Online privacy is getting tougher and tougher. Most people are unaware that in the US, Internet Service Providers (ISP) are now permitted to collect and sell user data without consent. In other countries, things aren’t much better. In China, Russia, and South Korea, governments have active censorship policies and even more closely monitor behaviors and restrict activities. Wherever you are, it’s become easier for your online anonymity and privacy to be compromised. This is doubly true in the world of cryptocurrency. Here you have these real threats along with predatory hackers looking to steal your information or actual cryptocurrency. That’s why it is essential you use a VPN when paying in crypto.
The Basics of VPN
A VPN or virtual private network is like a shield that keeps your data private. It is a pivotal first step in ensuring that you are accessing the web safely. VPNs do many different things. To begin with, they can mask which websites you visit from your ISP and hide your actual location.
The way it works is rather complex. It goes like this: traffic from, let’s say, the US is encrypted and sent to a VPN server in the UK. At the ISP level, all they see is you connecting to one set network, and not any of the other networks you may visit covering your internet activity.
Where Things Get a Little Complicated
For your basic browsing needs, a VPN should be enough to ensure security. However, it’s essential to understand that the VPN server essentially becomes your server. It has access to all the information and data you share online. This is where choosing the right VPN becomes crucial.
There’s a wide variety of options out there, but should be aware of the key things you need to look for while selecting one. The two essential characteristics you want is that a VPN has jurisdiction and legal relationship far outside your home country. The second is a ‘no-logs’ policy which means that there’s no record left on the server of your activity. You need this because even if you use a VPN provided by a trusted company, their network may become vulnerable for one reason or another. And, you don’t want your personal data and history to be compromised.
Why Does This Matter for Crypto?
One of the most popular aspects of cryptocurrency is that it is anonymous. However, this isn’t entirely true anymore. Since 2013, every major US agency from the FBI to the CIA has been tracking of BitCoin users. And they aren’t the only ones. ISPs and even groups of hackers have figured out different methods of tracking crypto exchanges particularly on AltCoins that may not have as many security features as more established cryptocurrencies.
This presents a two-fold problem from crypto users. To begin with, their trading, purchases, and acquisitions are not concealed from anybody interested in either their personal information or cryptocurrency. Hackers can trace back a crypto transaction to the exact server where it originated from. The second and more pressing issue is that their crypto wallets, private keys, and crypto itself may be vulnerable to theft as hackers can find out the critical information necessary to log in to their accounts.
A Dual Approach: Paying for Your VPN with Crypto
It should be clear that anytime you want to purchase, trade or use crypto, you’ll want to use a trusted VPN server. This will afford you a much higher level of privacy. But to further strengthen your security protocol, you’ll also want to actually pay for your VPN with crypto.
When you pay for your VPN through traditional means like a credit or debit card, you’re leaving a trail. It’s quite simple. To any outside eye, as you are seen paying for a VPN, you must be trying to conceal highly personal information. Hackers can then use this information and follow the trail until they come across your crypto account. With your credit card information, they’ll already have enough data to log in to your exchange and delete your wallet.
The Benefits of Crypto Plus a VPN
The whole concept behind cryptocurrency is that you have an instantaneous, anonymous, encrypted, and untraceable method of exchange whether you are paying for goods and services or trying to make an investment. More often than ever, people are monitoring crypto transactions. However, with a trusted VPN, you can shield your identity and ensure that your information and coins stay safe from prying eyes. You can download your VPN here.