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Quick VPN Installation Guide on Your Router

Having your own VPN, or virtual private network is growing in popularity. With so many hacks and data breaches taking place every day, maintaining certain levels of security is important. That’s why having a VPN is key.

What is so important about a VPN?

A VPN provides total privacy because your data is encrypted and the IP address is hidden. When you don’t use a VPN, the connection is open, leaving your information vulnerable. Government agencies can use your IP to track online activity and share information with other agencies. With a VPN, you’ll also have a secure connection no matter where you go. When you have your VPN enabled, everything you do on your device is protected. When sending data or documents, the information will travel through an encrypted tunnel to keep prying eyes at bay.

Why should I have a VPN?

Even if you’re okay with having your information open to certain people, a VPN prevents you from being watched and traced. A VPN cannot interfere with your online activities, and third parties won’t have access or be able to see what you are doing online. Additionally, you can use your VPN from anywhere in the world.

If you use internet cafes or public Wi-Fi, you need a VPN. This masks your IP while making it look like you’re in a different geographic location from where you actually are. Additionally, if you travel a lot, not having a VPN could severely compromise your information. VPN applications are useful when traveling and wanting to mask what you do on the internet if you’re in a public place. While most people think you can only use it for these types of activities, you can also install a VPN to your home router.

Can I really connect a VPN to my router at home?

Surprised? Don’t be. VPNs are meant to create encrypted online sessions, so why wouldn’t you be able to use it at home too? Setting up VPN to your router connection allows you to use multiple devices at home undetected. While this is convenient, there are some pros and cons to consider before getting started.

Don’t be. VPNs are meant to create encrypted online sessions, so why wouldn’t you be able to use it at home too? Setting up VPN to your router connection allows you to use multiple devices at home undetected. While this is convenient, there are some pros and cons to consider before getting started.

Some advantages of having a VPN attached to your router is consistent privacy. Once you install it, you’re done. Additionally, if you have visitors to your home, their devices are also masked once they connect to your Wi-Fi. A VPN attached to a router allows you to connect more devices, and it covers devices that don’t support VPNs. That means if you couldn’t use a VPN for certain applications, once it’s connected to the router, the process is automatic.

There are a few downsides to attaching a VPN to a router. First, it may block some incoming connections. You’ll also have a harder time managing your VPN settings. The configuration and encryption also rely on the type of router you have, with traffic between the devices used and the router not always secure.

Here’s how to set it up:

Access the login page of the router

Once you access the system, sign in with your username and password. In the event you don’t have this information, do a reset and use the information that came in the manual.

Select from the menu

You should have an entire menu to choose your course of action. Choose WAN so you can adjust the background settings. Your WAN connection type should be automatic IP. Then, the Enable WAN, Enable NAT, and Enable UPnP should all read YES. You do not want to automatically connect to the DNS server. Then input your DNS Server 1 and 2, and under DHCP Query Frequency, change it to aggressive mode. Finish by selecting “Apply.”

Connect the VPN

Choose VPN from the menu. There should be two available options: VPN Server and VPN client. You should choose VPN Client.

Select Add Profile

You should see an empty listing where VPNs should be listed. There should be three options to add different types of VPN security. Here are the differences – OpenVPN has been said to be very secure, but with the high levels of security, users may not experience the levels of speed they anticipate. PPTP is the lowest level in terms of security but is a lot faster. L2TP is the balance between the two and offers both speed and security. Select the one that will be more useful to you.

Once all the credentials are entered, press Activate under the Connection portion of the service. Even if you have different passwords and identifiers saved for each VPN server, only one can be active at a time. If this was done correctly, once the VPN is connected, there should be a blue checkmark indicating the connection is now active.

When using your VPN router, make sure you steer clear of any double coverage. Because it’s attached to the router and you’re used to switching on your VPN while away, this could easily happen because at home you’re automatically connected. While you may have an additional layer of security, this could slow down internet speed levels or cause some instability. Bookmarking your router settings page is very useful moving forward. This will make it easier to go in and change the settings whenever you need to. Additionally, setting up a separate router where one has the VPN and the other does not may be useful if you have a number of devices that need to be connected at one time.

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Adding a VPN to your home router network will encrypt your traffic and provide protection, just as if you were traveling or in a public place using your VPN. The only difference is you shouldn’t have to do anything after connecting it, and you’ll have that protection around the clock. As long as you follow the directions, installing the VPN should be easy.

Privacy and security usually go hand-in-hand. In today’s climate, whether you’re just surfing the internet or conducting business online, encrypting your information is more important than ever.

About Naomi Hodges

Naomi Hodges is a cybersecurity advisor and a contributing writer at Surfshark. She specialises in network security, virtual private networks, and privacy-related issues. At work, she’s busy fighting for a safer internet and pushing privacy agenda forward, as well as helping a broad range of client shape and refine their security efforts. Naomi is an engineering professional holding a Bachelor’s degree with a focus on information security from the University of Reading. When she isn’t working on making the internet a better place for everyone, she enjoys running and long hikes with her beloved dog Pluto.

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