VPNs have become a basic necessity for anyone who uses the internet. This applies to users of all operating systems including Linux. However, you do not hear much about Linux-specific VPN services. As it goes, VPN services for Linux platforms are virtually the same as those for other platforms.
All the Advantages and Drawbacks of Using a VPN On a Linux Platform
Since Linux users are generally more technically advanced than users of other major platforms, it is a given that they have already heard of (and used) VPNs. However, if you are a Linux user who doesn’t know what a VPN can do for you, here are some benefits (and drawbacks).
Benefits Using VPN Software on Linux Platforms
Here are some benefits of setting up a VPN on a Linux device.
1. Online Privacy
The most popular use for a VPN is to protect the identity of the user. By masking the IP address from which the connection is originating, the software prevents anyone from tracking them. This is not only useful for casual internet users but also for those making sensitive communications and transactions online.
Online snooping from both government departments and cybercriminals is on the rise. In that light, having a robust measure to protect your identity is a critical part of your safety. While Linux as a platform is far better protected than others, it can still be breached. So using a VPN is a good idea.
2. Data Security
One of the biggest ways hackers are able to scam and swindle people out of their money is by accessing their data. While basic encryption is good enough to keep your data safe from the average user, it will not be enough to protect it from hackers. If you are making online transactions of any kind, then using high-quality VPN is a good idea.
This applies to all kinds of online transactions, especially cryptocurrencies. For crypto traders, it is imperative to maintain transactional security. Otherwise, they can lose all their financial assets in a blink. Even if you do not do trading online, merely having your bank details stolen can lead to financial ruin. So, alongside minding basic manual transaction protocols, using a VPN is a good idea.
3. Enhanced Connectivity
Online connectivity can be a major issue for a lot of users. If you’re traveling overseas, how can you watch the shows that you watched back home? Also, you can stay updated with the news channels or sports matches.
Businesspeople who travel to other countries often miss this aspect of living at their home. With a VPN, you can stay connected to the TV shows of your home. For example, if you’re from the UK and want to watch BBC shows, you can use a VPN and connect to a UK based server to access all BBC shows and news reports.
A VPN makes sure you never miss your favorite shows or important sports events even when you’re not at home to enjoy them.
4. Hiding of Physical Location
One of the worst things about having laptops and smartphones is that they can be used to track your actual location. Now, aside from the potential government tracking, there are other dangers to consider as well. Some apps, particularly social media apps like Facebook and Instagram, perform auto tracking. You will see the location option come up in a post if you choose. Of course, you can choose to turn off the location permissions.
But that does not necessarily prevent apps from tracking you. Aside from that, your ISP can also use other means for tracking you. They will then sell this data to advertisers who will then use it to pitch targeted ads as per your choices. Finally, nefarious individuals can use location tracking to find your position and engage in stalking and other types of harassment.
5. Better Performance than VPS
Virtual private servers are tools which are often used instead of VPNs. They do provide some benefits but the major drawback is that they can only be used to a limited degree. While this option for encrypted access to the internet is more widely available for Linux, it is not the best. VPNs offer far more value for money simply because they are provided by professional businesses.
Their dedicated nature and additional benefits like enterprise-grade encryption, easy navigation by tech-savvy but non-technical professionals etc. make them ideal. They are also more widely available in different parts of the world. So, for traveling professionals, they tend to offer better connectivity than fixed VPS solutions.
Drawbacks of Using a VPN on Linux
While there are several benefits of using a VPN, there are also some drawbacks.
1. Slow speed
When you connect to a VPN, your traffic is rerouted through another server, which can delay the process a bit. This means you might get slower speeds than usual. However, this drop in speed might not even be noticeable depending on your provider. Speeds can also be increased by selecting a server that’s closer to your location and selecting lower encryption. Keep in mind that when it comes to server speeds, premium VPNs are always better than free ones.
There are free VPNs as well but they can be harmful. They just might take your data and sell it to third-parties. This makes using free VPNs even more harmful than not using a VPN. If you want to stay secure, make sure you get only reliable and trusted VPN providers and don’t fall into the honeypots laid out by snooping agencies such as hackers.
With such a wide range of benefits for Linux users from using VPN, it is very wise to invest in one. There are also different degrees of VPN which you can take up based on your needs. If you want to choose the right VPN for yourself or your business have an overall view of the market. Then you can easily select the best fit for your specific requirements. Invest in a reliable VPN and ensure complete security and privacy online.
Different VPNs can be good for different reasons. Make sure you read some top recommended Linux VPN reviews before you spend money on a monthly/yearly subscription.