Will a vpn complicate or improve my internet experience?

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OnTrack
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Re: Will a vpn complicate or improve my internet experience?

Post by OnTrack » Sun May 10, 2020 1:12 am

I see two potential advantages of a vpn. One is to hide a user's IP address from the sites that the user visits and the other is to hide what web sites a user visits from the user's isp. So potentially it is a way to enhance privacy and anonymity. Some people on this thread are saying they have more trust in their isp than in any vpn. There may also be some benefit when visiting an unencrypted website from public wifi although people here seem to be saying not to ever visit unencrypted websites; I certainly wouldn't want to send anything I wanted to keep private to an unencrypted website.

Darryl Henry
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Re: Will a vpn complicate or improve my internet experience?

Post by Darryl Henry » Sun May 10, 2020 10:06 am

To topic starter:
As a rule of thumb - never use any product of McAfee, even free one.
And the biggest deciding factor should be based on a reputation. There are probably hundreds of VPN providers out there. Some of them are just no names like https://vpnmelon.net/, without any following. Others are respected in the industry like https://nordvpn.com/ and well known.
HawkeyePierce wrote:
Sat May 09, 2020 11:11 pm
This is very true. We’ve been actively moving a lot of our intranet services out from behind the VPN lately.

In the corporate world a VPN is a bandaid and a bad one at that. It’s a patch for covering the fact that your internal services lack proper security controls themselves. The assumption behind too many corporate VPN setups is that only the edge of the network needs to be secure. This gives attackers run of the place if they breach the edge. Far better to ensure any sensitive service is protected in its own right than to assume that anyone on the network is authorized.
Oh, the problem here is that you are missing out on a layered approach to security. In a secure system, to reduce the risk you need to do two things on a strategic level: 1) religiously reduce the attack surface 2) have multiple measurements in place, so if one layer is breached, second can save the world. VPN has a place in the world, especially in remote setups. Especially in development, as very it's impossible to make a tradeoff between usability and security.
Last edited by Darryl Henry on Sun May 10, 2020 3:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

HawkeyePierce
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Re: Will a vpn complicate or improve my internet experience?

Post by HawkeyePierce » Sun May 10, 2020 11:16 am

Darryl Henry wrote:
Sun May 10, 2020 10:06 am
To topic starter:
As a rule of thumb - never use any product of McAfee, even free one.
HawkeyePierce wrote:
Sat May 09, 2020 11:11 pm
This is very true. We’ve been actively moving a lot of our intranet services out from behind the VPN lately.

In the corporate world a VPN is a bandaid and a bad one at that. It’s a patch for covering the fact that your internal services lack proper security controls themselves. The assumption behind too many corporate VPN setups is that only the edge of the network needs to be secure. This gives attackers run of the place if they breach the edge. Far better to ensure any sensitive service is protected in its own right than to assume that anyone on the network is authorized.
Oh, the problem here is that you are missing out on a layered approach to security. In a secure system, to reduce the risk you need to do two things on a strategic level: 1) religiously reduce the attack surface 2) have multiple measurements in place, so if one layer is breached, second can save the world. VPN has a place in the world, especially in remote setups. Especially in development, as very it's impossible to make a tradeoff between usability and security.
My employer has one of the most well-regarded security teams in Silicon Valley. I trust their judgement.

Darryl Henry
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Re: Will a vpn complicate or improve my internet experience?

Post by Darryl Henry » Sun May 10, 2020 3:53 pm

HawkeyePierce wrote:
Sun May 10, 2020 11:16 am
My employer has one of the most well-regarded security teams in Silicon Valley. I trust their judgement.
No offense, I believe in their professionalism. But what about different security standards like PCI DSS, for example? What you will do if there is 0day for internal services? No security controls will help. Only if service unreachable from the internet.

Anyway, we are moving far away from the topic starter topic. Consumer and enterprise use cases are totally different things.

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nisiprius
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Re: Will a vpn complicate or improve my internet experience?

Post by nisiprius » Sun May 10, 2020 4:05 pm

Five years ago I contracted at a company that wanted me to use a VPN. I can't speak to the security aspects of it.

What I can speak to is that it mildly complicated my Internet experience. Like so many things, installing and setting it up was a simple forty-step procedure. Once installed, it was supposed to "just work." But in order for it to "be there," there had to be software that was automatically started when I booted Windows (or logged into my Windows account), and in order for that to work it had to remember various web addresses and IPv4 and IPv6 addresses and user account names and passwords and such. And so what happened in real life was that it worked 95% of the time, but every few weeks or so there would be some glitch and a half-hour digging out instructions figuring out what configuration screen needed to have something re-entered into it.

If memory serves I needed to changing something in my router or firewall setup, too, oddly enough. It used some port that wasn't normally open? So in the name of security I needed to open up a port that had been closed. Didn't feel quite right.

It definitely didn't make my life easier. And it definitely did make make my Internet access perceptibly slower.
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MKGhandi
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Re: Will a vpn complicate or improve my internet experience?

Post by MKGhandi » Mon Jun 29, 2020 4:39 pm

beastykato wrote:
Sat May 09, 2020 11:54 am
I thought I understood VPN's, but perhaps not?

I was aware of the risks of using a VPN and that it wasn't entirely secure. For instance, the VPN provider themselves storing and leaking your data either for profit or if their own network is breached.

My only two cares for using it are:

1.) To hide/alter my location.

I assume this works accurately as I've been able to defeat certain video providers I subscribe to from blocking me while traveling. Some of these providers like Hulu, Netflix, etc. seem to want the blood of your firstborn to verify your location to watch your favorite show.

2.) To hide my information from my ISP.

I know my ISP collects and sells information and I also don't think it's any of their business what I'm doing on my connection. It was my understanding that my information is at least hidden from them even it the data eventually is vulnerable at a later point. Is that correct?
Which VPN do you use to bypass the Netflix restrictions? are free vpns any good?

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