VPN and Encryption

vpn encryptionYou’re probably already familiar with what a VPN, or Virtual Private Network, is. You probably even know that a VPN uses something known as encryption to increase your security. That is about as far as most people ever get in their knowledge of the encryption used in a VPN because the subject can quickly become technical, and the average VPN user has no interest in it. Most people look at their VPN like a light switch. They just want it to come on when they flip the switch.

In this article we’re going to demystify the technology behind VPN encryption, and we’ll even offer a little lesson in Internet history along the way.

The beginning of encryption gave birth to the Internet

Here’s a question to test your knowledge of Internet history: who invented the Internet? If you answered Al Gore, shame on you.

The humble beginnings of the Internet, believe it or not, can be traced back to World War II and a place called Bletchley Park. It was here that Alan Turing and a group of skilled mathematicians and scientists were tasked with deciphering codes intercepted from the German army during WWII. The Germans were using a fairly sophisticated piece of equipment called the Enigma that was able to encrypt messages sent to German leaders in the field. The process was slow, but by the time the war neared a close, Turing and his associates were able to break the codes before they reached their final destination.

Why is this important? Two reasons. First, after the war Turing and the other men involved in the project became the foremost scientists in the field of computers. It was their work which eventually led to the creation of the Internet as we know it today. Second, they were among the first to understand the elaborate process of encryption, and laid the groundwork for it to be perfected as we use it today in a VPN.

Encryption, plainly speaking, is the process of creating elaborate ciphers to encode and decode data. As it relates to a VPN, encryption serves to encode the data passed between computers on a network.

How A VPN uses encryption

A VPN tunnel basically creates a tunnel between your machine and a network access point, and guards that tunnel with encryption. The VPN stands between you and the access point, like a guard. It encrypts the data traveling the network, and also changes your IP address to that of its own. Encryption is the sword in the hands of the VPN. As far as the access point is concerned, it is communicating with the VPN. The VPN then communicates securely with your machine.

A protocol has to be used to maintain encryption, and in most cases in a remote-access VPN the protocol used is known as PPP, or Point-to-Point Protocol. To be more specific, PPP is actually encapsulated in one of the three following protocols:

  • L2F, known as Layer-to-Forwarding
  • PPTP, Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol and the most common variety
  • L2TP, Layer 2 Tunneling Protocol which makes basically combines the features of the first two

This is a lot of technical mumbo jumbo, and the fact is you don’t need to understand how any of it works to use a VPN. Remember the light switch? All you need to do is connect to your VPN and rest assured that your data is being encrypted through one of these protocols.

Why is encryption important?

Whenever you browse the Internet in an unsecured environment, you leave behind a significant digital footprint which can be used to the advantage of data thieves and hackers. From the information retained by your browsers to the emails you send to the sites you visit—all of these are vulnerable to prying eyes without encryption.

When your data is encrypted by a VPN, the result is a string of indecipherable gibberish. Encryption has come a long way since the days of Alan Turing, and the ciphers created today and complex and virtually impossible to break. Another advantage of a VPN is that as encryption gets more advanced so does the VPN. VPNaccounts uses state-of-the-art industry standard encryption to protect your online privacy.

Without encryption there wouldn’t be much point in using a VPN. Encryption and masking your computer’s IP address is what gives a VPN its teeth, so to speak.

Now you have a basic understanding of what encryption is and how it functions to keep you safe while you are browsing the Web. The use of a personal VPN has increased dramatically since 2011 and the numbers of VPN users is expected to reach record numbers by the end of 2013. This makes it all the more important that you know what kind of encryption your VPN provider offers so that you can make an informed choice. Come get yout VPN Account today.

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How and Why Governments Control Information

Controlling the flow of information has become a priority for many governments around the world in the age of digital communication. Just look at the recent events in Egypt which serve as an example of how digital information is parsed out in a crisis. It is important to understand how governments seek to control information, why they do it, and how you can avoid being caught in the crossfire by using your own VPN.

Isn’t the Internet unregulated?

Society has a tendency to think of the Internet as the last outpost of expressive freedom, but is it really as unregulated as one might think? Perhaps in the early days of the Web this was so, but in today’s world websites are routinely censored and blocked for a variety of reasons.

Would you like to visit a dating website while online in Saudi Arabia? How about using Skype in Oman? Or maybe you just want to watch a movie with your Netflix while vacationing in the Grand Caymans. In all of these scenarios you are out of luck unless you have your own VPN account.

Granted, all of the situations we mentioned aren’t due to some nefarious plan by a country to block information. Some services, like Netflix and Hulu, just aren’t available outside of the US. The point is that anyone who has traveled to various parts of the globe knows they cannot take digital services for granted.

How do governments control information?

Censorship and regulation of the Internet can be accomplished in a variety of ways. One of the first methods is through proxy servers / firewalls.

Some regions control information by monopolizing the ISP’s within a country. Many countries in the Arab Peninsula have ISP’s which are state-owned. These Internet Service Providers can use software to restrict website access, and they do. They block access to certain websites that they deem unacceptable in one manner or another. Many appear to be blocked for no apparent reason.

By using a VPN,  your IP address reveals that you are accessing the Internet from a location such as the US, accessing Netflix or Skype won’t be a problem. Your IP is basically telling the website that you’re in a non-restricted area. At the same time software used on proxy servers to block sites and ports will be unable to monitor encrypted VPN traffic and hence remains unblocked/unfiltered.

Proxy servers is used by many countries to block access to sites. The UK want to ban adult sites, and probably gambling sites too if they succeed in blocking sex sites.

Why do governments control information?

There can be a variety of reasons for Internet censorship, but most have to do with the politics or culture of a specific nation.

Arab countries are very intolerant of pornography, homosexuality, and anything which violates the principles espoused by their faith. In the US or UK, these types of websites don’t encounter nearly as much resistance. Arab nations take a proactive stance by simply eliminating the offensive material from view.

Those who live in democratic countries are also used to the freedom of being able to engage in political discussion and question the policies of their government. In other countries, like China, this is not permitted. Many news sites and blogs have fallen victim to the Great Firewall of China.

Finally, governments willingly cooperate with some digital media services to prevent piracy and unauthorized viewing of restricted content.

So, what’s the big deal about blocked websites?

The big deal is that some people who want to view restricted content while they are traveling can’t, even though their home country allows access. If you pay for a service, shouldn’t you be able to access that service whenever and wherever you choose?

You might think that the only people who want to access restricted websites are criminals or pedophiles. Wrong answer. What about the expatriate who is working on an oil rig in the Persian Gulf and wants to be able to talk to their family via Skype? What about members of the military serving abroad? Sure, they may be able to access unrestricted Internet while they are on base, but what if they live off-post in Germany and have to use a German ISP at home?  Many of their services will be restricted.

Even at home, Internet users just might want the added comfort of the encryption a VPN offers. The bottom line is that censorship of the Internet is viewed by some as an attack on personal freedom.

What if I do not use a VPN account?

If you do not use a VPN, it basically works this way. Every computer that accesses the Internet possesses a numerical identifier that is unique, like a fingerprint (e.g. 142.30.0.212). This is called an IP address. Whenever your computer asks a server to distribute content, its IP address is revealed. The server then knows where to send the digital content. ISP’s are given blocks of IP addresses to provide to their customers, and these addresses, in many cases, can be very accurate in determining the physical location of your computer. Enormous databases have been complied which map the IP addresses of different countries. If you do not use a VPN your location is known but with a VPN you are anonymous and traffic sent and received is encrypted.

Fight back with a VPN

You don’t have to settle for a censored Internet. You don’t have to allow a government to decide what you should look at online. You don’t have to sacrifice your local news when traveling. All of these things can be circumvented with a VPN.

If you haven’t jumped on the VPN bandwagon yet, you will. The past year alone has seen a rapid rise in the use of private VPN’s as web surfers become more aware of security and protecting their private data. When the cost is so affordable (we charge about 0.27 cents a day for a year of private VPN service), why wouldn’t you take that extra step to protect your information and ensure unrestricted access to your services? It just makes good techno-sense. Don’t get swept up in government efforts to restrict digital media, buy a vpn from VPN-accounts.com

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VPN to unblock Facebook, Twitter & Youtube

facebook youtube twitterFacebook, Twitter, and YouTube are three of the most-visited websites in the world, but did you know that in some areas of the world these services continue to be censored or blocked entirely? That can be bad news if you happen to be traveling or working in an area where these sites are restricted. Using a VPN can help you avoid the censorship of Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube in many cases.

Which Countries Block Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube?

Let’s address these individually. We’ll start with Facebook. Facebook has managed to overcome much of the censorship it faced in its early days. As of March 2013, there are four countries which block Facebook entirely: China, North Korea, Cuba, and Iran. Despite the block, there are people within these countries that still manage to use Facebook. It is important to remember, however, that a block will prevent you from creating an account in many cases. A VPN is most useful for individuals who already have a Facebook account and want to continue using it in a restricted area.

Twitter has been censored at various times in China, India, France, Egypt, Iran, and South Korea. The United Kingdom even threatened to shut it down during the 2011 England Riots! In the case of Twitter, it is far more likely to find examples of selective censorship as opposed to outright blocking. Governments can affect the removal of objectionable tweets. Once again, even though Twitter is blocked in China, many people there continue to use the service. A VPN can restore your access to Twitter in most cases.

YouTube falls under many of the same sanctions aimed at Twitter. It is far more likely to find individual videos removed. However, as of late 2012, the following countries are among those which have a national ban in place against YouTube: China, Iran, Pakistan, and Turkmenistan. VPN’s have been successfully proven to restore YouTube access in these areas.

We want to be clear once again: a VPN works when you have an existing Facebook, YouTube, or Twitter account registered from a location that is not blocked. For example, you live in the US and are planning on visiting China. If you attempt to access Facebook when you arrive from a Chinese ISP your access will be blocked. A private, paid VPN is the only option for those who happen to be in a country hit by serious web filtering.

A Quick Word on Free Vs. Paid VPN

Using a free VPN service might sound nice, but here’s a quick reality check. Free VPN’s are easily blocked in many cases by whoever is responsible for enforcing web filtering. In addition, just try getting customer service from a free VPN. If you want to maintain access to Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter in restrictive countries, the only dependable fix is your own paid VPN account.

Why do countries block social sharing sites?

Websites like Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter can be broadly classed under the definition of social sharing sites. Users can post updates and share media across the various platforms. That doesn’t seem like it would be such a big deal, but to countries that actively censor the Internet these sites pose a significant problem.

To begin with, social networks are difficult to monitor. Think for a moment about the millions of people who use Facebook alone. Trying to manually monitor every post for offensive or prohibited content is economically and practically impossible. There are only two viable options for countries like China in this case: block the site entirely or use sophisticated software to essentially spy on users. China has chosen the former in most cases, although they do still monitor many sites.

Secondly, social networks are virtually impossible to control. When a Tweet is sent there are vast numbers of people who can see it before it gets deleted. It’s the same with Facebook. The easiest and most effective means of controlling which information gets out is to simply block the troublesome sites.

Very recently, communications websites like Skype and Viber are also being targeted for the same reason. They make it too easy for users to contact other people in non-restricted areas.

A small caveat is in order here. Our website does not exist to provide political commentary on various countries that promote Internet censorship. Some countries may have valid reasons for doing so, which include matters of national security. What we do provide is an option for those people who may find themselves in a country which censors Web activity. There is no reason you shouldn’t be able to keep accessing the websites that are available in your own country. This is the primary reason that people choose to use a VPN legitimately. We do not endorse or support using your VPN account for activities that would be considered objectionable in ANY part of the world, such as using torrents to download copyrighted material.

True Anonymity and Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube

Many people who purchase a VPN are very conscious of maintaining their online privacy. They like the encryption offered by a VPN and the ability to be anonymous online. Something you need to remember is that whenever you login to a website like Facebook, Twitter, or YouTube, your anonymity is sacrificed.

Social networks require account registrations, and most people use their regular email to sign up. Whenever you login, your activities within the platform are easily tracked and monitored. In that sense, using a VPN won’t make you invisible.

A  VPN is your online passport

Try to think about your VPN as an online passport. You can’t cross borders without a real passport, and you can’t cross online borders without a VPN. The checkpoints in place to prevent access to Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube from countries like China will stop you in your tracks. You wouldn’t dream of trying to travel overseas without your passport, and you shouldn’t dream of traveling overseas without a VPN account.

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A hotspot VPN on Public Networks

public hotspot VPNHow often do you use a public WiFi network to access the Internet? Did you know that there are multiple ways a public network can put you at risk? Thankfully, there are many ways a hotspot VPN can help you evade the security risks associated with a public hotspot network.

What is a public network?

A public network is any network which may be accessed with few, if any, security restrictions. You will most often find these unsecured public networks in places like hotels, coffee shops, or a library. They have become increasingly popular as many businesses look to offer Internet access to their customers.

The concept of a public network is great, but accessing these networks without a hotspot VPN is asking for trouble. Public networks are not a public VPN. In other words, most of them do not use any type of encryption to secure the data that is being transferred across their connections.

How is a public network vulnerable?

The most glaring omission of a public WiFi network is a lack of encryption, and this is one of the greatest benefits of using a hotspot VPN when using these networks. Encryption is a powerful tool which basically uses a complicated cypher to mask or hide your data. When someone tries to view that encrypted data all they can see is basically coded gibberish.

Because most public networks are not encrypted, hackers and data thieves love to cruise these networks looking for exposed private information. Let’s say you decide to check your bank balance or buy something with a credit card while staying in a hotel. If that hotel is using an unencrypted WiFi network which is share by all guests at the hotel (very likely), you have likely exposed your financial information to anyone on the network who knows how to sniff it out.

Sometimes, people who aren’t even supposed to be accessing a network can do so simply by getting in range of the network’s signal. This means that someone can drive into the coffee shop parking lot, fire up a laptop, and connect to the public network without leaving their car. Public places have no real way to determine who is using their network and who is not.

What is a public VPN?

Technically, a public VPN simply means using a VPN when browsing on a public network. Our VPN can be used whenever you are forced to use a public connection. You may also hear the term “hotspot VPN” and this simply means using your VPN with a public hotspot.

Even though you might be using an unencrypted public WiFi to access the Internet, once you configure your VPN account with the client that is already installed on your computer or device, your browsing then benefits from the encryption offered by your VPN.

Can I be tracked on a public network?

Any time that you use a public network without using a VPN to secure your data, you are leaving behind a trail of your browsing activities which can be monitored and even traced. Some countries in the Arab region have even begun to require public network providers like Internet Cafes to collect personal information before someone is allowed to use the network. With the information you leave behind on a public network, your Internet activity can possibly be traced by any interested party.

Why would someone want to track your online activities? There could be several reasons. Spouses who suspect their mate of cheating, data miners, and repressive governments are all potential creepers when it comes to your Internet access.

How do I use a public VPN?

Using your VPN to secure your browsing on a public network is a very simple matter which does not require you to download any software. All modern computers and Internet-ready devices have a VPN client pre-installed. Before you can use that client to secure your public network access, however, you need a VPN account like the one we offer.

Once you purchase your VPN service, we’ll provide simple instructions on setting it up to work with your VPN client. You will never again have to worry about who is looking at your information while you are using public networks. The great thing about a VPN is that it works wherever you happen to be, so it doesn’t matter if you are using public hotspots in your own country or using them when you are traveling or working overseas. In fact, you will soon discover if you are a traveler that many of your services don’t work outside of your home country. If you want to access them a VPN is your best bet

Remember, public WiFi is great and you should take advantage of it, but this doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice personal security in the process.

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Egypt is a Strong Argument for a VPN Account

The recent political turmoil in Egypt has been a hot topic in recent days as tensions escalated during the ouster of President Mohamed Morsi. As you consider the implications of events like these around the world, you should realize that the events in Egypt are a strong argument for using a VPN.

Internet freedom is the first to go

When Hosni Mubarak’s reign came to an end in 2011 during a political uprising, Egypt made international headlines by basically shutting down the Internet within the country. No information could get in or out of Egypt. Sadly, these types of measures are taken by many governments in their attempts to control protests. While few countries have gone to the extremes that Egypt did, selective blocking and censorship are a common occurrence in China, Burma, and many Arab regions.

Internet censorship in Egypt can happen without advance warning. If you happen to be working or traveling in the country, being unprepared for this type of restriction can hamper your ability to get reliable news or contact family members in your home country. It can be a scary thought to find oneself isolated in a hostile environment.

Imagine not being able to access vital information that pertains to your safety. This is exactly what happened to some American citizens recently in Egypt due to Internet restrictions that could have been bypassed with a VPN. Some American citizens may not have received the directive published by the US State Department ordering them to leave the country immediately because the directive was released via news outlets.

In times of political crisis, news outlets are often considered a threat. This was the case during the Egyptian uprising. Morsi’s administration sought to actively control what information could be accessed from within the country, primarily through geo-restriction, so that Morsi’s opponents in outlying areas had no way to know the uprising was proceeding.

Beating geo-restrictions in Egypt with a VPN

Those within Egypt who had a VPN were able to bypass the geo-restrictions leveled by the Morsi-led government. A VPN helped them to appear as though they were accessing restricted sites from outside the country.

Geo-restriction is accomplished via a user’s IP address. It is the most economical and simple way for Egypt to control the flow of information. There are other methods of censoring the Internet, but this type of restriction is encountered in many countries throughout the world.

In fact, there are some websites and services that are blocked as a matter of course in many nations, and some services can only be accessed by US or UK account holders. The effective solution for getting around a geo-restriction is to use a VPN that will change your IP address to reflect that you are accessing the Internet from your home country. In this way you can continue to access your local news programming and services such as Skype which allow you to remain in contact with your family at home.

What Egypt teaches us about a VPN

If there is a way to maintain unrestricted access to the Internet in Egypt, doesn’t it make sense to take advantage of it? There is no reason you should put your own personal safety at risk because you cannot access reliable news content or political blogs.

Egypt teaches us that using a VPN is becoming more important for the average citizen. There may have been a time when a VPN primarily benefitted local businessmen who wanted to remain in contact with their home office, or college students who wanted to preserve the security of their academic work, but the world today has changed. Anyone who accesses the Internet, for any reason, should take these lessons from the Egyptian uprising:

  • Internet censorship can happen quickly. It doesn’t take days or weeks for a country to restrict web content. Because many countries like Egypt either own the ISP’s or strictly observe them, sites can be blocked with a minimum of effort in a short period of time.
  • Internet censorship can compromise your safety. Preserving your access to services like Skype or Viber, and being able to monitor news that is not filtered by the state is vital in situations similar to what happened in Egypt.
  • Internet censorship can be avoided. Using a VPN is the most sensible way to avoid restrictions like the ones imposed by Egypt. Using a VPN is easy—very little effort is required to set one up—and a VPN is also economical. The VPN we offer is affordable to everyone.

Ask yourself…

Is your personal safety in an uprising worth the cost of a VPN account? Of course it is. When traveling or working in a country like Egypt, a VPN is not a luxury. It is a necessity so get one at VPN-accounts.com

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What can Edward Snowden Teach us about using a VPN?

Edward Snowden from NSAEdward Snowden has become a household name in many countries throughout the world due to his revelations about how the US monitors Internet activity. As Edward Snowden continues to seek asylum from multiple nations, his story is a valuable lesson for anyone thinking about protecting their Internet freedom with a VPN.

The reality of Internet surveillance

Most of us would readily concede that certain countries like China or Saudi Arabia monitor Internet activity. We hear about it all the time in the news. What shocked people the most about the revelations of Edward Snowden was that he was pointing a finger at the United States.

The United States is supposed to be the last outpost of personal freedom in the modern world. It is upheld as a bastion of free speech and expression. Snowden exposed this as a myth by revealing that the NSA regularly collects data from Google, Microsoft, Facebook, and Twitter in an effort to monitor Internet traffic and communication.

The reality is that no matter where you live or work your Internet communication is vulnerable to government agencies. We all can agree that this can be useful in matters of national security, but the worrisome part is that governments aren’t making many distinctions when it comes to looking at personal data. They see what they see. Should you really have to worry about everything you post or look at online?

What a VPN can and cannot do

One of the first things you should understand about using a VPN account to protect your Internet privacy is what it can and cannot do. Edward Snowden revealed that the NSA monitors many social sites like Facebook and Twitter. Unfortunately, a VPN won’t help you much here.

Whenever you use a personal social network account your data is stored on the network’s server. That means there are many ways to track you down besides your IP address. Facebook tracks the actual device you use. The key thing to understand here is that you may think your Facebook and Twitter usage is secure, but it is not.

Trying to hide criminal activity such as pirating copyrighted material or “torrenting” is something else most VPN’s will not condone. Remember, breaking the law is breaking the law. If it is illegal it doesn’t matter if you break it on or offline.

There are ways, however, that a VPN can help you in the United States. A VPN can hide your real IP address and give you a degree of anonymity when doing searches. Remember, Snowden revealed that the NSA monitors Google also. Some search terms may trigger observation, who knows, but why take the risk? The searches you perform on Google are your personal business, and many people just don’t want the government snooping around in the things they choose to view online.

This isn’t a moral issue. Right and wrong is not for us to decide, and if you are searching things online that you shouldn’t be searching then you are responsible for that.  But what if you are a gay man or woman who is searching on coming out of the closet or attempting to locate a gay and lesbian social network? Is it right that the NSA or any government should be able to monitor those searches and tie them to your IP address? Shouldn’t you have the right to decide what is revealed about your personal life? Edward Snowden taught us that everything about your life is fair game in cyberspace.

How law-abiding citizens use a VPN

Another thing we can learn from Edward Snowden is that Internet monitoring doesn’t just get done on criminals. According to Snowden, the NSA monitors law-abiding citizens as well. This brings up an interesting question: how do law-abiding citizens use a VPN? Why do they use one?

Protecting personal data from information thieves is one major reason for using a VPN. Here’s the deal: there are only two types of networks you can really trust when it comes to keeping your data safe. The first is the network you use at home, provided you use the proper safeguards and restrict usage to your household members. The other is a VPN.

Whenever you connect to a public network like the one at your favorite coffee shop, the one provided by the hotel you are staying at, or the one at the library, your data is potentially at risk. Anyone on that network might be able to access your personal information. Would you walk up to a complete stranger and ask them to hold your wallet while you went to the bathroom? Probably not, but this is basically what you are doing when you use an unsecured public network.

A VPN gives law-abiding citizens the power to protect their personal data. In fact, using a VPN is the responsible thing to do. It is just as responsible as locking up your valuables in a safe.

Your right to use a VPN

What is really at issue in the case of Edward Snowden is your personal right to retain a level of anonymity online, a cyberghost. Many people would argue that the intrusion of governments upon the Internet activities of citizens treads upon an individual’s basic liberties, especially in the United States.

Snowden is a powerful reminder that, even in a country where the very Constitution guarantees personal freedom, it is still the responsibility of each individual to exercise their freedom. You have to make the choice to exercise your right to keep your data protected, and a VPN allows you to do that. If you do nothing, then you are potentially at risk and there is no one else to blame when your rights are violated.

The real lesson we can learn from Edward Snowden is that we take our Internet freedom for granted. We assume that governments will always play fair, and he has proven that they do not. Purchasing a VPN account is one way to assume the responsibility for your online safety and take back your Internet freedom.

You can check out Edwards twitter profile here

3 Steps to use VPN

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Sign upBuy an affordable VPN account.

02

ConnectConfigure the VPN on your device.

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Enjoy VPNEnjoy the benefits of a VPN today.

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Connect & Enjoy: Internet Freedom, Privacy & security. Purchase your VPN today!

Avoiding News Filtering With A VPN Account

A VPN can be useful in unblocking political and news websites that are restricted in some countries.

Many governments, especially those in Asia, take measures to filter news outlets and control the information which can be accessed via the Internet. This is done in an effort to prevent criticism of the ruling families or to otherwise quell disturbances. It is a sobering thought to consider that the news you are getting might be sterilized by government censorship.

Why do countries filter news?

The dissemination of political opinion is the primary reason certain countries choose to filter news content online. China, Saudi Arabia, and many nations in the Arab region do not tolerate news reports which reflect unfavorably on their political status.

Bloggers in particular are a favorite target of these countries. For example, China has blocked numerous news and political blogs and has even jailed journalists and bloggers for posting what they consider to be harmful content. The end result is that those in the country see what they government wants them to see. This can be dangerous, especially for expatriates who need to know what is happening in their own country.

The danger of news filtering

Imagine that you are a United States resident living and working in Egypt. The recent turmoil in this African nation prompted the US Government to issue a directive for all US citizens to leave Egypt and return home. This is the kind of news you need to know when visiting foreign soil, but as soon as the trouble began the Egyptian government began to selectively monitor and control which information gets through. If you have no way of getting unrestricted news then you might not receive these important warnings.

Another example is the Iraqi conflict during the 1990’s. You might recall that news outlets within Iraq were reporting that the Iraqi army was winning the battle, but the truth reported by news agencies outside of Iraq is that Saddam Hussein’s forces were losing badly. As you can see, access to accurate news can be a matter of personal safety.

Consider also that some nations block Skype, Viber, and other communications services which allow foreign visitors to remain in contact with their families. This means that your family cannot even pass along the warnings you may not have heard or read about.

Many regions of the world are in a constant state of political turmoil. When Chinese students protested the Chinese government in Tiananmen Square in 1989, a large portion of the country did not even know the uprising was occurring due to news filtering by the state. While as many as 1000 students were being killed in Tiananmen Square, much of China was unaware until the situation had been controlled by the government. Some foreign reporters managed to smuggle out footage of the protests, but this lack of knowledge could have quickly become a security risk for foreigners unsympathetic to the Communist regime.

If you are travelling or working in a foreign country such as China, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, North Korea, or any other nation where political news is filtered, there is a real danger that you may not learn of dangerous political crises until it is too late.

Getting unfiltered news with a VPN

You might think you can just hop down to the local Internet Café and keep up with what is going on around you, but the fact is that public networks in many countries are subjected to heavy filtering and censorship. The only way to avoid this is through the use of a VPN account like the one we offer. A VPN account can restore your uncensored access to the Internet.

Internet censorship and news filtering is primarily accomplished via blocking based on IP address. In other words, when your IP address identifies that you are within a certain location the blocks applicable to that location go into effect. It is possible, through the use of a VPN, to change your IP address to reflect that you accessing the Internet from a server within your own country where the services are not blocked.

For example, if you use Skype and wish to communicate with your family this way, a VPN is very successful in unblocking this service in countries that restrict it such as Oman & Belize. Even when you cannot get accurate news online, your family at home can keep you informed if you maintain a way to contact them. To use the example we gave before, unrestricted access to Skype would have allowed your family to tell you that the US directed all of its citizens to leave Egypt immediately prior to the latest turmoil.

A VPN will also allow you to retain uncensored access to your favorite news blogs, and even your local television programming while you are travelling abroad.

3 Steps to use VPN

01

Sign upBuy an affordable VPN account.

02

ConnectConfigure the VPN on your device.

03

Enjoy VPNEnjoy the benefits of a VPN today.

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China Internet & how to Bypass Internet Restrictions in China with a VPN

China restrictions on webAs the second largest nation in the world, the People’s Republic of China boasts a strong Internet presence. Other Asian nations such as Taiwan, Sri Lanka, and Nepal are similarly well-connected. The strict regulatory practice of the Chinese government dictates a heavy level of website filtering in China and other Asian nations. Violating Internet restrictions in China can carry a severe penalty, and many dissidents have been jailed for these offenses.

History of China/Asia

The People’s Republic of China occupies the greater part of East Asia and has the world’s largest population at 1.35 billion. The capital is Beijing and China’s Communist government rules over several smaller provinces including Taiwan.

China has been a world power for almost as long as the modern world has existed. The sheer land mass of the country as well as its powerful military make it a major player in the political affairs of the day. Much of China’s economy is driven by exports and it is the second-largest in the world today.

Officially founded in 1949, China has become the face of modern-day Communism. As such, the country is subjected to a significant amount of government control.

Internet in China/Asia

China has the largest base of Internet users in the world. They also have one of the oldest Internet infrastructures. The Internet made its appearance in China in 1987 with the transmission of an email that said, “Across the Great Wall, we can reach every corner of the world.” China was aware from the very beginning of the tremendous possibility of the Internet.

In 2012 China had over 500 million Internet users. They project over 700 million users by the end of 2013. Other Asian nations such as Sri Lanka and Nepal and the Philippines have not reached anywhere near the level of penetration achieved in China, but many Asian countries remain impoverished.

The majority of Internet users in China have broadband service. The cost of the service is very affordable for even lower income families. Over 3 million websites are hosted and developed in China, and this works to increase China’s online presence.

Internet Filtering in China/Asia

All online access routes in China are owned by the Chinese government. This means that businesses and individuals essentially rent bandwidth from the state. As you can imagine, this type of ownership allows the Chinese government to effectively control what is viewed online. There is a similar approach to Internet service in other Asian nations such as North Korea.

China’s Internet repression is considered to be the worst in the world. A recent report by Amnesty International reveals that China has jailed a record number of journalists for violating the state’s stance on what can be posted online.  China even maintains an Internet Police Force with more than 30,000 officers on active duty.

Other Asian nations, such as North Korea, have followed China’s example by exercising strict Internet restrictions. At the present time, these are a few of the types of websites which are blocked throughout Asia:

  • Political Blogs. Any website, blog, or news outlet which criticizes the Chinese government will likely be blocked. If the offensive posts originated from within the country, those who posted them are likely to be arrested.
  • Pornographic websites. They certainly don’t restrict them the way Arab countries do, but China has been known to block pornography.
  • Search terms. Some search terms are blocked in Google results and the results of other search engines like Bing and Yahoo. This speaks of how seriously the government monitors Internet activity.

It is also interesting to note that China blocked the social networking sites Facebook and Twitter in 2009 because of the state’s inability to properly control or monitor these services. You can read more about the great firewall of china here

Unblocking websites in China/Asia

If you want to experience true Internet freedom in China and the great majority of Asia, your most reliable option is to use a VPN account like the one offered on our site VPN-accounts.com. Without this type of service, you will encounter severe limitations and restrictions on the Asian continent.

A VPN is very effective in allowing Internet users to access Facebook, Twitter, and a host of other services like Netflix, Hulu, and BBC iPlayer which are not available in China and throughout Asia. A VPN gives you an added level of security in addition to making these websites available, and that added security could save you a lot of trouble in the long run given the restrictions in China.

For the latest news about China check the guardian news feed!

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Kuwait Internet & how to Bypass Internet Restrictions in Kuwait with a VPN

Kuwait Kuwait is one of the younger provinces in the Arab region, but it boasts one of the deepest Internet penetration levels. As of 2011, about 74% of the population in Kuwait is connected to the Internet. The presence of multiple ISP’s also makes Kuwait unique. The significant presence of foreign workers, many of them active-duty military, demands that Internet access in Kuwait is readily available and state-of-the-art. Even so, Kuwait engages in the same filtering and monitoring practices of its Arab neighbors.

History of Kuwait

Kuwait sits near the top of the Persian Gulf, bordering Saudi Arabia and Iraq. It is perhaps most notable for being the catalyst which began Operation Desert Storm in 1990 which was a response to an invasion by Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein.

Kuwait began its existence as a sheikdom of the British Empire and did not gain its independence until 1961. At that time, the country’s oil industry began to grow and Kuwait reaped the reward of large oil reserves. The invasion by Saddam Hussein destroyed more than 700 of the country’s oil wells, and the process of rebuilding is still ongoing. This necessitates the presence of many foreigners in Kuwait who are contracted to work on oil production.

Kuwait is technically a constitutional monarchy with a full parliament. It is typically regarded as the most liberal country in the Arab region.

Internet in Kuwait

Kuwait has five ISP’s which are licensed and regulated by the Kuwaiti government. These are Fasttelco, Gulfnet, KEMS, Mada, and Qualitynet. The presence of multiple ISP’s drives competition for Internet subscribers and ensures a healthy market.

Most of the ISP’s in Kuwait enforce stringent data limits on their Internet Service. A standard package will provide about 2GB of transfer each month. This limitation has been heavily criticized by residents of the country.

Internet Filtering in Kuwait

Kuwait is far more liberal when it comes to filtering websites than other countries in the region, but the practice does occur. However, the fact that most foreign journalists practice self-censoring when it comes to matters involving the Royal Family helps to keep moderation of political and news sites to a minimum.

The owners of Internet Café’s in Kuwait are required to maintain records including the names and addresses of all who access the Internet in their Café. In addition, bloggers are watched extensively and censored whenever their posted content is deemed inappropriate.

At the present time, these are a few of the types of websites which are blocked in Kuwait:

  • Gay, Lesbian, and pornographic websites. These kinds of sites are considered a violation of the moral values associated with Islam. These types of websites account for most of the blocking done in Kuwait.
  • Dating sites such as Match.com. A strong sense of family values is associated with Islam, and therefore many of these websites are deemed objectionable.
  • Political blogs. Bloggers are prohibited from a blanket condemnation of the government in Kuwait. Blogs are heavily monitored and watched for violations. If the blog in question happens to be hosted in Kuwait, legal actions can be taken against the blog owner.

Unblocking websites in Kuwait

While some may think using an Internet Café in Kuwait is a safe option for viewing restricted websites, this can be risky. As we mentioned, Café owners must maintain a record of visitors and supply that record to the government on demand. The only genuine way to unblock restricted websites in Kuwait is by using a VPN account like the one offered here.

A VPN is very effective in allowing Internet users to access communications apps and a host of other services like Netflix, Hulu, and BBC iPlayer which are not available in Kuwait. A VPN gives you an added level of security in addition to making these websites available, and that added security is something you will not find in an Internet Café.

you can read more about Kuwait here

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Bahrain Internet & how to Bypass Internet Restrictions in Bahrain with a VPN

Bahrain boasts one of the most long-standing ISP’s in the Arab Region, having begun making the Internet available in 1995. This should come as no surprise given the fact that Bahrain supports strategic military bases for many countries including the United States and the United Kingdom. About 55% of Bahrain’s population uses the Internet regularly, and a fair amount of these individuals are either military workers, expatriates, or other contractors working on projects in the private sector.

History of Bahrain

Bahrain is an archipelago which sits near the Western shores of the Persian Gulf. The largest island in the chain is Bahrain Island, which is only about 34 miles long and 11 miles wide. Saudi Arabia and Qatar are both connected to Bahrain via large causeways and Iran is in close proximity. The centrality of Bahrain makes it a preferred staging area for military operations in the Arab region.

Even though Bahrain is a constitutional monarchy ruled by King Shaikh Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, it is one of the most politically liberalized countries in the region. The country functions politically in a manner which resembles government in the West. The King appoints a Prime Minister and his cabinet, and there is a parliament which is responsible for making and enforcing constitutional law. In 2004, Bahrain negotiated a free-trade agreement with the United States, thereby increasing its economic standing among the Arab nations.

Internet in Bahrain

Bahrain is a regional leader when it comes to providing telecommunications and Internet service. An abundance of fixed telephone lines and state-of-the-art technology gives the Internet in Bahrain a level of sophistication which is seldom seen in the area.

It is interesting to note that an increasing number of websites are hosted in Bahrain, almost 600 at last count, many of which are blogs. There are also multiple ISP’s to choose from. Bahrain does not monopolize the telecommunications industry the way Saudi Arabia or other Arab nations do. At last count, ten ISP’s were licensed to provide Internet service in Bahrain.

Internet Filtering in Bahrain

Despite the ease of Internet access offered in Bahrain and the presence of multiple ISP’s, the Internet is still heavily monitored by the state. Web content deemed offensive is regularly blocked by the Bahrain Ministry of Information and hence the reason many would like to be a Cyber Ghost using a vpn.

Prior to 2011, the year of an uprising in Bahrain, Internet filtering was moderately applied. Since that time a new method of commercial filtering has been used by the Kingdom and it is very effective at allowing the state to control the content residents of Bahrain can access.

More than 13 people have been arrested in Bahrain for content posted on online blogs. One of these individuals, Zakariya Rashid Hassan al-Ashiri, died in prison after being tortured for posting content that the state claimed advocated the overthrow of Bahrain’s regime.

At the present time, these are a few of the types of websites which are blocked in Qatar:

  • Gay, Lesbian, and pornographic websites. These kinds of sites are considered a violation of the moral values associated with Islam.
  • Dating sites such as Match.com A strong sense of family values is associated with Islam, and therefore many of these websites are deemed objectionable.
  • Political Blogs. Blogs and news websites that criticize the regime are not tolerated and are highly filtered.
  • NOTE! While Skype and Viber are still available in Bahrain at this time, there are growing indications that these apps will fall victim to a governmental block in the immediate future.

 

Unblocking websites in Bahrain

There was a time when Bahrain even went so far as to block services which allowed Internet users to surf anonymously. Thankfully, it is still possible to  unblock restricted web content in Bahrain through a VPN account like the one offered on our website.

A VPN software is very effective in allowing Internet users to access a host of services like Netflix, Hulu, and BBC iPlayer which are not available in Bahrain. A VPN gives you an added level of security in addition to making these websites available, something that is very important in Bahrain especially for those who also create their own web content.

To read more about Bahrain check out the following site:  bahrain.com

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