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Access files from anywhere: 5 reasons to get a VPN today!


It wasn’t so long ago that if you mentioned Internet security you were viewed as paranoid. Slowly it changed to “it’s a good idea but I don’t need it.” Now there is an extreme opinion change due to Identity theft, financial transactions, and privacy fraud. Just the recent breaches with Target and concerns of spying by the NSA have heightened awareness to a new level. One way to help protect your privacy, identity and information is to use a VPN when you connect to your office remotely over the Internet.

A VPN (Virtual Private Network) provides a secure way for you to connect one computer to another over the Internet. This allows you to safely access resources on a separate network. This may be files, databases, programs or even a more secure connection to the Internet. A Secure Connection keeps the information you are transmitting secure so you can maintain privacy and even anonymity while online.

A VPN can be configured for single computers to connect to a main office (strangely this is called “dial-up VPN even though phone lines are almost never used). Or, you can connect two offices together (called a Gateway to Gateway VPN). The aforementioned VPNs are usually setup by the IT department. If you want a secure connection for personal use, there are 3rd party services like CactusVPN, proXPN or LogMeIn’s Hamachi.

Here are 5 reasons why you may want to consider using a VPN:

    • Protect your information
      Your personal information is everywhere, it’s on your local system and online services to which you belong so it’s important to protect against someone hacking into your Internet transmission to monitor your activity and in the process steal your information.
    • Privacy when browsing websites
      Your IP address is your home address on the Internet, much like your street address is your home’s physical address. When you connect to the Internet using a VPN Service, you can connect to websites anonymously seeing the VPN Service IP Address, not yours. This is much more effective than using your browser’s “private browsing” feature which keeps the computer clean of your tracking history but doesn’t hide your IP address.
    • Public Wi-Fi Access
      Whether you’re at the airport, Starbucks or Panera, just about anywhere you go there is public Wi-Fi available to use. The problem is that in every one of those situations there is someone sitting there with you eager to violate your privacy and steal your information. A VPN to a remote gateway turns any Wi-Fi hotspot into an encrypted link for your computer or mobile device.
    • Bypass location-based restrictions
      When traveling, some countries sensor the information they want their residents to use, limiting the information and influences they have access to. When connecting using a VPN, you bypass these restrictions as your IP origination comes from your VPN provider and not the location you are connecting from.
    • Unblock or Block restricted or dangerous sites
      Some Internet connections and services implement site blocking and filtering to restrict certain content; a VPN connection can allow you to bypass these restrictions. Or, you can leverage your office’s better firewall and filtering to help protect you while surfing by using your VPN to connect to your office and use its firewall for better protection.

If you would like to know more about using a VPN and how it can protect you, please feel free to contact me at 256-461-0040 or

I wish you safe computing,

Shawn Chenault
F1 Solutions, Inc.


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