The internet might seem like a place of freedom but the sad reality is the average online user will be restricted when it comes to what they can watch and access. Big corporations, governments and authorities often use software designed to block certain sites, track users and steal their data.
This is certainly true for the citizens of Canada. In order for them to stay protected and get passed restrictions they too will have utilize effective software. That is why so many Canadians are turning to virtual private networks (VPNs). These are not only versatile and effective. They are also perfectly legal in Canada.
In simple terms a VPN connects a user to the internet in a secure way. Their data traffic will go through an encrypted virtual tunnel. Therefore the user will be less vulnerable to trackers, hackers and cyber criminals. A VPN extends the amount of freedom Canadians can have when browsing the internet and deep web. The main advantages of having one installed are anonymity, security and the ability to bypass blocks.
Torrenting is enjoyed by people all over the world. The ability to share data files with others in a free and easy way is a wonderful thing. However, this activity can potentially expose sensitive user information. If someone in Canada started downloading or uploading on a torrent site their IP address would most likely be visible.
An IP address can also reveal the user’s geographic location. In some cases this may be enough to expose their identity as well. People who regularly engage in P2P sharing run the risk of this exposure every time they torrent. If anyone can see their IP address it is only a matter of time before a malicious entity takes advantage of the sensitive information.
A VPN will conceal a person’s true IP and make it appear as though they are located somewhere else, ideally in a completely different country. The biggest VPN companies give their users access to thousands of global servers. If a Canadian used a server in Europe their IP origin would appear to be from that continent. Masking an IP with VPN technology is an essential aspect of modern torrenting. Without it the consequences can be disastrous.
Bypassing Geo Blocks
Numerous sites and services on the internet have geo based restrictions in place. This is especially true when it comes to streaming sites such as Netflix, iPlayer, Prime Video and many others. A person in Canada would not be able to watch the British version of Netflix without a VPN.
Conversely, if a Canadian ex-pat wanted to watch geo-blocked television station content from their home country they would also need to utilize a VPN. This technology is not however a way to watch restricted content for free. The user will still have to register and pay for the streaming service content.
Live sporting events are notorious for “black outs”. This is when the event is not allowed to be broadcast to a certain territory because the network is not local. A black out can be very frustrating for sports fans. VPNs let users watch sports through an international server, preventing this issue.
Keeping Data Protected
Accessing the internet without any security software in place is risky. There is always the potential that a third party is monitoring the user’s activity. They will need to be protected from malware, ransomware and other malicious software.
When people use the internet for extended periods of time they will inevitably have to share sensitive information. This could include bank details, login usernames and passwords, personal information, medical history or work files. Their connection will have to be safe and a VPN is ideal for this. It stops hackers in their tracks and secures user traffic.
It is becoming increasingly difficult for the average person to keep their identity hidden when online. Criminals are not the only ones who want to get their hands on the general public’s data. Many legitimate but intrusive organizations try to collect user data. This could be for research and marketing purposes.
It is not uncommon for Canadians to search for items to buy and then be targeted by ads for these products. They have not had their mind read, instead their search information has been covertly collected. With this info a company can create an entire consumer profile and continue to target them with tailor made ads.
The practice of brazen data collection has become so disturbing that people use VPNs simply to stay anonymous. This does not mean they have anything to hide. They simply want to avoid creepy marketing practices.
VPNs have revolutionized the safety and freedom of regular people who use the internet. It is likely that the popularity of VPNs will increase even more in the near future.