Why banning VPN is a bad idea
Is your VPN blocked? Installing a VPN is the quickest way to bypass geo-restriction in countries like China. However, many users find that the Internet remains restricted as they fail to connect to a VPN server.
How does a VPN get blocked? And more importantly, is there anything you can do?
Read on and find out how to slip through the VPN ban enforced by governments.
Why Use a VPN?
A VPN offers both security and privacy on the Internet. It does so by masking your IP address and routing communication through a secure, encrypted server. When connected to a VPN, the device goes into stealth mode, as its public IP is no longer visible on the network.
Throughout the years, users have turned to VPNs for various reasons.
One of the main reasons for VPN signups is the strong security it provides on connected devices. Most VPNs are built with AES-256 encryption, which is the same encryption used by the military, governments, and banks. Technically, it’s unbreakable, keeping potentially intercepted data safe from hackers.
A VPN’s impenetrable security is a handy feature when you’re accessing the Internet from public WiFi. You can’t be sure who’s waiting to strike.
Let’s not pretend that turning on the incognito mode on the browser is the key to privacy on the Internet. It’s not. There are many ways that you can be tracked online. Every single click or web page you visit is of interest to various parties, including governments, advertisers, and people with malicious intentions.
Installing a VPN protects you from being tracked. A VPN’s encrypted connection will keep you away from prying eyes.
Access geo-restricted content
Admittedly, some users turn to a VPN because it lets them bypass geo-restriction. For example, you can access Netflix US from another country by connecting to a VPN server in the USA. By using a US-based IP, it tricks content providers into treating the connection as local.
Similarly, a VPN is used to bypass internet censorship in countries that restrict internet freedom. For example, you can’t access apps like Gmail, YouTube, and Facebook in China without a VPN.
Better connection speed
In some cases, installing a VPN can boost your connection speed. This is true when your ISP is throttling your internet connection. Connecting to a VPN server allows you to bypass the throttle and enjoy the maximum bandwidth allocated.
How is a VPN Blocked?
The use of VPN has allowed users freedom to navigate the Internet undetected. For some countries, workplaces, and schools, a VPN is an unwelcome technology that jeopardizes how users are monitored and controlled on the public network. That’s why a VPN ban is enforced.
So, how is a VPN blocked?
There are a few ways where institutions can enforce a block on a VPN.
- Network Port Block — Most VPNs transport data with the OpenVPN protocol and it uses the UDP port 1194 by default. All it takes is to block the particular port, resulting in the VPN being blocked and all encrypted data will but cut off.
- IP/DNS Block — When data is routed through a VPN server, the server’s IP and DNS are visible to the destination server. As most VPN servers are using a shared IP, it isn’t difficult for governments and companies like Netflix to identify which IP/DNS belongs to a VPN and enforce a block.
- Deep Packet Inspection (DPI) — Every type of protocol has a unique structure. This means the number of bytes of the preamble, opcode, data packet, and other data fields. By using firewall software with DPI capability, VPN data packets can be stopped from reaching their destination.
Why a VPN Ban is a Bad Idea
China has officially banned VPN providers that are not approved by the government. Any user caught using a banned VPN is subjected to a fine of $145. India is about to follow suit, with the Parliamentary Commission pushing for a blanket ban for all VPNs.
While banning VPN serves the ambition of the governments, it does more harm than good for ordinary citizens. Here’s why.
While a VPN ban accords more control to authorities, it leaves the public vulnerable. Internet users lose one of the best protections that keep them protected from hackers. The threat is magnified when users are browsing unsecured websites from public WiFi.
With the public IP exposed, hackers will have the easy task of intercepting transmitted data, carrying out identity theft, and making unauthorized financial transactions.
There is nothing ambiguous about the ban exerted on VPN providers. It is to exert full control of user activities on the Internet. In other words, every second you spend online is tracked by the ISP or enforcement agencies. For the privacy-conscious, the Internet becomes a suffocating place.
Without a VPN, any party with the right technological capability can extract data from your browsing sessions to fuel their purposes. No one likes to become an open book to the public.
Businesses will suffer from any sort of ban on VPNs. Companies use VPNs to keep internal communication private and protect sensitive information from leaking out. A potential ban of all VPNs in India will hugely inconvenience businesses.
China’s move to illegalize most VPNs is already evidence of how disruptive such a move can be. It means that foreign business travelers are robbed of access to familiar business apps and websites.
How to Use ClearVPN
It may not be possible to unblock a VPN blocked by overzealous parties but you can stay one step ahead with ClearVPN. ClearVPN leverages obfuscation technologies that bypass all the common restrictions used to block a VPN.
Here’s how to establish a secure connection in spite of VPN blockages.
- Install ClearVPN on your device (we use macOS as an example in the picture below)
- Open the app and activate Browse Privately and Securely shortcut.
- That’s it! Your online journey is protected and private.
Let’s Wrap it Up
Banning a VPN is a foolish idea. The disadvantages clearly outweigh the political goals. You don’t have to be a victim of such circumstances. All you need to do is to use a VPN that can outsmart the existing restrictions.
Take charge of your security and privacy with ClearVPN.