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Check out EarthVPN for a budget virtual private networking service

Updated on August 3, 2014
VPNs protect Internet user security
VPNs protect Internet user security | Source

The revelations from Edward Snowden about government surveillance and snooping on private individuals caused shockwaves around the world and one way to protect yourself against this type of activity is to install a virtual private network (VPN) to act as a buffer between your computing device and the outside world.

Virtual private networks create an encrypted tunnel, offering users the anonymity and safety to browse the Internet with peace of mind. They are also useful for consumers wishing to carry out frequent filesharing who suffer throttling from Internet Service Providers (ISPs) on a regular basis or worry about copyright trolls and download issues. Furthermore, frequent travelers or consumers living in areas of the world suffering website censorship or finding it impossible to access favorite websites will discover VPNs open the Internet to worldwide use. Freelancers needing to site the IP address of specific Internet-enabled devices within particular locations will also find VPNs give them opportunities to adopt IP addresses in country-specific locations.

A variety of companies offer VPN services and EarthVPN is one of cheapest on the market at the present time.


EarthVPN features

EarthVPN is a budget VPN service but that doesn't mean it cuts corners when it comes to the the features offered. It is a fairly recent entrant to the VPN market and in August 2014 had 114 servers located in 32 countries.

It's a simple matter to set up the EarthVPN service which can be up and running within minutes of downloading the service. Customers can use up to three devices from the same IP address simultaneously but it's not possible to run a mobile device from the budget price plan, although mobile mobile services can be purchased at additional costs. The company offers a 7-day money back guarantee and prices start at $3.99 per month.

Just some features of EarthVPN's service include unlimited bandwidth and guaranteed assurance that no user logs are retained or shared with third parties. EarthVPN is enabled for torrents and P2P, so filesharing is a simple matter, while unblocking censored websites and services is just a case of logging into the relevant country servers to unlock sites. Customers have access to the full range of servers and are assured of data confidentiality for transmissions or receipts while the encrypted tunnel is enabled.

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Mobile devices are notoriously insecure for data transfers
Mobile devices are notoriously insecure for data transfers | Source

Add ons

EarthVPN plans can be customized to specific user requirements by purchasing add ons. Some useful add on features include incorporating extra devices such as mobiles, registering for a static IP address, upgrading to 256-bit AES encryption and enabling SSH Tunnel/Socks proxy.

Check out more Internet security options on Amazon

Drawbacks

One major drawback of the EarthVPN service is that budget costs are raised significantly when customers purchase add ons. Plans costs can reach levels as high as some of the other providers that offer similar features which are incorporated into basic plan packages.

Independent reviewers also noted inconsistent and slow speeds when the service was tested and some of the servers were unavailable for connections. OpenVPN protocol was particularly disappointing when it came to speed tests and seemed extremely dependent upon server location, often the closest servers did not prove to be the fastest.

Benefits of VPNs

The principal benefit of VPNs is the securely encrypted tunnel for Internet use. allowing customers to regain freedom on the web and browse, download or visit sites with peace of mind. Customer IP addresses are hidden within the tunnel once the service is active and unique IP addresses are allocated by the relevant server, ensuring anonymous use of the Internet. For consumers this means there is no possibility that third party eavesdropping or hacking can take place and also that Internet Service Providers (ISPs) cannot track or throttle internet use, which is particularly important for frequent filesharers. Security of Internet-enabled mobile devices is a particular concern as Wi-Fi hotspots are notably insecure, though where consumers find this an important aspect of consideration it may be a better idea to purchase VPN services from suppliers offering simultaneous connectivity from computers and mobile devices.

Customers living or located in countries where censorship of websites and services is common will find that all restrictions can be bypassed when the VPN is active, as logging into servers in different countries removes location specific blocks. This means sites such as BBC iPlayer, Hulu or Netflix can be unlocked and accessed from any worldwide location and is a particularly beneficial aspect of VPNs for frequent travelers wishing to watch their favorite TV shows and programs.

More information

Check out BestVPN for an independent review of the EarthVPN service.

Visit EarthVPN to learn more about this budget virtual private networking service and to register for plans.


Simple illustration of a VPN system
Simple illustration of a VPN system | Source

© 2014 Dawn Denmar

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