How does VPN technology work and how can it protect young people?
VPN technology is a configuration available in all new mobile phones, laptops. PCs and even Wi-Fi routers that enables forwarding all Internet traffic first to a remote server called ‘VPN Server’.
This technology is usually used by Enterprises to let their employees connect to their corporate servers securely and also enables a way for them to monitor everything from a single VPN server.
Most of today's children have the ability via their device to access any network which provides free access to the world wide web. This presents a whole host of risks and demonstrates how vulnerable today's children can actually be when given the opportunity to open many different doors to the internet without any protection.
How it works; Normal Internet Access
Problems accessing the Internet without a VPNThe first problem is that it is the wi-fi router which assigns you the public IP address or in other words publishes your ‘location’. Every single entity in the path of communications knows your almost exact location. You can check this by navigating to any site like http://ipstack.com and see the amount of detail available to all third party websites and all networks in between.
Secondly, at every stage, the entities know which websites and applications you are accessing. If communications are unencrypted, they can also read it, watch it, listen to it, whatever the case may be. They can also keep a log of the activity and apply ‘policies’ as well. Common policies are to block some applications like some games or torrents or WhatsApp / Skype calling etc.
Internet access with VPNWhen you connect VPN, it establishes a secure tunnel between you and the VPN servers. Nobody in between sees which websites or applications are being accessed. You are issued your public IP address by the VPN server instead of your wi-fi router.
Benefits of Internet access via a VPN include:
If you are interested in finding out more about VPN, Friendly WiFi Partners ‘SafeLabs’ have created a ‘Child Safe’ simple to use method allowing families to connect safely to the internet. They have launched a ‘Child Safe’ VPN service, which is easily applied to any device (PC, Laptop, mobile or tablet) giving parents and their children peace of mind that when browsing the internet they are protected from accessing inappropriate material. Read more.
I'm concerned this article is aimed at child safety, when its promoting a service which encourages accessing location based webservices, bypassing internet restrictions and any home based webfilters which to me seems more dangerous and in some cases illegal.
Thanks Ant - Our partners at Friendly WiFi have commented "The service is an added layer of protection which is ideal for use particularly when the user is connecting to a WiFi network where they are unsure, or have no knowledge if any internet protection is present i.e. public WiFi, other networks outside the home. SafeLabs VPN is a Friendly WiFi certified product and has been checked and verified that by using this service, prevents access to illegal child abuse and adult websites”Posted: almost 4 years by Ant