Aside from protecting your privacy, VPNs can do many other things that simplify and improve your interaction with the Web. With that said, when it comes to what does a VPN do, we can mention securing Wi-Fi networks, unblocking websites, reaching new streaming services, and even getting the lowest possible prices when shopping online.
Sounds interesting, right? We're sure that's the case, so let's dive a bit deeper, shall we? Keep on reading to discover what a VPN can do – along with some valuable tips, tricks, and recommendations.
#1: A VPN Protects Your Privacy (First & Foremost)
First, your data begins to flow in a different way than usual, based on the VPN protocol you decide to use. In simple terms, your data is separated into small packets, which are then scrambled in a certain way (once again, based on the protocol you use, such as WireGuard, OpenVPN, IKEv2, and more), which makes it impossible for anyone to see what you do online.
Alongside using a VPN protocol, you'll also use a specific type of encryption. As your data starts to flow through a VPN server, it receives an additional layer that can be unlocked using keys. Those keys are randomized, so not even your VPN can see your data.
#2: A VPN Secures Any Wi-Fi Network Out There
As explained just above, a VPN will encrypt and scramble your Web data. However, it is crucial to know that VPNs work on just about any Internet connection out there. And yes, that also applies to public Wi-Fi networks.
In case you didn’t know, public Wi-Fi networks are vulnerable to various kinds of exploitation. In fact, those types of Web connections are perhaps the easiest gateways for malicious actors to target individuals. Well, that's where VPNs come into play.
Using a VPN, you can protect any public Wi-Fi network out there. And since they work on pretty much any computer and mobile device out there, that means you can protect your data when using your laptop in a coffee shop or your smartphone while outside your home.
#3: A VPN Helps You Work Remotely
As a result of the global COVID-19 pandemic that still affects us, many have switched to working remotely. That’s what makes VPNs even more important than before, as that type of software protects your sensitive work-related data.
When working remotely, you produce a large volume of confidential data that you share with your team members and your employer. The best way to safeguard that data is by encrypting it. As explained above, the easiest way to get the highest level of commercially available encryption is to use a VPN.
Hopefully, the global pandemic will be behind us soon enough. However, remote work is here to stay, which might lead to travel-related opportunities. So, if you want to create a safe tunnel for your data, no matter where in the world you are (or where you plan on going to), a VPN is the way to go.
#4: A VPN Helps You Fight Against Malware & Ads
As a way to stay competitive in today's global cybersec market, VPNs have recently started expanding their list of features. Many of them provide a certain level of protection against malware and digital trackers (which, as a result, blocks online ads).
VPNs such as CyberGhost VPN, Private Internet Access, and Surfshark offer standalone anti-virus software, while other VPNs have tools for filtering malicious domains. Even though those features have only recently started appearing, they present a convenient way to secure your privacy on many different levels.
#5: A VPN Helps You Fight Against Censorship
Censorship is still a big problem in many parts of the world, affecting hundreds of millions of individuals who are blocked from getting information from certain sources. That's happening in countries like Turkey, China, Kazakhstan, Venezuela, South Africa, and Egypt.
Online censorship happens once ISPs (Internet Service Providers) start implementing lists of blocked domains, preventing you from accessing those websites in a certain territory. However, in that case, an effective countermeasure is to use a VPN, which obfuscates your data.
With that said, if you’re in a country where the flow of information is regulated, using a VPN helps you unblock the Internet. Of course, before you decide to use one, make sure that VPNs are legal in your country.
#6: A VPN Unblocks New Digital Services
A “side effect” or using a VPN is that your IP address will be replaced by a new one, based on the country you pick when choosing a VPN server. Thanks to that, you’ll browse the Web as if you’re somewhere else, which is how you can unblock new digital services.
VPNs are beneficial for media streaming, as those services are typically limited to individual countries or territories. That's precisely how you can access Hulu, HBO Max, Disney Plus, Discovery Plus, or Paramount Plus – even if you’re outside the United States.
When it comes to streaming services available in your country, they can be further unlocked to let you stream previously unavailable titles. For example, here’s how to get more movies on Netflix (by changing your location using a VPN, of course).
#7: A VPN Saves You Money When Shopping Online
When talking about what does a VPN do, we must not forget to mention its money-saving benefits. More precisely, a VPN helps you save money when shopping online by blocking cookies and trackers whose mission is to profile your e-shopping habits.
For example, many e-commerce websites know if you've visited them once, or perhaps you've been visiting them multiple times, trying to find the lowest possible price. Based on your location (provided by your Web connection's metadata), they can set price-related thresholds, preventing you from getting the best possible price.
Since any reputable VPN will hide your personal information, it will also hide your previous history and location data. So, when shopping online (especially when buying digital services), you'll always see the lowest possible price.
So, those would be the 7 most prominent things any reputable VPN can do – without any hassle on your end. In case you have any questions, let us know via the comments section below. And lastly, thank you for reading!