Despite what many VPN providers advertise VPNs are useless (at best ineffective) at:
- Achieving anonymity.
- Preventing Google or Facebook from collecting your private data.
- Preventing unwanted profiling by social networks or search engines.
- Providing better security when ‘working from home’.
- Protecting your passwords.
- Hiding your mobile phone location (GPS).
- Helping you avoid data breaches on services you use online.
- Defending against “cyber threats” and identity theft.
Do not rely on a VPN to protect you in any of the above scenarios.
However, a trustworthy VPN can be very effective at:
- Encrypting your data so your ISP or mobile network provider cannot monitor or log your online activity. Without a VPN, HTTPS still exposes the domain name or IP address you are visiting to the ISP.
- Encrypting your DNS requests so your ISP or mobile network provider cannot monitor or log the domains you visit.
- Increasing your security on untrusted public networks by preventing MITM attacks.
- Masking your IP address from websites and servers you connect to.
- Circumventing censorship or geographical blocks on websites and content.