Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) are gaining popularity. No longer are they only known and used by techie’s, but also business and personal internet users to solve various online needs. But as it grows, so too do some of the myths surrounding it. 

With a lot of fake news and misinformation floating around these days, we thought we’d debunk a few VPN myths floating around.

VPNs slow down your internet connection

It all depends on the quality of the VPN you choose. While the encryption and decryption of data between servers that are on different slides of the globe can make your connection slightly slower, it shouldn’t be a noticeable difference. Plus, if you choose a quality VPN that makes use of a high-speed server, your connection shouldn’t be slowed down at all.

In fact, if you’re prone to internet throttling by your service provider, a VPN can actually improve your internet speed. If you enjoy streaming on Netflix, or online gaming and you use a lot of bandwidth at a time, the VPNs ability to hide your IP address will ensure your internet service provider will not pick up this activity, and not slow down your internet speed.

VPNs are only useful for techies

Gone are the days where VPNs are too technical a product for everyday browsers to understand or make use of. While the language used to explain how they work can include some IT jargon, VPN setup, choosing your required server locations, and clicking connect is not complicated. Choose a VPN provider that has an extensive self-help section and expert customer support team, to help you trouble-shoot in the event that your connection is lost.

VPNs are also not just about allowing gamers access to an unthrottled internet speed. They also provide an extra layer of security and allow you unrestricted access to global content.

I don’t need to pay for a VPN with free options available

While there are many free VPNs in South Africa and abroad, they can be more trouble than they’re worth. While they seem to provide you with security and anonymity on the web, many of them in fact collect your data that is shared with unknown third parties. 

The act of sharing your data is how many free VPNs make their money. While paid VPNs don’t generally cost an arm and a leg, and will provide you with the peace of mind that your data and personal information is safe and secure.

Read more: Why you shouldn’t use a free VPN

All VPNs are the same

There are thousands of VPNs on the market. A search in your app store alone will no doubt give you options for days. But that doesn’t mean one size fits all. VPN providers will offer similar features, but it’s how powerful, secure and robust these features are that set them apart. 

Not all VPNs offer the latest encryption software, the same amount of devices allowed on one account or even unlimited bandwidth. Think about what your browsing needs are, and find a provider who can match these needs.

In summary, VPNs are incredibly useful to any internet browser, as long as you understand what a VPN is, what it’s uses are and how it’ll best benefit you.