If you recall, when Twitter was blocked, there was a lot of hype surrounding VPN services, especially among Nigerian youths. However, very few of these people even know what it is. In this article, we will explain what it is, how it operates, and all of the other things it can be used for in addition to fighting internet censorship.
VPNs, also known as Virtual Private Networks encrypt data and internet traffic while obscuring your IP address and online identity.
This makes it more difficult for outside parties to track your online activities and steal data while also enabling you to browse the internet anonymously, whether you’re using public or shared Wi-Fi.
How does it work?
When using VPN to browse the internet, the VPN server becomes the source of your data.
As a result, neither your Internet Service Provider (ISP) nor other parties including cybercriminals will be able to see the websites you visit, your location, your IP address or the data you send and receive online. With it, be rest assured of complete online anonymity.
In selecting the best VPN service provider, some of the top choices include SurfShark and maybe two others.
Why would you use it?
Using a VPN has many benefits that go beyond being able to access blocked social media platforms.
Here are a few fantastic benefits:
- Confront Internet Censorship: During the Twitter restriction ban of 2020, VPN quickly rose to the top of the list of popular apps, especially among Nigeria’s dedicated Twitter users.
With the strict censorship on Twitter, VPN services were used to get around the restrictions by simply letting users connect to a server in another country and operate virtually from that location.
- Online Privacy; Your IP address can be used to easily track your location and online identity if a VPN is not used.
It hides your IP address, instead of using your actual IP address when browsing the internet, your activities are routed through an encrypted virtual tunnel to the IP of the VPN server.
- Protection from government monitoring and cybercriminals: In addition to online anonymity, the government and hackers are just two of the parties who might be interested in knowing your internet activity.
By using an encryption protocol, a VPN can also skew your internet traffic, making it impossible to read or decode your data.
- Avoid geographic limitations: There are many websites and internet services that are inaccessible in Nigeria. VPN can help in this situation.
You can access such a website from your home country with it.
- Internet security in public spaces; Many people are unaware of the dangers of using public Wi-Fi.
Hackers may obtain your personal data. When using these hotspots, it is best to use a VPN service because it will encrypt all data, especially in public places like airports, hotels, and schools.
Limitations and risks of using VPN service
Apart from the fact that these services don’t function as comprehensive anti-virus software protecting you from viruses, bots, and other malware which can still access your data, meaning you need to use a service in conjunction with a powerful anti-virus programme.
They are not guaranteed and can be vulnerable to hacks and malware, so you might not want to trust them completely. Additionally, you should invest in a reliable service because free VPNs might not offer the best security.
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