Virtual Private Network (VPN)

This technology, widely used in the business world, allows the creation of an Internet tunnel (a virtual link) between two physical networks in different locations in a way that is transparent for users. Only they will by allowed access (hence the term “private”) and data sent via the tunnel is encrypted. This guarantees that data sent by VPN users will be illegible to any third party in the event of malicious interception such as espionage or intrusion.

How a VPN can be used

A VPN allows data to be moved from one private network to another using a secure Internet tunnel. Your Web browser cannot access www.google.com via a classic VPN connection. Your email client can only connect to your company’s internal email and not to your own email address. You are sheltered but isolated. The VPN has the functionality it needs for us to protect our communications between A and B using legal means. But there is more to it than this.

Using a VPN as a “virtual escape route” to circumvent censorship

The Internet is a place for communicating and exchanging information, which does not please everyone. Some states monitor and spy on the content of their citizens’ online activities and, where they feel it is necessary, restrict access to some websites or services that they believe to be contrary to their interests.

The diagram below shows an example of a filtering system put in place by a government to prevent the country’s Internet users from posting videos of demonstrations. This is an ideal scenario for using a VPN to circumvent the filter system.

The following diagram shows the use of a VPN as a means of bypassing an existing filtering system.

Your workstation is company A and the VPN provider is company B. The main difference is that your real Internet connection is through the VPN provider, so the Internet sees that you are connected from Sweden and not from your own country. This means the filtering system in place in your own country no longer applies. By using a VPN, a legal tool, you can publish your video on YouTube, read your email, surf any part of the Web securely, etc. Your country will no longer be able to see what you are using the Internet for since you are now accessing it via a tunnel with one end in Sweden, a country where the Internet is outside your government’s control.

Setting up this type of service is no simple matter and requires a level of technical knowledge not available to everyone. Fortunately there are companies that provide such services commercially, making the configuration and use of a VPN on your workstation a fairly simple matter.

Choose a VPN provider carefully

A VPN connection costs about five euros per month. Avoid free offers. One way or another these so-called free services find a way to make you pay. A free VPN may, for example, be set up with the intention of discreetly spying on your communications, known as a “honeypot”.

Nothing2Hide VPN

Nothing2Hide provide free VPN account to jornalists and human rights defenders. If you trust us, use our VPN srevice. If you don't trust us, don't use our VPN service. Our VPN server is hosted in France.

If you want to use and install Nothing2Hide VPN, contact us to get your credentials and follow the instructions below :