Practical Technology

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Get Started With a VPN: For Beginners, Power Users, and IT Pros

Do you want to be secure–I mean really secure–when you’re on the Internet? If so, then you want a virtual private network.

A VPN creates a secure “tunnel” across the Internet between you and your office, a VPN provider, or your home. Why would you want that? Easy-to-use programs such as Firesheep make it easy for snoops to see what you’re writing in your e-mail messages, posting to your Facebook page, or buying online. But with a VPN, you can surf the Web through that virtual tunnel, away from prying eyes, and your Internet traffic is encrypted.

Whether you just want to access Wi-Fi networks on the road without potentially exposing your activities to nosy strangers, or whether you need to enable a team of remote employees to handle business securely on the Internet, you can find a VPN to fit your needs. This guide will walk you through VPN essentials for beginners, power users, and IT departments.

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