What does “Bypassing Web Filter” Mean?

Websites Filter

site blockedBypassing Web Filter” sounds like something you would hear on Star Trek. You’ll see this term used frequently on a lot of websites which promote and sell VPN’s for personal use. Exactly what does this term mean, and why is it important to you if you are thinking about VPN service?

What are Web filters?

As they relate to the discussion of VPN technology, Web filters are methods of restricting access to specific Internet content. While the term web filter precisely refers to content-control software, it has come to be synonymous with geo-restriction which is something else altogether.

An actual web filter is known under a variety of names: content filtering software, secure web gateways, and censorware are just a few. One of the primary applications of these software platforms is  allowing businesses to control the availability of Internet sites on their network. Businesses know that employees are prone to engage in personal browsing on their work computers. They put these web filters in place to insure employees cannot view objectionable content while working. You’re probably thinking they are mostly used to restrict access to porn (here), and they do that, but some businesses restrict access to Facebook and Twitter as well as other social media sites.

Geo-restriction, while not specifically a web filter, accomplishes the same restrictions on a much larger scale. Geo-restrictions can target residents of entire countries. When a nation in the Arab region wants to block Skype, it is a simple matter for Skype to be blocked by restricting access to an IP address based in the region. Companies like Netflix also use IP-based restriction to make sure it’s presentation of digital media does not violate the Digital Media Copyright Act.

How to bypass a web filter

You don’t need to be a Star Trek captain to to start bypassing a web filter. You just need a VPN.  VPN’s are effective in most situations involving both scenarios we discussed above. We’ll mention one caveat, however. If you are using your personal computer on a work network to browse websites on company time, you can still get in trouble even when you are using a VPN. Buy a vpn, and bypass censorship and restrictions.

Most people use their VPN service to avoid filters of the geographical type by changing their IP address. In this regard, bypassing a web filter is very easy to do. Your VPN will allow you to restore access to most blocked websites in many different locations. To buy a vpn and find out more click here.

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Use a German VPN to get a German IP Address.

German VPN

German VPN serviceThere are times when a German IP address can be very useful, and getting one is possible when using our German VPN. Our German server is one of the many server options we offer. Expats and travelers have found this particular option of great benefit throughout the European continent. Buy a German vpn, bypass censorship and restrictions.

The benefits of a German VPN

You probably already know that using a VPN will change your IP address, but why is it profitable to change it to one in Germany. There are several reasons, but we’ll begin with the obvious. In terms of Internet freedom, Germany is pretty comparable to the US and UK. This means that there are not a lot of restrictions imposed by the country on website access. You can use the VPN to unblock many websites that are restricted in certain parts of Asia and the Arab Region.

Citizens of Germany will find this VPN handy for accessing local television programming and other services that are exclusive to Germany. The country boasts a significant number of expats and students who often find themselves out of the country.

This being said, there is one distinct advantage of using German IP address that is not common to one in the US. Many online gambling sites, especially those that provide poker, are not restricted by Germany. Of course, one still needs a German address to register an account with a site like PokerStars and collect payouts, but having a German IP address makes it possible to log into these gaming platforms from anywhere you have an internet connection once your account is established.

Something else to consider is the number of foreign military personnel in Germany. Many of these service members have married German nationals, and when they return home with their spouse it will be very useful for these individuals to keep their access to German television programming and news outlets which are not available outside of the country.

The Internet inside the Internet

It may be helpful to think of a VPN as the Internet inside the Internet. Think about it like this. If you are a German citizen and travel the world, many other countries have a German embassy. Whenever you are on embassy property, you are basically in Germany. German laws and regulations apply. A German VPN is exactly like that. No matter where you happen to be, or what Internet connection you happen to be using, this server becomes an Internet embassy where the access is subject to the Internet laws in Germany.

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An IP Address … is a Digital Fingerprint

VPN IP Address

VPN IPIn researching VPN services you’ll notice a lot of talk about your IP address and how a VPN functions in a way that masks your own address with that of the VPN server. This prompts a few questions that we want to try and answer, ranging from the basic to the advanced. What is an IP address? How is it used to observe my Internet activity? How does a VPN help me to conceal it? Read on and we’ll make an effort to explain some things you need to know about IP addresses.

What is an IP address?

Let’s get the technical jargon out of the way first. An IP address is a numerical label assigned to each device that uses Internet Protocol for digital communication. It is the second aspect of a system of delivering digital information which includes name, access, and route.

A less technical way of explaining the function of an IP address is to compare it with postal delivery. In order for you to receive your mail at home, the post office needs to know three things: your name, your address, and the route it will take to deliver your mail. The Internet is not so different. It’s basically like a big postal hub that receives mail, sorts it, and sends it to the proper recipient. We call that mail data, and it is routed by your ISP to your home machine. Your IP address helps to make the delivery of your data possible.

Most IP addresses are a 32-bit binary number expressed in a human-readable notation like this: 168.21.226.1. That address is specific to your device, machine, server, etc.

Certainly, you can see how an IP address enables the basic functioning of the Internet. Unfortunately, it also creates a digital fingerprint that can identify the source of transmitted and received data. In short, your IP address is a unique identifier that can open up a window through which your Internet activity can be monitored.

Logging of IP addresses

Many websites log the IP addresses of visitors for a variety of reasons. You’ll often encounter a notification on a website or forum, often near the top of the page, that displays your IP address and location. Why is this done?

Some IP address logging is relatively harmless. The website may simply want to verify that you are who you say you are. Take Facebook as an example. If you try logging into Facebook or Twitter or even Gmail from an unrecognized device, say a friend’s computer or the computer at the local library, you may be prompted to enter a security code which is sent to your mobile phone or possibly an alternative email address. The reason for this is that the website has noted a difference in your IP address and wants to make sure that someone else isn’t trying to access your account. In this regard, the logging of an IP address is a good thing.

Unfortunately, that same type of logging will also prevent you from using certain web services in areas where access is restricted. Netflix is not available in many areas of the world. Neither is Skype. Even Twitter is blocked in some places. If your IP address reveals that you are in a geographical location which does not permit access to certain websites, you will find these services inaccessible.

IP addresses and a VPN

A VPN functions in numerous ways to enhance your browsing security. Perhaps the most important of these is that it has the ability to mask your IP address and make it appear that you are in a different location. This is especially useful for expats and travelers.

Your VPN server, just like your own personal device, has its own IP address. When you connect to the VPN, the big postal hub of the Internet registers that you are accessing the Internet from the location of the VPN server. It will deliver your data without a hitch and without revealing your actual IP address.

Did you recently come to the US from the UK on a visit or to attend school or work? The BBC iPlayer is something you probably use a lot in the UK, but you won’t be able to use it if your IP address reveals that you are out of the country. This is not a big deal if you have VPN service. Just connect to the UK VPN server and you appear to be at home. Your access is restored.

Changing your IP address can also be useful if you simply want to keep it from being associated with various websites. Perhaps you are researching a subject for a school paper that is somewhat controversial. Or maybe there are aspects of your personal life you would like to keep private. In this case, masking your IP address with a VPN is a wise idea that might save you some future trouble. Click here to order you VPN today!

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UK VPN Become Popular

UK VPN account

Recent proposals by the British government and an increased number of British expats are making a UK VPN a necessity. VPN usage is on the upswing in the UK, and for good reason. Those who use the Web at home and abroad are becoming more concerned about their lack of Internet freedom. Buy a UK vpn, bypass censorship and restrictions.

To begin, British expats in the United Arab Emirates alone number well over 100,000. The total number of British expats around the world is estimated to be somewhere around 5 million individuals, and the number is growing. These expats work in the US, China, Spain, Portugal, Singapore, and a host of other countries. Many use it to watch BBC iPlayer while travelling.

In some areas, like the US, British workers aren’t exposed to a lot of Internet censorship. In others, like China, it can be impossible for a UK resident to use many of the basic Web services they can use at home. In addition, VoIP services like Skype may be unavailable, and this affects an expat’s ability to communicate with friends and family at home in an economic way. These are some of the reasons why a UK VPN is a must for British expats.

Most of those who will be leaving the UK on business are wise enough to purchase their VPN service from VPN-accounts.com before they leave. It can be difficult in some areas to access provider websites. Unfortuately, this is something many companies don’t tell their employees beforehand.

The UK government has also taken aim domestically at pornographic websites, stating that a full ban on these websites may be imminent. This has led many people to question their level of Internet freedom in the UK. A lot of these people have started making the transition to a VPN for their server requirements. Using a VPN in the UK is seen by many as a preemptive strike before other digital access becomes compromised.

So far, the UK has not ended up on any watchlists which monitor Internet censorship, and it probably won’t. There is a climate of tolerance in the UK towards the Internet. But, for some, the benefits of using a VPN now outweigh any hesitation they may have had in the past about protecting their security and anonymity, or unblocking restricted websites in other locales.

One reason the decision to use a VPN is easier made today is that the pricing of a quality UK VPN has been dramatically lowered in recent years, and the technology that powers these encrypted means of Internet access is far more advanced than it was even two years ago. Once the realm of businesses and government agencies, secured networks are now possible for the average citizen through VPN technology. Buy your UK VPN here before travelling just in case the site is blocked.

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VPN Switzerland – The Haven of Secrecy

switzerlandvpnSwitzerland has had a reputation for years as a haven of secrecy, and a VPN Switzerland carries on the country’s tradition of protecting freedom and privacy. For those who are looking to use a VPN to browse anonymously, using a VPN server in Switzerland is a great choice.

At VPN-accounts.com, we proudly offer a VPN server in the world’s most famous haven for privacy and freedom.

The Origins of Swiss Secrecy

Swiss secrecy originally began in the Swiss banking industry. Can you believe that the first bank secrecy laws in Switzerland can be traced back to 1713 and the Great Council of Geneva? At this council, regulations were implemented which required bankers to keep registers but prohibited them from sharing any information with anyone other than the client. This type of confidentiality actually paved the way for privacy in many areas of life, including medical records.

Today, the VPN Switzerland operates on many of the basic principles set forth so long ago but takes privacy a step farther. Browsing data is secured, and, even better, no logs are kept. You can use your Swiss VPN with complete confidence and remain anonymous online.

The Banking Act of 1934 took secrecy in Switzerland to a new level by making it a criminal offense to divulge client’s information. Bankers could be prosecuted for revealing information. This opened up the door for many foreign clients whose dealings were not always pure. The strict climate of Swiss secrecy would continue until 1995.

Big changes in Switzerland

In 1995, pressured by foreign governments, Switzerland’s bankers initiated an investigation to uncover dormant Swiss bank accounts and heirless assets. This has changed the way many bankers in Switzerland permit the opening of new accounts.

The good news is that, while the legendary Swiss bank account may be a thing of the past, the Switzerland VPN is not. VPN’s have become the new face of privacy in Switzterland, offering users a measure of online anonymity and personal Internet freedom. There are no restrictions on using a Swiss VPN, and the cost is very affordable. Buy VPN, and be free of internet restrictions and censorship.

The Benefits of using a VPN in Switzerland

  • Anonymous browsing via a Swiss IP address. Your actual IP address is concealed when you use your VPN, making it nigh impossible to pinpoint your true geographical location.
  • Liberal Internet access. Switzerland is very liberal where the Internet is concerned, meaning that surfers will not encounter too many blocked websites.
  • Protection of private data. The Swiss server, like all other servers we offer, encypts data with the latest technology.
  • Watch swiss TV abroad

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Don’t Miss NFL Games, Watch NFL with a VPN

vpn for nflThe 2013 NFL football season is halfway through, and teams are gearing up for that final push that will carry them through the playoffs and on to the Super Bowl at MetLife Stadium in February. Hardcore fans know what it is like to suffer an NFL Blackout or miss their favorite team because of programming choices by local television markets, and smart fans are using a VPN to unblock NFL games and stream them live on the Internet.

Why do they block NFL Games?

NFL football games can be blocked for a couple of reasons. The first is something known as the local market blackout. The local market blackout was devised by team owners in the early days of televised football to encourage live attendance to the games. Basically, a local market blackout was originally implemented when a game failed to sell out within a specified time frame. In small markets like Green Bay, this tactic worked very well. Today, it is still used with slightly amended rules. Get a VPN Account, and be free of internet restrictions and censorship.

The current NFL blackout rules stipulate that television stations within a 75-mile radius of the local stadium may only broadcast road games or games that sell out 72 hours or more before kickoff. In June of 2012, the NFL rules were revised to allow teams to set a benchmark between 85 and 100 percent of non-premium seats which must be sold to avoid a blackout.

Obviously, the most popular teams in the NFL have no problem selling seats to their games. But what about teams that aren’t playing well? This year, Jacksonville Jaguar fans are paying the price after their team is off to a 1-7 start. Attendance is down in the stadium, causing blackouts and further alienating harddcore fans.

Competing market blackouts

A second type of blackout is really not a blackout at all, but rather the result of a programming choice by television stations that serve two markets. A great example is the Fox affiliate in Shreveport, Louisiana. While Louisiana is the home of the New Orleans Saints, many Dallas Cowboy fans live on the Louisiana-Texas border and depend upon the Shreveport station to watch Cowboy games. Because these two teams often play at the same time, the station must choose which game to show. Similar situations happen in Florida, which boasts three NFL teams, and California where there are multiple teams within a short radius.

Beat the NFL blackout with your VPN

Thankfully, the Internet has solved many sport’s fans inability to watch their favorite football team compete. Apps like NFL Total Access and other streaming media services offer up each and every NFL game every week. It seems like all you need to do is get a subscription to one of these services and you are good to go, right?

Not so fast. Thanks to geo-restrictions which are enabled by tracking a user’s IP address, the NFL can still restrict games in certain markets. If, for example, your IP address reveals that you are within a 75-mile radius of Pittsburgh when the game there is blacked out, you still will not be able to access the live coverage. These apps do not restrict based on the address you used at sign up; the NFL knows that most people purchase these apps because they want to see their teams when they are traveling. They restrict based on where you are when you access the app.

Using a VPN to unblock NFL games is the answer. With multiple server options, you can appear to be in Canada or the UK when you access the games, thereby avoiding the dreaded blackout.

Follow these simple steps

If you want to watch every NFL game without the fear of a blackout, the process is pretty simple:

We work hard to make it affordable and easy for anyone to use a VPN to unblock NFL games. If you need assistance getting your VPN configured, we’ll gladly give you support. You can purchase a year of VPN access from VPN-accounts.com for less than the cost of a premium seat at most NFL games. You’ll never miss another thrilling catch, 50-yard touchdown run, or overtime period when you have VPN access. With the NFL playoffs looming on the horizon, don’t be left out in the cold when your team takes the field!

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Sign upGet an affordable VPN account.

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ConnectConfigure the VPN on your device.

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Canada VPN helps Relatives Stay in Touch

canadian VPNThe close proximity of Canada to the United States prompts many US residents to refer to Canada as “our neighbor to the north.” This concept is especially important given the number of indviduals who either work or have family living in Canada. For these individuals, having access to a Canada VPN and a Canada IP address is very beneficial.

For example, let’s say that a young Canadian is attending school in the US. They may want to retain access to their local television programming and news by using the CBC Player. In order to do that, they need a Canada VPN which will change their IP address to reflect that they are still at home. Their parents will also find it useful at times to have a US-based VPN so they can monitor local news where their child is living in the States.

This is just one example of the ways in which a Canada IP address can be useful. Those within the country can also benefit from using a VPN in order to maintain added security and anonymity while browsing the Internet. Thankfully, Canada is not known for censoring the Internet, so few websites are actively blocked. Even so, some US-based services still cannot be accessed once residents cross the Canadian border.

US-Canada Server Options

It should be apparent that multiple server options are important to many Canadians and US residents. There is so much traffic between the two countries, even on a daily basis. Many Canadians work each day in the US and return home at night, and vice versa. The Detroit-Windsor Tunnel, less than a mile in length, is one of the fastest border crossings in the world. Many residents of both countries use it everyday to go to work.

With the recent bankruptcy of Detroit and the ongoing economic issues in that troubled city, more and more people are looking for employment in Canada. These individuals can benefit from multiple server options that will allow them to use different VPN servers in each country. Perhaps they need to check the traffic on the CBC Player before they head out to work, or maybe they want to watch Netflix on their lunch break. Having a VPN provider that offers both a US and Canadian-based server to choose from gives these individuals a lot more flexibility.

It is also important to remember that a Canada VPN can be used on a smartphone or tablet. Users on the go can avoid encountering blocks by configuring their device for a VPN. VPN-accounts.com takes great pride in offering users numerous server options. You only need to buy one VPN account when you pruchase your service from us!

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Sign upGet an affordable VPN account.

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ConnectConfigure the VPN on your device.

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using a VPN account on your Android Device

Android VPNAre you one of the millions of people who have chosen the Android operating system for your smartphones and tablets? If so, you may be neglecting the ability to use a VPN on your Android device. Many Android users are simply unaware that their device will support a VPN.

Internet usage is drifting more and more towards mobile access. Society today is fast-paced and many people are connecting on the go. It’s great to be able to check your email, update Facebook, or shop online via your Android device, but there are some security pitfalls to be aware of when using unsecured public networks to connect.

The popularity of the Android

Based on the Linux kernel, Android is Google’s answer to Apple’s iOS. The Internet giant backed the development of the Android OS from the beginning and bought it outright in 2005. The platform was officially launched in 2007, but the first Android smartphone didn’t hit the shelves until October of 2008.

Like Linux, the Android OS is open source and Google releases the code under the Apache License. This really opens the door for developers to constantly improve the software and develop new apps. This could be a significant reason for the surge in Android popularity.

In 2010, Android officially became the most widely-used smartphone operating system. It has also been used in gaming systems, televisions, and digital cameras. As of March 2013, Android’s share of the global smartphone market is an amazing 64%, most of which are Samsung devices.

Mobile Internet and the Android Devices

The smartphone truly changed the way people think about mobile devices. Once considered to be primarily a telecommunications device, mobile phones are now regarded as a preferred way to access the Internet both at home and on the road. When you add the new Android-powered tablets to the mix, mobile access to the Internet is growing by leaps and bounds.

The current generation of Android devices offer full browsing compatibility and also the necessary hardware to stream media such as movies and songs from popular services like Netflix and Hulu. The speed of these devices can even support playing games like Words With Friends against other users. The technology and hardware are only going to improve and bring additional features to the Android.

The Pitfalls of Android Internet Access

As good as the Android OS is, it isn’t immune to the same security concerns someone encounters with their desktop or laptop computer. In fact, Android is even more vulnerable because most devices are used away from someone’s trusted home network. A lot of Internet activity via the Android is accomplished on unsecured public networks.

Android devices are susceptible to malware that can damage the operating system. These harmful software applications can be picked up in a variety of locations, and that even includes the Google Play Store. Users must be very careful and make sure their device is protected by a good antivirus suite. Spyware is another issue. Internet usage can be tracked and monitored. Additionally, there are always data thieves to contend with who stalk unsecured netowrks in an effort to steal private information.

While an antivirus suite will protect your Android from harmful software, it will do little to prevent your data from being exposed to the masses. To ensure that your data is invisible to prying eyes you need a VPN.

Yes, you can use a VPN on the Android

Many people still haven’t made that connection that Android devices are really just a small computer. It doesn’t register with them that using a VPN account on the Android is possible. Not only is it possible, it is the wise thing to do.

All currently popular models of Android phones, from the cheapest to the most expensive, come with a VPN client that is preinstalled. You will not have to download any special software to configure a VPN for your device. Here are step-by-step instructions for setting up an Android VPN:

  1. Purchase your VPN service from VPNaccounts.com. We’ll even discount your service some if you choose the yearly option.
  2. Check your email for the network credentials. You should receive these right away, and they include all of the information you need to get things going.
  3. Go to Settings>Wireless and Networks>VPN Settings on your Android device.
  4. Tap Add VPN
  5. Select the proper protocol for your VPN (in most cases you will be using the first one on the list, PPTP VPN.
  6. You’ll then be prompted to give your VPN a name and set the VPN server. In the VPN server field, enter the credentials supplied by VPN-accounts.com.

Once you have completed these steps your VPN will show in your list of available connections. All you have to do, once your existing connection is established, is tap your VPN name to connect.

Nothing could be much simpler, and you will sleep much better at night knowing your data is encrypted and secure. Click here to buy a vpn account.

3 Steps for a VPN

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Sign upGet an affordable VPN account.

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ConnectConfigure the VPN on your device.

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How to Get Around the itunes Geo-restrictions?

US Itunes using VPN

iTunes has virtually dominated the market for streaming music, podcasts, Internet Radio, and other media for several years now. As popular as the platform is, however, users will still encounter problems when attempting to access all iTunes features outside of the US. Here’s a quick look at iTunes and how users can unblock it in restricted countries by using a VPN.

Tricky iTunes geo restrictions in order to access the US itunes store from abroad

Apple, the developer and owner of iTunes, actually offers worldwide service, and iTunes itself is a global platform. This only means that it is potentially available throughout the world. Things get a little tricky beyond this basic distinction due to international legal arrangements.

The Digital Millenium Copyright Act, or DMCA, was passed in 1996 in response to the amount of digital media being illegally distributed on the Internet. While the basic premise of the law (protecting the intellectual property of artists) is good, some countries especially prone to copyright infringement and major studios have found it easier to simply restrict their content in areas that are considered hotbeds of illegal filesharing and piracy.

Things get even trickier when you consider that someone with an iTunes account may travel often. Should a service which is permitted in their country of residence be denied to them simply because they are visiting a foreign locale? That is an ethical issue which is certain to be debated for many years to come with no satisfactory conclusion.

Which countries block iTunes?

Technically, no countries block iTunes. Remember, we mentioned that the platform is global and available worldwide. Countries do block access to the media which is delivered via the platform. It’s a Catch-22. If you have electricity but no lamp you are still in the dark. That’s what blockages of iTunes amount to.

On occasion, a country will block the entire iTunes platform. In 2008, China blocked the entire iTunes website because iTunes offered a Pro-Tibet album for download. These intermittent wholesale blockages of iTunes can happen at any time for a variety of reasons.

It makes sense to abide by a simple principle: if you expect to be outside of the US,expect that your iTunes access could be interrupted.

The VPN & Pre-paid itunes card solution

If you already have an iTunes account and simply want to keep your access when you travel abroad, the effective way to do this is by using a VPN. If you are an American, with an American credit card on file, once you connect with your VPN to the iTunes platform you are good to go. Our US VPN server will register your location as being within the US.

But what about those who live outside of the US and want to experience iTunes? It can be done, but you’ll need to follow a few additional steps to make it happen. First and foremost, you will need to purchase a VPN that offers a US server option. When you register your iTunes account you will need to be connected to the US-based VPN. You’ll be asked for some personal information, such as an address, and we’re not going to advise you to simply use a bogus US address. We will tell you, however, that iTunes does not check your address unlesss you use a credit card for billing.

Since you won’t be able to use a credit card to make purchases, you’re going to need a pre-paid itunes access card. We’ve investigated many sites which provide pre-paid iTunes cards, and the one we will recommend to you is jerrycards.com. They can hook you up with a USA iTunes card quickly and offer several denominations to choose from. They also offer cards for Spotify and other media services which are all delivered instantly worldwide.

Realize up front that you are going to pay a little more for iTunes when using a pre-paid card. For example, a $15 iTunes credit will cost roughly $20 at jerrycards.com. It’s a small price to pay for some people if it helps them use the iTunes service. If you use itunes a lot you may want to go with a $100 pre-paid itunes card.

Our thoughts on iTunes and a VPN

We’re not here to debate ethical issues, so we’ll keep this short and sweet. There is nothing illegal or wrong with using a VPN account to access an iTunes account. You can even use your VPN while you are in the US to access iTunes if you choose to do so. That is your right and privilege.

Is it fair to lose your iTunes access when you travel because the DMCA says that you can’t listen to Maroon 5 or Robin Thicke in Qatar or China? We don’t think so, but everyone has to decide for themselves how they stand on the issue. Some people who reside in countries targeted by the DMCA feel like they shouldn’t be punished for the actions of a few pirates, so they use a VPN to access iTunes. That is their choice. We simply provide information and options for those who want the accessibility afforded by a VPN. Buy your vpn account here.

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Sign upGet an affordable VPN account.

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ConnectConfigure the VPN on your device.

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