iPhones already come with tons of useful features, so why should you bother adding a VPN to your already-lengthy list of apps?
We’ll tell you exactly why you should do that in this quick article. If you were just looking for some recommendations, though, we suggest checking out some VPNs for iPhones here. You’ll definitely find the best services on the market.
Not 100% Sure What a VPN Is? Here’s a Quick Intro
If you’re new to VPNs, or you already heard of them but are not completely sure how they work, don’t skip this section. We’ll do our best to explain what a VPN is and how it works in very simple terms.
To start off, a VPN is an online tool that hides your IP address and encrypts your traffic. By “tool,” we just mean it’s an app you download and install on your iPhone.
Now, here’s how a VPN “hides” your IP address:
- When you visit a site without a VPN, your connection takes this path: Your iPhone à ISP Network à Website. The site sees connection requests coming from your iPhone, so it sees your IP address.
- When you visit a site with a VPN, however, the connection will look like this: Your iPhone à ISP Network à VPN Server a Website. The VPN server acts as a middleman between you and the site you visit.
- Because of that, any site you visit while connected to a VPN will see your connection requests coming from the VPN server, not your iPhone. So it will only see the server’s IP address, while your address stays “hidden.”
It’s pretty simple. The VPN app and the server you connect to negotiate and establish a secure connection between them (often called a VPN tunnel). Any data that passes through it is encrypted end-to-end. That means only the app and server can encrypt and decrypt it. That’s basically why nobody can spy on your traffic when you use a VPN.
What about the encryption part?
So Why Should You Use a VPN for iPhone?
Here are four good reasons to head to the iTunes store and download a VPN app:
1. Unblock All the Online Content You Want
Ever tried visiting a site or watching a video only to be hit with a message saying something along the lines of “Sorry, this content isn’t available in your area.”?
That’s geo-blocking in action – content control technology that lets websites blacklist your access to certain web pages if you’re not from a whitelisted geo-location. And all sites know your geo-location because they can see your IP address, which tells them:
- What country you are from.
- What city you are from.
- Who your ISP is.
- What your ZIP code is.
Well, since a VPN can hide your IP address from all the sites you visit, it can help you bypass their geo-blocks. Just use a VPN server in a country where the content you want to see is available, and you’re good to go.
So if you wanted to binge shows from the US Netflix library, you’d have to use a VPN server in the US.
2. Secure Your Traffic on Public Networks
Here’s the thing about public WiFi – it’s extremely convenient, but extremely dangerous too. Many networks don’t even bother using encryption, so all your traffic is exposed. That means any run-of-the-mill hacker could use packet sniffers to steal sensitive data from you (like login credentials, for example).
Not to mention that a hacker could easily set up their own fake network, and trick your iPhone into connecting to it. If that happens, they can monitor all your online communications.
If you use a VPN, though, you need not worry about that. It encrypts your traffic end-to-end, so nobody can compromise it – not even on networks with no encryption or fake hotspots.
3. Avoid Some Phishing Attacks
By encrypting your traffic, VPNs offer some level of protection against a form of MITM (Man-in-the-Middle) attacks – specifically when hackers try to redirect your connection requests to phishing sites.
Because your data packets are encrypted end-to-end, cybercriminals can’t use packet sniffers to find out what sites you’re visiting. Without that information, they can’t successfully redirect your requests to fake sites.
After all, if you wanted to visit Twitter, and you ended up on a PayPal-looking site, you’d be pretty suspicious. You might even check the URL bar and see the address looks something like this: “paipaL.xy.org.” At that point, you’d be able to tell you’re on a phishing site.
Besides that, some VPNs also offer firewall-like features that automatically block your connections to malicious domains. So hackers’ redirects wouldn’t even work because the VPN will automatically stop your connection to their fake sites.
IMPORTANT: VPNs can’t protect you from all phishing attacks. So please use antivirus protection (like Avira Mobile Security), password managers (like 1Password), and enable 2FA/MFA on all your accounts.
4. Stop Bandwidth Throttling
That’s when your ISP intentionally slows down your speeds because you’re using too much data on a web app or site. They can do that because they can see all your traffic.
With a VPN for iPhone, that’s no longer a problem. Here’s why:
- Your ISP can’t see what sites you visit. They’ll only see the VPN server’s IP address.
- The VPN encrypts all your traffic, stopping your ISP from analyzing your data packets. So they won’t know what web apps and web pages you spend data on.
Without that valuable information, they won’t be able to selectively throttle your bandwidth anymore.
Need Help Finding a Good iPhone VPN?
We know how hard that is – what with 100+ VPN services on the market.
Instead of doing hours of tiresome research, we recommend checking out some VPNs for iPhones here. It’s an easy-to-scan guide from ProPrivacy that compares the best iPhone VPNs on the market.
Why Else Do You Use iPhone VPNs?
Tell us other reasons why someone should use a VPN on their iPhone in the comments. Also, if you have other information about using VPNs on iPhones, please let us know.