Should you use a VPN on Smartphone?
What is a VPN?
You’ve probably come across VPNs before. A Virtual Private Network, for those of you who don’t know, is best defined as a network of computers that allow a user to have safe access to data and websites online. Think of it as a sort of masking technology that hides your data and prevents it from being seen by others while you surf the net.
How it is used?
The way it is used is simple – a user accesses the VPN portal that they’ve installed and goes to the VPN site. From here, he or she can go about working online as usual. The system that is put in place ensures that only the sites protected by the VPN secure list are accessed and no data is leaked out to third-parties.
Now, when most people think about VPN users they imagine corporate heavyweights or remote office workers using it for work while away from the office. But increasingly VPNs are, and should be, used for a variety of other reasons.
Why should you use a VPN on your smartphone?
If you download massive amounts of data, are a business traveler, or simply a student, you may find a VPN useful. It is absolutely essential for protecting your data online, that’s the underlying point. And it is arguably more important to protect data that goes over a mobile network than a fixed network at home. Check out Tim Uittenbroek‘s site for more detailed information about why you should really consider using VPN.
Think about it – you roam around the world with a smartphone while your PC is restricted to the study table at home. More and more of your online activities are now going mobile. You can bank, buy groceries, shop for clothes, and rent movies all on a smartphone that fits in your pocket. And you are way more likely to do these things in a public place like a cafe with free Wi-Fi or an airport terminal. This free range of mobile networks means that the chances of getting caught out by attackers is even higher.
In fact, VPNs were originally developed for those who traveled. Businesses noticed that hackers were using software and cheap hardware to breach private networks through devices their executives were using while travelling. Back then, corporate executives roamed around with laptops loaded with sensitive business-crucial data.
Now, all that information is on smartphones. Everyone, everywhere has a smartphone they use. These devices are loaded with location and payment card data which can be easily compromised if the network being used is not secure. Attackers prey on unsuspecting victims in hotels and cafes.
Modern smartphones are really just minicomputers, and while many ordinary users may not have given it much thought, attackers most definitely have. Mobile devices are increasingly becoming more vulnerable as the skills and technology for attackers improve.
This is the main reason it is so vital to get a VPN for a smartphone. There are really a lot of options to choose from since the marketplace is crowded with a ton of different providers. All of them provide different levels of security at different prices. There are special software providers for mobile devices since the VPNs required are so different from the ones used on a desktop. Some don’t work as well on mobile devices while others are specially designed for Android or iOS. Take some time to do your research and pick the best VPN there is so that your data is secure.
I want to end by saying how much I appreciate the team at Broodle for allowing me to contribute to the site. It’s one of my favorite tech sites and being able to contribute my thoughts here is an absolute privilege.
About the Author:
Caroline is a technology enthusiast and blogger. She enjoys writing about all types of technology and gadgets with a particular passion for internet security. Her blog can be found at www.securethoughts.com
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