<firstimage=”//static.makeuseof.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/ibvpngiveaway.jpg” />In the last year or so, I think we’ve all come to realise that our internet communications are really quite insecure. Using a public WiFi connection? FireSheep will easily grab your social network network passwords in seconds, giving anyone on the same network instant access to your entire life.
There are a lot of things that can happen to you too if you don’t secure yourself online. You have a reason to be scared, and there’s no point in lying to you about it. But this week, we’re giving 25 six-month subscriptions to ibVPN to totally secure your internet activity.
What a VPN does for you
Put simply, VPN creates a secure tunnel between your computer and remote location. Anything you communicate will be encrypted and secured between those two points – so the government can’t read your tweets, the national firewall won’t be able to see what pages your viewing or block them, and someone on the public WiFi won’t be able to grab your passwords. Of course, every user on the internet must have an IP address, and usually it’s quite easy to grab the details of who was on that IP at a precise time from your ISP. With a VPN though, your IP will be in a remote location on ibVPN’s servers. If a government agency was to try and subpoena those records, they would find none, because none are kept.
A pleasant bonus to having your IP address located in a different country is that you will also be able to watch streaming video services such as BBC iPlayer (UK) or Hulu (USA) that are normally restricted to viewers within that country.
Types of VPN
There are three main types of VPN, and ibVPN offers all of them. A PPTP connection is the easiest to set up, but not 100% secure. To simply get an IP address in America for Hulu though, it is sufficient. If you’d like top security, OpenVPN is the best choice. Personally, I’d suggest OpenVPN for all your needs, and this is how I tested ibVPN.
On a Windows machine, setting up your ibVPN is a quick download away. Mac OS X is a little harder, but there are full instructions on the site. To connect to your ibVPN, right click on the new taskbar icon and choose a server.
ibVPN offers a choice of servers which will show as your physical location, and you can switch if you find one is a little slow. When the icon is red, your connection is insecure; when it’s green you are safe.
Connected to the US2 server, I was able to get a reasonable 1 MB/s download and 0.6 MB/s upload speed. While the download speed is clearly going to be lower than my regular internet speed, it is more than useable.
I tested by trying to access Hulu again, and sure enough I was able to watch the latest episodes streaming with no speed problems or jittery video.
We’re giving away 25 premium six-month subscriptions to ibVPN and here’s how you can win one.
How do I win a copy?
It’s simple, just follow the instructions.
Step 1: Fill in the giveaway form
Please fill in the form with your real name and email address so that we can get in touch if you are chosen as a winner. Click here if you can’t view the form.
The giveaway code required to activate the form is available from Friday’s newsletter or on our Facebook page.
Step 2: Share!
You’re almost done. Now, all that’s left to do is to share the post. There are 2 options to choose from or you can do both!
Like it on Facebook
Or share it on Twitter
This giveaway begins now and ends Friday, February 25th at 2100hrs PST. The winners will be selected at random and informed via email.
Spread the word to your friends and have fun!
[UPDATE] And the winners are …
- Will Reichard
- Shaun Bell
- Jeff R
- Elise Schuchman
- Antanas Antaso
- Angelo Cruz
- Aimee Lee
- Colin Ripley
- Dhruv Shah
- Fabian Falatyk
- Graves De Armond
- Joseph Gorman
- Lashawnda Brown
- Matt Coolbaugh
- Muki Dumbeldor
- Renato H. Gatdula
- Saurabh Pandya
- Ted Betts
Congratulations! Your new account details will be sent to you via email next week.