Do you use a VPN?

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
Northern Flicker
Posts: 10759
Joined: Fri Apr 10, 2015 12:29 am

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by Northern Flicker »

roamingzebra wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 4:55 pm
Northern Flicker wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 3:24 pm
roamingzebra wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 3:21 pm
Absolutely not.

I purchase a gift card with cash, then pay for the VPN with the gift card.
And connect to the VPN from where? The VPN has the IP address from the machine you use to connect.
I have a dynamic IP address.

And, I can change it at will by unplugging the computer from power and ethernet and I have a brand new IP address several hours later.
So an entity you don’t want to have your connection data needs to get data from both your ISP (your assigned dynamic IP addresses) and the VPN service (IP addresses connected to) instead of just getting the data from the ISP.

But even that may not be necessary. How many users of the VPN service you use have ISP addresses selected from the pool you are part of with your ISP? It probably is not difficult for the VPN to disambiguate that and aggregate your connections as belonging to the same person.
My postings are my opinion, and never should be construed as a recommendation to buy, sell, or hold any particular investment.
tj
Posts: 6132
Joined: Thu Dec 24, 2009 12:10 am

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by tj »

TECHCON wrote: Sat Jun 18, 2022 11:08 am
sandan wrote: Sat Jun 18, 2022 10:53 am Primarily to watch sporting events.
+2 For watching sporting events
So, you use VPN to violate copyright law? 🤦🏼‍♂️
typical.investor
Posts: 3284
Joined: Mon Jun 11, 2018 3:17 am

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by typical.investor »

tj wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 8:29 pm
TECHCON wrote: Sat Jun 18, 2022 11:08 am
sandan wrote: Sat Jun 18, 2022 10:53 am Primarily to watch sporting events.
+2 For watching sporting events
So, you use VPN to violate copyright law? 🤦🏼‍♂️
I kind of find that accusation offensive and rather ill-informed.

I use a VPN to watch sports and point out that many services have TOS ('terms of service') that allow for traveling. The one I use most says a subscription must be obtained while a US resident (it was) and that then will be your Covered Territory.

It also says "Any geographic restrictions will be based on your subscription’s Covered Territory and the geographic location where you are attempting to access the Paramount+ Service from.".

I can see nothing in their TOS stating that I am prohibited from using a VPN to access the internet from a different geographic location.

So in what way am I violating copyright law? Please explain your accusation. I understand LadyGeek is banning comments related to using VPNs to watch sports. From a legal standpoint I maintain I am doing nothing wrong. Of course, I am watching soccer and not MLB which has particularly strict blackout rules.

Speaking of MLB, they state in large letters that you can “watch every out-of-market game regular season game live or on demand on over 400 supported devices.” and then in tiny letters state that that really isn't true and use your IP location to not honor their statement. My understanding is that "bait-and-switch" is a type of fraud. So who is in the wrong there?

Anyway, the analogy is that expats can buy mutual funds in their 401k because the company plan is located in the US. This is despite the fact that mutual funds agreements prohibit distribution to non-US residents which expats are. Yet, nobody on this site would object to someone buying mutual funds via their 401k plan in the States. But if content if restricted by geolocation, and you view the content via a company in that location, then it is wrong. Curious and inconsistent.
typical.investor
Posts: 3284
Joined: Mon Jun 11, 2018 3:17 am

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by typical.investor »

heywhoathere wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 8:11 pm
OnTrack wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 7:44 pm
heywhoathere wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 5:25 pm
roamingzebra wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 3:21 pm
candb wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 3:13 pm
So you just decide to give all that information to the VPN provider instead?
Absolutely not.

I purchase a gift card with cash, then pay for the VPN with the gift card.

Some VPN providers accept cash through the mail (not something I'd do) and some except cryptocurrency. I know nothing about the latter, but from what I gather, it allows anonymity.
Paying for a VPN with a gift card doesn't stop the VPN provider from being able to see the domain names you're connecting to.

The specific argument about your ISP seeing domain names makes no sense to me. All of that information is found in the TLS handshake, so it's not like your VPN provider doesn't see the exact same info that your ISP would.

The fundamental question I have is - if you don't trust your ISP with this information, why do you trust a VPN provider with the information?
Several articles that I have read say that once the VPN tunnel is set up, everything is sent through the encrypted tunnel so the ISP wouldn't be able to see what sites the user visits.
Correct, although that wasn't my point. My point is that you're shifting the visibility of your traffic from the ISP to the VPN provider. If you trust the VPN provider then that's your decision. I'd argue that you have just as little visibility into what your VPN provider is doing with your data as you do with your ISP, so at that point it's mostly a matter of "faith". Most providers that I've looked at (that actually provide this info) are based in countries with fairly lax cybersecurity laws, so it's not like you have much recourse if you find that they're breaching their terms of service and collecting data that they claim they aren't.
Sure, but many VPNs are real businesses that don't want to lose their customer base.

I use NordVPN and in 2018 a 3rd party datacenter they use was revealed in an audit to have a security risk. To this day, it's always brought it in reviews for which VPN to get. They are actively looking for flaws and took steps to truly fix the problem.

In any case, no data was said to have been lost but if they were breaching their terms of service, they'd be out of business I think for sure.
RetiredAL
Posts: 2200
Joined: Tue Jun 06, 2017 12:09 am
Location: SF Bay Area

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by RetiredAL »

heywhoathere wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 8:11 pm
...... you're shifting the visibility of your traffic from the ISP to the VPN provider. If you trust the VPN provider then that's your decision.
A few years ago, the FBI and DEA setup a VPN based messaging system and convinced a lot of drug traffickers and big-time dealers to use it as a "secure" system for messaging.
tj
Posts: 6132
Joined: Thu Dec 24, 2009 12:10 am

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by tj »

typical.investor wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 9:02 pm
tj wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 8:29 pm
TECHCON wrote: Sat Jun 18, 2022 11:08 am
sandan wrote: Sat Jun 18, 2022 10:53 am Primarily to watch sporting events.
+2 For watching sporting events
So, you use VPN to violate copyright law? 🤦🏼‍♂️
I kind of find that accusation offensive and rather ill-informed.

I use a VPN to watch sports and point out that many services have TOS ('terms of service') that allow for traveling. The one I use most says a subscription must be obtained while a US resident (it was) and that then will be your Covered Territory.

It also says "Any geographic restrictions will be based on your subscription’s Covered Territory and the geographic location where you are attempting to access the Paramount+ Service from.".

I can see nothing in their TOS stating that I am prohibited from using a VPN to access the internet from a different geographic location.

So in what way am I violating copyright law? Please explain your accusation. I understand LadyGeek is banning comments related to using VPNs to watch sports. From a legal standpoint I maintain I am doing nothing wrong. Of course, I am watching soccer and not MLB which has particularly strict blackout rules.

Speaking of MLB, they state in large letters that you can “watch every out-of-market game regular season game live or on demand on over 400 supported devices.” and then in tiny letters state that that really isn't true and use your IP location to not honor their statement. My understanding is that "bait-and-switch" is a type of fraud. So who is in the wrong there?

Anyway, the analogy is that expats can buy mutual funds in their 401k because the company plan is located in the US. This is despite the fact that mutual funds agreements prohibit distribution to non-US residents which expats are. Yet, nobody on this site would object to someone buying mutual funds via their 401k plan in the States. But if content if restricted by geolocation, and you view the content via a company in that location, then it is wrong. Curious and inconsistent.
If you are out of the country and use a VPN to watch a US based stream, then you are depriving whatever entity paid for the local rights to that spotting event in that particular country from generating revenue from you.
rockstar
Posts: 3305
Joined: Mon Feb 03, 2020 6:51 pm

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by rockstar »

RetiredAL wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 2:52 pm
Chuckles960 wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 2:07 pm
roamingzebra wrote: Sat Jun 18, 2022 6:52 pmI don't think there is a technical reason for the following, but before I started using a VPN, my internet service would go down multiple times a year. Since using a VPN exclusively (for four or five years), there has not been a single day where I have not had internet service...
A possible "technical reason" is that your internet service did not go down but your nameserver did. To connect to the VPN you would not need the nameserver, and once connected you would use a different nameserver.
+1

Years ago, I set my DNS to include a second server due to drop-outs. Neither are my ISP's DNS.

I use FireFox and it now has an internal HTTPS DNS function which means it usually does not use the regular Windows DNS.

Whoever you get your regular DNS from can always see what addresses you are requesting and by that infer who you are connecting to.
I setup a local dns cache at my home using unbound. I find it speeds up streaming services such as HULU. No idea why.

You can also use this tool to find faster DNS for failover:

https://www.grc.com/dns/benchmark.htm

I'd love to use a VPN, but I have no idea what service is reliable and fast.
Marseille07
Posts: 10099
Joined: Fri Nov 06, 2020 1:41 pm

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by Marseille07 »

tj wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 9:35 pm If you are out of the country and use a VPN to watch a US based stream, then you are depriving whatever entity paid for the local rights to that spotting event in that particular country from generating revenue from you.
So...? How is that illegal or violates ToS in any way? Are you seriously saying that you have to go hit the local sports bar to watch sports events and you can't watch a US based stream you pay for from your hotel room?
US & FM (5% seed) | 300K Cash
typical.investor
Posts: 3284
Joined: Mon Jun 11, 2018 3:17 am

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by typical.investor »

tj wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 9:35 pm
typical.investor wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 9:02 pm
tj wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 8:29 pm
TECHCON wrote: Sat Jun 18, 2022 11:08 am
sandan wrote: Sat Jun 18, 2022 10:53 am Primarily to watch sporting events.
+2 For watching sporting events
So, you use VPN to violate copyright law? 🤦🏼‍♂️
I kind of find that accusation offensive and rather ill-informed.

I use a VPN to watch sports and point out that many services have TOS ('terms of service') that allow for traveling. The one I use most says a subscription must be obtained while a US resident (it was) and that then will be your Covered Territory.

It also says "Any geographic restrictions will be based on your subscription’s Covered Territory and the geographic location where you are attempting to access the Paramount+ Service from.".

I can see nothing in their TOS stating that I am prohibited from using a VPN to access the internet from a different geographic location.

So in what way am I violating copyright law? Please explain your accusation. I understand LadyGeek is banning comments related to using VPNs to watch sports. From a legal standpoint I maintain I am doing nothing wrong. Of course, I am watching soccer and not MLB which has particularly strict blackout rules.

Speaking of MLB, they state in large letters that you can “watch every out-of-market game regular season game live or on demand on over 400 supported devices.” and then in tiny letters state that that really isn't true and use your IP location to not honor their statement. My understanding is that "bait-and-switch" is a type of fraud. So who is in the wrong there?

Anyway, the analogy is that expats can buy mutual funds in their 401k because the company plan is located in the US. This is despite the fact that mutual funds agreements prohibit distribution to non-US residents which expats are. Yet, nobody on this site would object to someone buying mutual funds via their 401k plan in the States. But if content if restricted by geolocation, and you view the content via a company in that location, then it is wrong. Curious and inconsistent.
If you are out of the country and use a VPN to watch a US based stream, then you are depriving whatever entity paid for the local rights to that spotting event in that particular country from generating revenue from you.
I pay a streaming service for the right to view content on their platform. That streaming service pays the sporting event to show it.

If content providers wish to allocate my revenue based on my location on say any given Tuesday, they need to revamp their system. Look, I travel. If I am charged for a month of service, I am going to use a month’s service.

Why should I have to pay for simultaneous service in multiple countries? I only have two eyes and can’t watch it in both places at once.

In fact, travel travel is permissible in many TOS.

I paid for the content I am viewing and I will view it from wherever I am. Per the my TOS, there appears to be nothing wrong with my usage and I’d politely ask you kindly refrain from labeling me a law breaker. People who steal, kill, harm children, and deal drugs do that. Sorry, am just not in the lawbreaking category here and I don’t appreciate the false accusation.

If you can refer to a legal ruling on the subject, I'd be happy to become as informed as possible so as not to inadvertently do something wrong.
Last edited by typical.investor on Sun Jun 19, 2022 10:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
tj
Posts: 6132
Joined: Thu Dec 24, 2009 12:10 am

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by tj »

typical.investor wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 10:09 pm
tj wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 9:35 pm
typical.investor wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 9:02 pm
tj wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 8:29 pm
TECHCON wrote: Sat Jun 18, 2022 11:08 am +2 For watching sporting events
So, you use VPN to violate copyright law? 🤦🏼‍♂️
I kind of find that accusation offensive and rather ill-informed.

I use a VPN to watch sports and point out that many services have TOS ('terms of service') that allow for traveling. The one I use most says a subscription must be obtained while a US resident (it was) and that then will be your Covered Territory.

It also says "Any geographic restrictions will be based on your subscription’s Covered Territory and the geographic location where you are attempting to access the Paramount+ Service from.".

I can see nothing in their TOS stating that I am prohibited from using a VPN to access the internet from a different geographic location.

So in what way am I violating copyright law? Please explain your accusation. I understand LadyGeek is banning comments related to using VPNs to watch sports. From a legal standpoint I maintain I am doing nothing wrong. Of course, I am watching soccer and not MLB which has particularly strict blackout rules.

Speaking of MLB, they state in large letters that you can “watch every out-of-market game regular season game live or on demand on over 400 supported devices.” and then in tiny letters state that that really isn't true and use your IP location to not honor their statement. My understanding is that "bait-and-switch" is a type of fraud. So who is in the wrong there?

Anyway, the analogy is that expats can buy mutual funds in their 401k because the company plan is located in the US. This is despite the fact that mutual funds agreements prohibit distribution to non-US residents which expats are. Yet, nobody on this site would object to someone buying mutual funds via their 401k plan in the States. But if content if restricted by geolocation, and you view the content via a company in that location, then it is wrong. Curious and inconsistent.
If you are out of the country and use a VPN to watch a US based stream, then you are depriving whatever entity paid for the local rights to that spotting event in that particular country from generating revenue from you.
I pay a streaming service for the right to view content on their platform. That streaming service pays the sporting event to show it.

If content providers wish to allocate my revenue based on my location on say any given Tuesday, they need to revamp their system. Look, I travel. If I am charged for a month of service, I am going to use a month’s service.

Why should I have to pay for simultaneous service in multiple countries? I only have two eyes and can’t watch it in both places at once.

In fact, travel travel is permissible in many TOS.

I paid for the content I am viewing and I will view it from wherever I am. Per the my TOS, there appears to be nothing wrong with my usage and I’d politely ask you kindly refrain from labeling me a law breaker. People who steal, kill, harm children, and deal drugs do that. Sorry, am just not in the lawbreaking category here and I don’t appreciate the false accusation.
If you need to use a VPN to bypass the geographic restrictions of the local area, then you are presumably violating the terms of services and "stealing", otherwise there would be no need for the VPN. Seems pretty clear to me.
tj
Posts: 6132
Joined: Thu Dec 24, 2009 12:10 am

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by tj »

Marseille07 wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 10:08 pm
tj wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 9:35 pm If you are out of the country and use a VPN to watch a US based stream, then you are depriving whatever entity paid for the local rights to that spotting event in that particular country from generating revenue from you.
So...? How is that illegal or violates ToS in any way? Are you seriously saying that you have to go hit the local sports bar to watch sports events and you can't watch a US based stream you pay for from your hotel room?
If you can't watch on your hotel room TV or stream it without a VPN, then yeah, that would be the legal way to consume the content.
User avatar
slowandsteadywins
Posts: 220
Joined: Tue Dec 20, 2016 3:13 pm

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by slowandsteadywins »

This is a resource I often reference when considering privacy guidance to tools and applications, including VPNs:

https://www.privacyguides.org/vpn/

TL;DR they recommend:
- Proton VPN
- IVPN
- Mullvad

Mullvad is my personal choice. I also use Proton for their email and calendar service.
"Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence; Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent." | -Calvin Coolidge
typical.investor
Posts: 3284
Joined: Mon Jun 11, 2018 3:17 am

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by typical.investor »

tj wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 10:12 pm
typical.investor wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 10:09 pm
tj wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 9:35 pm
typical.investor wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 9:02 pm
tj wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 8:29 pm

So, you use VPN to violate copyright law? 🤦🏼‍♂️
I kind of find that accusation offensive and rather ill-informed.

I use a VPN to watch sports and point out that many services have TOS ('terms of service') that allow for traveling. The one I use most says a subscription must be obtained while a US resident (it was) and that then will be your Covered Territory.

It also says "Any geographic restrictions will be based on your subscription’s Covered Territory and the geographic location where you are attempting to access the Paramount+ Service from.".

I can see nothing in their TOS stating that I am prohibited from using a VPN to access the internet from a different geographic location.

So in what way am I violating copyright law? Please explain your accusation. I understand LadyGeek is banning comments related to using VPNs to watch sports. From a legal standpoint I maintain I am doing nothing wrong. Of course, I am watching soccer and not MLB which has particularly strict blackout rules.

Speaking of MLB, they state in large letters that you can “watch every out-of-market game regular season game live or on demand on over 400 supported devices.” and then in tiny letters state that that really isn't true and use your IP location to not honor their statement. My understanding is that "bait-and-switch" is a type of fraud. So who is in the wrong there?

Anyway, the analogy is that expats can buy mutual funds in their 401k because the company plan is located in the US. This is despite the fact that mutual funds agreements prohibit distribution to non-US residents which expats are. Yet, nobody on this site would object to someone buying mutual funds via their 401k plan in the States. But if content if restricted by geolocation, and you view the content via a company in that location, then it is wrong. Curious and inconsistent.
If you are out of the country and use a VPN to watch a US based stream, then you are depriving whatever entity paid for the local rights to that spotting event in that particular country from generating revenue from you.
I pay a streaming service for the right to view content on their platform. That streaming service pays the sporting event to show it.

If content providers wish to allocate my revenue based on my location on say any given Tuesday, they need to revamp their system. Look, I travel. If I am charged for a month of service, I am going to use a month’s service.

Why should I have to pay for simultaneous service in multiple countries? I only have two eyes and can’t watch it in both places at once.

In fact, travel travel is permissible in many TOS.

I paid for the content I am viewing and I will view it from wherever I am. Per the my TOS, there appears to be nothing wrong with my usage and I’d politely ask you kindly refrain from labeling me a law breaker. People who steal, kill, harm children, and deal drugs do that. Sorry, am just not in the lawbreaking category here and I don’t appreciate the false accusation.
If you need to use a VPN to bypass the geographic restrictions of the local area, then you are presumably violating the terms of services and "stealing", otherwise there would be no need for the VPN. Seems pretty clear to me
If using a service I paid for is 'stealing', then indeed I am a bad, bad boy.

I also have to use a VPN to access US Gov. sites like the health care marketplace and to order groceries for a disabled relative in another country. I suppose I am some kind of international spy or fugitive or something. Whatever. I sense a reality break here.
Last edited by typical.investor on Sun Jun 19, 2022 10:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
tj
Posts: 6132
Joined: Thu Dec 24, 2009 12:10 am

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by tj »

typical.investor wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 10:18 pm
tj wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 10:12 pm
typical.investor wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 10:09 pm
tj wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 9:35 pm
typical.investor wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 9:02 pm

I kind of find that accusation offensive and rather ill-informed.

I use a VPN to watch sports and point out that many services have TOS ('terms of service') that allow for traveling. The one I use most says a subscription must be obtained while a US resident (it was) and that then will be your Covered Territory.

It also says "Any geographic restrictions will be based on your subscription’s Covered Territory and the geographic location where you are attempting to access the Paramount+ Service from.".

I can see nothing in their TOS stating that I am prohibited from using a VPN to access the internet from a different geographic location.

So in what way am I violating copyright law? Please explain your accusation. I understand LadyGeek is banning comments related to using VPNs to watch sports. From a legal standpoint I maintain I am doing nothing wrong. Of course, I am watching soccer and not MLB which has particularly strict blackout rules.

Speaking of MLB, they state in large letters that you can “watch every out-of-market game regular season game live or on demand on over 400 supported devices.” and then in tiny letters state that that really isn't true and use your IP location to not honor their statement. My understanding is that "bait-and-switch" is a type of fraud. So who is in the wrong there?

Anyway, the analogy is that expats can buy mutual funds in their 401k because the company plan is located in the US. This is despite the fact that mutual funds agreements prohibit distribution to non-US residents which expats are. Yet, nobody on this site would object to someone buying mutual funds via their 401k plan in the States. But if content if restricted by geolocation, and you view the content via a company in that location, then it is wrong. Curious and inconsistent.
If you are out of the country and use a VPN to watch a US based stream, then you are depriving whatever entity paid for the local rights to that spotting event in that particular country from generating revenue from you.
I pay a streaming service for the right to view content on their platform. That streaming service pays the sporting event to show it.

If content providers wish to allocate my revenue based on my location on say any given Tuesday, they need to revamp their system. Look, I travel. If I am charged for a month of service, I am going to use a month’s service.

Why should I have to pay for simultaneous service in multiple countries? I only have two eyes and can’t watch it in both places at once.

In fact, travel travel is permissible in many TOS.

I paid for the content I am viewing and I will view it from wherever I am. Per the my TOS, there appears to be nothing wrong with my usage and I’d politely ask you kindly refrain from labeling me a law breaker. People who steal, kill, harm children, and deal drugs do that. Sorry, am just not in the lawbreaking category here and I don’t appreciate the false accusation.
If you need to use a VPN to bypass the geographic restrictions of the local area, then you are presumably violating the terms of services and "stealing", otherwise there would be no need for the VPN. Seems pretty clear to me.
If using a service I paid for is 'stealing', then indeed I am a bad, bad boy.
You paid to use it with the restrictions the site enforces without VPN. You chose to bypass those restrictions because you apparently feel entitled to do that.
typical.investor
Posts: 3284
Joined: Mon Jun 11, 2018 3:17 am

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by typical.investor »

tj wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 10:21 pm
typical.investor wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 10:18 pm
tj wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 10:12 pm
typical.investor wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 10:09 pm
tj wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 9:35 pm

If you are out of the country and use a VPN to watch a US based stream, then you are depriving whatever entity paid for the local rights to that spotting event in that particular country from generating revenue from you.
I pay a streaming service for the right to view content on their platform. That streaming service pays the sporting event to show it.

If content providers wish to allocate my revenue based on my location on say any given Tuesday, they need to revamp their system. Look, I travel. If I am charged for a month of service, I am going to use a month’s service.

Why should I have to pay for simultaneous service in multiple countries? I only have two eyes and can’t watch it in both places at once.

In fact, travel travel is permissible in many TOS.

I paid for the content I am viewing and I will view it from wherever I am. Per the my TOS, there appears to be nothing wrong with my usage and I’d politely ask you kindly refrain from labeling me a law breaker. People who steal, kill, harm children, and deal drugs do that. Sorry, am just not in the lawbreaking category here and I don’t appreciate the false accusation.
If you need to use a VPN to bypass the geographic restrictions of the local area, then you are presumably violating the terms of services and "stealing", otherwise there would be no need for the VPN. Seems pretty clear to me.
If using a service I paid for is 'stealing', then indeed I am a bad, bad boy.
You paid to use it with the restrictions the site enforces without VPN. You chose to bypass those restrictions because you apparently feel entitled to do that.
In any case, even if I were violating the terms of service, and having read them I do not believe I am, merely violating the terms of service on an internet site does not make it a crime (except in countries where VPN usage is outlawed of course). You can not show a court ruling demonstrating it is. And as such, I find your labeling me a criminal for 'stealing' to be unjustified. I have broken no laws. I have paid for the content. I am not engaged in any type of piracy.
User avatar
Rob5TCP
Posts: 3686
Joined: Tue Jun 05, 2007 7:34 pm
Location: New York, NY

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by Rob5TCP »

YoungSisyphus wrote: Sat Jun 18, 2022 4:33 pm
hoofaman wrote: Sat Jun 18, 2022 4:13 pm For those who use a VPN while at home to access the internet, why do you do this?
Because I prefer to route my traffic through a VPN vs my ISP seeing everything I do.

Also because many times privacy focused addons break your internet experience, where I haven’t had as much problems on a VPN.

Because changing geographies can be advantageous depending on where I browse. I often use a German VPN and websites tend to give me more privacy options on cookies than if I browse directly from the US - I am a fan of GDPR. Product offers and availability can be limited depending on where you are (pricing and streaming services).

I’d prefer to keep the profile of ‘me’ less defined than every single company online that is trying to get their hooks into my online patterns - browser or otherwise.

It’s also at times fun to see what different countries are targeted for from an advertising perspective.

And probably most simply: because I think privacy is important.
+1
roamingzebra
Posts: 400
Joined: Thu Apr 22, 2021 3:29 pm

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by roamingzebra »

heywhoathere wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 5:25 pm
roamingzebra wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 3:21 pm
candb wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 3:13 pm
roamingzebra wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 3:03 pm
OnTrack wrote: Sun Jun 19, 2022 12:48 pm A number of replies state that VPNs are not needed because most websites are now encrypted. However, the ISP can still figure out the domain name of each site their customers visit.
Exactly.

Many domain names contain clues if not outright identification of the content of the website. Until websites start using domain names like www .random.com, an individual browsing the web is going to be telegraphing their personal interests, political affiliations, vehicle type, health issues, etc.
So you just decide to give all that information to the VPN provider instead?
Absolutely not.

I purchase a gift card with cash, then pay for the VPN with the gift card.

Some VPN providers accept cash through the mail (not something I'd do) and some except cryptocurrency. I know nothing about the latter, but from what I gather, it allows anonymity.
Paying for a VPN with a gift card doesn't stop the VPN provider from being able to see the domain names you're connecting to.

The specific argument about your ISP seeing domain names makes no sense to me. All of that information is found in the TLS handshake, so it's not like your VPN provider doesn't see the exact same info that your ISP would.
I think one of us is misunderstanding the other. ;)

Here's my situation:

My ISP knows who I am because I pay them monthly with a credit card or check. They have my name, phone number, address, and other personally identifying information (PII). They even have my birth date, but not really, since I gave them a fake one, but I digress... Basically, I don't like having my ISP associate my browsing history with my PII and further making money on it by selling it.

By contrast, to obtain my VPN, I go to the supermarket or drugstore and pay cold cash (actual dollar bills) for whatever gift card is available and accepted by the VPN provider -- Home Depot, Target, Walmart, etc. Since I'm paying cash, there is no personally identifying information associated with the transaction.

Then I use that gift card to pay the VPN provider, and when I enter the gift card number I am given login credentials for the VPN. In essence, I have set up an anonymous account.

Sure, the VPN provider then has my starting IP address when I make that transaction. That's not a big deal for me as I'm neither a criminal nor a political dissident hiding from the government. But that starting IP address is all they have -- they don't know my actual identity -- and I can immediately change the IP address using the method described in my earlier post.

Again, my threat model is not hiding from the FBI or any other entity that would want to expend resources to find out who I am. If I were a criminal or political activist in an authoritarian regime, I would have additional layers of protection and not just rely on a VPN to hide my identity.
wander
Posts: 4168
Joined: Sat Oct 04, 2008 9:10 am

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by wander »

Besides VPN, I think free Email services also monitor your lives so you may need to do something about it.
Ricola
Posts: 795
Joined: Sat Apr 26, 2008 10:38 am

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by Ricola »

When overseas can't one just use a browser that has a built-in VPN such as Opera or maybe Brave?
Marseille07
Posts: 10099
Joined: Fri Nov 06, 2020 1:41 pm

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by Marseille07 »

Ricola wrote: Mon Jun 20, 2022 11:16 am When overseas can't one just use a browser that has a built-in VPN such as Opera or maybe Brave?
Well...some posters seem to have issues if you use a VPN service you pay for. I'm sure they also have issues if you leverage a built-in VPN in your browser.
US & FM (5% seed) | 300K Cash
typical.investor
Posts: 3284
Joined: Mon Jun 11, 2018 3:17 am

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by typical.investor »

Ricola wrote: Mon Jun 20, 2022 11:16 am When overseas can't one just use a browser that has a built-in VPN such as Opera or maybe Brave?
Use for what? Protection on public wifi? Sure.

To order a birthday cake delivered to a relative from Publix in the States? No and no for other sites that use geolocation to restrict access.

That is as I don't believe those browsers can change your geolocation. When you use a VPN service, your IP address will show as the IP address of the VPN server you are connected to because it is connected at that IP.

This is why I make my analogy of 401k contributions. Mutual funds can't be sold to non-US residents by distribution agreement. Yet, expats working for a US company that offers a 401k plan are able to make contributions because the plan is set up in the US.

Geolocation strikes me as similar. You aren't physically in the US but the VPN company you are using has a server that is. And bam, you can order a cake for a relative from a grocery store that is using geolocation to probably avoid traffic they think is unlikely to be customers.
There are no legal rulings stating use of a VPN to legitimately access content (not stolen and shared, not pirated) is illegal. There is no law stating that using a VPN even if it violated a sites terms of service is illegal.

Yet, on this site I am repeatedly called a criminal for ordering a relative a birthday cake and other activities that are clearly not illegal. It's weird you know.

Anyway, geolocating gets used for a lot of purposes and it's not always clear that it's the reason for the failure. If overseas and a site won't load you might try a VPN that can change your location. It's rather acute if you have a dependent in the States you are responsible for. That Boglehead's accuse me of being a criminal for caring for a disabled loved one seems rather absurd in my opinion, but yes I am knowingly breaking the TOS on many sites because I have to. And I don't believe there is anything illegal about it after having searched for rulings. Please send links if you have any.
Cunobelinus
Posts: 232
Joined: Tue Dec 04, 2012 5:31 pm

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by Cunobelinus »

An EU-based company will tend to have more stringent rules surrounding the collection and selling/distribution of your information than a U.S.-based company. Same applies to a company based out of Turkey or Hungary as compared to Australia. The laws surrounding collection and distribution of customer information vary based on the country.

As a U.S.-based ISP has no incentive to NOT market your information.

It's a personal decision on what you think is most right for you.
Marseille07
Posts: 10099
Joined: Fri Nov 06, 2020 1:41 pm

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by Marseille07 »

typical.investor wrote: Mon Jun 20, 2022 6:46 pm Yet, on this site I am repeatedly called a criminal for ordering a relative a birthday cake and other activities that are clearly not illegal. It's weird you know.
It is weird, especially when some ToS are unreasonable to begin with. Streaming sports getting called out I understand, but restricting banking access outside of the US? Pure nonsense. Americans traveling abroad have legitimate banking needs, and if they unreasonably deny such access then I don't see anything wrong using a VPN for that.
US & FM (5% seed) | 300K Cash
User avatar
Voltaire2.0
Posts: 263
Joined: Thu Sep 26, 2019 10:12 am

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by Voltaire2.0 »

I use 1.1.1.1 which is a VPN and DNS service. The VPN is useful only on public WiFi networks, though I never access sensitive accounts over public WiFi, even with the VPN.

The DNS service keeps my web access activities private from whatever ISP I happen to be using, including the one I pay for. They don't need to know the sites I visit.
trueson1
Posts: 172
Joined: Mon Mar 13, 2017 11:40 am

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by trueson1 »

I was using Norton 360 for antivirus, VPN, etc but it kept inteferring with my email and they kept sending me offers for other services which was very annoying.

I decided to go with Surfshark VPN after some research. I am quite pleased with this service, as it also offers antivirus and other security features.

Also can use on unlimited devices and can turn of and on easlily if it happenss to interfer with a particular program.
wolf359
Posts: 2824
Joined: Sun Mar 15, 2015 8:47 am

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by wolf359 »

Marseille07 wrote: Sat Jun 18, 2022 6:13 pm
I haven't tried Netflix / ObamaCare etc etc from abroad, good to know that I might have to use VPN though :beer
Whoever brought up Obamacare and Netflix might have been just being facetious.

Netflix is available overseas. There may be different shows licensed in different countries, but it's available.

Obamacare is probably useless overseas. Most versions of Obamacare plans I've seen don't provide much coverage outside of your local area, much less internationally. Most international health care plans are much cheaper and cover much more when you are outside of the United States.
typical.investor
Posts: 3284
Joined: Mon Jun 11, 2018 3:17 am

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by typical.investor »

wolf359 wrote: Wed Jun 22, 2022 11:07 am
Marseille07 wrote: Sat Jun 18, 2022 6:13 pm
I haven't tried Netflix / ObamaCare etc etc from abroad, good to know that I might have to use VPN though :beer
Whoever brought up Obamacare and Netflix might have been just being facetious.
Speculative on your part and incorrect.

wolf359 wrote: Wed Jun 22, 2022 11:07 am Netflix is available overseas. There may be different shows licensed in different countries, but it's available.
Sure, as are other streaming content providers. Why should I have to pay for Netflix in every country in which I stay in order to watch the same the same show every week? Maybe you don't suddenly get told you are spending two weeks outside the US, ooops now it's a month; but I do.
wolf359 wrote: Wed Jun 22, 2022 11:07 am Obamacare is probably useless overseas.
For whom? Not for people who need health care in the US. And what if the person responsible for signing up is outside the US in an enrollment period?
wolf359 wrote: Wed Jun 22, 2022 11:07 amMost versions of Obamacare plans I've seen don't provide much coverage outside of your local area, much less internationally. Most international health care plans are much cheaper and cover much more when you are outside of the United States.
Yeah, and for those overseas who have to take care of people in the US, people who are not able to take care of themselves and who have no-one else, we need to access Obamacare from overseas. The same goes ordering them groceries. And the list goes on and on.

Breaking the TOS of any of those sites by accessing it using a VPN does not break the law. If it did, the Bogleheads administrators could have us up on charges for recommending anything other than a three fund portfolio. They'd just have to put it in the TOS, and bam elected officials have delegated the right to make law.

Think about that ... you protest that international is necessary for true diversification and so you land in court because the mods say it's a violation of TOS to suggest anything that Bogle didn't explicitly recommend. Really? Surely the mods could ban you, but to say it's criminal is not supported by law.
Marseille07
Posts: 10099
Joined: Fri Nov 06, 2020 1:41 pm

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by Marseille07 »

typical.investor wrote: Wed Jun 22, 2022 7:49 pm Breaking the TOS of any of those sites by accessing it using a VPN does not break the law.
Correct. TOS is not the law. Violation could result in getting kicked out of the service but you don't go to jail for that.
US & FM (5% seed) | 300K Cash
Call_Me_Op
Posts: 8654
Joined: Mon Sep 07, 2009 2:57 pm
Location: Milky Way

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by Call_Me_Op »

TECHCON wrote: Sat Jun 18, 2022 11:08 am
sandan wrote: Sat Jun 18, 2022 10:53 am Primarily to watch sporting events.
+2 For watching sporting events
Out of curiosity, why would a VPN be of value for watching sporting events?
Best regards, -Op | | "In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity." Einstein
typical.investor
Posts: 3284
Joined: Mon Jun 11, 2018 3:17 am

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by typical.investor »

Call_Me_Op wrote: Thu Jun 23, 2022 8:02 am
TECHCON wrote: Sat Jun 18, 2022 11:08 am
sandan wrote: Sat Jun 18, 2022 10:53 am Primarily to watch sporting events.
+2 For watching sporting events
Out of curiosity, why would a VPN be of value for watching sporting events?
Sporting events like other content providers, websites, and government services may try to geographically restrict users to a particular location.

Using a VPN that has a server in a different geographical location will then show your IP address as being in that location and might give you access for that location --note: I say might because sites try to detect your VPN often through location services in the browser and block you for using one.

MLB is particularly notorious for their TOS wording which suggests it is a crime to use a VPN to watch blacked-out games. They admitted recently though that they have never pursued anything in court.

They state:

IF YOU CIRCUMVENT, OR ATTEMPT TO CIRCUMVENT, ANY BLACKOUT RESTRICTION OR OTHER USE RESTRICTION: YOUR SUBSCRIPTION WILL BE SUBJECT TO IMMEDIATE TERMINATION AND A CHARGE OF ONE HUNDRED DOLLARS ($100.00) FOR EARLY TERMINATION; YOU MAY BE SUBJECT TO LEGAL ACTION; AND MLB RESERVES THE RIGHT TO REPORT SUCH MISCONDUCT TO APPROPRIATE LAW ENFORCEMENT AUTHORITIES.

As such the moderators will ban comments and commenters suggesting VPNs be used to watch sports. I, however, can not find any ruling suggesting that using a VPN violates the law (despite why MLB may in their own self-interest suggest).

So actually in some cases, using a VPN to watch sports is disadvantageous because your access package could get cancelled and you could be charged for the cancellation. I'd be aware of the terms of services for sites you are using. Many allow for use while traveling.
User avatar
LadyGeek
Site Admin
Posts: 83315
Joined: Sat Dec 20, 2008 5:34 pm
Location: Philadelphia
Contact:

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by LadyGeek »

Because it violates the contract terms of service, which is our criteria (dishonest behavior).

If anyone has further comments on that aspect, please PM me. Don't post here.
Wiki To some, the glass is half full. To others, the glass is half empty. To an engineer, it's twice the size it needs to be.
User avatar
UncleLeo
Posts: 166
Joined: Wed Jul 12, 2017 12:43 am

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by UncleLeo »

heywhoathere wrote: Sat Jun 18, 2022 5:52 pm As someone who has worked in cybersecurity, I've yet to hear any convincing arguments that a personal VPN for internet-browsing has any impact on privacy/security. Obfuscating your geolocation is the only "legitimate" use that I can think of.

So no, I don't use one.
Depends on your trust model.
Without using a VPN, your ISP can see where you go, but can't see what you do there (if the site/server uses SSL, or other transport layer encryption).
With VPN, your ISP can't see either (Most VPN use IPsec protocol which operates at the network layer of the OSI model and runs on top of the IP layer = original IP headers will be encrypted between you and the VPN server, hence ISP won't be able to tell where you go, but they will know that you're using a VPN)

This is why many VPN providers advertise - No logs policy. which means that they claim not to keep a mapping between your IP and where you go. whether you trust those claims and if there's a way to verify them is another story. Another consideration is the jurisdiction of the provider - whether or not the provider is legally obliged to provide information about their customers to authorities if requested.
There's a lot more nuance to that. Here's a neat comparison chart - https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/ ... =231869418
rich126
Posts: 3272
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2018 4:56 pm

Re: Do you use a VPN?

Post by rich126 »

Probably best to use one when traveling. At home I'm not worried about the connectivity. You can also argue how do you know you can trust the vpn provider?

Some might suggest setting up a VPN at home. My first thought on that is that you need to mess around with firewalls and need a static IP address which then exposes your system to hackers and would probably not be worth the risk in my opinion.

Using a VPN on a device like an iPad is pretty trivial. I find the providers to play the low first year price and then start jacking it up quickly.
----------------------------- | If you think something is important and it doesn't involve the health of someone, think again. Life goes too fast, enjoy it and be nice.
Post Reply