The best VPNs of 2023 (including free VPN services), tested for privacy on iPhone, Android and PC

Archbishop Jerome Lloyd OSJVPosted by

VPNs (virtual private networks) encrypt your internet traffic and can protect you from hackers on public Wi-Fi. Here are this year’s best

Using a VPN (Virtual Private Network) can be a vital tool in today’s mobile, remote-working world, offering a secure and private way to connect to the internet even on public Wi-Fi. 

VPNs used to be largely used for business, extending a secure private network across a public network to allow people to log in to the office remotely. But they are now widely used by individuals for travel, entertainment and more. 

Most VPN software is simple to use, even if you’re not particularly technical, and when you subscribe to a VPN service, you can usually install a version for laptopstablets, Android and Apple smartphonesChromebooks, web-linked platforms including smart TVs and even games consoles.

How do VPNs work?

When you use VPN software, you typically pick a location on a map or a list and then connect to an encrypted server there.  When you are connected, the VPN hides your device’s unique address (IP) by routing requests through that server, meaning your browsing activity and IP address are encrypted and safe from prying eyes.

VPNs are sometimes misused to access blocked streaming services — for instance, to watch British TV from abroad by convincing the providers that you’re in Britain when you are not. This is against the terms of service of most streaming services, such as Netflix. Using a VPN can also have odd side-effects, such as your PC offering a weather forecast for Poland, or seeing adverts in Dutch. You can disconnect and use a normal connection whenever you want to. 

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The best VPNs of 2023 (including free VPN services), tested for privacy on iPhone, Android and PC

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