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Comparing Paid VPNs and Free VPNs: The Hidden Costs – and Dangers – of “Free”


For the top-notch level of privacy and security, people switch towards the use of a virtual private network, or VPN. VPN usage is not restricted to just individuals. Enterprises and companies also use VPN to prevent hacking incidents like the one recently in which the malicious actor attempts to steal the data related to Covid-19 research

However, not all VPNs deliver what they promise. By now, you all have understood that we’re talking about “free” VPNs. The best VPN is the one that keeps you anonymous, protects you from various cyber threats, and allows you to access geographically restricted content. I know that if you get all these benefits in a free package, nothing is better for you. However, things are not like that. Running a VPN service requires certain expenses, so they can’t provide you everything for free.

Most of the people ignore premium VPNs every month without considering how dangerous it is to use free VPNs and to save some dollars. But let me clear about one thing – as paid VPNs make money by subscription fees, providers of free VPNs are engaged in some activities to make a profit from your use. It is also found that the service provider restricts the functionality of their services and most of the time you need to switch to premium subscription for a little advance feature.

A free VPN works fine for you if you need it occasionally. It is a good idea to invest in free VPNs. However, if you need a VPN for daily use, then choosing premium VPNs is a wise decision. Free VPNs are vulnerable in many aspects and thus are recommended not to use. What’s the purpose of using a service when it is behind the compromise of your privacy and security?

Well! Things don’t end here. Several other reasons prove your decision to use free VPNs wrong. In this article, we’re discussing reasons that signify how worthy it is to invest in paid VPNs. So, let’s read on.

Risks Associated with Using a Free VPN:

There are numerous flaws and security concerns when it comes to using a free VPN service. Out of all of them, the most prominent ones are as follows:

Online Tracking and Selling of Your Data

Several free VPNs share your browsing session data with different advertisers and bombard you with ads. When third parties access your confidential information and see your data, they compromise your online privacy which is one of the prime reasons for using a VPN. Moreover, many free VPNs also acknowledge hijacking your browser and redirecting you to other partner websites without your prior knowledge.

Provide Other Users Access to Your Connection

The famous Hola VPN and other VPN service providers function as P2P networks. They send your data through another user’s device and route other users’ traffic by yours. All this system risks you to DNS attacks and the spread of malware within your device.

Provides Weak and Easily Breakable Security

Running a reliable and secure network infrastructure is an expensive process. The free VPNs companies often use unreliable security practices as well as encryption, which acts similarly to malware. It is a clear sign that your data is easily decoded by hackers and government and surveillance agencies.

Browsing is Interrupted by Ads

Free VPNs mainly generate revenue by selling ads. Even if the provider is not involved in tracking your activities or selling your data, the continuous display of advertisements annoys you, and you regret your decision. It isn’t very certain that any free VPN screens all ads for malware and spyware. Hence, one unintentional click puts you in great trouble.

Vulnerable to IP Address Leaks

A VPN acts as an invisible tunnel. All of your internet traffic passes via the tunnel, keeping it secure from any malicious actor. In free VPNs, the tunnel is not as secure as paid VPNs or does not exist at all. In this situation, the IP address, along with personal data, gets exposed. This entire process is termed as an IP traffic leak in which anyone can track your entire browsing experience. It is also revealed that some paid VPNs also leak your IP address; however, it is in sporadic cases. The presence of an internet kill switch does the protection job.

Why Should One Invest in Premium VPNs?

Concerning all the reasons mentioned above, it is now clear that free VPNs are more problematic than what they are. Moving a step forward, we now highlight the reason for investing in paid VPNs.

VPN Protects Your Online Privacy

A VPN is among the safest privacy-protecting tools made available to the users on the internet. With a VPN, you enjoy robust protection against information interception, internet surveillance, as well as your identity and location, detected.

Paid VPNs provide a three-layered of protective technologies to their users. They efficiently mask the destination and origin of your data packets from spying. They hide your original IP address behind that of the VPN server and encrypt your data with robust security protocols. It means that no one, including your government, has the requirements to decrypt the internet traffic.

Mostly, the best VPNs use military-grade 256-bit encryption that can be found in large financial institutions. Now, you can see how strong this kind of encryption is used to make your data secure and inaccessible to anyone as you’re connected to a secure server.

VPN Helps in Unblocking Websites and Content

Everyone nowadays comes across geographically restricted websites and online content. As these use different methods of checking your location, it is nearly impossible to use these services outside of their supported regions. Here premium VPNs come in, and this is yet another advantage of using them, as it is the most effective tool for unblocking restricted websites.

Thus, this is one of the most vital pros, and it directly affects your freedom to get the information you require from anywhere you want.

By using the best paid VPN services, you can watch the American version of Netflix (even bypassing the proxy error), access streaming sites like Amazon, Hulu, HBO GO, PlayStation Vue, Prime Video, and many more.

VPNs Help in Bypassing Government Censorship

There are several countries in this world where there are strict government surveillance and censorship. The government controls the flow of information and wants its citizens to abide by the rules.

Some countries have banned worldwide popular social networking sites such as Facebook. What’s an app, Twitter, and YouTube. The only way you can circumvent these restrictions is by using a premium VPN that comes with high-end encryption and anti-blocking mechanisms.

Port Forwarding

It is one of the best ways to guard your IP addresses against attackers and government surveillance, and it does not come for free. It is not an option now but a necessity in today’s age. The netizens must practice the digital techniques that shield their IP address.

A premium VPN does the work here. It prevents the snoopers from finding you or your unique IP address. Furthermore, it stops anyone from getting into your system and browsers and seizes any content, email, or messages your share within your network.

Advanced Security Features

The premium VPNs are best in providing advanced security features to their users. They don’t take any chance because one wrong move or privacy breach brings their name down, and people lose trust.

Considering users’ needs, most of the VPN companies are creating a robust VPN network using technologies like DNS and IP leak protection, kill switch, and split tunneling that ensures you’re anonymous and secured. All these features help in ensuring that your sensitive data is not made public even if you get disconnected from the VPN either because of network or technical issues.

Final Thoughts

To reimburse all the points, the most crucial things while using a VPN are privacy and security. The best solution to get this through is to use a VPN of a reputable company that charges money in exchange for their services. Remember, nothing in this world comes free. There are several vulnerabilities associated with free VPNs. It is better to pay once than cry on the lost. As mentioned above, the points have provided you with valid reasons for investing in paid VPNs rather than free VPNs.

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