VPNs popularity is growing rapidly every day, In 2018 the number of VPN users has grown by 165%. Every year, heck every day we see more and more people talking, sharing experiences, recommending using VPNs. Well-known content creators, journalists, politicians, and other influential people are sharing the importance of VPNs and security online on their platforms.
We know that VPN is crucial for anonymity and security online, but there are actually more ways how this bad boy can make our lives easier and better. Here are some that I have found to be true and valuable.
Just to be clear: not all the VPNs are the same, some do collect logs and cannot be trusted for keeping you secure online, some do not work well with bypassing geographical restrictions on Netflix. Not all of them are the same so you need to do your research.
All these experiences are based on the VPN I used personally — Surfshark.
- Secure surfing on public wi-fi
Of course we will start the list talking about security since it is the main idea behind the creation of VPN — to make everyone secure online. And the least secure we are when we are connected to a public wi-fi. For hackers hacking public wi-fi is like taking candy from a kid — easy-peasy. When the network is easy to occupy it is also easy to reach and steal users information that are connected to that network. And this is where VPN comes in handy, it encrypts users traffic and puts a layer of security on their data and prevents naughty people from stealing it.
- Secure online banking
I guess there is no doubt that the most important information that belongs to use online is our banking accounts. Doesn’t matter how many dollars we have in the bank we want to keep it just for ourselves. VPN helps to prevent online banking credentials from being stolen (again this is very easy to do when connected to public wi-fi) and all of your money drained out.
- Secure Cryptocurrency
Again money is important and with increasing usage of cryptocurrency it is crucial to make sure that your money is safe. Since cryptocurrency security absolutely depends on you go get that VPN and make it safe and sound. Especially if you are some kind of Crypto goddess.
- Security for social media accounts
The same as we want to keep our banking accounts secure we also want to make sure that our social media accounts are accessible only for us. Nobody wants their social media accounts being stolen and all of your secret chats with your best friends or you loved ones accessed by some creepy hacker. Most of us usually have the same passwords for every account so you can imagine what could happen if someone has your Facebook password.
- Avoid tracking
VPN helps you bypass tracking online. Let it be someone trying to stalk you or just good old friend Google tracking all your moves, collecting yummy cookies and targeting you with stuff they think you need.
- Anonymous torrenting
In many countries people can get huge fines for torrenting, It is called copyrights infringement. In such countries as Germany or the United States you will need to pay hundreds of dollars for torrenting, while in some you can torrent with no worries. Everything depends on where you live. If you do want to torrent and don’t want to pay any fines VPN is here to help. By changing your IP address VPN ensures anonymous torrenting since such activity cannot be traced to you and your real IP address. Just make sure that your VPN supports torrenting (it needs to have P2P servers).
- Watching content privately
Here we talk mostly about the content that we really wish to keep only just for us. I think you guessed it — porn. We do want to keep our sex life and preferences to ourselves and VPN is here to help since once again — it makes us anonymous online.
- Bypass ISP throttling
ISP throttling happens when your ISP provider limits your internet speeds on purpose. You can notice such speed drops while loading videos, downloading stuff online or just simply visiting specific websites. For many different reasons ISPs choose to limit their users because of different reasons.
- Masking your location
Location spoofing can be done for many reasons, maybe you want everyone to think that you are away, maybe you want to access some game that is not available in the country you are physically in, maybe you want to hide from your friends or the whole country and the government. VPN changes your IP address and by this changes your location while you are on your computer. What deals with smartphones you will need extra tools that change your GPS location not just the IP address. There is only one VPN in the market — Surfshark that offers GPS spoofing for others you will need some extra apps.
- Blocking Ads
VPN itself doesn’t block apps, but these days many VPNs do have built-in ad-blockers which is a very helpful thing to have next to security online. Basically VPN helps you get clean and a little less annoying internet.
- Freedom of speech
In some countries there is no such thing as freedom of speech. Everyone is being tracked and just trying to say the wrong thing on the internet… VPN again masks your identity online and helps you to freely and anonymously express your opinions online. It is also a very crucial tool for journalists who just love to tell the truth even though the truth might hurt lovely politicians or the whole country. But it is still the truth.
- Bypass Firewalls
Starting from such firewalls as the Great Firewall of China and finishing to simply firewalls that are put on schools or offices in order to limit its citizens activities online. VPN helps to bypass all sorts of firewalls by simply changing your IP address.
- Unblock Social Media Accounts
Social Media websites such as Facebook, Instagram or Twitter are one of the most heavily censored websites in some countries. Actually the number of countries that ban social media is growing. I don’t know how about you but it would be very strange for me to not be able to use these social media accounts and would raise a lot of inconvenience. With the help of VPN you of course can easily bypass these restrictions by simply connecting to the country where those social media platforms are available.
- Unblock Apps
Like social media accounts can be banned so will their apps. Many different apps could be banned and not available in your country. By using VPN and changing your location on your phone you will be able to get them.
- Geo-restricted content
I bet you have encountered geo-restricted content while being online. For example you want to watch a video, but one says that it is not available in your region. Or maybe you want to read an online newspaper but it is available only to US readers. There are loads of cases like this online and it could get really frustrating, especially when we are used to the idea that the internet is free and you can access everything on it. VPN easily bypasses such restrictions and lets you enjoy content without any regional restrictions.
- International libraries
One of the most popular reason why people buy VPN (I think after security) is for getting better libraries on such streaming platforms as Netflix. Due to copyrights Netflix offers different content in different countries, which is super annoying especially if there is a show you really want to watch and could watch it calmly in HD on Netflix but it is only available in the US while you are living somewhere in Europe. Well VPN once again saves the day and helps you to unlock streaming platforms, just know that not all VPNs do this, you will need a good one which knows how to fight with those streaming platforms.
- Unlimited websites
This is the use case that I personally really love. There are a lot of websites that have limited access to their content. For example, website limits how many articles you can read per day or maybe month and if you want to read more you will need to buy the subscription. Well with VPN you can come back to the page as a new user with your new fancy IP address and read as many as you wish. This also works with such pages as freepik where you can get a few free vectors a day and then need to pay some bucks.
- Cheaper online shopping
Cheaper shopping sounds like a dream come true and it is actually. With the help of VPN and different locations you can bypass such thing as price discrimination. Price discrimination occurs when prices varies based on your location. For example if you live in a rich country or even better in a fancy neighbourhood in that rich country the prices you see online for different products starting items finishing video games and even subscriptions like Spotify will be different from prices other person sees who lives in some poorer country.
- Cheaper traveling
It is actually the same idea as mentioned above, but I really wanted to outline cheaper traveling since I personally use the VPN to get cheaper plane tickets and hotel bookings. Yes you can actually do that and I have already saved hundreds of bucks. Also it works on car rentals and these 3 things basically sums up the biggest amount of your travel expenditures. I won’t go explaining how to actually bypass price discrimination bu you can read the how to in this article.
- Language learning
This one might sound out of the blue, but I used VPN myself for learning new languages. Imagine you want to learn Spanish. What you could do is change your IP address with the help of VPN to one in Spain and then all the internet will be in Spanish for you. Google searches, websites, videos. You won’t learn grammar and stuff but you will learn some words and it is a much more fun learn like this then cramming everything.