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VPN FAQs

Find answers to our readers most commonly asked questions. If you cannot find an answer to your question here, do not hesitate to use our Contact Us page for further assistance.

What are VPN services?

Virtual Private Network (VPN) is a way of connecting your system, or computer, to a remote server in an encrypted manner that can use protocols and authentication to maintain security. The VPN provider can make your personal computer appear to be connected to another remote server and not be tracked back to your actual online location.

How do VPN services work?

VPN services tunnel over an ISP and directs all your data through that tunnel. Your system is provided a unique location on that VPN's network and has complete access to the worldwide web. This access is protected so your privacy is constantly maintained through the use of encryption programs, called protocols. Your real IP is hidden from view and your signal is scrambled so you cannot be seen online. This allows you to become completely invisible when surfing throughout the web. This technology was developed to maintain a person's anonymity and make their systems more secure.

Why use a VPN service?

The Internet is a dangerous place, even if it is the best way to communicate and research. All computer systems speak, or communicate, with each other through ports. However, these ports can become infected by scans, viruses, worms and other hacking attacks. To protect your system from these dangerous attacks, VPN technology was developed. This technology development was also found to ensure your online privacy, as well as connect to different server locations, granting you a different IP address. If you have every been in a region that does not have Netflix, but want to watch a movie on the network site, then you have discovered you are being blocked. VPN services can bypass the Netflix blocking program. If you have ever traveled to a country that limits the Internet, then you have discovered that you cannot go to very many websites, or your social media site. VPN services can bypass censorship software used by countries. These are just a few of the examples of why you should use a VPN service.

What OS devices are supported by VPN services?

Almost every operating system can be supported by VPN services. However, you will need to check with your chosen VPN provider to determine what OS works with the software. Common operating systems that are supported by VPN providers are Windows, Mac, Linux and Android.

Can VPN services be used for private use?

Actually, VPN services are beneficial to both business and private use. You receive the same security for both your business and private needs, as well as additional options to protect yourself when communicating or surfing online. Some VPN services have special packages for business use, but most of the top VPNs are quality services for private users, as well as businesses.

How is VPN software used on my personal computer?

The VPN software gets downloaded to your personal computer, just like downloading any software. If you wanted to add Adobe to your computer, you have to download the software. VPN software is just the same. The only exception is that you have to set up the VPN connection on your network.

What password and user name should I use?

This is a common questions asked by many VPN users. The password you use will be initially provided by the VPN service during the registration phase. Some VPN services allow you to change that password, but it is not necessary. The VPN will send the password to the email address you provided during registration.The user name is something you would choose yourself. You want to select a user name that is easy for you to remember. It can be simple or complicated, but it is your choice.

What IP address will I be assigned?

The IP address you are assigned from the VPN service is decided by you or by the server location you choose. For example, if you choose a VPN server location in Dallas, Texas, then you get an IP address from Dallas, Texas. Some VPN allow you to randomly change your IP address automatically, which adds extra security to your connection. Other VPN services also allow you to change your IP address to countries whenever you want without limit.

Can I get on other websites?

One aspect of VPN services that is commonly being used is the ability to go to a website that is not available in the country you are located. For example, if you are located in South America, but want to watch BBC iPlayer, you can use a VPN to get a UK IP and then access iPlayer from another country.

How fast are VPN services?

It really depends on the VPN's server location. Some server locations are faster than others. VPNGround.com's speed tests have found that the fastest VPN servers are located in America and Europe, but the slower speeds are in Asia and the Ukraine. It depends on a lot of aspects of the VPN service, but the top VPN providers can actually speed up your connection.

Why does the VPN service disconnect after awhile?

It is common for your VPN service to disconnect if your computer device has set idle for a few minutes. Some VPNs are not as reliable or stable as others, this is why it is so important to use a VPN that has quality service.

Do I have to use the VPN service every time I go online?

No. You do not have to use the VPN every time you go online, but it is the safest way to get on the worldwide web. You can disconnect from the VPN any time you like, just choose a different network from your network connection, such as the one provided by your LAN.

Can I get around firewalls?

VPNs were developed to get around country firewalls, like the one you will find in China. However, it will depend on which protocol you use. For example, PPTP is blocked by the firewall in China, you would have to use a SSTP, OpenVPN or SSL protocol to bypass some firewalls.

Does a VPN service slow down my Internet connection?

The better VPNs can actually increase your Internet connection. Some people think that since encryption software is being added onto your Internet connection, your speed will slow, but that is not actually the case. It does depend on which VPN you choose and what bandwidth limitations, if any, that VPN offers its members. You can check our reviews to determine which VPN offer unlimited bandwidth.

Why are some servers faster than other servers?

It is not completely known why some servers are faster than others, but it does depend on how many members are using that server at the same time. It also depends on the quality of the server and where it is located. However, if you find one server slows down your connection, you can connect to another server.

Do VPNs monitor my activity?

The better VPNs only log the when you use their service, but do not monitor what you do or where you go online. You want to check the VPN's privacy policy to ensure what data it compiles on your Internet usage. Most free VPN services do monitor what you do and sell that information to online marketing companies.

What are dynamic and static IP addresses?

Dynamic IP addresses are ones that change each time you go online. Static IP addresses remain the same each time you log on to the Internet. Most VPNs use dynamic IP addresses, which provided the maximum security for its members.

What are VPN Protocols?

Protocols are what VPNs use to encrypt your signal. They come in many types, but the most common are SSL, SSTP, OpenVPN, L2TP and PPTP. However, there are many others. You can use our selection tool to find the VPNs that use specific protocols, or try are comparison tool to see what protocols each VPN uses as they compare to other. Some only offer one or two protocols, the better VPNs offer multiple protocols.

Is there a limited amount of bandwidth that I will get?

It depends on the VPN provider you use and what plans it offers. A lot of VPNs have no bandwidth limitations, while others base their prices on the protocols and bandwidth size you want to use from them. You much check with the VPN service to see what it offers and whether it limits the amount of bandwidth you receive.

What will others see when I am connected to the Internet?

The only thing others will see if they attempt to track you back to where you are is the server location of the VPN server. No software will be able to see what you are sending through the VPN's server or get past that server's location. For example, if you are in China and connect to a VPN using OpenVPN protocols, then choose a US server to get online, anyone trying to trace you will see that you are in the US, even though you are actually in China.

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