Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) are awesome security and connectivity tools that have a wide array of advantages, including but not limited to location changes, data privacy, security, and increased connection speed.

However just as it is with basically every other service out there, there are various VPN service providers, and you will need to ensure that you choose one that works for you.

To wit, make sure to put the following into consideration when choosing a VPN service provider:

The cost of the service

So, let’s get to the major issue; price.

Just as it is with anything else, VPNs provide you with what you pay for. There are free VPN options out there that you can use, but these free options will most probably not really do it for you if you’re looking for that optimum level of protection. The free VPN services tend to make use of your data as compensation, so it’s not like you’re getting a free VPN service if you really think about it. Also, if you’re trying to keep all your information private, then you might not want to go the “free” way.

However, when it comes to pay VPN services you should also know that the level of services usually varies with differences in price.

The kind of encryption provided

There are only a few types of VPN encryption protocols available to customers, and none of them offers the same level of effectiveness as the other. PPTP has had apoor security history over the years, and nobody really considers it a secure option. To wit, you might want to stick to VPN providers that make use of IPSec, OpenVPN, IKEv2, OpenSSH or L2TP.

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The type of access provided

Some VPN providers make allowance for a single point of accessing their services, while there are some that allow for as much as 5 or even more simultaneous connections. In your best interest, examine them and see which will fit best into your needs. For instance, if you’re a type of person who has a lot of devices and you want them allto be connected, then you will want one that has multiple connection access.

Also, apart from connectivity, you will also want to things about whether you want a provider that has a lot of exit nodes. As exit node is a server that sits somewhere in the world, and which will provide you secure connections. Once you’re connected, you’ll appear to be using a connection from the IP address of that server, regardless of where it is (or you are) in the world. You could be in New York and be connected to the Rio de Janeiro server of your VPN provider. Some VPN providers have just a few exit nodes while other have more than 10 (such as VPN Base). Also, by examining the location of the exit nodes, you will be able to determine whether you will be able to get access to certain internet services that are geo-locked.

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Speed and bandwidth

If you will like optimum security but you still also want to ensure that you have the fastest bandwidth available, then it is recommended that you get a service provider that has an exit node’s geo-physical location that is in close proximity to yours. The longer the distance of the provider from your current position, the ore the lack f speed that you’ll experience when you connect to the VPN. This is also related to the number of computers that your data will need to gin access through in order to get to your preferred exit node.

Depending on the bandwidth of the ISP you’ve bought, you might (or might not) max out your bandwidth, although this depends on the ability of your VPN provider.

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Block or throttle?

You might want a VPN service that allows external users to gain access to your computer through a calendar service, or you may ant to ensure that access to VoIP is just as fast. Ensure to look out for providers that don’t block or throttle any service.