One of the biggest changes to come from the pandemic is the increase in the number of people who work from home. While many companies have returned to the office, there are still plenty that embrace the work-from-home model. Of course, to do this, you need to have a safe and secure way to access the company’s network. This is where a VPN comes in handy. Here is some important information to know about VPNs as well as 5 reasons to use a VPN when working from home.
Whether you are self-employed like me or work with a company where you need to access the company network from your home, there are many reasons to use a VPN. But before we get into those, here are some important facts you need to know about VPNs as well as some common questions.
What Is a VPN?
A VPN, or Virtual Private Network, is a secure, encrypted connection between your computer, phone, or tablet and a server on the internet. A VPN acts as a shield for your online activities, adding an extra layer of privacy and security to protect your data and prevent anyone from spying on what you are doing.
VPN services keep your passwords, IP address, location, and other identifying data safe from hackers, data collectors, and other unsavory entities and people you don’t want to access your personal information.
VPNs also have several other benefits such as allowing you to access the internet anonymously, protecting your identity, and protecting your browser history. Also, since you can use a VPN to change location, it allows you to access websites and videos that are not available in your region, and bypass geo-blocks and censorship if you live in or visit a country that censors or restricts online activity.
Are VPNs Safe to Use?
One of the most common questions people have regarding VPNs is whether or not they are safe to use. The answer to this is yes, they can be, but it depends heavily on the one you use.
Look at it this way. When you use a VPN service, you’re basically letting it handle all of your personal data, so it needs to be a VPN from a reputable company that you can trust 100 percent.
How to Select a Good VPN Provider
With the increase of people working from home, the number of VPNs has grown exponentially. But not all VPNs are made the same. Different VPN services have different features and security levels. Some have data caps, while others only allow you to connect one device. Some have even had their user’s data leaked.
So, it’s important that you be careful and do some research before selecting one. Avoid choosing the first one that comes up in search results. Instead, always go with an established, trustworthy, and highly effective service.
Take the time to do some thorough research on multiple companies so you can compare them. How long have they been around? How do they protect your data? What features do they offer? And make sure to read reviews from multiple sources.
While there are both free VPN services and paid services, using a paid service has its benefits. Most paid VPNs include faster speeds, unlimited data, a broader choice of servers and locations, and the ability to connect multiple devices at the same time.
If you choose to go with a free service, make sure that they offer enough bandwidth, speed, and server choices to meet your needs.
Reasons to Use a VPN When Working from Home
Now that you know some more about VPNs, here are 5 reasons to use a VPN when you are working from home or any other remote location.
Protects Your Personal Data and Identity
One of the most obvious reasons to use a VPN when working remotely is that it protects your company’s sensitive data. It also does the same for you.
When working from home, you do most of your business online. This includes accessing your banking information, paying bills online, your tax records, and all sorts of other sensitive information. A VPN will protect your identity and your personal information, keeping you safe from data leaks, hackers, and online attacks – whether at home or in public.
Gives You Flexibility in Work Location
As a blogger, there are times when I travel for work or must work while on vacation. There are also times when I just want to get out of the house and work outside on a beautiful spring day or in a coffee shop for a change of scenery.
Using a secure VPN remote work setup allows me to work from wherever I’d like, even on public Wi-Fi, without having to worry about cybercriminals or hackers accessing any of my or my company’s private data.
Enables You to Avoid Data Throttling
One of the best reasons to use a VPN when working from home is because it helps you avoid data throttling. Nothing is more frustrating than slow internet, especially when you are trying to work. Internet providers have been known to use data throttling, intentionally slowing down your internet speed due to data caps and other reasons.
With a VPN, your IP address is hidden. This effectively gets you around any throttling measures, giving you access to better internet speeds. And with better internet speeds, you can get more work done in less amount of time without having to worry about throttling.
Can Help Increase Productivity
Being able to work from wherever you want can also increase productivity. In fact, research has shown that remote workers are more productive, and enjoy a healthier work-life balance with less stress.
A VPN allows employees to work where they work best, without sacrificing their organization’s security.
Plus, since VPNs also give access to faster internet speeds, employees can finish their work more quickly.
Makes Finances More Secure
Last on the list of reasons to use a VPN when working from home is to protect your finances. Enjoying the benefits of online shopping and banking should never come at the expense of your privacy and security. Like many people, I manage most of my finances online, including checking my balance, paying my bills, sending out invoices, and even transferring money. I also do a lot of my shopping online. Without a VPN, this would leave my account details and other financials vulnerable.
However, by using a VPN, my finances and online identity are protected from anyone trying to access them or exploit them for their own personal gain.
Final Thoughts on the Benefits of Using a VPN When Working from Home
Using a VPN is pretty much a must for anyone that uses the internet whether they are working from home, shopping online, or enjoying social media.
In the past, I figured I had no use for a VPN, now, however, after working from home for years and using a VPN, I’ve learned that using a VPN has many benefits including increased productivity, making finances more secure, giving access to better internet speeds, and more, all while also being one of the best ways to protect myself and my business online.