What is a VPN?

A VPN or Virtual Private Network encrypts data sent between computers on the Internet. When using a VPN for privacy, your data is encrypted so your ISP or mobile network provider cannot surveil your internet activity.

Alice’s ISP can track every site she visits, and so can yours.

What is a VPN - Alice ISP
What is a VPN - Alice ISP

Without a VPN you connect to the internet through your internet service provider (ISP) and risk exposing your private Internet activity. If you are not using HTTPS then every site you visit, and the content that you view or download, can be tracked by your ISP. It’s like sending confidential messages using postcards except that unlike your post office, your ISP can record and store every message with almost zero effort and cost. Even if you are using HTTPS, the IP address or domain being visited can still be tracked by the ISP.

Even on public Wi-Fi, your data can be intercepted by eavesdroppers or hackers. Your activity or personal data may be intercepted without your knowledge, leaving you exposed.

Take a look at Alice’s case, as shown in the diagram. Her traffic is flowing through the ISP without any encryption, and so her ISP is able to record exactly where she is connected. In addition, the servers she is connected to also log her private IP address, affording her no privacy.

Bob uses IVPN to protect his privacy instead.

What is a VPN - Bob IVPN
What is a VPN - Bob IVPN

With IVPN, you first connect to one of our secure servers through your ISP. As soon as you’re connected, all of your online activity is encrypted and untraceable. Nothing you do is monitored or logged, and your private data can’t be intercepted by spies or hackers.

In Bob’s case, he is connected to an IVPN server and therefore all traffic going through his ISP is encrypted. The ISP can only record that Bob is connected to an IVPN server, nothing else. The servers he is connected to see only that the IVPN server is connected to them and therefore can only record the IP address of the IVPN server in their logs. The best VPN services will diligently ensure that they do not log any user connection data, ensuring their customers' privacy.