What is a VPN Kill Switch?
A way to prevent your connection from accidental exposure
* Kill switch on Windows & Macs
VPN Kill Switch
If you are someone that often uses a VPN account for secure Internet browsing, you have probably experienced a dropped connection. This is when your VPN disconnects without warning. If you are not alerted that your VPN is no longer connected, your regular internet connection could leave you exposed. Even a few minutes is long enough for a hacker to do serious damage.
The solution to this problem could be a VPN feature known as a kill switch. We’ve put together some information that you should know about a VPN kill switch. This is one of many benefits of a VPN.
Dropped VPN Connections
If you ask some VPN users what features they generally demand from a provider, reliability of a VPN connection is not usually near the top of the list. Most VPN users want speed and a large number of server choices. They take reliability for granted.
The truth is, most paid VPN providers are very reliable. At VPNAccounts.com we rarely receive reports of a connection being dropped. With that being said, no VPN is perfect. There are many things that can cause the temporary loss of a VPN connection, and they don’t always have to be on the provider’s side of things.
Here is what happens when your VPN connection is dropped without warning. Your connection then goes back solely to the one provided by your ISP. That means that your own IP address is now being used, and there is no longer an encrypted VPN tunnel between your machine and the ISP. Your browsing preferences, private data, and location are all now potentially exposed.
It should be stated once again that the great number of paid VPN providers do a good job with reliable Internet connections. The so-called “free” VPN services are the ones that are more likely to disappoint users with a dropped connection.
VPN Kill Switch FAQ
Some frequent Kill Switch questions & answers
There are three primary reasons that a VPN could disconnect without warning. As we mentioned above, these are usually related to the user’s end.
Your firewall and router settings may be causing your VPN connection to drop. Some antivirus programs could cause the issue to occur. The best way to test this is briefly turning off your firewall. If the VPN does not drop with the firewall disabled, you should be able to add your VPN as an exception.
There are times when a VPN protocol is the culprit. Some VPN services state that you should always be running the TCP protocol. With some providers the default may be the UDP protocol. Try switching to TCP and see if this resolves the issue.
Finally, a poor signal or excess network traffic could be causing the problem. Always remember that it is the strength of your ISP and the connection it provides which determines your signal strength, not the VPN. You may have to adjust your access times to less-busy periods. Of course, you are more likely to encounter this problem when you are using your VPN in conjunction with public WiFi.
The way that a kill switch works is pretty much the same as a kill switch works on a motorized device. If your VPN connection is dropped, the VPN kill switch comes into play. It activates and disconnects you from the Internet. This prevents you from browsing unprotected when the VPN drops.
You usually have to go into the VPN app’s settings to activate the kill switch feature. Many VPN providers are beginning to integrate this feature.
At the present time our VPN Kill Switch is only available on the Windows and Mac operating systems and you must use our VPN client.