7 Essential Data Privacy Tips for New VPN Users

VPNs can be excellent tools for ensuring better data privacy, but you have to invest in the right ones.
data privacy with vpn data security
Shutterstock Photo License - By Alexander Supertramp

Data privacy is becoming more of a priority than ever for consumers in the United States and other parts of the world. Even before Edward Snowden released his report on the massive NSA data accumulation scandal, people were starting to become concerned about their online privacy.

More recent polls have shown that interest in data privacy is growing faster than ever. One poll from Morning Consult showed that 56% of registered voters support a national data privacy law.

Unfortunately, data privacy legislation is not advancing as quickly as people would like. Even if such laws are passed, it will still be legal for companies to collect certain types of data. There will also always be some companies that neglect to follow data privacy laws.

This has led some people to debate whether data privacy is a right or a luxury. The good news is that there are ways to protect your data. One of them is to use a VPN. However, you have to know how to use a VPN properly.

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Guidelines on Using a VPN to Keep Your Data Secure

A VPN establishes a safe passage between you and the internet. It will provide you with an additional layer of anonymity and better protect the privacy of your data. So, with a VPN, you can hide your location and internet activity, torrent anonymously and safely, overcome censorship, and unblock streaming platforms.

No, you don’t have to be tech-savvy to use a VPN to keep your data secure. But when you start looking for it, you might notice that there is a plethora of VPN providers in the market. Many services are capitalizing on the general masses’ rising concern about cybercrime and surveillance. This means you have to be careful. So, how do you know which is the best one? Well, it is simple, you just have to keep a few factors in mind.

For your convenience, we have listed the top tips to follow for a beginner to get the best VPN to improve data privacy.

1.      Consider Why You Need a VPN in the First Place

Surely, you are not going to buy the first VPN that you come across, especially if you are truly serious about data privacy. If you want a VPN for your house, a router-based VPN or a VPN that allows multiple connections at the same time can be a good choice. These different connections make it a lot harder to trace your true IP and keep your data from being decrypted if it falls into the wrong hands.

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But if you travel regularly and have to depend on a Wi-Fi network, choose a VPN that provides complete security and has servers across the world.

When you decide to use a VPN, consider the features you think are important. After you complete the process, it will be easier for you to decide the VPN you want.

2.      Use the Free Trial Period

It is a great way to choose a VPN service. Most of the VPNs come with a trial period, and you should take advantage of that. The longer the trial period, the better it is for you as you have more time to assess the features. You can experiment with the different VPN features and learn if you like the interface. If you don’t, you can easily ask for a refund.

Make sure that you check the refund policy. In some cases, you might have to wrangle a little with the support and sales team to cancel the subscription. But the best thing about the trial period is you will have a VPN that is perfectly suited for all your requirements, and you won’t have to worry about a refund.

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3.      Weigh the Cost Against the Features

Selecting a VPN isn’t easy, especially for a beginner. Even experts, who are aware of the security market, find it difficult since the technology keeps on evolving. Also, new VPN providers are cropping up every now and then. So, the pricing might vary from one VPN service to the other.

You have to figure out how much it will cost you to get the features that you are looking for. A few VPN providers offer a monthly or yearly subscription plan. For a longer commitment, you can enjoy a discounted rate. But you have to decide if the savings will be worth your commitment to the VPN service.

You will also find some free VPNs on the market. However, they are notoriously unreliable for data privacy. They have weaker encryption and are usually not based in countries that are shielded from government subpoenas.

Many VPN providers offer advanced features and addons for an extra cost, which can go beyond typical data privacy. Being a beginner, it is like choosing something that you don’t know much about. Thus, it is better to stick to the basic features and then move on to an improved one when you get to know more about it.

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4.      Check Device Compatibility

Even though a majority of the VPN services support the main platforms, such as Windows, Linux, macOS, Android, and iOS, there are a few that don’t work on all platforms. In case you have a Windows computer but use an iOS smartphone or tablet, you have to ensure that your VPN works on both.

Don’t forget to check how many devices you can connect to the VPN at once. A few VPNs allow you to connect unlimited devices, simultaneously. But there are others that will allow you to connect up to 3-5 devices only.

5.      Check Out the Country Servers

The VPN’s server locations can be an important factor to take into account if you want to keep your data safe. In case you are a less developed or less populous country or plan to travel for some time, you have to get a server that has servers in close by location.

Countries, like China and North Korea, are known to provide restricted internet service. Using a VPN in such situations will help in handling their restrictions and censorship if you plan to work there.

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6.      Look for Supportive and Reliable Customer Service

Often users tend to neglect the importance of good customer service. It is always better to choose a VPN provider that offers 24/7 customer service so that you can reach out to them even in the middle of the night while you face any issues.

There should be someone that you can easily contact when you need help with the VPN. The VPN service should offer its customer service through different channels. One of the most effective forms of communication is live chat. But the phone and email support are equally important. The customer service team should not take more than 24 hours to reply to your queries.

7.      Privacy Policy

It is important that you choose a provider that follows a no-log policy. If they don’t, they might store your data and share it with third parties, such as the government. The provider is based outside the 5/9/14 Eyes alliances, too. In case you aren’t sure where the VPN provider stands, you have to read the privacy policy.

Take the Right Steps to Keep Your Data Safe with a VPN

VPNs can be great for data privacy. However, you have to choose the right one if you want to try to fully protect your data.

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You shouldn’t assume that all VPNs offer the same service. Understanding the features that you need is important. In case you don’t have enough time to look through different VPN providers, we recommend TheFastVPN.com. It is one of the best VPNs to protect your privacy and security.

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The VPN allows you to browse anonymously. It offers unlimited bandwidth to make sure you can access any content you want. The VPN has 50 servers across the world and offers dazzling speed. So, all in all, it is one of the top VPNs in the market.