Is using VPN legal?

People want to have more privacy when they are on the web, and they want to remain as safe as possible. Inevitably, their search leads them to VPNs, and when they start to look at how VPNs work and the benefits they offer, they start to question whether this type of service is legal or not.

Fortunately, the answer is yes. In most countries, people have the legal right of privacy, so there should not be issues when it comes to utilizing a VPN service. Of course, this is not the case everywhere. There are some countries, such as China and Iran, that do not believe their citizens should have full privacy. These countries also tend to be repressive of rights in other ways as well. In those cases, the countries might ban VPN services from operating within the borders, and they could even try to block some users from accessing a VPN service from another country.
However, that does not mean that those individuals do not find ways to get around that censorship. Even in China, which has some of the most powerful and intrusive Internet censorship in the world, people are still able to get around the blocks and get onto VPN services so they have freedom on the web.

This is important for people who are living in those countries and who want to have more privacy and freedom, as well as journalists who are working in those countries. So many countries today, even countries that you might not expect, have increasingly broad surveillance laws. France and the UK are two prime examples. With the rise of terrorism, they have started to increase their surveillance laws.

It is important to keep in mind that those laws can sometimes affect the type of services allowed to operate there. The UK and France, from the previous example, require that the providers of VPN services keep logs of their users’ activities while online. Those who want to have real privacy should therefore work with VPNs located in countries where it is not a requirement to keep logs.

Something else you should keep in mind is that even in countries where it is not required to keep logs, it does not mean that the providers are not keeping them. Therefore, you should always make it a point to check and see whether the VPN company you are considering using keeps any types of logs whatsoever.

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What About Torrents or Streaming Services?

People who want to use these types of services will often want to use them to stream videos, such as Netflix or Hulu. The catalogs for these services are much vaster in places such as the United States, so it makes sense that people would want to “spoof” their IP address so they can get the most from their subscription. Many of the VPN services available explicitly offer this as an option. That is not the case with all of them though, so you will need to check to see whether it is available through their service or not.

The same holds true for those who want to torrent. As long as the provider allows torrents through their service – and they are usually forthcoming about whether they do or do not – you can. If you are unclear over whether they will allow torrents or not, you should certainly check with them first. This is typically the safest way to torrent.

Normally, when you are torrenting a file, everyone who is on the server and who is downloading the file would have access to your IP address. Naturally, this is not something you want to have happen, and that is where the VPN helps. With the VPN, you will not have to worry about everyone having access to your IP address. The VPN hides it, so the only thing people on the P2P service will see is the IP of the VPN.

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A good VPN provider wants to keep you safe and help you ensure your privacy when you are on the web. When using a provider for legal purposes most countries do not have a problem with it. It is when someone starts to use the VPN service for illegal purposes that trouble occurs. There are bad people out there who abuse the power of VPNs to engage in seriously heinous activities, and they give others who want to use the service for privacy a black eye.

High quality VPN providers will still prohibit illegal activities on the web including things such as child pornography, hacking of accounts and emails, spreading viruses, spamming, theft, and running scams. Companies do not want to be associated with people who do those things, and if a VPN is entirely open with an “anything goes” policy, you do not want to be associated with them.

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Know the VPN You Are Choosing

As you can see, a VPN will allow you to do a number of things on the web without worrying that someone else is going to follow your activities and find out all of the sites you’ve been visiting. When you want privacy, you cannot beat a VPN. However, not all VPNS are created equal, and that is why it is so important for you to take the time to research VPNs; rather than simply using the first one you find. Always be sure to read through the policies of the service so you understand whether they keep logs and what they do and do not allow.

A good VPN can do a lot for you. They will keep your privacy when you are surfing on the web, and everyone deserves to have privacy. In addition, they have the ability to help keep you safe from hackers and others out there who might want to do you harm. With a good VPN service, you can use the Internet the way you want to use it.

Valerie

Valerie has been a full time writer for 10 years and is HubSpot Inbound Marketing Certified with a vast user experience technical Internet tools, widely used today. Excited about new things out there and happy to share personal experience!

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