In simple terms a Virtual Private Network can be used to protect and hide your online identity. Hiding your IP address eliminates advert tracking and ensures secure browsing on public WiFi. A VPN can also be used to anonymously view a website and to access websites that may otherwise be blocked at your location. If you pursue offshore trading and investment opportunities via the internet, using a VPN will significantly enhance your online privacy and security.
Now days there are lots of VPN service providers, and most offer a free version as part of their sales strategy. However, if you road test a few of these free versions like we did here at Thai Shares, you will quickly discover some major drawbacks:
- Advert bloat: You are inundated with advertising and requests to buy a subscription.
- Changing your OS: Security advisors have labelled some free VPNs as malware because they make permanent changes to your computer’s operating system files.
- Data limits: Most free VPN services have a limited data allowance. Once you use up the allowance you will either be signing up for the paid version, or clicking to uninstall.
To avoid these issues, the smart thing to do is sign up for a good paid for VPN service right from the outset- a service that is reliable, feature rich, and cheap. We spent a good deal of time here at Thai Shares testing VPNs and we think that the best service currently available is Tunnel Bear.
Tunnel Bear is based in Canada and their website and documentation is simple and accessible. The service is fast and reliable, and their plans are cheap and include unlimited data. The only minor annoyance is that, to promote their brand, they use lots of bear related jokes and puns in their emails and website. Cute at first…but after a while…unbearable… 🙂