How Does VPN Work?
We are all familiar with private networks. These are networks that are local and comprise of devices that are physically connected. Sometimes, private networks can also be connected through a shared router, with devices allowed access to each other. However, a Virtual Private Network is not so widely understood and a lot of people ask ‘How does VPN work?’.
What exactly is a VPN?
A Virtual Private Network behaves in the same way as a Private Network, except that it connects devices that are geographically far apart. It allows you to access another system, or server, through a secure pathway. You can then access files, data, applications, or peripherals like printers on the other device.
In order for a VPN to work, you first need to set up and configure the network. This may sound like it requires a lot of technical know-how, but it is relatively simple. If explained without the jargon, it is simply creating a secure tunnel that starts from your device and exits at the VPN provider’s server.
This secret tunnel leads you to the secure exit point that no one else knows. This can be any one of the servers belonging to the VPN provider. From that point on, you are free to go to any site without anyone being able to trace your actual origin.
How does VPN work in your favour?
The communication that happens from your computer to the VPN server is encrypted. Anyone who tries to ‘listen in’ to what you are doing will get the equivalent of white noise. Your ISP will know that you are accessing the VPN server, but they will not know where you are going from there.
If you are accessing the internet using a public wi-fi connection, anyone who tries to hack into your system will fail. This is because your login details and your connection is hidden under layers of code. This makes your computer or device safe even when you surf the web on an unsecured connection.
Additionally, a VPN can also grant you access to web content that might not be otherwise available in your region. How does VPN work against geo-blocking? Again, it does so by connecting you through servers in different regions.
Most VPN providers have servers set up in various regions and countries. When you log in to the internet through them, you can select the country or region you want to appear from. The network will send you anonymously through to the server in the specified country, and when you emerge out from there, it will seem like that is your point of origin.
Certain sites will restrict content or access based on your physical location. These sites rely on the IP address of your device to determine where you are. Because the VPN server that you connect to becomes your new point of origin, your IP address changes to one from that location. The website you then go to from there believes you to be in that country.
Using VPN provides several advantages, with security and free access being the main ones. It makes your online experience much more unrestricted. Once you have the answer to the question, ‘How does VPN work‘, you realise that it literally opens the doors to a