Like it or not, what you do online isn’t private. The things you search for, the websites you visit and the products you look at or buy can be seen by your internet service provider (ISP), your IT administrator at work or college, Google, the websites themselves or your government.
It’s a scary thought if you’ve not considered this before. The good news is that there’s something you can do about it. A VPN can help restore privacy for browsing, shopping, chatting and doing whatever you want to do as it will prevent your ISP – and anyone it might share information with – from seeing which websites you’re visiting and who you’re communicating with.
Encrypt your connection
The way it works is that a VPN encrypts the connection between your device and the internet. And encryption means the information going to and from your device is scrambled and unreadable to anyone that can see it.
You’ll need to apply some common sense if you want to be anonymous online, though. It’s a myth that using a VPN makes you unidentifiable. It doesn’t. When you sign into a website (such as Amazon) or use Google while signed in, everything you do can be seen, tracked and attributed to you: it makes no difference that the connection is encrypted.
To avoid being identified, you need to remember not to sign into any websites and, ideally, use a search engine that doesn’t track you.
Hide your identity
When you use a VPN service, you don’t only get an encrypted connection. You also get a new IP address. These are a bit like car registration numbers, which can tell you information about that car and its owner.
Your IP address, given to you by your internet service provider (whether that’s your home broadband or 5G phone) can be traced back to you. And not only who you are, but where you are as well.
A VPN hides your real IP address and replaces it with a different one, effectively masking one aspect of your identity and true location.
The fact a VPN can make it appear as if you’re located somewhere else – even in a different country – is how VPNs can help you avoid censorship. If a website only allows access to visitors from a specific region, you can use a VPN to change your digital location and browse it freely.
Similarly, if your IT administrator has blocked Spotify, Netflix or another service, you can get around this by using a VPN.
Increase your security
These days, you can never overdo it when it comes to security. The fact that a VPN encrypts the data being sent to and from your device means there’s an extra layer of protection when you’re using someone else’s Wi-Fi network, be it a friend’s house or when you’re out in public.
Discover Private Internet Access
Whatever you want a VPN for, you’ll need to sign up for a VPN service before you can get all these benefits.
Private Internet Access is a world-leading VPN provider, with over 30 million downloads. It never records or stores user data, and its no-logs policy has been proven multiple times in court. Plus, since Private Internet Access is 100% open source, you can always scrutinise its code and see for yourself there are no backdoors or security holes.
Private Internet Access is easy to use and has apps available for all popular devices, including Android, Windows, iPhone, iPad, macOS, and more. You can also limit the VPN to your Chrome, Firefox or Opera web browser if you prefer.
Thanks to WireGuard, one of the latest and most secure VPN protocols, and constant infrastructure optimisations, PIA's connection speeds are some of the fastest around. Plus, Private Internet Access offers unlimited access to thousands of servers located in over 75 countries. That's great since more servers mean fewer crowds and faster connections.
In addition to changing your IP address and providing encryption, the two main functions of a VPN, Private Internet Access also comes with MACE. This feature blocks ads and stops trackers from following you around as you browse the web. It also blocks malicious websites, keeping you safe from scams and malware.
You don’t have to remember to launch the app and connect to a server to get all these protections, either. If you want to, all Private Internet Access apps automatically launch a VPN connection when your phone (or whichever device you’re using) connects to an unknown or open Wi-Fi network.
With this special offer, you can get three years’ access to Private Internet Access for just £65 instead of £379.62.
That’s a saving of £314.62 and works out at just £1.71 per month.
You can use the service on up to 10 devices at the same time, making it even better value.
To get this deal, head to Private Internet Access’s website, where you can pay with gift cards or cryptocurrencies for an extra layer of identity protection.
Don’t worry if you’re not ready to commit. There’s a 30-day money-back guarantee and a 24/7 customer support service, which means you can try Private Internet Access completely risk-free.