What is VPN (Virtual Private Network)?

The number of customers that use VPN rises every year. These networks have evolved and they are now also eligible for smartphones as well as any other operating system. With all the latest system security breaches of big companies like Apple, more people are trying to figure out what’s the best security solution. VPNs are used as a secondary security layer behind antivirus software.

What is VPN Actually?

VPN is a common name for Virtual Private Network. This is a network that uses different protocols and data encryption in order to increase the security of your online presence. Some of the protocols used in VPNs include PPTP, L2TP, SSTP and the newest one OpenVPN. The quality of the data protection you receive depends from the length of the encryption that can be anywhere from 64bit to 1024bit. Most of the VPN providers use 256bit encryption. In more simple terms, VPN providers allow you to browse the internet anonymously through their international servers. This also helps with other aspects different than security.

Why to Use a VPN?

Virtual Private Network can be used for many things. Big percentage of users have it because they want to avoid some country restrictions while they browse the web. These clients maybe don’t even know what is VPN, but they’re using it for their needs. This only shows how simple is it to setup and start using a VPN account. There are other reasons why people choose to use a VPN. Thanks to the encryption and protocols that it uses any VPN will not only allow you to surf anonymously, but it will also protect your personal data. Keeping you safe from blacklist sites and software that is used for data phishing.

Features for Judging Best VPN Providers

You will find tons of VPN reviews on both free and pro services on this website. We would also like to keep you informed and knowledgeable, so you can make a decision on your own. That’s why we’ll present you the criteria by which we judge the quality of a VPN provider.

Speed – This is crucial component regarding customer experience. VPNs that use quality encryption methods and implement all the latest versions of available protocols have good connection speeds. This is also connected with the number of online servers. Usually a very quality VPN will decrease your internet connection anywhere between 1% and 10%. Anything that’s below that, well let’s just say that you don’t need to pay for that level of quality.

Servers – When you browse the net to find a suitable VPN for your needs you’ll find lots of companies that pride themselves because of the number of international servers they possess. This is important because of so many reasons. Great number of international servers allow you to breach almost any country related restriction there is. You should always be able to choose the location of the server that you want to use. You should keep in mind that some companies have only handful of servers in one location, but they operate a good business because they provide great quality and internet speeds. Quantity is great, but watch out on quality as well.

Anonymity – Let us not forget the most important thing and the reason why you’re reading this article, which is the total internet anonymity. You need to be careful with VPNs, especially if they’re free versions. Because no matter how good is their encryption and the protocols they use, VPNs are still virtual networks that are consisted of great number of users. This means that if the provider doesn’t have strong internal security, any fellow member of the network could jeopardize your online safety. Check out the location of the company as well. Although some providers have servers all of their world, at the end of the day they answer to local laws. That’s why VPN providers based in the UK and US restrict their users till some point because of local laws and legislatives.

Logging – Even if everything else is checked and you’re ready to go, you may experience it too hard to setup your new VPN account. Knowing what is virtual private network is good, but you also need to know how easy it is to login into your new account. Some companies have difficult to understand policies and crazy setups. Our recommendation is to choose the most user friendly and customer orientated VPN provider out there.

VPNs in Mobile Environment

VPNs are in the early stages of adjusting to the mobile environment, at least in quality standards. Till now it was hard for companies to provide quality services for mobile operating systems. The development of the OpenVPN protocol allowed for them to create useful and simple smartphone apps that provide the full VPN package. Virtual Private Networks for mobile now mostly use OpenVPN protocols. You will still need to setup an account and purchase the service pack, but you will get the VPN mobile app for free.

Technologies Related to VPN

Connection Manager – This technology represents a service profile that will allow you to have remote access to the network that you want to use, by applying VPN connection. Tools that are a part of the connection manager are CMAK (Connection Manager Administration Kit) and CPS (Connection Point Services).

DHCP – Used for PPTP and L2TP types of connection protocols. During this process all of the data is tunneled into a PPP frame. PPP connections must exist prior to this process.

EAP-RADIUS – EAP messages need to pass during the process of encryption and they are confirmed by an authenticator called RADIUS. This abbreviation stands for Remote Authentication Dial-In User Service.

IAS – The server can use either Windows or RADIUS authentication protocols. IAS is used for Windows and it represents a version of RADIUS proxy and server.

Name Server Assignment (DNS and WINS) – DNS stands for Domain Name System and WINS stands for Windows Internet Name Service. The assignment of servers of this type happens when you try to connect to a VPN server.

NAT – Network Address Translator is used to translate the IP Address and all the protocol port numbers for packages that travel between the network you use, which is private, and the internet space.

VPN on Routers

Great number of people are setting up VPN connectivity on routers in order to achieve greater freedom and security. This allows all users that are connected to the router to use the VPN service that can be found on the router. This also makes the installation of VPNs on devices like gaming consoles and smart TVs easier. Some of the reasons why people install VPNs on their routers include: savings, increased scalability of the network, secondary security layer, etc. The problem is that not every router is open to accept a VPN service.

Conclusion

Ok guys we’ve told you what a VPN is, its uses in a nutshell, the features and technologies connected to this tool of freedom. We would look for when we search the perfect VPN provider. We would like to hear what do you look from your VPN provider and was it hard to search through all the info about VPNs on the net the first time you did that. Thanks for the support.

Top image by: Wikipedia (http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Wat_is_VPN_(Virtual_Private_Network)%3F.png)

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What is VPN (Virtual Private Network)?

by Ali Qamar time to read: 5 min
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