Since widely publicized data breaches and massive government surveillance became public knowledge, internet users have to sort ways to protect their data, ensure privacy and keep the government from intruding on their sensitive personal information. Internet users want to be able to use the internet without their identity being revealed or their internet activities being used against them. The answer to the problem of government intrusion and privacy concerns appeared to be a virtual private network (VPN). A VPN is a technology that allows internet users to securely access the web through remote servers and make the connection appear as if it is actually in that location.
A VPN encrypts a user’s internet traffic routes through remote servers, protecting the user’s data such as browsing history, chats, message download, location, etc. VPNs are used by millions of people across the world to circumvent censorship, eavesdrop, bypass restriction, and hide a user’s identity. Due to the urge by internet users to protect their privacy, ensure the safety of their data and bypass censorship (in countries with restrictive internet laws), there has been a growth of VPN service providers. In order to win over customers, these VPNs have put out advertisements that make many claims about what their VPN can do. Most VPNs claim to offer users anonymity, all-around protection and security of identity, hack-proof, and no logging of users’ data. But as it turns out, many of these claims are actually bogus claims, half-truths, and outright lies. Below we take a look at the lies VPNs tell users:
- VPNs Lie About Their Location:VPNs lie to their customers about the location of their servers and some claim to have servers in almost every country when they have servers in only a handful of countries. Many VPN service providers let customers choose which country to route their traffic to. For instance, showing a user’s location as California when the user is actually in Moscow or Muscat. But it turns out some VPNs claim their traffic is going through one country when they are actually routing it through another without the user’s knowledge. This raises questions about the honesty of the VPNs and points to the fact that VPNs are betraying their customers’ trust. When users are made to believe that their traffic is passing through one country while it actually goes through another, it means that VPNs do not have the users’ interests at heart. Using the wrong location to route people’s traffic against their wish and knowledge could compromise their identity and pose serious risks to their safety if their data is breached.
- Anonymity: most VPNs claim to offer users anonymity and complete protection of their identity. However, the fact is, that a VPN could hide your location from your internet service provider (ISP). The VPN service itself knows your location and the content of your VPN data. Therefore, you are not completely anonymous. Should your VPN be compromised or it is a fake VPN, all your data could be compromised with your identity made known. This is a serious issue VPN users need to note with the proliferation of VPN service providers and research showing that some VPNs are surveillance conduits.
- No Logs Claim: Most VPNs claim to have no logs about their users or customers, but this is completely untrue. It is in fact a blatant lie. While VPNs do not track users like regular ISPs do, for a VPN to actually function it must keep some degree of customer’s log. VPN logs are records of a VPN user’s internet usage. The logs typically kept by VPN service providers include information such as users’ real IP addresses, which sites users visit, and the time a user visited the websites. These data kept by VPNs may be necessary for the proper functioning of the sites and to enhance the user’s experience. But the fact that these details are collected negates the claim by VPNs that they do not keep users logs. To make matters worse, many VPN services have been found to sell customers’ data to advertisers and digital marketers.
- VPNs are one-click Security Solutions: Most VPNs claim that their network and the services they offer are one-click solutions for complete security and privacy but this is a lie. While a VPN can hide a user’s traffic, the source, and destination, it cannot protect users against malicious and phishing attacks or breaches of privacy as a result of malware. Most VPNs do not have cybersecurity protection, so claiming to provide customers total privacy and security is a lie. Users can enhance their privacy and security by installing apps that offer cybersecurity protection and prevents cyber attacks. For instance, a privacy app like Hoodyoffers users privacy, security, and anonymity. It combines two techs designed from scratch for privacy: Phantom Browsing™ & Bulletproof Privacy Network (BPN) to ensure ultimate privacy. In today’s world where mass surveillance & tracking is very prominent, hoody is the only app that offers total privacy. Hoody’s Phantom Browsing™ anonymizes your data and creates a unique fingerprint for every tab on your browser. Hoody Phantom Browsing™ outperforms even the most sophisticated and intrusive tracking methods. Hoody’s Bulletproof Privacy Network (BPN) encrypts your local traffic and anonymizes your IP via multiple random relays.