Why is a VPN for the UK important?
This is a good question with so many answers. Most importantly, you will be shielded from the government’s snooping eye. By using a VPN service, you will be able to stay secure and keep your privacy online. This is achieved by the fact that your VPN service creates a secure encrypted connection between your device (a PC, tablet, smartphone, laptop, basically any device that has the ability to connect to the Internet) and the VPN server.
So, by using a VPN, you are basically shielded from your ISP which now cannot see which websites you visit or any of your data online. This, in turn, means that the government can’t see any of this either. All that the ISP and the government will be able to get from you is your new VPN IP address. This means that there is no way for them to see your real IP address and thus trace anything to you. Useful, isn’t it? The Big Brother will have no effect on you.
When talking about security, with a VPN you will also be safe from any hackers and criminals when you are connected to public WiFis where a decent hacker can easily see and access everything you do online. A VPN connection protects you from that as well.
Furthermore, you will be able to access a bunch of stuff that can’t be accessed with a British IP. You will be able to appear in any other country you want and thus avoid censorship. This way, for example, you will be able to appear to be in the USA and thus access US Netflix or HBO or Hulu, all of which offer more content than the UK version.
For people visiting the UK, A VPN will be useful to access BBC iPlayer for example. People living in the UK are bound by law to pay for a TV license, but people outside of the UK are not. And since a registration for iPlayer is not tied to a physical UK address or a UK TV license, people overseas can easily use iPlayer with a VPN. But you can’t use a British VPN though, as iPlayer blocks people with an IP address that’s connected to a British VPN server.
If all of this weren’t enough, by appearing to be in another country through the use of a VPN, you will also be able to download torrents.
How to use a VPN in the UK
Using a VPN is very easy, and each service is pretty much self-explanatory. Even if you have problems, all the good VPNs have a help section and a 24/7 customer support that will gladly help you with everything.
However, as is the case with everything, there’s a catch here as well. First of all, you will have to use a paid VPN if you want foolproof encryption methods, a variety of options, customer support and much more. A paid VPN is a must because operating a good VPN service is not an easy thing to do. There are people who need to constantly operate that and keep that service going, the servers, and much more. All of that requires money, so you can’t really expect to get such good things for free. I mean, you can, but they won’t be good, and most won’t work for a lot of stuff so there’s basically no point in using them. If you want great paid-for VPNs for the UK, our top picks are your best choice, and you will be able to see the reasons why down below in the review section.
Furthermore, it’s also worth mentioning that you should avoid any British VPN services, even if they charge money. The laws that the UK has and new ones that are bound to come can easily affect any company from the UK, so it’s safer not to use the services of a British VPN. The law mentioned at the beginning of this text affects VPN companies as well, not just ISPs. So if you use a British VPN you are technically not safe as the authorities can always demand your VPN service to give them all of your data. The law, naturally, cannot affect a service that’s located outside the UK, so using a VPN company that’s registered in any country that’s not the UK is far better.
Key UK VPN Questions and Answers
- Are VPNs legal? Are they legal in the UK? Yes and yes. There is no law in the UK that can prohibit you from using a VPN. You are perfectly within your rights to use any VPN in the UK.
- Can I use a VPN on my phone? Yes, of course. Most VPNs offer their apps for phones as well. They usually offer their apps for basically any device that can connect to the Internet.
- Will the use of a VPN slow down my connection? Only a little bit, with most good VPNs. This tiny lag is necessary due to the very nature of VPNs. Your data has to pass through VPN servers in addition to all the other places it has to go through, which naturally means that it will take more time to do all of that (even if that time is equal to fractions of a second).
- Will a VPN make me anonymous? No, it won’t, unfortunately. It can only provide privacy, not anonymity.
- Since my data passes through a VPN server, doesn’t that mean that they can see what I’m doing at all times? Technically, yes. But any decent VPN service keeps no logs of their user’s data as it would defeat the purpose of their very existence. This cannot apply to a British VPN, for the reasons already mentioned in this text.
- Do I still need an ISP when I have a VPN? Yes, of course. VPNs cannot provide you with an internet connection, they can just mask it. Having an ISP is still a must, unfortunately.
Things to look for before buying a VPN
- No logs of your online activity. This is key, because, as you can probably assume, there’s no point in having a VPN that actually keeps logs of your online activity and your data.
- The number of devices. The more the better. Every VPN offers to cover several of your devices at the same time. The number is usually around 5.
- The number of servers and their locations. The more servers a VPN company has, the better it is. Also, look for VPNs that have servers in the UK (most do by the way) as this will provide you with great speeds when online.
- Support for OpenVPN. This protocol is the industry standard and definitely the best one. So, even though the VPN you chose probably supports it, you should still check just in case, as this is very important.
- Take advantage of a free trial that most VPNs provide. This way you will be able to see if your VPN of choice is not blocked by websites you wish to visit while using it.