The Shocking Truth about VPNs and Your Business Privacy

Protect your business privacy by safeguarding sensitive information from VPNs

While VPN providers often boast about offering online privacy and cyber security protection, it is important to note that many of them engage in data collection practices that can compromise your business information.

If your business relies on free VPNs for small business to secure your staff and business data on a daily basis, it is crucial to review your current setup. Ask yourself the important question: "Are we actually using the right provider for these services?"

In reality, a VPN that logs its users could land your private data on everything from the dark web to government watch lists. 

This means that while you're trying to stay safe online, your VPN could be quietly monitoring and storing details about your browsing habits, IP address, connection times, and more.

The Shocking Truth about VPNs and Your Business Privacy - dont use free vpns - speedster it

Worried your VPN may be engaging in invasive data collection or retention practices?

There are steps you can take to safeguard your business privacy. Here's what you need to do:

1. Research thoroughly: Before choosing a provider, make sure they have a strict no-logging policy. Read their terms of service and privacy policy with utmost attention to detail.

2. Encryption is key: Ensure they offer robust encryption protocols like superior encryption and MFA for business authentication.

3. Location matters: Consider where the provider is based as different countries have varying laws concerning data retention and surveillance practices.

The Shocking Truth about VPNs and Your Business Privacy - remote workers - speedster it

Why do VPNs, Want to Log Your Business Data?

What Information VPNS Actually Collect and Store, Here's what you need to know:

  1. IP address logging: Many log your IP address when you connect to their servers. While this may seem harmless, it can actually reveal more than you think. Your IP address can be used to track your online activities, monitor your location, and potentially identify you.

  2. Connection timestamps: Some also log the time when you connect and disconnect from their servers. These timestamps can give insight into your browsing habits and the duration of your online sessions.

  3. Bandwidth usage: Certain providers may keep track of how much data you consume while using their service. This information can be used for various purposes, such as optimizing server performance or monitoring user activity.

  4. Personal information: Depending on the provider, they may collect additional personal details like email addresses or payment information for account registration or billing purposes. It's worth noting that not all collect the same data – some are more privacy-focused than others.

  5. Traffic logs: These logs can include details about the websites you visit, the files you download, and even your IP address. Another issue to be aware of is the privacy risks associated with browsing history. Your browsing history can contain sensitive information about your interests, habits, and personal life. If this data falls into the wrong hands, it could be exploited for various purposes such as targeted advertising or even identity theft.

  6. Metadata retention: a hidden danger most people remain unaware of. Metadata refers to information about your online activities that is recorded without your knowledge. When you browse the internet, send emails, or use social media platforms, various pieces of information are collected as metadata.

    This includes details such as the time and date of your online activity, the websites you visit, your location data, and even the duration of your interactions. The problem lies in the fact that this metadata can be easily accessed by governments, law enforcement agencies, and even hackers.

    It provides them with valuable insights into your online behavior and can be used to infer personal information about you. The implications are far-reaching: targeted advertising based on detailed profiling becomes possible; government surveillance could invade individual privacy rights; criminals may exploit vulnerabilities exposed by retained metadata.

  7. To support local authorities. Using a Virtual Private Servers (VPS) is a common VPN practice. According to Restore Privacy, “The problem is that rental servers will often maintain logs of server activity. Furthermore, local authorities can possibly force a server host to log data.” Meaning, they could simply bypass and go directly to the datacenter for information.

  8. To assist spying agencies. Big tech and international spying agencies have long been bedfellows. With one government request, a company or server could see a portion of its data end up in outside hands.

  9. To improve the service. User experience can be dashed with bugs and glitches. It’s why so many VPNs will log data under the guise of performance improvements.

The Shocking Truth about VPNs and Your Business Privacy - Speedster IT

The Potential Risks When Your VPN Knows Too Much About Your Business

One significant risk of using a VPN that collects and stores extensive data about you is the threat to your business privacy. This can lead to the exposure of your business information, putting your business identity and sensitive data at serious risk.

Another alarming consequence of VPN data collection is the increased vulnerability to cyber attacks. By amassing vast amounts of user data, these providers become attractive targets for hackers who are eager to exploit any security weaknesses present in their systems.

Business Cybersecurity Avoiding the VPN to Dark Web Pipeline - Speedster IT

Users Beware: What “Free” VPN Really Means

In the realm of technology, there's a cynical adage that rings true: if you're not paying for the product, then you are the product.

This is glaringly evident in this case. For a VPN to offer this so-called "free" service, it's almost certain they'll resort to logging user data and peddling it to other entities and third parties.

The mere whisper of the word "free" should set off alarm bells immediately.

Free VPN for small business – Avoid at All Costs

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Business Cybersecurity : Avoiding the VPN to Dark Web Pipeline

The escalating trend of VPN to Dark Web connections is a disconcerting development in the cybersecurity sphere. The ransomware attack that crippled the Colonial Pipeline, leading to fuel shortages on the East Coast, was successful due to an unsecured Virtual Private Network (VPN) utilised by remote workers.

The account was devoid of multifactor authentication – a rudimentary security measure that most companies implement for employee accounts, particularly when remote access is required.

Users Beware What Free VPN Really Means - Speedster IT

Support Remote Work with Confidence & WatchGuard

WatchGuard offers three choices for client-based connectivity:

Mobile VPN with IKEv2 – Mobile VPN with IKEv2 uses IPSec to provide superior encryption and authentication.

Mobile VPN with SSL – Mobile VPN with SSL uses Transport Layer Security (TLS) to secure connections between a remote computer and your protected network.

IPSec VPN client

By selecting a provider that is transparent about its logging policies, provides 2FA and superior encryption. Your business can have some assurance that your data is being used in accordance with the company's stated intentions to safeguard it.

If you would like Speedster IT to access your businesses VPN services get in touch

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