Are you worried about losing confidential business data? Perhaps you’re worried about the possibility of someone stealing your bank details and getting access to your cash? Good! If you are, you’ve taken the first step towards protecting yourself against online theft and fraud. Your next step is to read on as we’ve pulled together a non-nonsense article about the ways that you can protect yourself.
There are a number of reasons that you might consider using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) but for most people the security provided is the number one benefit. Without getting too technical your computer has an IP address – think of it as a zip code – and anyone who can see your IP address is part way to getting access to everything on your computer.
You can stop this happening by using a VPN. When you use one your VPN provider become your proxy (just like a proxy vote) and they assign IP addresses on your behalf so the outside world doesn’t know where or who you are. Hiding your IP address in this way is an important first step in protecting yourself against identity theft or fraud.
People can’t commit fraud unless they manage to get hold of your bank account details and unfortunately this is a bit easier than you might think. Every time you settle down with your first coffee of the day and log in to that helpful free Wi-Fi you run the risk of revealing your details. Firstly, most public Wi-Fi is unsecure and secondly anyone sitting nearby with the right software, even that unassuming person in the corner enjoying their coffee and emails, could be snooping.
A simple, freely available piece of software allows anyone who wants to, to look over your shoulder as you type in your passwords, account names, and any other personal data. It really is that easy. Of course, once your details have been stolen in this way it’s then very easy to steal your money, make purchases and even use your name to commit fraud.
You can still enjoy your coffee and make use of the free Wi-Fi without fear if you buy a VPN service which encrypts all data and stops snoopers in their tracks.
It’s one of those words that instantly make you feel more secure but what exactly is encryption and how can it help keep you secure?
Encryption is a technique that scrambles your details (that’s personal data and websites you’ve visited) before it leaves your computer and only unscrambles it when it arrives at the other end of your VPN. So that polite looking person in the corner of the coffee shop, the one with the malicious intent, can sniff youth your data but can’t make head nor tail of it as it’s all garbled. Your account details are fully secure and what’s more, most encryption software is clever enough to spot when someone is attempting to peek at your data and it will immediately inform you of the threat. Double whammy for your coffee shop snooper!
You should expect your VPN service provider to offer a range of other facilities that will help protect against fraud and identity theft. Look out for protection from malware and spyware that can cause all sorts of security breaches. They are similar to the software you install on your PC or laptop but the software comes with the added benefit of stopping the software being downloaded to your PC before it can do any damage. Anti-phishing software that stops your account names and passwords being stolen is also offered by the best VPN service providers so make sure you ask for it.