If the infamous Snoopers’ Charter from 2016 wasn’t bad enough, the UK government is now using the pandemic as an excuse to ramp up surveillance. Moreover, hacking activity has increased for pretty much the same reason – taking advantage of the panic caused by Covid. As such, you’ll need a UK VPN to preserve your online privacy and security, and for a few other great reasons detailed below.
Meanwhile, keep an eye out for ProPrivacy’s best VPNs for the UK – a great starting place in your effort to fight back against mass surveillance and cybercrime.
How Will a UK VPN Keep Me Safe?
As mentioned, the UK government will find any excuse to intrude on the private lives of its citizens. If you weren’t aware, Internet providers are required to store your web browsing activity for up to 12 months. Your private data can then be perused by any government bodies and law enforcement without requiring a warrant.
Fortunately, all your web activity is encrypted while using a VPN. The app essentially uses complex algorithms to garble the stream of data that makes up your online behavior. Your Internet provider and anyone else trying to access your data (such as hackers) will only be able to see gibberish.
Moreover, a UK VPN can help you hide your real-life location by spoofing your IP address. This identifier can reveal your city and even postcode, making it a slight privacy issue if somebody is on your trail. Say, a stalker. When you connect to the VPN, your IP address (and thus your Internet-facing location) is changed to reflect the VPN server you’ve connected to (e.g. Germany).
This same feature is useful for entertainment purposes, as detailed in the next section. Sure enough, we all need a little something to take our mind off of things after this rollercoaster of a year.
Kick Back and Relax with a UK VPN
The IP spoofing capabilities of a VPN allow you to access content unavailable in the country. Whether it’s US-exclusive streaming platforms like Hulu, or Netflix shows not available in the UK. Simply select a server from the long list of options at your disposal, and all content from that area will become available.
This also works the other way around, as the BBC’s own iPlayer service is watched by over 60 million people outside the country. Good to keep in mind for when you’re on holiday abroad when things get back to normal.
Of course, Netflix and co are quite aware that people are using VPNs to circumvent geo-blocks. As such, you won’t have much luck using free VPNs, as these providers can’t afford to keep up with how fast their servers are blocked by streaming platforms.
Not to mention the fact that free VPNs are a privacy nightmare most of the time. Seven such VPNs recently leaked the data of 20 million of their users, going against their policies of not logging user activity. We recommend using one of the trusted providers linked in the beginning.
How Else Can VPNs Help?
Once traveling becomes safe again, we bet the flood gates will open. You’ve probably been putting off that holiday abroad forever and your plans have been ruined by the pandemic as well. Well, you might as well prepare in advance and get a good deal while you’re at it. How? By using a UK VPN to get cheaper flight tickets, of course.
You might not be aware of this, but airline companies price their tickets differently based on region. Some countries get vastly better deals for the same tickets. All you need to do is switch your location with a VPN and you can shave quite a few pounds off the full price.
Keep in mind that this will take a bit of trial and error. Try connecting to servers in a few different countries with less powerful economies and see which works. Here are some other tips that will help:
- Clear your browser cookies or use a different, freshly installed browser.
- Set your system time to the correct region (the one you’re connecting to with the VPN).
- Use a different network than the one you use at home.
You may also find success in purchasing digital goods with this method. Since holidays won’t be in the plans for quite some time, this is more of an immediate benefit. And with VPN providers nowadays offering generous 30-day money-back guarantees, you can easily test it out at no risk.