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The featured VPN Services have been recommended by:

Provider Information Review Price
1.

Works with Netflix

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Easy set-up & use

6 simultaneous connections

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No logs kept!

30-day money back guarantee

Ad-blocker

5 simultaneous connections

Price: $3.33

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3.
Express VPN

Works with Netflix

30-day money back guarantee

Easy set-up & use

6 simultaneous connections

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Works with Netflix!

30-day money back guarantee

Good for beginners

5 simultaneous connections

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5.
Get CyberGhost VPN

Works with Netflix

7-day free premium trial

Above average speed

7 simultaneous connections

Price: $5.99

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Works with Netflix

30-day money back guarantee

Easy set-up & use

6 simultaneous connections

Price: $6.99

Visit site

No logs kept!

30-day money back guarantee

Ad-blocker

5 simultaneous connections

Price: $3.33

Visit site

Express VPN

Works with Netflix

30-day money back guarantee

Easy set-up & use

6 simultaneous connections

Price: $8.32

Visit site

Works with Netflix!

30-day money back guarantee

Good for beginners

5 simultaneous connections

Price: $6.99

Visit site

Get CyberGhost VPN

Works with Netflix

7-day free premium trial

Above average speed

7 simultaneous connections

Price: $5.99

Visit site

VPN Guide

Why Use a VPN?

As the world around us shrinks and we each become increasingly integrated into an expanding online community, our concern for personal privacy grows. No scan of the day’s news headlines is complete without finding multiple instances of data security breaches, invasions of privacy and monitoring of our online activities. From government sensors to internet service providers and all hackers in between, each time you access the internet to stream a movie, pay a bill or interact via social media, you are at risk. How can you protect yourself from prying eyes while online?

One of the most effective ways to keep your browsing sessions secure and private while safeguarding personal data on your electronic devices is through the use of a Virtual Private Network, or VPN. In the following sections, we will examine what a VPN is, the benefits of using one, how to download and install a VPN client and, ultimately, how to choose the best VPN to fit your specific privacy needs.

How Does It Work?

A VPN, in simple terms, allows you to connect your computer, mobile device or tablet to the internet by masking your gadget’s unique identification from the world. This identification contains a series of numbers, known as an Internet Protocol, or IP, address. A VPN service sets up a secure connection with your device to hide this IP address, and ultimately, hide your location and connection details.

The “virtual” in VPN means that you are essentially creating a virtual connection, as opposed to a physical connection, to securely access data online. Your privacy is maintained through encryption of information before it is sent online via an internet service provider. This encrypted data is then broken down and decrypted at the final destination. VPNs were initially crafted to help businesses establish secure connections to protect proprietary data and allow employees to work securely from home or via public networks across the world.

Today, however, with a masked IP address, users experience enhanced privacy and security to access a variety of online services. For example, some entertainment services such as popular streaming sites including Netflix and Hulu, intentionally block IP addresses which originate from overseas. Therefore, if you travel outside of the country, using a VPN could help you maintain access to these services by making them believe you are connecting from within the U.S. Bypassing these geographic filters is just one of the many ways VPNs help users.

VPN Advantages

VPNs are extremely useful in a variety of unique situations many of us encounter when we access applications and data online. They offer advantages including:

  • Masking your online browsing activity: When you access the internet through an internet service provider or via a public Wi-Fi connection, the websites you visit and the activity you conduct are visible to those around you. However, when you connect to a VPN service, your session is private and secure from prying eyes.
  • Access to geographically restricted websites: Some websites intentionally block users attempting to connect from various locations across the world. If you travel overseas or wish to gain access to exclusive offers, services or content only available within a particular country, a VPN service is essential. Additionally, many countries attempt to restrict the data citizens have access to in an attempt to manipulate the news. VPNs help bypass these restrictions and allow users to gain access to unfiltered opinions and news articles.
  • Protecting your privacy when downloading online content: When you access websites that offer content downloading services without a VPN, your internet service provider frequently monitors the entire session. This monitoring can slow down your connection speed significantly. However, VPN users can maintain anonymous downloading sessions and experience faster connections.
  • Keeping you anonymous when you use public Wi-Fi hotspots: Accessing content online from a public Wi-Fi hotspot places you, and your data, at extreme risk. VPN use is essential to maintain your privacy and keep the data on your mobile devices safe and private.
  • Securing your online shopping sessions: Do you routinely shop online? If so, a VPN can help protect your valuable credit card, Paypal or other financial account data which transmits to vendors each time you make a purchase.
  • Helps prevent third-party companies from logging details of your online activities: VPNs help keep the details of your browsing session private by avoiding or minimizing the recording of the websites you visit, the locations you visit them from and the activities you conduct while online.

How Do I Install and Set Up a VPN

VPNs offer a wide range of advantages for users, but how do you download, install and set them up? Most VPNs, especially the top 5 VPN services, walk users step-by-step through an installation and setup wizard to remove the guesswork out of the process. However, before you initiate a VPN download, it is helpful to first uninstall any existing VPN software from your system. Removing this software can help prevent system conflicts and lead to fewer hassles as you move forward in the process of setting up your secure service.

Next, determine your preferred VPN provider by comparing them online and reading through the installation details. Many offer fully customized clients tailored to a variety of operating systems and platforms. Once you download the VPN’s user client to your system, it is time to step through the setup process. During this phase, you will select from a wide range of options for your specific user preferences and also enter some information about your current connections.

While each VPN setup process is unique, almost all have online tutorials or support staff on call to help troubleshoot any issues you encounter.

In the next phase, configuration and optimization occur when you tailor the settings on your new VPN to suit your needs. Many users customize settings to only activate the VPN service on an as-needed basis. Others prefer to have it engaged at all times. Other options typically include a full suite of browser settings, preferred connections and speed settings. Once your VPN is downloaded, set up, configured and working on a basic level, you can begin the process of fine-tuning the VPN to unlock advanced features and make it more responsive to your needs.

Before you begin the installation and set up process, it is best to research the available VPN services and select the one that fits your needs.

How to Choose a VPN Provider?

With so many to choose from, how do you know which is the top VPN to meet your specific online browsing and privacy needs? It is usually best to begin by reading several reviews and comparing VPNs by examining the following factors:

  • Price: Although many free VPN providers are available, they typically only offer limited services which are not well-suited for most users. Paid VPNs run from $2 – $10 per month and provide enhanced security, better privacy configurations and more user-friendly graphic interfaces and better support services.
  • Logging: Be sure to read the fine print and find a ‘no log’ VPN provider which does not sell your internet browsing history to a third party.
  • Number of devices: How many devices do you want to connect simultaneously? Many of the free VPN services will only allow one connection at a time. If you plan to connect a mobile device, tablet, smart TV and computer all at the same time, search for a VPN which supports multiple devices.
  • Server network: Pay close attention to the VPN server network. How many unique IP addresses and locations does it offer? Many of the larger VPN services provide over 2,000 servers spread across hundreds of unique locations across the world. This large number of connection configurations provide users with ultimate flexibility.
  • Speed: Some VPN services provide enhanced security and anonymity by sacrificing connection speed. If you plan to download content or access music or movie streaming services frequently, it pays to shop for a fast VPN.
  • Other features: VPNs now offer a wide range of additional features including malware detection, 24/7 customer support, advanced speed settings and much more.

In today’s increasingly connected online communities, maintaining privacy and securing data are top concerns. One of the most effective ways to protect yourself is through the use of a VPN. Explore the full range of VPN services offered, select the one that suits your needs and then go online with the peace of mind that your identity and online activities are safe and secure!