What is actually a VPN and who should use it?

With a Virtual Private Network (VPN), you create an encrypted tunnel between your computer and a remote server. This means that you:

  • Hide your internet activity from your ISP (and anyone else who’s watching)
  • Hide your “real” IP address (your IP on the internet appears to be that of the VPN server instead).

VPNs are therefore good for:

  • Evading blanket government surveillance
  • Watching geo-restricted streaming services such as Hulu and BBC iPlayer from abroad
  • Protecting your Wi-Fi connection when using public hotspots
  • Evading censorship (both government or at school, and so on)
  • Protecting you when P2P downloading.

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