The Implication of Using a VPN Connection

Some months ago, the Nigeria Internet Community swift into a necessary desire for the use of VPN to be able to continue accessing the services of Twitter Inc. whose operation was banned by the Nigerian government for reasons that did not go down well with the public.
This ban had a major effect on the Nigerian internet community, with an extensive side effect on the economy of Nigeria, especially for the small and medium enterprises that have grown through the use of social media marketing to market and sell their products and/or services to the Internet community.
Before going deep down into the danger of using VPN connectivity, let’s understand how a VPN works.
VPN as we may know is an abbreviation for Virtual Private Network. It is an extended private network through a public network. It is a technology that sits between your private network or personal computer and the internet. So, traffics in form of a packet is sent through the VPN connection.
A VPN comprises two major technology, there is the VPN Client and VPN Server. The VPN Client is usually installed on the private network or personal computer and the VPN server is a VPN connector that enables the VPN client to connect to it. VPN providers offers VPN connection services and they have different servers across different regions, countries, and continents. The VPN connection is when the VPN client which is installed on the personal computer or private network to connect to any of the VPN servers in any of the location the user prefers.
What happens when a VPN client connects to a VPN Server? The first thing that happens is an exchange of identity. The Identity of any computer or network connected to the internet is an IP Address. The IP address of the personal computer or private network connecting to the VPN server is now exchanged with the IP address of the VPN Server. So every internet request and browsing activity is sent from the user’s private network or personal computer to the internet through the VPN connection. When the request passes through the VPN server, the server will replace the IP address of the user computer or network with its own IP address. By doing this, it would mean that the request is coming from the IP address of the VPN server, however, the originating IP address which is already replaced with that of the VPN server is from the User computer or private network.
If the VPN server that the VPN client is connected to is in the United States, it will mean that the user is connected to the internet via a US IP address and if the VPN Server is in Japan, it will mean that the user is connected to the internet via Japan’s IP address.
While this may have its own advantage, there are also certain red flags that should be of concern to the government as the public begins to access the internet via the IP address of another country.
The first thing we should know is that VPN connectivity will drastically bring down digital marketing. This will affect digital marketing professionals, digital marketing companies, and corporate organization that tends to get the majority of their clients from the digital space.
The way digital marketing works is that it uses IP addresses to track and send the digital advert to potential clients or users. That said, using a VPN connection through Japan, for example, will change our IP address from a Nigeria IP address to a Japan’s IP address and this would mean that VPN users will only be receiving digital advert meant for the Japanese internet community.
Now as a Nigerian company, whose client targets are Nigerians and usually carry out digital marketing to source for clients, because Nigerians are now connecting to the internet via an IP address of another country, the advert of Nigeria will not be able to get the right client due to the internet access IP address.
This has the tendency of shutting down organizations that have grown through digital marketing. It may also end in the downsizing of staff because the client inflow has dropped.
Another strong danger of using a VPN connection is that it has the tendency to increase the cybercrime rate by breading impunity. Users now know that internet connection through a VPN connection gives them their privacy and also makes their IP very difficult to trace. This will enable the internet community to begin to commit internet-related crimes with impunity. As a country, we should expect more fake news, internet crimes, and attacks because the government just handed over invisibility to the public.
We should look out for the slowness of our networks. Connecting to the internet via a VPN connection is like adding another network within a network. It has increased the number of nodes and routers that the traffic will pass through to get to its destination. The more routers and nodes traffic passes through, the longer it will take to get to its destination, and the longer it takes, the higher the latency, and the higher the latency, the slower the connection.
Last but not the least, there is the place of resale of internet habit which most VPN users may not be aware of. Most VPN providers will tell their users that they don’t log VPN traffics, but nobody can ascertain that they truly don’t log VPN traffics exchange. Some VPN providers will log user’s traffics, analyze them to extract valuable habits or information that will now be sold to the corporate world for corporate use or government use. Some organizations do approach VPN providers to buy traffics from specific VPN users. The danger in this is the sensitivity of the information that may have passed through the VPN provider. It can be confidential information, personally identifiable information, or a business secret.

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