Note: Access to Hotspot Shield's VPN is not currently available in Dashlane Free or free trials of Dashlane Premium.
When we visit social media, consult our bank accounts, or communicate with friends and family, we can't always wait until we're at home or on a trusted network. Or maybe we might prefer our internet service provider or online companies not track our every move online.
A VPN, or Virtual Private Network, addresses these concerns.
What is a VPN?
As its name suggests, a Virtual Private Network is about privacy. It creates a network—a closed system of communication—between you and the VPN provider. And that network is virtual because, unlike a "real" network, there is no preexisting, dedicated infrastructure.
Some people are already familiar with VPNs through their company or school because using one is sometimes necessary to access those institutions and their resources.
But many people use a VPN to protect their privacy and improve their security on unsecured networks. This is where our partnership with Hotspot Shield comes in.
Why should I use a VPN?
In many cases, your access to the internet, be it at home or work, is safe and secure.
But when you're on the move and use free or unfamiliar networks such as in airports, hotels, or cafes, you're opening yourself up to people seeing and potentially stealing your data. This is especially true if you visit web addresses using “HTTP” and not “HTTPS” or access an email account using unsafe protocols. A VPN allows you to go online through a secure connection even when you're on an unsecured network.
When you're on the internet, you're anything but anonymous. Your IP address is public information and identifies where you are in the world. A VPN routes your internet traffic through the VPN provider so your traffic comes from the VPN's server location instead of your IP address. Additionally, your service provider cannot see what websites you're visiting because the VPN encrypts the traffic moving through it.
Hotspot Shield lets you choose the location of the server. For performance reasons, if you allow the VPN to assign the server automatically, it will connect to the nearest server it can, most often in the same country or region where you are.
To learn how Hotspot Shield respects your privacy, read their Product Privacy Notice.
When do I use Hotspot Shield's VPN?
We recommend you use the VPN feature whenever you feel you need an extra layer of privacy.
We recommend you always connect to the VPN when using WiFi in public places like cafes and airports or on any open network that’s unfamiliar. Hotspot Shield's VPN is a simple and easy way to protect your online traffic from prying eyes.
Remember that you must choose when to connect to and disconnect from the VPN.