Advice Request Is VPN a requirement for security in 2023?

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MuzzMelbourne

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Mar 13, 2022
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...But I know in such country's money is an issue so you will have to find a provider within your budget...

I'm not big on offering personal recommendations, but this case calls for it IMHO.

The Swiss based company Proton was established primarily to provide every person on the planet a free, lifelong, encrypted email address with a fully encrypted service as well as a free, fully encrypted, VPN service.

Their subscription services are used to pay for this and profits are re-invested to expand server locations.

I know they were very vocal about Modi and his cronie's attempts to limit VPN etc. in India, but I'm not sure what the latest situation is.

I subscribe to their top tier service in all products, Email, VPN, Cloud Storage and Calendar. All fully encrypted, end-to-end*.

*I think sender and recipient need to be using Proton email, but they were looking into ways around that. Again, not sure about the current status of this.

 
Last edited:

brambedkar59

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Unless user is working with sensitive data eg. journalist/human rights activist/fact checker or work in malware/security analysis or using public wifi hotspots, I dont see VPN enhancing security.
I sometimes use VPN to hide my online history mainly from my ISP, but that's a privacy issue not security related. I do use NextDNS while browsing w/o VPN but only for blocking trackers/ads. Edge is my daily browser w/o VPN and Firefox when using VPN.
 
F

ForgottenSeer 97327

@SohanRay

On my Windows 10 Desktop and on wife's Windows11 laptop I have setup a Secure DNS in the network adapter, When on Windows 11, also set the DNS-over-HTTPS template in your adapter. Set for both Windows10 and 11 the DnsOverHttpsMode to 'secure' in the browser policy (regedit). When on Windows10 you also have to set the policy for DnsOverHttpsTemplate for your browser in the registry. Set automatic HTTPS to always in your browser. Now both your DNS requests and web traffic is encrypted.

When you use a laptop, it is wise to use a VPN on demand when in public places like @Trident advised you. You want a VPN-tunnel when away from from home to do security sensitive stuff.

You can achieve both with free services (e,g, NextDNS and WindScribeFree), but it is up to you what you want. When you are on a trusted (home) netwerk with correct settings a VPN is an extra for your privacy needs, but not a must (as @Oldie1950 posted). For business use a continues VPN and for mobile use (e.g. online banking on your laptop) a VPN on-demand (when in public places).

Other people can advise about the need, but it is up to you to decide whether you want it.
 

Trident

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No, its a DNS filtering service...doesn't change IP.
ControlD and Apple Private Relay are the two I know that change IP address for home users (surely there are others as well). NextDNS as you said is not one of them. Even the Apple Private Relay is rather problematic when browsing the web (captchas and what not). ControlD in the version that acts as a partial VPN is quite expensive and in my opinion, not worth it.
 

RoboMan

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Depends on the approach you're searching for.

Built-in app encryption seeks for security and privacy, while VPN has a more "anonimity" approach.

Whatever the case, VPN is always useful, not only for anonimity, but for protection in public spaces and bypassing restrictions.
 

Shadowra

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I will clarify that.

A VPN is important if :

- You are in an airport, train station, McDonald's, restaurant, hotel etc because public wifi is not secure. A hacker can easily create a fake access point and steal the information (funny enough because I experienced this at my training when we had to see the risks of attack)
- You are "paranoid" in terms of security
- You live in a country where freedom of expression is censored or sites are blocked in a political way
- You want to watch geo-blocked series

A VPN is useless if :

- You surf the Internet on known sites
- You do not travel
- Your country does not censor

You should also avoid VPNs that read connection logs, those of Kape Technologies (ExpressVPN / CyberGhost / PIA / ZenMate) and especially those that claim everything and anything...

In VPN I recommend Mullvad which is not too expensive and has already proved that it had nothing (they had a search given by the Swedish Court, they found nothing because Mullvad did not keep anything at all)
 

SohanRay

Level 5
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Mar 19, 2022
246
I will clarify that.

A VPN is important if :

- You are in an airport, train station, McDonald's, restaurant, hotel etc because public wifi is not secure. A hacker can easily create a fake access point and steal the information (funny enough because I experienced this at my training when we had to see the risks of attack)
- You are "paranoid" in terms of security
- You live in a country where freedom of expression is censored or sites are blocked in a political way
- You want to watch geo-blocked series

A VPN is useless if :

- You surf the Internet on known sites
- You do not travel
- Your country does not censor

You should also avoid VPNs that read connection logs, those of Kape Technologies (ExpressVPN / CyberGhost / PIA / ZenMate) and especially those that claim everything and anything...

In VPN I recommend Mullvad which is not too expensive and has already proved that it had nothing (they had a search given by the Swedish Court, they found nothing because Mullvad did not keep anything at all)
If I am using public wifi, encrypted DNS (DNS rebinding protection enabled) and apps are encrypting network traffic....even then hackers could steal sensitive info?
I do visit unfamiliar sites looking for some information or software , so how will a VPN help here? Note: I am alrready using Bitdefender total security.
 

SohanRay

Level 5
Thread author
Mar 19, 2022
246
I'm not big on offering personal recommendations, but this case calls for it IMHO.

The Swiss based company Proton was established primarily to provide every person on the planet a free, lifelong, encrypted email address with a fully encrypted service as well as a free, fully encrypted, VPN service.

Their subscription services are used to pay for this and profits are re-invested to expand server locations.

I know they were very vocal about Modi and his cronie's attempts to limit VPN etc. in India, but I'm not sure what the latest situation is.

I subscribe to their top tier service in all products, Email, VPN, Cloud Storage and Calendar. All fully encrypted, end-to-end*.

*I think sender and recipient need to be using Proton email, but they were looking into ways around that. Again, not sure about the current status of this.

I have known about proton VPN, but its pretty costly for me, in India. I have seen VPNs increasing price based on country.
 

Shadowra

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If I am using public wifi, encrypted DNS (DNS rebinding protection enabled) and apps are encrypting network traffic....even then hackers could steal sensitive info?
I do visit unfamiliar sites looking for some information or software , so how will a VPN help here? Note: I am alrready using Bitdefender total security.

All it takes is for the access point to be infiltrated by a hacker and he can do whatever he wants.
 

Trident

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even then hackers could steal sensitive info?
Hackers can steal your sensitive info in various ways that VPN can’t stop, for example by breaching services (potential credentials stuffing may follow too), exploits, infostealers, phishing attacks. Bitdefender (and partially NextDNS) will fend many of these off, but it’s important to take additional steps to secure your accounts. 2FA via authenticator, hard-to-crack passwords and other common recommendations.

VPN will not help you much in relation to securing your info.
 

Trident

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Feb 7, 2023
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Do you trust your ISP? - In my case Virgin Media, now having read thier prcacy policy not at all - That is why I use a VPN all the time.
They all have similar policies in the UK and it’s not the ISP, it’s the law. Suspicious activities such as something that looks like hacking, torrenting and others result in automated warnings being issued and if you don’t stop, they can terminate your contract. I’ve not experienced it, but I’ve read it in the contract.

I’m not with Virgin, I find Virgin Media and O2 highly repulsive.
 

piquiteco

Level 14
Oct 16, 2022
626
Ahh I have no idea what Proton direct is actually....sorry about that. Could you let me know me what it is and how to use it...?
Check Mullvad, NordVPN, ExpressVPN or you search some VPN that is located in neutral countries, if you don't want neither Europe or America, that doesn't store logs of your activities.
 

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