If you are a proficient Mac user, you probably know that this operating system is much more secure than Windows. Having that in mind, it can be puzzling why someone would get a VPN application for his Apple computer or mobile device given that these programs are mainly concerned with your safety and privacy. But, let’s go step by step.
VPN in a nutshell
So, what is a VPN?
VPN or virtual private network allows computer (or computers) to use a secure tunnel. As the name implies, it is a private structure which allows you to play by your own rules, being able to circumvent all the restrictions that your local, public network imposes. Also, with a VPN, you are able to connect computers that are geographically distant and put them in a same virtual space.
Now, you might ask, what is the practical use for such kind of a network?
First VPN applications were create as a way to help out big companies that have employees all over the world. By installing this application, users are able to see other computers as if they were part of the same local network. On top of that, as we mentioned, it creates a tunnel between two users. This tunnel cannot be hacked given that all the data within it is encrypted. Because of this, two individuals are able to safely transfer funds and data between themselves without any fear of being attacked.
Besides that, VPNs are also really great when using public Wi-Fi. Most of these connections are unprotected and anyone can access your data. Although Mac is a bit safer, it is still a good precautionary measure to install this type ofapplication.
Lastly, we have to mention that VPNs can change appearance of your IP. What do we mean by saying that? Whenever you use VPN, you can choose a particular geo-location. After that, it will appear as if you were working from that country. This is important as it allows you to use various websites which are otherwise blocked by a local network.
Things to look out for
First of all, it has to be mentioned that VPN can be either free or paid. No matter what you choose, these programs are a real bargain: they usually cost less than 10 $ per month which is acceptable by almost any standard (especially if you are using the Internet as a way to make money). Like with most other free applications, you are able to upgrade VPN into a paid version whenever you want.
Another thing which needs to be mentioned but rarely poses a problem is the interface. VPNs are pretty simple. In the end, they were created for users with simple needs. As long as it provides protection or changes your physical location; it serves its purpose. Sometimes, you may bump into VPNs that are a bit more sophisticated and provide additional options. But, there are only a handful of them.
Let’s get to the things that actually matter and can pose an issue.
Available traffic is something that can create a lot of headaches. If you are living in a country with high restrictions (such as China) and you require “western” programs and websites such as Gmail or Skype, if you do not have enough traffic, you might get stuck.
Same goes for speed. Some VPNs are dreadfully slow. Those who rely on efficiency will find this to be a really big issue.
Some providers are logging your internet activity. This is a common practice as they would later on sell it to various marketing agencies and other organizations. However, this is usually the thing with free applications. Paid ones are more reliable in that regard.
Lastly, you need to look out for available locations. When you use VPN, you can choose between several locations, depending on application. In that regard, you might have some preferences.
Finally, we come to the most important question: Which VPN application would you recommend for Mac?
Here is our list!
- Hide My Ass VPN
If you are a first time user and you would just like to try several VPNs to get a feel for it, here are our recommendations:
- Hotspot Shield VPN
- CyberGhost VPN
- Cloak VPN
VPN applications are something that will only become more important in future as our privacy becomes more and more endangered. In time, we feel that most people will have at least one of these applications installed on their computer. Have in mind, if you are a business person and you wish to have an optimal solution, we would suggest getting one of the paid ones. The price is not that high but you will get much more.