Gangelo

Level 3
Verified
Simple answer? No.
You don't need a VPN unless you live in a country with region block of certain websites / services.
IMHO a VPN is needed when you do "illegal stuff" (torrenting / streaming / unethical hacking), when you want to circumvent region blocks, or when your line of work requires anonymity (journalism, etc.)
 

omidomi

Level 69
Verified
Trusted
Malware Hunter
its belong to your job & country that you live & where you connected to internet.
1-if you you are journalism , human right lover , or any of these YES you need
2-if you live in dictatorship country with heavy restricted banning YES you need.
3-if you connected to public WiFi or non private Internet YES you need.

Simple answer? No.
You don't need a VPN unless you live in a country with region block of certain websites / services.
IMHO a VPN is needed when you do "illegal stuff" (torrenting / streaming / unethical hacking), when you want to circumvent region blocks, or when your line of work requires anonymity (journalism, etc.)
The word "illegal" has different means in all countries , if you live in Russia ,Hacking is not illegal :D , or if you live in France Torrent is not illegal ....:) If you live in Iran produced Violence & hate speech against "none government" is not illegal :D
 

Gangelo

Level 3
Verified
its belong to your job & country that you live & where you connected to internet.
1-if you you are journalism , human right lover , or any of these YES you need
2-if you live in dictatorship country with heavy restricted banning YES you need.
3-if you connected to public WiFi or non private Internet YES you need.


The word "illegal" has different means in all countries , if you live in Russia ,Hacking is not illegal :D , or if you live in France Torrent is not illegal ....:) If you live in Iran produced Violence & hate speech against "none government" is not illegal :D

Unethical hacking is illegal everywhere, so is torrenting copywrited material.
I agree that if someone uses public wifi (I avoid it like the plague), a VPN is essential.
 

RoboMan

Level 30
Verified
Content Creator
Malware Tester
Depending where you live. For example, when I was in Germany on vacation I watched a movie online, don't remember if it was uploaded to Youtube or some similar site. Days later, I recieved a letter where I was fined with 5000 EURO. From that day on, I used VPN 24/7 in all Europe. Back home in South America, I only use it in public areas or networks that aren't mine, since I don't know if they're compromised.
 
ISP won't check what you are doing unless they get order from a law, but in that case someone did something illegal. At least in most countries is like that.
Torrentig is illegal but again in most countries no one cares about that unless you are selling stuff online.
As someone mentioned before, Germany will go after you even if they catch you download one mp3.

Do you need VPN or not depends where do you live. I turn VPN on only when i'm connected to wifi
 

Burrito

Level 23
Depending where you live. For example, when I was in Germany on vacation I watched a movie online, don't remember if it was uploaded to Youtube or some similar site. Days later, I recieved a letter where I was fined with 5000 EURO. From that day on, I used VPN 24/7 in all Europe...

As someone mentioned before, Germany will go after you even if they catch you download one mp3.


Yeah, my employer briefed us that we should never download/stream/torrent music or movies from many sources in certain countries, especially Germany --- or risk fines.

But how does that work?

Usually an ISP would turn over that sort of information that would lead to the perpetrator.

If one is in a hotel room in Germany using their wifi.... how would they know it's 'you' without getting into your computer? And yeah, use a VPN, got it. I was in a hotel once where every single person had a different logon/password to get into the wifi. Certainly that could create a trail. But I've only seen that one time.
 

upnorth

Moderator
Verified
Staff member
Malware Hunter
If we visit reputated websites and do nothing illegal, do we really need a VPN?
Yes of course we do, and I'm a bit surprised the general security layer reason is not mentioned by the OP.

The risk of hi-jacked public Wifi is one great example but, even so called reputable websites gets attacked and hit and spread malicious code. Malicious ads for example and the news forum/section here on MT is filled/flooded with articles/reports. It's not some fantasy freak or extrem never ever happen to common users. It's a sad sad reality and ignore it is asking for problem and btw, if it's actually nothing to worry about as it's never gonna hit anyone as it's so rare, makes me wonder why even have any protection at all and that's 100% not the case on this forum anyway. Again, the news paint the picture more then well enough.

Here's a few genuine example of way too many.
The last example that specific hit German Windows 10 users is a great example where a VPN would help better. Nothing is though bullet proof as we all already know, well most of us anyway.

That people use other layers then a VPN is always their own decision but, I highly recommend it as it's not all about better privacy against our ISPs.
 

Cortex

Level 23
Verified
I'm not totally sure how much difference a VPN makes to overall security but I run one more or less all of the time, I get a marginal slowdown so there is little if any reason not to use one esp a high rated one? (apart from initial cost) - I went many years without one so I probably don't need a VPN but using one does add slightly to my feeling of security - Along with AdGuard for Windows almost maxed out I have few issues.
 

Threadripper

Level 8
Unethical hacking is illegal everywhere, so is torrenting copywrited material.
I agree that if someone uses public wifi (I avoid it like the plague), a VPN is essential.
Consumer privacy is actually legal in Switzerland, but that's another story.

Torrenting can be used for legitimate purposes like downloading an iso or another large file, even though this is completely legal and actually encouraged, using a VPN is still a good idea.
 

omidomi

Level 69
Verified
Trusted
Malware Hunter
It's illegal for copyrighted content. Like movies and such.
I hear that if you do't break laws useing Torrent is not illegal...? am I right?

Unethical hacking is illegal everywhere, so is torrenting copywrited material.
I agree that if someone uses public wifi (I avoid it like the plague), a VPN is essential.
I know this rules about hacking in Russia : the only law is : "Russian do't hack Russian" :)
about torrent , I see some countries rules d't ban it same as "Switzerland " "Spain" "Poland" in many Countries where downloading content is overlooked "Netherlands" "Slovakia"" Slovenia""Columbia""Brazil""Philippines""Argentina""Iran""Egypt""Denmark""Singapore"
in many countries there is no rules against torrent :D
source:
 

MacDefender

Level 11
Verified
Yes, if it's not copyrighted content, it's legal.
Correct in most jurisdictions it's not against the law unless it's copyrighted content...

With that said, some networks (particularly corporate ones, hotel rooms, and certain ISPs) have blanket ban against P2P services, regardless of reason. I've seen cases of our corporate network flagging Blizzard game transfers because they used to be BitTorrent powered. Sometimes this results in disciplinary action, other times it results in getting hassled by your IT dept or maybe being victim of an automated penalty box (bandwidth limit, etc).

As far as the original question, if you aren't hiding from your network operator or the services you use, you probably don't need a VPN. But OTOH if you, say, work for Apple and spend time at work posting on Macrumors, or something like that, it doesn't have to be illegal for you to feel like you want an extra layer of privacy from your network operator. Or if you work at a defense contractor and use Asian (particularly Chinese and Indian) services, I have personal experience that this sets off a lot of warning bells. Remember that HTTPS analytics are actually really advanced these days. A lot of Cisco and school-targeted solutions have the ability to analyze traffic patterns and detect activities like actively scrolling through Instagram feeds and paint a pretty good picture of when/what you're doing, even if they cannot see the traffic itself. Sending everything through a VPN pipe makes that a lot harder to do.

With that said, just flicking on a VPN switch is rarely adequate for online privacy. You also have to be somewhat mindful of signing into services that you've signed into on and off the VPN (Facebook/Google single-sign-on cookies are possibly the worst offenders).

Long story short, if you can't think of a reason why you want a VPN, you probably don't need one.

I've heard some folks complain about speeds of VPNs but the last 2 or 3 VPN providers I've tried, I was able to find a local mirror that added maybe 10-20% to the ping times and had nearly 400mbit throughput on a gigabit connection. I wouldn't say VPN has to have a significant speed impact, but that strongly depends on the type of VPN and your devices. OpenVPN, for example, is pretty much universally slow even on beefy hardware.
 
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