Everytime you go online without a VPN, you reveal information (like your location and which websites you visit) to advertisers, the website owners, and even government agencies—not to mention hackers.
If you use a VPN, you obscure your personal information. When you enter your credit card number, date of birth, and your address to register for a new app, for example, the VPN encrypts and secures that data so it can’t be hacked.
Here’s some of your data that websites try to collect from you. Once they get this data, it can easily be sold to the highest bidder. This is also the kind of data that will remain safe if you use a VPN while browsing the internet.
Information on how you interact with the web. Facebook is widely known for tracking how you interact with websites even outside the Facebook app. In order to produce better, more targeted ads, websites can collect patterns based on your browsing history and the web browser you use.
Your IP address. Any website you visit at any time can collect your IP address and circumvent private internet browsing. Every person needs an IP address to access the internet. Your IP address can lead back to you and your approximate location when you accessed the internet. By itself, your IP address doesn’t reveal too much about you. But if it’s paired with other personal information, it could reveal more info about you than you want it to.
Cookies. These are tiny text files that you can collect when visiting many websites. Cookies help other websites keep track of your personal preferences. On the one hand, this can be helpful when you’re searching the same thing or trying to find an old website you signed into. It helps keep your browsing history for you. However, cookies are often used by websites for marketing and advertising. Cookies can collect info from site-to-site or from page-to-page.