In recent years, so many myths have been circulating concerning how Police are monitor and track VPN user’s general online activity. You may have heard that government organizations are taking note of each step you make online. And yes, you heard, right. Making use of a VPN to mask your online activities needs careful attention of the category of VPN chosen. This is because most of the VPN in the market today can’t keep detailed logs, they leak vital information which ends up leaving a track for the security agencies to follow. Hence, the Police can access only a VPN that leaks information because it will have a real IP address of the user together with the browsing history.
With this, the Police can make immediate use of a court order to make contact to the user, the internet service provider used to access all the associated IP address. In this write-up, we’ll take a look at how this works in real-life practice
What is a Virtual Privat Network VPN
A VPN is a network that creates a virtual bridge between the Server and the user. It is private and allows access to various regulated and unnavigable websites that under normal circumstances, the user can’t easily access. Besides, it offers verification and encryption with a tunneling system for protective transfer of data. Also, a VPN secures the privacy of the user by blocking the online tracks and data of the user, which makes it difficult to be intercepted by anyone.
It’s easy to access a regulated website with the aid of a VPN because it helps in unblocking all the geo-restricted content with just a click. In doing this, most VPN services still follow the safest protocols such as OpenVPN SSL, PPTP, IPsec etc.
However, the central rationale of VPN remains to assist various business organizations in conducting a secure virtual meeting without any interception. But, this service has been used for many things, both positive and negative such as pornography, cyberbullying etc. In other words, with this VPN, the public gets access into restricted websites which might have been forbidden by some countries.
How A VPN Keeps You Protected?
You’ll get an IP address once you connect to a VPN server. This is normally provided by the VPN service you subscribed and not the internet service provider. What this means that you’re being tracked, the person won’t be able to get access to your real IP address. As for logs, there is no way any government agency can track you because they’ll certainly discover a VPN shields you. This blanks them from all your online activities.
However, in critical conditions, security agencies do approach VPN providers to get authorization to access their servers. This will still fail when there are no logs to track. For this reason, it’s advisable to only go for VPN service that you’re sure to have conducted a verifiable, third-party audit of its policy on zero-logs. This is what the most trusted VPN service providers do.
What Are The Legalities of Using A VPN
The majority tend to ask if using a VPN is legal or illegal. Well, it depends. On the country of your residence. It is illegal when your country puts a strict ban on the use of proxies as well as VPN. It is also illegal to use VPN for spamming, hacking, defrauding people etc. This can as well lead to your arrest. This is the reason behind banning VPN usage by countries like the UAE, Turkey, Russia, China etc. Furthermore, it is also considered as illegal when you make use of a VPN to download copyrighted contents. It’s important to note that, most VPN has their limitation and won’t shield you from various malware seen online.
As the internet progresses over the years, cybercrimes have advanced as well. For instance, stalking, ransomware, e-mail phishing, identity theft etc. are some difficult cybercrimes that have kept growing over the years. This is because the data packets used to perpetrate these acts are encrypted, which makes it difficult to decode by security agencies as well as internet service providers. There is no way these encrypted files can be tracked or cracked without using the key created by the user. As a result of this, encryption has always been the most trusted way to secure yourself online.
Can Police Track VPN?
The truth of the matter is that, yes Police can actually track VPN. Still, they might need to first contact the VPN provider, the internet service provider or even use any higher authority to find out the details of the user. For instance, in a situation where the VPN providers keep a record of website logs, it can be used by Police to trace the users. This is why it’s important to do your research well before pitching tenth with any VPN subscriber.
Though it might take a while for the Police to effectively track you down depending on the authority that grants them warrant. This is because, without a legal document, they’ve no right to track you down. The Police only have this access when a warrant is shown to an internet service provider to fully corporate and provide the needed details to quickly trace the location of the user. With this, it will just take a few hours.
Some fact you need to be aware of:
- Free VPN keeps logs, so avoid using them.
- Go for a trusted and well reputable VPN service.
- Use VPN that do not monitor online activities
- Your VPN should have a kill switch
- Be concerned about VPN that has leak protection
- Using VPN proxies should be a NO-NO.
- Do not prefer to use VPN extensions or plug-ins
- VPN should be used in all your devices
How Police Track Users On The Internet
The use of IP address given to you by your internet service provider is the number one means Police uses to track any user. You might wish to know that every service provider has unique IP addresses, so it’s easy for any security agency to know which operator you make use of to get online. Hence, it will be easier to get a court order to unveil all the needed details like the user the IP address is assigned to which they can use to locate the user. It’s the same process even if you make use of a smartphone to access the internet.
In fact in some countries, for you to operate as a service provider, you must agree to keep a record of all the logs which will serve as a vast pool of data for the authorities whenever they need to solve any difficult criminal case.
TOP-RATED VPN SERVICES
They’ve constantly proven to be one of the fastest and most secure VPN provider available today. This is because their network is powered by TrustedServer technology which does not keep logs of any online activities. They’ve a track record in the privacy world having undergone a server confiscation by the authorities which reveled their zero-log policy.
- Offers a convenient kill switch feature.
- No leakage of network data outside of its secure VPN tunnel.
- Easy to run on any platform.
- Enterprise-level encryption
- Speedy VPN servers in over 94 countries.
- Fast, with fantastic connection speeds.
- To some extent, it is more expensive when compared to others.
- Streaming servers are not labelled.
- Irregular drop in connections.
If you’re quickly confused and, eventually, put off by complicated menus and uncountable options, Surfshark VPN is for you. Its interface is completely free from any hurdle. The visible options often seen are ‘Quick connect, all locations, together with Settings icon, and nothing else.
- It boasts a secured DNS and additional security blanket through a dual VPN hop.
- As for the logging policy, just billing information and e-mail address are stored.
- It’s fast whether you’re connecting to the UK or US server or someplace far away.
- Limited P2P Servers, including poor speeds.
- Fastest Server is not inevitably right.
They’re among the most known brands in the VPN industry. It provides a substantial real-time connection computation, with six synchronized connections via its network. Others have a maximum of five. There is also an option for a dedicated IP for individuals looking for a diverse VPN connection.
- No privacy leaks.
- The speeds are reliably fast.
- About 5,000 servers in roughly 60 countries.
- Strong DNS leak protection.
- Availability of kill switches.
- Proxy extensions for Firefox and Chrome browsers.
- Smart DNS-like SmartPlay feature for bypassing geo-restricted websites.
- Torrenting supported by a few servers.
- Slow Server and app connections.
- OpenVPN configuration is not user-friendly.
IPVanish is another durable performer. The service also has unlimited simultaneous connections, unlimited P2P traffic, and 24/7 customer support. About support, you can directly access it from your iOS or Android app just that the interface is stuffed with unusual features, options and settings and often usually gets you elsewhere.
- Servers are always up and connect quickly.
- Download speeds are above average.
- Torrent support on all Server.
- Ability to unblock US Netflix with ease.
- Few usability issues with their app.
- Servers don’t seem to be in the advertised locations.
- Absence of kill switch in the iOS app.
This VPN provider has more than 6,000 servers spread across 90-odd countries. They’ve apps for Mac, Windows, iOS and Android. Torrents allowed and speedy support services. With this VPN you won’t start guessing which Server to use to unblock a website. You just need to choose a geo-blocked service from the provided list, and the app automatically connects to the best Server.
- Good performance levels
- Can block trackers, ads, and malicious websites
- Automated HTTPS redirection which ensures a secure connection.
- Optional data compression (saves money on mobile devices).
- Complicated desktop interface.
- Poor support site.
- Long-distance connections hardly reach 10Mb.
Unless you’re committing any cybercrime, you’re safe when using VPN because providers that keep logs will still give it up with court orders which are needed to solve serious crimes which have become prevalent in our time. Because various multinational corporations and some banks have been a target in the time past. These are criminal cases that require logs to crack it down. Though it’s still an issue when it comes to keeping these logs.
Virtual Private Network remains perfect for covering your online activity, and there is nothing Police can do about it. Despite this, it’s still a concern because the majority of people still forget to turn it on while some do not have it. This remains an issue because negligence is always a criminal’s best tool.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Can government agencies track a VPN?
YES, they can see your VPN traffic though with the help of VPN providers and internet service providers. With sophisticated tools, they can decrypt any blocked keys.
Can police agencies track your phone?
In most countries, Police can get various kinds of cellphone data without a warrant. This is mostly seen in the United States. From research, it has been noted that Police can use data from a tower dump to seek court orders to obtain more details like billing records, logs of calls, addresses, and locations.
Can Police track IP address?
Yes. The IP address is owned by someone, typically an internet service provider. The Police usually approach the ISP with a warrant for access. Eventually, the ISP records do reveal the user behind the IP address.
Is it possible to trace a private IP address?
NO. It’s difficult for someone to trace your IP address. There might be other ways, though, but this is certainly not among. It’s even easier to use your stuff posted on social media to track you than your IP address.
Can WiFi connection be tracked by Police?
Yes, it can be tracked with the IP address provided to you by your internet service provider. This address is used to communicate between your Wi-Fi network and all your online activities. Various internet service providers certainly keep records of all these.