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Right now - whether you realize it or not - the entire internet as we know it is under siege. There are major hack attacks happening constantly (and even more happening that aren't publicized) and our own government and internet service providers want to degrade and compromise the internet for their own benefit and profit:

In the end, this spells bad news for you, the consumer. Not only are you being attacked by hackers and criminals, but the institutions designed to protect and serve you are selling you out: Congress is allowing ISPs to track your movement online and sell your data to 3rd party advertisers and net neutrality is next on the chopping block. Big companies and the government are not the entities you should rely on to keep your data secure - they are eager to ruin the internet as it stands now just to make a little more money. But luckily, there IS something you can do to protect yourself: get a VPN.

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via VPNranks

Do you know what a VPN is? Basically: it re-routes your internet traffic so that you go through an encrypted VPN server instead of your normal ISP. Of course, this means you're now entrusting your data to a VPN service. The benefit is that these services live and die by holding on to customer trust and respecting their need for privacy, whereas ISPs (clearly) couldn't give a shit less about that. ISPs act under the assumption that most people are too ignorant about their own crooked practices to actually bother looking into getting a VPN - but it doesn't have to be that way.

In the past, VPNs were primarily used for workplace things (accessing an intranet) and doing internet pirate-y things - illegally downloading media and accessing banned sites. But that's not really the case anymore - people are using VPNs to protect themselves, their data, and more. The benefits of using a VPN are huge:

  • Encrypts your data - from your ISP, from hackers, from EVERYONE (this is the big one).
  • Utilizing a separate IP address can circumvent browsing restrictions - either by country (e.g. if you're in China and can't access a site due to government restrictions, a VPN would allow you to use an American-based IP address and access the site) or by the specific ISP (e.g. if you're using a company's wi-fi and they have Netflix blocked, you can get around that too)
  • Can actually speed up your internet connection and reduce your ping time (here's an Explain It Like I'm Five link that helps clarify that aspect)

In short - if you're NOT using a VPN for your internet browsing, you are making a huge mistake. If you're letting family and friends go without a VPN, you're being negligent. You and everyone you care about should be using a VPN - not using one is like driving down the Autobahn blindfolded (well, not QUITE that bad, but you get it - it's reckless).

Don't worry though - we've found a few VPN options for you, all of which come with great reviews and reputations. Still be sure to click around to find the right option for you - it's YOUR data, so you should make sure you're comfortable with the option you go with.



Private Internet Access VPN: 2-Yr Subscription

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Only $59.95 (that's 63% off of the original $166.00 pricetag) for 2 years of VPN service, intuitive setup, and tons of options:

Block hackers and government spies, even when you're connected to public Wi-Fi, thanks to Private Internet Access. High-level encryption ensures you'll put an end to incessant digital advertising, while IP cloaking gives you access to the Internet uncensored from anywhere. With Private Internet Access, the only gateways to the outside Internet are the ones you open. 

4.5/5 Stars, PC Mag 
"While many VPN providers say they do not log their users' activities in order to protect anonymity, it's not often their claims get tested in the wild. However, a criminal complaint filed by the FBI... notes that a subpoena sent to Private Internet Access resulted in no useful data being revealed about a suspected hoaxer," Torrent Freak 

  • Prevents data mining so you can browse anonymously
  • Blocks ads, trackers & malware w/ the new MACE feature
  • Connects instantly w/ one-click installers
  • Masks your location w/ IP cloaking
  • Allows the use of 5 devices simultaneously w/ unlimited bandwidth
  • Protects your identity w/ several layers of privacy
  • Bypasses censorship filters so you are free from geographic restrictions
  • Stops traffic w/ a kill switch if the VPN connection is unexpectedly terminated



VPNSecure: Lifetime Subscription

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Of course, maybe you're more interested in a LIFETIME subscription, so that you'll never have to concern yourself with ISP data exposure ever again - and that's why this deal, for only $39 (which is 91% off of the original $450 pricetag) might appeal to you:

Internet threats are a real thing - and surfing the Web on a public connection can result in your personal data falling into the wrong hands. This deal offers you a lifetime of protection so you can explore the Internet worry-free. With the Smart DNS component, you can even bypass those annoying geographical restrictions that block Hulu, and more abroad. Plus, unlike other VPN services that claim to not log your activity, VPNSecure proudly assures that ZERO logs are recorded. Get VPNSecure, and you'll get a cross-platform VPN service you can trust. 

  • Allows you to bypass geolocation blocks on your favorite streaming networks
  • Encrypts your traffic so hackers can't access your data
  • Hides your location & IP address
  • Supports torrents
  • Allows you to connect five devices simultaneously
  • Grants you the ability to choose Data Cipher
  • Uses Stealth VPN to render your VPN traffic unrecognizable
  • Delivers unlimited bandwidth
  • Does not keep any logs of your activity
  • Includes servers in 46+ countries & counting
  • Protects against DNS leak fixes, kill switches & more



Disconnect: Lifetime Premium Subscription

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Alternately, you could go with this lifetime subscription option from Disconnect - only $49 (which is 90% off of the original $500 pricetag) for internet peace of mind 'til the end of your days (although it DOES also have options for 3 year and 1 year subscriptions).

The internet is crawling with trackers designed to harvest your personal information - sometimes for things as innocent as understanding what ads to display on the web for you, sometimes for far more nefarious purposes. Regardless, web tracking ranges from innocuous to deeply serious, and it's more important than ever to take precautions to ensure your internet security. Disconnect blocks trackers and malware across your entire device, allowing you to browse up to 44% faster, using up to 39% less bandwidth, and greatly improve battery life. 

'We researched and tested four tracker blockers and found their results varied widely. In the end, the app Disconnect became our anti-tracking tool of choice,' New York Times 
Innovation Award Winner, Privacy and Security at SXSW Interactive Conference 
Featured in Tom's Guide's Best Ad Blockers and Privacy Extensions 

  • Blocks tracking requests from connecting to your devices, making the internet faster & extending battery life
  • Keeps your data safe from companies, cybercriminals, & government entities
  • VPN tech encrypts your internet connection
  • Masks your location so you can access content as if you're in a different country
  • Allows you to use blocked services, sites, & apps



Regardless of which of these you go with (if any), please keep this in mind: your DESERVE security and privacy. Your data belongs to you and no one else - so do not allow laziness to let you give that up. There are countless individuals and groups out there that want to use your data for their own means - you don't have to let them. There's a lot you can do - signing petitions against rolling back net neutrality laws, supporting politicians who support data privacy, etc. - but the best first step you can take is getting a VPN.