What Does a VPN Hide? An Ultimate Guide
4 minute(s) read
Published on: Jan 20, 2023
Updated on: Jan 20, 2023
But does it mean we’re 100% protected? If not, what are the remaining vulnerabilities?
Let’s take a closer look at what a VPN can - and can’t - offer.
What does a VPN hide?
The most important thing that a VPN hides is… you. To be more specific, it achieves this by hiding multiple things that could lead third parties to you. Namely:
Your IP address
Your IP address is linked to your online identity, and if breached, your personal information can be accessed and exploited. When you connect to a VPN server, it automatically hides your IP address so that the following are also hidden:
- Your physical location.
- Your online activities.
- Your browsing history.
From preventing annoying ads to significant breaches and exploitation such as doxing, a good VPN will stop anyone from backtracking your movements and finding you.
An IP address shows the location where the server you are connected to is located. However, there are ways that you can be tracked more accurately through certain apps that use GPS tracking or platforms that use triangulation to locate users or signals.
Using a VPN and turning off GPS tracking prevents anyone from tracking your location, even if you are using public Wi-Fi.
Your personal data
Although many people consider free Wi-Fi in public places convenient and useful, it also constitutes a real danger to users. These unsecured hotspots and public networks offer wonderful opportunities for hackers.
Unless you are protected by a VPN, cybercriminals can access and steal personal, sensitive information such as passwords and logins. A VPN encrypts all data before it leaves your device, so your data is unreadable and, therefore, unusable.
Your online activity
This item refers specifically to internet connection speed when you are gaming or streaming videos.
There are ISP providers, particularly in the US, that slow users’ internet connections or throttle some services so the internet providers make additional money by favoring certain streaming services over others. To avoid this, you may opt for a US VPN that’ll make it look like you’re in the US, but your internet speed won’t get compromised.
A VPN hides your online activity from your ISP so it can protect against throttling when streaming videos online or downloading files.
Yes, a good VPN hides itself and its own activity, so third parties can’t see that you are using a VPN and attempt to block it.
Does a VPN hide you completely?
Unfortunately, no. There is currently nothing that can hide you 100% or make you fully anonymous when you are online. To be brutally honest, if a company says that it can, they are not to be trusted.
What will it not protect you from or hide?
While a VPN offers a range of significant benefits, there are things that even the best ones can’t hide:
- Any existing cookies: you should delete these.
- It can’t hide you from potential viruses. Avoid sites, emails, and downloads that pose a potential risk.
- Your absolute identity: it won’t make you 100% anonymous; nothing can.
If you want to test the legitimacy of a VPN supplier’s security, you could carry out the IP address, DNS, and WebRTC leak tests.
Can you still be tracked with it?
This is a simple question without a simple answer. It is possible to leave a digital trail that no VPN can protect you from. It’s important that, even if you have a good VPN, you still exercise vigilance and diligence.
Why you need protection from your own ISP
A VPN will hide your browsing history. This is important because, although you may have cleared your cookies and deleted your search history, your ISP probably hasn’t. By watching your activities, an ISP learns a great deal about you.
Some ISPs are legally permitted to sell your browsing history, although they are supposed to do so without revealing your identity. As mentioned, a VPN will hide you from your ISP, so this is not possible.
Using a reputable, trusted VPN provider will hide your online activity, IP address, and location and encrypt your data. While total protection and anonymity is not possible, you will be able to browse the internet without the considerable risk posed by cyber criminals to those without protection.DotNek Android development services