A virtual private network (VPN) is widely regarded by numerous cybersecurity specialists as one of the best and most effective ways to secure your online privacy and protect your browsing behaviour from cybercriminals.
It can give you peace of mind while surfing the web without having to worry about surveillance, snoopers or cybercriminals looking to compromise your data.
But recently, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has issued a warning to VPN users to read the fine print and terms of service and generally do their due diligence before signing up for any virtual private network provider. The FTC said that users who choose not to do so — may potentially be falling victim to the same exploits they we’re looking to protect themselves from.
Most VPNs are unsafe
The FTC referred to a study that analyzed 300 VPN services and found that many of these virtual private network providers didn’t use encryption technology and demanded sensitive information from their users that could hurt their user’s privacy.
Not only that, some of those 300 VPN services even went so far as to sell their users data to third-party companies and advertisers and they we’re generally spying on their user’s online activities without their consent.
This obviously goes against the very own purposes of using a virtual private network (VPN) which is to protect your data and not share it with any third-parties, reputable VPNs keep no logs and can’t even know what you do online when using their service.
The government-owned consumer protection agency advises online users to research the VPN service they’re planning to use and making sure it actually keeps on their promise of delivering enhanced online security and privacy to their users.
Because the fact is most VPN providers tend to not keep on their promise of delivering the online privacy and security they preach, and may even do the exact opposite.
Although it is difficult to actually see for sure whether a VPN service will spy on you or not, there are some things that you can do to make sure you use the right VPN.
One of the first things to look for when using a VPN is to check for the kind of permissions requested by the virtual private network service, if some requested permissions seem unnecessary, do not install it and opt for another provider.
Some VPN services don’t entirely encrypt your data which may compromise your private data. Testing the service on a free trial or reading about reviews online may help you verify this.
The consumer protection agency has also reported that users should be aware of the fact that VPNs don’t make you entirely anonymous online due to the fact that the VPN provider will be the only part involved that is spying on you.
In addition, some VPN apps especially the free ones, usually end up sharing your personal information with third-parties such as advertisers.
And if you’re wondering what VPN provider is safer to use, VPN Express is a reliable privacy-focused virtual network provider (VPN) that doesn’t sell your data to third-parties, encrypts your traffic, and doesn’t keep any logs or spy on your online activities.