be unlimited or unmetered traffic with no cap on transfer speeds.

Your requirements – If your reason for choosing to buy VPN service is to unblock skype or similar services from countries like China, UAE or Oman, you can choose providers who offer such services separately. If you do not need all the advantages of VPN networks, the price will be relatively cheap. You can look for providers who specialize in providing access to blocked sites. Also if you access internet from multiple devices, choose a provider that will give you best price for a combo plan through which you can use VPN on both computer and mobile.

Reliable Tech support – Just like with any other technology, you might be faced with tech issues while using VPN networks. The customer tech support of the provider should be open 24 x 7 and should be competent and friendly.


Written by Alice Walker