In today’s highly-connected world, countless cyber criminals lurk around every corner of the World Wide Web. One may never know when they might be targeted until it’s too late and the damage is already done. The one thing that belongs to us and we can’t go-on without is our identity, and much of that is stored on our devices in the form of data. Our identities and data are worth a lot and cyber criminals are well aware of this, which is why they keep coming up with ingenious ways to steal it.
Cyberattacks on the Rise
In recent times, we have witnessed a lot of sophisticated malware and attacks targeting some of the biggest corporations and governments alike. In May 2017, the world stood witness to “WannaCry” – the biggest cyberattack in history.
WannaCry was a cheeky ransomware that affected more than 200,000 organizations in over 150 countries. The ransomware basically locked all the data on a device and left the user with just two files; instructions on what they should do next and how to decrypt the data. Basically, the only options most users had was to pay-up in order to retrieve their stolen data. The outbreak was the most sophisticated till date, which made use of hacking tools that were stolen from the National Security Agency (NSA) and leaked online in April 2017 by a group that calls itself Shadow Brokers.
A month ago, a cyberattack targeted government and business computer systems in Ukraine and eventually ended up spreading around the world. This attack also made use of stolen NSA tools that were leaked online earlier this year. Just like its predecessor – WannaCry – the new malware that hit Ukraine locked users’ data and the perpetrators demanded a ransom in order to retrieve it.
These sort of attacks are becoming more common by-the-day, and most cybersecurity experts believe that the number of incidents will only increase with attacks getting even more sophisticated with time. However, it’s not all doom-and-gloom for internet users and there is still light at the end of the tunnel as there is a solution to this menace. It’s called a VPN.
What’s A VPN?
What in the world is a VPN? Well, I’m glad you asked. Short for Virtual Private Network, a VPN works pretty much like a firewall. While a firewall protects your data on a computer, a VPN guards your online privacy by making sure all the data you receive and send is encrypted and secured from prying eyes and uninvited guests.
A VPN also hides or changes a user’s IP address to make it appear as if the connection is originating from another location rather than the user’s actual location. This can come in handy when you’re trying to bypass regional restrictions or hide your browsing activities from Internet Service Providers (ISPs), hackers, or third-party agencies.
While there are several other tools that too can protect your online privacy and data, most experts believe that a full-fledged VPN with all the right features is the best way to go on about protecting yourself from countless online threats. However, let’s not make the mistake of thinking that all VPNs are the same and provide an equal level of protection. So how does one get a VPN?
How to Get the Most Reliable VPN?
While there are dozens, if not hundreds, of VPN services out there, most experts believe the ones that stand out from the pack are PureVPN, Zenmate and DotVPN. However, what makes a VPN special is the added features that it offers. Make sure to look out for a VPN that offers a host of other handy features.
Osama Khan – A cyber security analyst by choice, Osama Khan likes to channel his positivity to make the internet a safe place for users. He advocates for rights to online privacy and internet neutrality for the masses. He has contributed immensely to the field of cyber security by his intellect, precise knowledge, and gifted insight.