It’s common to see people using VPNs when they are out of their homes, especially when they are using public wifi. This makes sense when you consider that many public networks are not secure and are prime hunting spots for cybercriminals looking to steal your personal information.
But should you use a VPN when you are in the comfort of your home? We’ll be answering this question and more in this article.
What Are VPNs All About?
A VPN is a program designed to provide an extra layer of protection to online activities. Essentially, it’s an online privacy protection tool that reroutes your internet traffic through secure servers and acts as a middleman between you and the websites you visit.
Using a VPN prevents hackers, tech giants, and even government authorities from tracking your online activities and your location. You are risking your online privacy and security if you don’t use a VPN.
In addition to routing your internet traffic through secure servers, VPNs also encrypt them. So, should anyone manage to intercept your data, all they’ll have is some indecipherable code. Pretty neat, right?
There are several VPN providers on the market and we encourage you to use only premium VPNs like SurfShark which you can download here. Free VPNs aren’t as good as protecting your online privacy. Heck, they may even sell your data. They have to make money somehow.
Should You Use a VPN at Home?
You can be sure that your home networks are safe to a good extent. It’s unlikely that a cybercriminal will break into your home and replace your router. Cybercriminals will want to collect as much information about you before attempting such an audacious move and chances are there isn’t enough foot traffic in your home to justify breaking in. But you are still not completely secure.
A good or motivated hacker can still get your private information through router hacks or MITM attacks. Using a VPN will ensure that a hacker can’t access your internet traffic or decode it should they manage to access it.
Your internet service provider (ISP) can access your online traffic and collect data about you. They sell this data to the highest bidders although they claim to anonymize this information. Still, it’s unnerving and using a VPN can protect against tracking from your ISP or prevent them from associating any data they collect with you.
Other reasons to use a VPN at home include:
Getting past firewalls and network restrictions: Government and sometimes institutions may use firewalls to restrict the online activities of users while tracking them in real time. One of the best ways to bypass these firewalls is to use a VPN which masks your online activities and allows you to slip through the firewalls.
If you are using a VPN to bypass firewall and network restrictions, use one with a “kill switch.” This feature automatically cuts your internet connection if it detects your data or activities aren’t fully protected. Many premium VPNs have this feature and your device will reconnect when you are secure.
Safely share files: When you are sending or receiving files with someone, a hacker can be in the background spying on the transfer. To make sharing of files more secure, you’ll need a VPN. Thanks to the powerful encryption protocols of VPNs, sharing of files can become more safe and secure.
Protect your devices: Your camera and IoT devices like baby monitors, doorbells, smart door locks, smart security systems, and so on are vulnerable to attack if you browse unprotected. To protect every device in your home connected to the internet, you should set up a VPN directly on your router. Doing this means all internet traffic from your local network to the internet passes through the VPN secure servers thereby protecting you without any of the fuss on the local level.
VPN for entertainment: VPNs can be fun. You can use them to access location-restricted content or to increase internet or gaming speed.
With everything we’ve discussed above, you can see it’s a good idea to use a VPN when you are at home and elsewhere. There are so many parties after your private information for different purposes. And you can protect yourself by using a VPN.