How Does a VPN Work?
Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) may seem like a complicated concept, but they are only complicated when looking deep under the hood. So, how does a VPN work on my phone? We’ll get to that shortly. Obtaining a VPN service and using one is not complicated at all. It’s the word in the middle, “Private”, that’s the key. It’s all about privacy.
The most important aspect of a VPN is that it can safeguard your private and sensitive information against prying eyes, whether the eyes are those of a novice hacker or a member of some type of government agency. Virtual Private Network technology is not a new concept, but the need for using one has become more apparent to the general public in recent years.
When Was the VPN First Used and Who Invented VPN Technology?
A Microsoft employee by the name of Gurdeep Singh-Pall is credited by many for developing the initial technology. He was working on the Peer to Peer Tunneling Protocol (PPTP), work that he began in 1996. The specification was published in 1999. Today’s VPNs utilize a drastically changed version of the concept to function the way they do, but the concept was initially proven more than 30 years ago. Today people are curious, how does a VPN work on my phone?
Originally only big corporations took part in the development of VPNs in order to utilize them for their own corporate needs. They needed a way to communicate between offices securely and required the ability to transfer sensitive proprietary files and other information involving trade secrets securely. As encryption schemes and technologies became more advanced the Private connections became more secure.
If you buy something using links in our stories, we may earn a commission. This helps support our journalism. Learn more.
During the early years, the technology was not available for the average Internet surfer to use. Today’s landscape is very different for the average user and personal VPNs are commonplace. As common as they are, very few users ask, “How does a VPN work on my phone?” Many Internet professionals recommend the use of VPN by the average user.
Should You Use a VPN?
I always use a VPN and so should you. Using a VPN is no longer only for the technically advanced. They are not difficult to use. There’s really no excuse not to use one. There are many reliable and affordable VPN services available.
Five Top Reasons to Use a Reliable and Trustworthy VPN Service:
- Feel safe and secure when using your laptop in public places like coffee shops and internet cafes – When using a VPN service, on your laptop or cellphone, all the information you send and receive will safe. Your banking information, your unique passwords, email addresses, and other sensitive information will not be vulnerable to malicious malcontents, or government agencies.
- Have a peaceful mind when shopping online in other countries – Everyone likes to shop online. It is so convenient and has no borders. Sometimes we forget that we are shopping in another country. When we see the lock icon in our browser we can feel fairly assured that our information is safe. But, not all countries are as secure as ours. Stay aware of where you are shopping and always take advantage of the privacy that a reliable and trustworthy VPN service can provide.
- Feel comfortable when conducting online banking – Insecure Internet connections can lead to banking credentials being exposed and in some cases, Identity theft. Online banking provides a great level of convenience and it’s here to stay. Our banking and private information is a sensitive topic. Maintain that extra layer of security by using a reputable VPN service. Most VPN services offer an automatic connection cut-off if it detects your connection is not secure.
- Feel secure when shopping for the best deals on airfare, hotels, and car rentals — There’s a lot of different websites you may end up on when shopping for the best deals. All of those websites are tracking your activity in one way or another. These websites may adjust their offers accordingly depending on your activity. Stay completely anonymous while shopping and ensure you are getting the best deal. Reliable and trustworthy VPN services offer some type of anti-tracking setting. It allows you to compare prices in total privacy.
- Avoid censorship when traveling in other countries – Whether you are traveling for pleasure or on a business trip there is a need to stay in touch for one reason or another. It may be a social media site like Facebook or Instagram that you need to access, or perhaps a company intranet. You may be a foreign exchange student. A Reliable VPN service will help ensure you are able to avoid the inconvenience of censorship.
Whether it’s security or convenience, using a reliable and trustworthy VPN service is very beneficial. It almost seems irresponsible not to use a VPN anytime you are connected to the Internet. Take charge and have the security you deserve.
How Does a VPN Work on My Phone?
Most VPN users never ask, “How does a VPN work on my phone?” However, It would be nice to at least be aware of the processes and technologies that are used to create a virtual private network. So, let’s take a look, how does a VPN work?
Once you have selected a reliable and trustworthy VPN provider you download their software and install on your computer or whatever device you are protecting the connection on. Good VPN services offer many different servers across the globe that can be connected to. You choose one of them. Once you connect the software does the following things:
- Your data that is to be sent is encrypted by the VPN software and is then sent to the VPN secure over a secure connection. The data is encapsulated within the VPN tunnel and is unreadable even if intercepted by a malicious actor or entity.
- The data is then decrypted by the VPN server and the destination address is read.
- The VPN server will forward your data to its destination and receive the acknowledgment (reply) that is intended for you, the original sender.
- The VPN server then encrypts the reply meant for you and sends it to you.
- The data will then be decrypted by the VPN software on your device so you can understand it and use it accordingly.
This process allows the user to remain anonymous and makes it difficult for a third party to intercept and view the transmitted data. Because the data is rerouted through the VPN server it is the IP address of the server that is exposed to the Internet while your true IP address remains hidden. You are able to travel the Internet anonymously. The operation of the VPN software is not apparent to the user, except that certain restrictions don’t exist. So, that’s how a VPN works.
Photo by Tim Mossholder
How to Choose a Reliable and Trustworthy VPN Provider in 2020
Today’s landscape offers many choices for VPN providers. VPNs are in big demand and there are many companies trying to profit from this. Unfortunately, many of these companies can’t be trusted to keep our data secure and out of the hands of malicious actors and cybercriminals.
Even our service providers may be collecting data from us which is legal for them to do because it is in their terms of the agreement that we can read. Sometimes we have to agree to the terms because they are our only option, in some cases. That’s how a VPN works to protect our privacy and our personal information.
Free VPN services are typically a poor choice because of course, they have to make their money somehow. They benefit by selling your information to companies that find it valuable. Before using a VPN service provider always look for reviews from authoritative sources like security professionals and technology review companies. Following are the main things to consider:
- Confirm that the level of encryption used is at least AES 256-bit encryption – the same encryption used by the United States government.
- It’s best to select a VPN provider that is based in the United States. They are subject to U.S laws and regulations and are typically more transparent about their policies.
- Choose a provider that does not keep logs of your behavior. If they don’t keep the logs then you don’t have to worry about the data falling into the wrong hands.
- Not to go unmentioned is cost. A VPN service is a long-term commitment, You will always need one. There are trustworthy and reliable VPN providers that offer deep discounts when you agree to a multi-year plan.
- Customer support is very important. Once again read consumer reviews. In addition ensure that the service offers something like a 30-day money-back guarantee, in case you are not happy with the service for any reason.
The VPN service I use is Ivacy VPN. They are affordable and have an outstanding product. They include all the features you want, and need.
Ivacy VPN Includes
- Malware Protection
- Advanced IPsec & IKEV Protocols
- Smart Connect Feature
- Unlimited Bandwidth
- Military Grade 256-Bit Encryption
- No Browsing Logs Policy
- Internet Kill Switch
- High Speed Downloading
- 1000+ Servers in 100+ Locations
- P2P Support
- Dedicated Kodi App
- 10 Devices Simultaneous Logins
READ MORE: How the NSA Keeps Devices Safe From Tracking
Hint: One solution is to use a reliable and trustworthy VPN.
Updated 03/15/2021 by Kirby Allen