Heidi Finigan | 21 Aug 2017
The U.K is a country known for its Monarchy, Big Ben, One Direction, and the origin of parliamentary democracy. But, did you know that it is also fast becoming one of the most efficient surveillance states on the planet? In 2016, parliament agreed to make the much maligned Investigatory Powers Act law. And in doing so, effectively withdrew the right to internet privacy from its citizens.
We recommend Express VPN as the best VPN for the UK, they have a fast and simple interface to bypass any restrictions.
But what does that mean for you? Commonly referred to as the Snoopers Charter, this U.K law requires all internet service providers in the U.K to keep logs. These logs contain details about every website you visit, online service, what device you used, the time, date, IP address used and more. As for how long this information is held, currently, the law requires 1-year, however, that may soon increase.
Fortunately, if your privacy is important to you, there is a workaround, one that restores what was taken. And that is a VPN, in this article were going to explain what one is, and how they work. Followed by a look at the best options available for U.K residents.
Short for Virtual Private Network, VPN’s allow you to secure your internet access. That is achieved by concealing the data you send and receive from those who may want to view/collect it. Additionally, what is a boon for those wanting to view Geo-locked content, is the masking of location information. Meaning it’s nearly impossible for outside sources to see what you’re looking at online, or to know what it was in the first place.
How does this happen? Instead of directly connecting to the web servers of sites and services you use, all your online activities are encrypted. That is done by passing your communications via a third-party, the VPN, any interception on the way to the service will be meaningless. Why? Because the content is already encrypted, plus anyone intercepting at the server end will not know from where it originated.
What this means is, you can circumnavigate the Snoopers Charter and regain your privacy fast. And the below service providers will help you do just that.
As one of the U.K’s most trusted VPN service providers ExpressVPN has built a reputation for itself. This reputation has been cemented by providing its customers with a high-speed, secure, and easy to use service. Together with a highly rated customer support team, it’s regularly voted one of the countries best online privacy enablers.
With 256-bit encryption and more than 1,500 servers located in 145-location across the world, it guarantees security and privacy. Furthermore, if you want to access Geo-locked content (e.g. Netflix, BBC iView, Facebook, etc) not available in your country, ExpressVPN offers that in a friendly feature filled package. One that is quick and easy to setup, while maintaining your right not to be snooped on.
Based in the U.S this VPN service provider is one of the industry leaders, offering true unadulterated privacy. Meaning, absolutely, no logging of your connections takes place. So, whether you are gaming, living abroad and want to watch BBC iPlayer, or at home using Kodi, access to content is at your fingertips.
In fact, the company is part of the Electronic Frontier Foundation and regularly campaigns for an open, and safe internet. As for what it offers, that is a service primed for online gaming and streaming. Not only that, but it is also compatible with many platforms and has apps to support them. With more than 700-servers worldwide in 60-locations, it is an evenly distributed service, primed to compete with its competitors. Furthermore, if you want a reliable, but, super-fast down and upstream speeds, plus low latency, IPvanish is worth considering.
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Located in Hungary, this next VPN provider is for some the perfect choice should you wish to avoid the spying eyes of the UK’s department: Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ). Plus, as a VPN business that is quite new to the industry, Buffered has one huge advantage. It has been able to prevent its service from succumbing to the geo-censorship put in place by Netflix and others. Meaning, that while some vpn service providers are not compatible with popular TV & Film streamers Buffered is.
Additionally, it offers some other decent VPN services. Such as browsing privacy and streaming performance. Meaning that you can expect download and upload speeds to be within 95-percent of your non-encrypted ISP provided speed. As for platform compatibility, there is support for multiple desktop clients and clear details on how to get connected via a mobile device. Furthermore, that all-important connectivity is comparable to the best. With servers across the world in 37-countries and unlimited bandwidth, you are in good hands.
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So, now that you have realised putting up with the constant intrusion into your privacy is not a must. Which of the above three will you choose, will it be ExpressVPN, IP Vanish, or Buffered VPN?
If you’re not sure, consider these points, all will give you the privacy and security required. Plus, the online streaming of Geo-locked content as standard. However, what you need to consider is the ease of setup and how fast the upstream, downstream, and latency speeds are. Furthermore, if you plan to use a mobile device, make sure it is easy to do so.
What we can say is, for the most part, all three services offer polished and consistent products. However, some are more clearly suited for the beginner while providing depth for those who want to get stuck into the detail. As always, do your research, and do not simply opt for the cheapest. After all, that old-adage ‘You get what you pay for’ certainly applies when it comes to a VPN.
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