Why You Should Install A VPN [Data Privacy Concerns]


The Question why you should install A VPN comes up a lot.  In order to answer this question , we look at windows 10 monitoring activity.

Windows 10 monitors your activity and privacy unless the user has opted to turn off these options. Data collected by Windows 10 is stored locally on the machine and only sends the data to Microsoft if the user has signed into the machine using their Microsoft account and given the proper permissions.


Does Windows 10 Monitor Your Activity

According to Microsoft they only use this data to provide personalized experiences across devices and relevant suggestions based on your activity.

In other words, they use this data to try and personalize your experiences across devices so you don’t need to worry about data being lost from one device to another and to show you ads and relevant apps that you might find useful.

They also use this data to improve Microsoft products using machine-learning techniques that analyze how customers use their products and services and diagnose errors that customers run into to fix them.


There are three features that use activity history. The first is the timeline, for example, if you are editing a word document and need to finish it later, you could either store the activity history on the device you are using or send the activity to Microsoft.

The first option will keep the activity on your local devices’ timeline so you can resume editing it at a later time. The second option allows you to edit the word document at a later time on a different device that is connected to the same Microsoft account. The second feature that uses your data is Cortana.

Cortana allows you to pick up where you left off across Windows devices. Lastly, Microsoft’s web browser Edge also uses your activity history and saves your browsing history.


How to Protect Your Privacy on Windows 10

Despite the extensive amount of data that Microsofts gets from a customer’s Windows 10 installation if a user decides to dig into the settings they can easily reduce the amount of data.

The first way to protect your privacy is to create a local account during the Windows installation instead of linking an existing Microsoft account to Windows 10.

In order for Microsoft to retrieve data from a local machine, the user has to log into Windows 10 using a Microsoft account and give Windows privileges to send data to Microsoft.

The downside to this is that you are no longer able to share data across devices. The next way to protect your data on Windows 10 is to disable Cortana in order to keep your voice data private. To do this go to Settings > Cortana and toggle it off.

There are a few other things that help protect your privacy these include not sharing your advertising ID  with apps on the system and controlling which apps and services have access to your location and controlling which features, such as, the camera, microphone and calendar have access to your sensitive data. All of these options are found under Settings > Privacy


Why Should You Install a VPN on a PC?


A Virtual Private Network or a VPN is a software tool that allows you to connect your device to a server somewhere on the internet.

It then allows you to browse the internet using that server’s internet connection.

For example, if you connect your laptop to the internet in the USA and us a VPN to connect to a server in Germany it will look like all of your internet traffic is coming from Germany. There are many reasons why someone would want to install a VPN on their device.

From a security standpoint, installing a VPN provides you with anonymity on the internet because it hides your true location and it protects your devices from snooping on untrustworthy Wi-Fi hot spots like the Starbucks down the street. On the other hand, it can also be used to bypass geographic restrictions on content that is only available in a certain area.

It can also open new content for streaming sites like Netflix or Hulu. Their content typically changes depending on the region you are in and a VPN can be used to access different regions content.

VPNs are also useful for people who choose to torrent files as it can protect your location and make you harder to track. VPNs can also be used to access home machines or Networks at work. This way employees always have access to their work’s network and information regardless of where they are at.


How To Install a VPN

Installing a VPN is quite simple but it does take some research. The hardest part is choosing which VPN service to use. There are many different services out there that offer different types of subscriptions, prices, and options.

The three top VPN services are NordVPN which offers a paid subscription for up to 5 devices, Private Internet Access VPN which has paid subscriptions for up to 10 devices and lastly Tunnel Bear VPN which has a free version that offers very limited features and paid subscriptions for up to 5 devices. Each service has its own pros and cons and different offerings.

The next step is to download the application on all the devices you wish to protect and install it just like you would any other application.

Once the application has been downloaded and installed you can choose which server to connect to depending on what activity you plan on doing. For example, you may find a server specifically for streaming geographically locked content.

After choosing your server you can mess around in the settings. Some general settings you may find are a kill switch that will prevent the device from transmitting or receiving data if the VPN becomes disconnected.

You may also find the ability to choose a VPN protocol. While this is generally something that can be left alone, there are some protocols that provide different levels of security and speeds.

Make sure that everything you find is thoroughly researched before changing the settings.