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VPN Encryption & Security

PrivateVPN offers the strongest VPN encryption available when you’re online. Get the ultimate in privacy and security.

What Is VPN Encryption?

Encryption is a process that converts data into an inviolable code that protects your web activity and personal information. Concealing your IP address, passwords, and browsing history, an encrypted VPN ensures that your network cannot be infiltrated and your web activity cannot be recorded.

When you use a VPN, your data is coded as it travels to a VPN server, leaving any bad actor who tries to access your data with a stream of gobbledygook. To add a further layer of security, VPNs such as PrivateVPN also mix your internet traffic with that of other VPN users. Because encryption offers such a high level of protection, premium VPN servers are often described as “tunnels” that shield your data from outside threats.

This “end-to-end” encryption ensures that any data you release into the VPN tunnel is viewable only by your intended recipient when it leaves the tunnel. When you’re using PrivateVPN, you will be protected by the best VPN encryption available in the market–the same technology used by the US military.
Encryption typically takes one of two forms: symmetric or asymmetric. Both systems work by establishing “keys,” or strings of coded data that can be deciphered only by the sender and the recipient. In symmetric systems, the key is the same for both parties; whereas in asymmetric systems, there are two different keys. Also known as public key encryption, these systems use one key to encrypt (public key) and one to decrypt (private key).

PrivateVPN uses a symmetric system known as the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES), the gold standard for premium VPNs today.

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Why Do You Need An Encrypted VPN?

When you surf the web on a public network without a VPN, your personal data and web browsing history are discoverable to anyone using the same network. Open networks, such as those used at coffee shops and airports, may be used by hundreds of strangers on a given day. This can be especially problematic if you are connecting to your workplace’s network, as you risk exposing your company to a myriad of security threats.

Although password-protected home networks from internet service providers are far less likely to be hacked than public networks, they can still fall short when it comes to protecting your privacy. For instance, some ISPs keep records of your web history to sell to advertisers. And when you’re traveling, you should be aware that certain countries’ governments may be logging your web activity and may prevent you from accessing certain websites.

You may also find that some of your favorite streaming content is restricted when you’re in a different country. Such restrictions, known as “geoblocking,” result from variations in networks’ streaming permissions in different locations. By connecting to a VPN server in your home region, you can overcome such blocks.

When you’re using the best encrypted VPN service available, you’ll be free from concerns such as being hacked, having your web history logged, or being cut off from your favorite streaming content. With PrivateVPN, you can choose the server that best suits your browsing, streaming, and file sharing needs in any location across the globe. With over 200 servers in 63 countries, we ensure that you will never lack the protected internet access you need.

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Not All VPNs Offer The Same Encryption

When considering which VPN service to use, your first question will likely be “Is the VPN encrypted?” The answer to this question is a bit more complicated than it may at first seem.

While encryption is one of the stated benefits of any VPN, the truth is that some free VPN services do not actually encrypt your data as promised. Some not only fail to protect you with strong encryption; they may also sell your data to third-party advertisers or even infect your computer with malware.
Even when a VPN does encrypt your data, the value of the encryption may be diminished by other vulnerabilities associated with the server. Keep in mind that just because a VPN is encrypted doesn’t mean it’s secure. The strength of VPN encryption types varies considerably. Encryption should go hand in hand with strong, up-to-date protocols. Your best option will be a premium VPN that operates with the OpenVPN security system, an open source collection of the most rigorous security protocols available today. Outdated protocols such as PPTP are no longer considered sufficiently secure for use with VPN servers.
Rather than asking “Does the VPN encrypt data?,” ask “What encryption does the VPN use?,” then, “Is the encryption enhanced by other security features, or weakened by other vulnerabilities?” Always do your research before entrusting a VPN provider with your most private data and web activity. Free VPNs in particular often promise more than they can deliver.

How Does PrivateVPN’s Encryption Work?

Military Grade AES Encryption

When searching for the encryption method that would best protect our customers, PrivateVPN went straight to the top, selecting the same technology used to protect the highly sensitive data stored by the US government and military.

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) developed the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) in 1997 as a means to better protect the US government’s digital data from security breaches. Also called AES-256, this encryption method uses the most complex level of symmetric coding available to make its data protection impenetrable. When the US government began using this encryption method in 2001, VPN providers recognized its value and began to follow suit.

By using AES-256 encryption, PrivateVPN ensures that the data you entrust us with will be visible only to you and your intended recipients–period. You’ll never have to worry about us selling your browsing history to a third party because we don’t log it. Ever. We firmly believe that what you do online is your business.

WireGuard Encryption

PrivateVPN also uses WireGuard, a cutting-edge communication protocol that is changing the VPN game. As opposed to other protocols that were developed decades ago with technology that is now considered antiquated, WireGuard uses only the latest encryption methods and operates with a mere 4,000 lines of code (as opposed to up to 400,000, the amount used by traditional protocols). Thanks to WireGuard’s streamlined, modern features, networks using this protocol are both incredibly fast and highly secure.

Get PrivateVPN Today

With a single click and a 60-second download, you’ll be browsing the web with complete peace of mind, no matter where you are in the world. Choose from our monthly, quarterly, or annual plans with a 30-day money back guarantee! Although PrivateVPN is known for its fast and intuitive setup, we also offer round-the-clock live support in case you hit a snag with setup or any PrivateVPN feature.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does a VPN Encrypt All Traffic?

While all VPNs promise to encrypt your traffic, not all of them actually deliver on this promise. Some free VPNs not only fail to code your data, hide your ISP address, and obscure your browsing history; some of them actually log your activity to sell it to advertisers or infect your system with malware. With VPNs, if it seems too good to be true (i.e., offering the strongest protection at no cost), it probably is.

What is the Strongest VPN Encryption Level?

Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) encryption, or AES-256, is the strongest encryption level available on the market. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) developed it as an iron-clad method for protecting US government data, and VPN providers later began to adopt it as well. To get the most out of AES encryption, PrivateVPN works in combination with high-performing communication protocols such as WireGuard.

What Devices or Operating Systems Does an Encrypted VPN Work On?

Although it depends on the provider, encrypted VPNs typically work on most internet-enabled devices. PrivateVPN can be used on computers using Windows, Mac, Android, and Linux operating systems, as well as iOs devices such as iPhones and iPads.

Do Free VPNs Use Encryption?

All VPNs claim to use some level of encryption, since the key benefit of a VPN is its ability to make your online data and activity unreadable to others. However, free VPNs sometimes fail to encrypt your data adequately and often have vulnerabilities that compromise your safety and privacy in other ways. Some free VPNs have connections that are frequently unstable or extremely easy to hack, giving you a false sense of security when you’re online. 

Still other VPNs may encrypt your data adequately while you’re online but log your activity and sell it to third-party advertisers or even infect your system with malware. Free VPNs also frequently lack a kill switch, an important security feature that immediately disables your internet access if you lose your VPN connection. Therefore, the best VPN encryption method is choosing a premium VPN service such as PrivateVPN.