Best VPNs For Hotels – How to Keep Safe When Travelling

If you travel often for work or for pleasure, then you’ll be well acquainted with the necessity of hotel wifi. In the last decade, it’s become expected that hotels will provide free wireless connections for their guests, allowing them to access the internet from their rooms, or from common areas like the lounge or hotel bar.

Despite the convenience and utility, it’s nevertheless vital to consider security issues when using hotel wifi. In addition, there are usability concerns regarding accessing content from home. For these reasons, many people choose to use a virtual private network when they are staying in a hotel. In this article we’ll explain why you might want to use a VPN when traveling, and then give you our recommendations for the best VPNs for hotels.

Always Use A VPN On Shared Wifi Networks

You may not be aware, but there are serious security issues regarding public wifi networks like the ones that you find in hotels. When you connect to a hotel wifi network, you join the same network as many other users who are also staying in the hotel (or spending time in the hotel lobby). While most networks will have security measures in place to guard against outside attacks, far fewer have countermeasures set to protect a network’s own users against each other. It is possible for other users on your network to intercept your data, which can lead to identity theft or having your credit card information stolen.

Another problem is honeypot wifi networks. This is when hackers set up a fake wifi network which does not require a password to access. When users connect to the network, they can access the internet and everything appears to be normal. But then when they send their usernames, passwords, and other information over the internet, this data can then be stolen by the scammers running the honeypot.

Further risks of using an unencrypted public wifi network include becoming a victim of a phishing or vishing attack, as your IP address reveals your location, making you easier to target. To top it all off, whenever you use an unencrypted connection, all of your internet activities are visible to the ISP running the connection. In order to keep your data private when you browse the internet, you need to ensure that you use a VPN to encrypt all of the data that you send over public wifi networks.

How To Watch Content From Your Home Country In Any Hotel

Travel is always exciting, but sometimes we miss the comforts of home, like our favourite series. The BBC iPlayer, for example, is freely available to UK residents to stream the last two weeks’ worth of high-quality BBC content, making it a popular service indeed. However, if you’ve flown off to a posh hotel resort in Spain for vacation, then you won’t have access anymore, since the service blocks users with IP addresses located outside the UK.

Fortunately, you can bypass this block by using a VPN to reroute your data through a proxy server located in the UK. This process changes the IP address associated with your present location to one in the UK. iPlayer gets fooled into thinking you’re connecting locally, and will serve you BBC content as though you were back home.

This same method can be used to watch content from anywhere in the world, such as CBC content in Canada, Comedy Central content in the US, or Canal+ content in France. You can even use a VPN to unblock streaming sites like Netflix or Hulu and get access to a larger catalogue of streaming content from around the world. This makes a VPN an essential tool for an international traveller as it allows you to access the content you want regardless of the country you are currently travelling through.

How To Choose A VPN Provider

When it comes to choosing a VPN provider, you might at first be tempted to save money by using a free VPN service. However, this is not advisable as non-paid providers have many issues with privacy and security. For example, free VPN services have been known to sell off data about their users, to impose bandwidth caps, and even to make users part of a botnet.

To avoid the problems with free VPNs, choose a reputable paid provider instead. You should base your decision on which provider to select on the following factors:

  1. Excellent security, such as the use of strong 256-bit encryption, which is almost impossible for any outsiders to crack, and a no logging policy, which means that no data about you or your internet activities will ever be recorded or sold to a third party.
  2. Fast server connections. Whenever you use a VPN, it will inevitably slow down your internet connection to some degree, as the data has to go through an extra step of encryption. A good VPN will reduce this slowdown so streaming, downloading, and surfing the web all offer a seamless experience.
  3. Lots of servers in different countries around the world so that you can access global content by connecting to a server wherever you need one.
  4. Software support for different operating systems so that you can use your one VPN subscription to protect all of your different devices, like your phone, tablet, or computer.

Recommended VPNs For Hotels

With these factors in mind, we are sharing the following recommendations for the best VPNs for hotels:

1. ExpressVPN – Overall Winner

ExpressVPN is a VPN that you’ll see placed number one in a lot of recommended VPN lists, thanks to its combination of high speeds, easy to use software, and great security. Contained in this sleek software package is everything you need to keep your data safe, like strong 256-bit encryption to prevent hacking, and a no logging policy on traffic data to protect your privacy. The connections offered are some of the fastest we’ve seen from any VPN provider, hence the “express” name, so you can happily use the VPN for downloading large files or streaming high definition video as well as browsing the internet.

When you want to get around region locks and access content from elsewhere in the world, you’ll have no shortage of options – with a total network of more than 2000 servers in 94 different countries. Another big advantage of ExpressVPN is how many different platforms it supports, so you can protect all of your devices at once. The software is available for Windows, Mac OS, Linux, and Android, plus some games consoles and smart TVs. There are even browser extensions available for the Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Apple Safari browsers for total internet protection!

Read our full ExpressVPN review here.

EXCLUSIVE DEAL: Sign up for a year with ExpressVPN at $6.67 per month and get 3 months FREE! There’s also an amazing risk-free 30-day money back guarantee, just in case you’re not completely satisfied.

2. NordVPN – Most Specialty Servers

NordVPN is the perfect VPN for advanced users who want a no compromises approach to their security. The standard VPN connections come equipped with 256-bit encryption, with your privacy being backed by a thorough no-logging policy. But where NordVPN stands out is in its speciality servers for particular functions, such as the double VPN option, which wraps your data in two layers of encryption, making it virtually impossible to crack. There are other speciality servers available too, like P2P servers which are optimised for torrent use, onion over VPN for the best possible level of anonymity, or anti DDoS servers.

The total network of servers available is absolutely huge, numbering over 4800 servers in 60 countries to date. The software has a handy map interface which makes it easy to find a server in the location you need, and is available for Windows, Mac OS, Linux, iOS, Chrome OS, Android, or Windows Phone.

Read our full NordVPN review here.

HUGE DEAL: Get a 77% discount on the 3 year subscription, just $2.75 a month! All plans are backed by a 30 day money back guarantee.

3. CyberGhost – Best For New Users

CyberGhost is ideal if you are new to the world of VPNs and you aren’t yet confident with all the technical details of setting up a connection. Instead of having to play around with settings, you simply open up the CyberGhost software and then choose the type of connection you want – for example, browse the web anonymously, use torrents anonymously, or unblock streaming sites like Netflix. Once you have made your choice, the software will connect you to the right server and apply all of the settings for you automatically. You just have to click and go–it’s dead easy to use!

But don’t worry that this ease of use implies a compromise on security. CyberGhost makes use of the near-unbreakable 256-bit AES encryption, and guarantees your privacy with a comprehensive policy against logging any data. For advanced users who want to really dig into their connection settings, there is the option to manually connect to more than 2200 servers located in 60 countries. That’s a pretty good spread for frequent travelers looking to tap into their home networks! Dedicated software is available for Windows, Mac OS, iOS and Android.

Read our full CyberGhost review here.

Get a 77% discount on CyberGhost’s three-year plan, for payments as low as $2.750 per month.

4. PrivateVPN – Best For Streaming

PrivateVPN is the perfect service for Netflix enthusiasts and other frequent streamers. In recent years, streaming sites have gone to great lengths to block VPN users from accessing their content libraries, and to a large extent those efforts have been successful. Most VPNs won’t let you watch Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime and the like. PrivateVPN, on the other hand, provides reliable and smooth access where other providers fail. This makes it the ideal choice for frequent travelers looking to catch up on their favourite shows in the hotel.

Keeping with the industry standard, Private VPN offers 256-bit encryption on its connections. However, you have the option to step down this security to 128 bits in exchange for a boost in speed. We rarely made use of this feature though, since by default PrivateVPN’s speeds are already perfectly suited for streaming, downloading or surfing the web without lag, buffering or slowdown. No matter what you do, you can trust that your activity won’t be monitored or recorded thanks to the company’s thorough no-logging policy.

When it comes to server network size, PrivateVPN is undeniably smaller than other services, with only 80 servers available. However, these servers are spread over 56 countries so there are still plenty of options for accessing global content. The software is simple to use and can be installed on devices running Windows, Mac OS, Linux, Android, iOS, and Amazon Fire Stick, as well as a browser extension for Chrome.

Read our full PrivateVPN review here.

Get an extra 5 months FREE on the yearly plan with PrivateVPN – just $2.54 per month. If you aren’t completely satisfied in the first 30 days, get your money back in full, no questions asked.

5. PureVPN – Complete Cybersecurity

PureVPN is not only a VPN – it’s a whole digital security suite. In terms of the VPN itself, you’ll find super-strong 256-bit encryption and a no-nonsense no-logging policy on traffic. The servers available to you cover a wide network totalling 750 servers across a whopping 140 countries, so you can easily access the content that you want to from wherever you are in the world. Rounding the package out are security features like DDoS protection, app filtering, a kill switch, a dedicated IP address, and a NAT firewall.

Your subscription to PureVPN includes even more protections for your device, like an ad blocker to keep obnoxious ads out of your sight while you’re browsing, an anti spam filter to keep unwanted mail out of your email inbox, as well as anti virus and anti malware protection. Dedicated software is available for Windows, Mac OS, Android, iOS, and Android TV devices, plus there are browser extensions available for the Chrome and Firefox browsers.

OFFER: Take advantage of an amazing 73% discount on a 2-year plan, just $2.95 per month! You can even try it risk-free with the company’s seven day money back guarantee.

Conclusion

If you are someone who travels a lot and often stays in hotels, then a VPN will be highly beneficial for you. Using a VPN will improve your privacy and security, and prevent anyone else from accessing your data or stealing your identity. Plus, you can use the VPN to access content from home while you’re away, like content on streaming sites which would normally be blocked from foreign countries. We’ve recommended a number of top VPNs that you can use to keep your device and your data safe when you stay in a hotel.

Where in the wide world have you traveled with your VPN? Did you find it improved your hotel stay? Let us know about it in the comments below!

Read Best VPNs For Hotels – How to Keep Safe When Travelling by Georgina Jones on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

Best VPN For O2 (UK) in 2018: Protect Your Privacy

O2 is a massive telecommunications company which has grown to become one of the most popular providers of mobile phone service in the UK. In fact, it is the second largest mobile network operator in the country! As such, there are lots of customers who depend on O2 for their everyday personal phone, as well as a sizable base of business clients.

Those who have been paying attention to news in the internet security world for the last few years will have noticed that mobile phones have become a target for a wide range of data harvesting, scams, and surveillance by the state. If you want to improve your overall digital security and to lock down your internet use for better privacy, then a virtual private network is an essential tool for your mobile phone. In this article we’ll discuss why O2 UK users benefit from a VPN, and then share our recommendations for the best VPN for O2 (UK).

Protecting The Privacy Of O2 (UK) Users

With phone hacking frequently in the news, mobile users have been sent scrambling to protect themselves. When you connect to an internet network (whether it’s your home router, public wifi at a cafe or university, or mobile internet from your service provider), it is trivially easy for the administrators of that network to track your activity online. They can see what sites you visit, what files you download, and sometimes even the text of messages that you send via chat or email.

The concern is not only that network administrators might collect this data and use it against network users – for example, turning over information about users who download files to copyright lawyers – but also that this data could be hacked, stolen, or sold off. As the recent scandal where Facebook was caught selling off data has illuminated, once a company has your data you have very little control of where it will end up.

The best way to protect yourself from this is to ensure that companies do not have data about you in the first place. And the best way to achieve this is by using a VPN which will encrypt all of the data that your device sends over the internet. This encryption means that no one else can see your data (not even the administrators of the internet networks you use) so it is much harder for companies to gather data on you. Without access to this data, you are much harder to track online, and you retain more control over who has your data and what they can use it for.

Further Reasons To Use A VPN

As well as protecting your privacy, a VPN also has benefits for your security. It is much harder for anyone to hack your device when you use a VPN, as hackers cannot intercept or interfere with the data that you send over the internet. A VPN can also help to protect you from phishing, smishing, and vishing attacks by obscuring data about your location which scammers can use to target you. With a VPN active, no one can see what your real location is from your IP address.

There are other practical upsides to using a VPN as well, like the ability to get around region locks and to bypass censorship. Normally, when you try to access certain websites then your IP address will be read to work out your location and the content available to you will be adjusted based on this location – like how you can’t watch BBC iPlayer from outside of the UK, or how The Pirate Bay and other file sharing sites are blocked within the UK. Using a VPN, you can make it appear as if you are browsing from any country you choose, which means that you can access all of these websites freely from anywhere without restrictions.

Stay Away From Free VPNs

With all of these benefits, you can see why O2 (UK) users might want a VPN for their phones. And at first you might be tempted to try out a free VPN in order to save money. However, we strongly advise against this, as when a VPN company does not make their money from user subscriptions, they must necessarily make their money elsewhere. Free VPN companies have been found to participate in a variety of dodgy practices like collecting user data, selling off user data, and even making their users part of a botnet.

To avoid these major security issues, you should use a reputable paid VPN service that you can trust to keep your data safe and private. If you don’t know how to evaluate VPN providers, then don’t worry, as we have guide for selecting a VPN provider for you below.

How To Choose A Reputable VPN Provider

In order to find a VPN provider that will keep your data safe and which has all of the features that you need, we recommend that you select a provider based on the following key criteria:

  1. Excellent security to keep your data safe, such as the use of strong 256-bit encryption which can’t be cracked
  2. Privacy protections that are listed in a privacy policy, such as a no logging policy which means that the VPN provider will not keep any records of your internet activities. This way, the VPN provider can never hand over or sell your data because they never have that data saved in the first place.
  3. Fast server connections so that your VPN doesn’t slow you down and you can still browse the web, streaming high definition video, or download large files without the VPN holding you up.
  4. Many servers in many different countries so that you can get around region locks and censorship by connecting to a server in the country that you need.
  5. Easy to use software that is available for all the different operating systems that you use, so you can protect your computer and tablet as well as your phone.

When we looked at all of these factors, we decided on the following recommended VPNs for O2 (UK) users:

Recommended VPNs For O2 (UK)

1. ExpressVPN – Best Overall VPN

ExpressVPN is a top provider in all the key areas of security, speed, and ease of use. Your subscription nets you unbreakable 256-bit encryption to lock down your data stream, as well as no logging policy that completely disassociates your identity from your online traffic. Further security features are available in the software like DNS leak protection (so that no one can track your internet activities through your DNS use), an IP address checker (so you can check whether your real IP address is hidden before you go online), and a kill switch (which will automatically cut off your internet connection if the VPN server you are connected to goes down, thereby preventing you from accidentally sending data over an unsecure connection).

ExpressVPN earns its namesake through the blazing fast speeds it offers, so you can happily use the connections for browsing the web, downloading large files quickly, or streaming high definition video content with no buffering or lag. The huge network of servers covers more than 2000 nodes in 94 different countries (including servers in the UK which will be the fastest for O2 UK users to connect to).

You can install the user-friendly software on Windows, Mac OS, Linux, and Android, plus some games consoles and smart TVs. There are even browser extensions available for the Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Apple Safari browsers, so you never go unprotected when surfing the web.

Read our full ExpressVPN review here.

EXCLUSIVE DEAL: Sign up for a year with ExpressVPN at $6.67 per month and get 3 months FREE! There’s also an amazing risk-free 30-day money back guarantee, just in case you’re not completely satisfied.

2. NordVPN – Advanced Internet Protection

NordVPN features advanced security options designed to give peace of mind to serious internet users and newbies alike. The core VPN service comes complete with 256-bit AES encryption and a strict zero-logging policy. Beyond that, there are bonus protections like the option to enable the CyberSec security toggle, which will block ads and prevent malware or viruses from infecting your device.

However, where NordVPN really shines is its network of servers. For starters, there is a massive 4800+ servers in 62 countries (including servers in the UK, all of which offer fast and reliable connections to O2 users). What’s more, there is a multitude of specialty servers optimised for a variety of functions, including onion over VPN, P2P traffic, anti-DDoS, double VPN, and for securing a dedicated IP address.

That’s a lot of utility, but fortunately it doesn’t come at the cost of usability. In fact, there’s a simple map interface to make connecting to your server of choice a breeze. When you consider the wide availability of the software across platforms including Windows, Mac OS, Linux, iOS, Chrome OS, Android and other platforms, you have a strong contender for the world’s best VPN.

Read our full NordVPN review here.

HUGE DEAL: Get a 77% discount on the 3 year subscription, just $2.75 a month! All plans are backed by a 30 day money back guarantee.

3. PrivateVPN – Great For Streamers

If you’re a heavy user of Netflix or other streaming sites, then PrivateVPN is the VPN for you! Whereas most VPNs fail to connect their users to Hulu, Netflix and the like due to VPN-blocking countermeasures, PrivateVPN has made its mark as one of the most consistent ways to unblock the content catalogues of these services from anywhere in the world. In the ongoing struggle against copyright trolls, this provider always manages to stay a few steps ahead!

In terms of security, PrivateVPN offers industry standard 256-bit AES encryption, though you have the option to drop that rating to 128 bits when you don’t mind trading some security for a boost in connection speed. This provider claims to log exactly nothing when it comes to its users’ traffic and VPN usage, and their track record supports this claim.

PrivateVPN doesn’t have the biggest server network, (80 severs in 56 countries) but each node is extremely well maintained and provides optimised performance in terms of speed and stability. Dedicated software can be had on Windows, Mac OS, Linux, Android, iOS, Amazon Fire TV Stick, and even as a browser extension on Chrome.

Read our full PrivateVPN review here.

Get an extra 5 months FREE on the yearly plan with PrivateVPN – just $2.54 per month. If you aren’t completely satisfied in the first 30 days, get your money back in full, no questions asked.

4. CyberGhost – Best For New Users

CyberGhost is the provider we recommend for new users who do not have a lot of experience with VPNs, thanks in large part to their simple graphical interface. When you open the software, you are given clear options to choose from such as to browse the internet anonymously, to torrent anonymously, or to unblock streaming sites. When you select the option that you want, a server is chosen for you and the configuration settings you require are automatically applied. This means that you don’t need to worry about complex settings, as everything is sorted out for you.

Hardcore privacy buffs still have a lot to love here, though, including the use of nigh-unbreakable 256-bit encryption and a comprehensive zero-logging policy. If you prefer to handle your VPN connections manually, you can select from a network of more than 220 servers in 60 countries which have fast and reliable connections. The software is available for iOS, Android, Windows, and Mac OS.

Read our full CyberGhost review here.

Get a 71% discount on CyberGhost’s two-year plan, for payments as low as $3.50 per month.

5. PureVPN – VPN And More

PureVPN is not only a VPN, but an entire software suite of cybersecurity options! The core VPN offers industry-standard features including 256-bit AES encryption, as well as zero logging on any data that can be used to identify you or your activities online. What’s more, you’ll enjoy DDoS protection, app filtering, an automatic kill switch, an option for a dedicated IP address, and a NAT firewall.

As well as the VPN, the software comes with further security software like an ad blocker to keep ugly and invasive ads out of your browsing experience, an anti virus and anti malware protection to keep your device safe, and an anti spam filter to declutter your email. The software is available for Windows, Mac OS, Android, iOS, and Android TV devices, plus there are browser extensions available for the Chrome and Firefox browsers.

OFFER: Take advantage of an amazing 73% discount on a 2-year plan, just $2.95 per month! You can even try it risk-free with the company’s seven day money back guarantee.

Conclusion

There are many reasons for O2 UK users to get a VPN, from improving their digital security to prevent hackers from accessing their devices, to bolstering their privacy to stop outsiders from collecting data about their internet use. Plus, a VPN is handy to get around regional restrictions and to unblock websites. We’ve recommended a selection of VPNs that O2 UK users can try to keep themselves and their devices safe and secure.

Are you an O2 UK user? Do you use a VPN, and what has your experience with it been like? Tell us about it in the comments below.

Read Best VPN For O2 (UK) in 2018: Protect Your Privacy by Georgina Jones on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

Watch BBC iPlayer in China: 3 Working Solutions to Access and Unblock the Service

BBC content is popular far outside of the UK, thanks to the combination of beautiful nature documentaries, cute cooking shows, and fun scifi that the channel offers. Some shows, like Doctor Who, Sherlock, or Great British Bake Off, have become such smash hits that people from all around the globe regularly tune in to watch. Meanwhile, people in Britain can benefit from the BBC iPlayer website, which offers the ability to stream any of the content that is shown on the BBC TV channels, on demand, and for free.

However, the BBC iPlayer website only works to show videos when you access it from within the UK. If you try to use the iPlayer website from another country, such as China, then you’ll get an error message: “BBC iPlayer only works in the UK. Sorry, it’s due to rights issues”. As such, you can’t usually watch any of the videos from China. However, there is a way to get around this problem and to use the site freely, by using a VPN. Read on for more information and to learn how to watch BBC iPlayer in China.

Why iPlayer Doesn’t Work In China

There are a couple of reasons that iPlayer doesn’t work in China. The first reason is that the site is region locked, meaning that the content is only accessible to users from within the UK. The site determines your location by examining your IP address, which is a string of numbers that is assigned to you whenever you connect your device to a network. This IP address contains information about your location, as certain ranges of numbers are assigned to be IP addresses for particular countries. Therefore, a website can look at your IP address and know which country you are browsing from.

With the BBC iPlayer site, if you are visiting from the UK then the site will show you any of the video content and let you stream it. But if you access the site with an IP address that is not from the UK, then you will only be able to listen to radio content and not to watch any of the videos.

The second problem with accessing BBC iPlayer from China is the general censorship of the internet, dubbed the “Great Firewall of China“, which severely restricts what sites can be visited and what content can be viewed from within the country. Bypassing these restrictions can prove to be an unsurmountable challenge without the right tools.

Use A VPN To Watch BBC iPlayer In China

Fortunately, there is a solution for both of these problems which allows users in China to watch videos on BBC iPlayer, and that is to use a VPN. A VPN works by installing a small piece of software onto your device which encrypts all of the data that your device sends over the internet. The encrypted data is sent on to a server owned by your VPN provider, where it is then decrypted and sent onward to its final destination. The advantage of this is that you can get around both region locks and censorship by routing your internet traffic via another country.

In the example of the BBC iPlayer, you would choose to connect to a VPN server that is located in the UK. Then, when your data is sent to the UK server, it will be assigned a UK IP address which masks your real IP address from China. Therefore, when you visit the iPlayer site then it appears as if you are browsing from the UK instead of from China, and the site lets you access any video content that you want. Not all VPNs will work with the iPlayer site, as recently the BBC has cracked down on VPN use and has started using VPN blocking software to discourage people from accessing the site from abroad. But there are still some VPNs that work with iPlayer, like the ones that we have listed below.

Secondly, using a VPN will also enable you to bypass censorship. Because the data you send out gets wrapped in a layer of encryption, it can get past any blocks that exist on the ISP level. What’s more, when that encryption occurs in a proxy server located in another country, your data stream gets labeled with the respective IP address of that country, fooling websites into serving you content that would normally be blocked in your country. Once again, not all VPNs can accomplish this as well in China as in other countries, but the best of the few services that do work there have been recommended below.

Further Security-Related Reasons To Use A VPN

Not only does a VPN allow you to get around regional restrictions and censorship, there are also further security advantages to the technology. One such advantage is the improved privacy, as the encryption makes it impossible for your ISP or the government to track your internet use. Normally, the time that you spend online and the sites that you visit are clearly visible to your ISP, and this information can be obtained by the government if they force the ISP to hand over the data. But with a VPN, the encryption prevents anyone from being able to see what you do online.

This privacy benefit is particularly important if you like to participate in file sharing like the use of torrents, as this activity is very obvious to ISPs, who are usually glad to give your usage data over to copyright holders. You could then face fines or even prosecution for sharing files. Using a VPN keeps you safe when you download as the encryption hides your activities from others.

A VPN can also help to beef up your security and to keep you safe from threats like honeypot free wifi networks which steal your passwords and data, phishing and vishing attacks which can be based on your location, or identity theft from people intercepting your data.

Our Recommended VPN Providers To Watch BBC iPlayer From China

You can see all of the benefits of using a VPN, including the ability to watch BBC iPlayer in China. Now you just need to select a VPN provider and you can start watching unblocked content. But how should you select a VPN provider? You might at first be tempted to use a free VPN to save money, but this is not recommended as free VPN companies have a history of behaving unethically, for example by selling their user data to other companies or by selling off access to users’ devices. Instead of these dubious free VPN services, you should choose a reputable paid VPN that meets the following criteria:

  1. Servers available in the UK so that you can access UK-only content like BBC iPlayer. The VPN also needs to work with iPlayer, which not all VPNs do. Further, it is handy to have lots of servers available in different countries so that you can get around other region locks too.
  2. Excellent security to keep your data safe and private and out of the hands of third parties. You should look for security features like the use of strong 256-bit encryption and a no logging policy.
  3. Fast connection speeds so that you can stream video content in high definition without having to put up with buffering or lag caused by slow VPN connections.
  4. Easy to use software that is available for all of the different devices that you use, so that you can protect all of your devices using just one VPN subscription.

Looking at all of these factors, we came up with the following recommendations for a VPN to watch BBC iPlayer from China:

1. ExpressVPN – Simple And Effective

ExpressVPN is effective in China, where its powerful encryption methods can bypass censorship with ease. What’s more, it works beautifully with iPlayer owing to its super-fast speeds, so you can use it to watch BBC content to your heart’s content. You might think that such a service would be difficult to use, but you’d be wrong! With just a single click of a button, your internet connection will be completely shielded from prying eyes, restrictive network algorithms, or any other third party.

ExpressVPN maintains a massive network of proxy servers numbering more than 2000 nodes across 94 countries, many of which are in the UK. You can always rest easy knowing that your data stream is masked behind 256-bit AES encryption, while ExpressVPN itself will never rat you out thanks to their no-logging guarantee. In addition, there are further security options you can choose to enable, like DNS leak protection, an IP address checker, and a kill switch.

Plus, the software can be installed on a massive range of devices: Windows, Mac OS, Linux, and Android, plus some games consoles and smart TVs, and there are also browser extensions available for the Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Apple Safari browsers.

Read our full ExpressVPN review here.

EXCLUSIVE DEAL: Sign up for a year with ExpressVPN at $6.67 per month and get 3 months FREE! There’s also an amazing risk-free 30-day money back guarantee, just in case you’re not completely satisfied.

2. NordVPN – Extra Strong Security

NordVPN is a VPN with tons of advanced options like speciality servers and extra security software. The basic network of servers covers an impressive 3500 servers in 60 countries, which does indeed include a multitude of servers in the UK. The service works well with iPlayer so you can watch your BBC shows with no problem. And there’s a feature which is particularly useful for users in China: the option to use obfuscated servers. This means that the fact you are using a VPN is hidden from the network that you connect to, so you can use your VPN even on networks with the VPN blocking that you often find in China. This makes NordVPN one of the uncontested best VPNs for watching BBC iPlayer from China.

NordVPN also offers unique speciality servers, which are optimised for tasks like torrent use, or which can assign dedicated IP address. There is even an option to use double VPN servers in which your data is encrypted twice over to make it essentially uncrackable. And rounding out the package are servers dedicated to DDoS protection or onion over VPN.

The connections are plenty fast enough for streaming HD video, and the software has an attractive map interface which makes it easy to find and connect to the server that you need. The software is available for Windows, Mac OS, Linux, iOS, Chrome OS, Android, or Windows Phone.

Read our full NordVPN review here.

HUGE DEAL: Get a 77% discount on the 3 year subscription, just $2.75 a month! All plans are backed by a 30 day money back guarantee.

3. PrivateVPN – Balanced VPN Protection

PrivateVPN is a VPN that you can use not only for BBC iPlayer, but also for other streaming services like Netflix or Hulu. Most providers don’t work with these streaming services due to the VPN blocking methods in place, but PrivateVPN does with ease. What’s more, it also works in China to unblock sites and get around censorship, netting you all of the ingredients that you need to watch iPlayer from China.

The total number of servers available is smaller than other providers, with 80 servers in total, but these servers cover 56 countries, so you will still have plenty of options. These servers are all optimised to offer blazing fast connection speeds across the entire network–some of the fastest we’ve seen in fact! This makes it an ideal VPN if you want to stream lots of high definition video or to download large files.

The software is very simple to use and can be installed on devices running Windows, Mac OS, Linux, Android, iOS, and Amazon Fire Stick, or it can be installed as a browser extension for Chrome.

Read our full PrivateVPN review here.

Get an extra 5 months FREE on the yearly plan with PrivateVPN – just $2.54 per month. If you aren’t completely satisfied in the first 30 days, get your money back in full, no questions asked.

Conclusion

Accessing videos on the BBC iPlayer website from China is a challenge due to two issues: firstly, the region locking on the BBC website which ensures that the content is only available to watch from within the UK, and the censorship and blocks that are applied to the internet in China. But you can use a VPN to overcome both of these problems by encrypting your data and sending it via a server in the UK.

You need to be careful when selecting a VPN though, as not all VPNs work with iPlayer and work in China. We’ve recommended several VPNs that meet both of these requirements and which you can use to watch iPlayer from China.

Do you watch iPlayer in China? Which VPN do you use, and what has your experience with it been like? Let us know in the comments below.

Read Watch BBC iPlayer in China: 3 Working Solutions to Access and Unblock the Service by Georgina Jones on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

How to Watch Hotstar in the UK with a VPN

Hotstar is a massively popular streaming service in India that many people consider to be India’s answer to Netflix. The website lets you sign up for a monthly subscription which allows you to watch any content you want, as often as you want, at the time you choose. This has led many to cut the cord and get rid of their TVs, and to watch all of the content that they want on their computers instead.

One of the best things about Hotstar is that it has movies and TV shows from both India and around the globe, so you can use this one service to catch up on all the latest Bollywood movies and Indian dramas as well as Hollywood movies and western TV shows. Plus there is sports content available so you can watch all of the cricket, football, and more.

With a free and a premium option available, the service has taken off in a big way in India. The only problem is that Hotstar can normally only be watched if you’re actually in India. If you try to watch from the UK, for example, then you’ll get an error message. But fortunately, there is a solution which we’ll share with you today. Keep reading to find out how to watch Hotstar in the UK.

Why Doesn’t Hotstar Work In The UK?

If you are sitting in India and you point your browser to the Hotstar website, http://www.hotstar.com/, you can start using the site straight away to stream content with the free version. However, if you are based in the UK and you head to the site, when you try to watch a video you’ll get an error message: “Hotstar is currently not available in your region.” You can browse some of the content on the website, but you can’t play any of the videos. This geographic restriction is present due to copyright.

So how does the website know whether you are in India or in the UK? The answer is to do with your IP address. Whenever you connect a device (like a phone, tablet, or computer) to an internet connection, the network assigns your device an IP address. This is a string of numbers that refers specifically to your device and is different from every other device on the network. The network uses IP addresses to make sure that the right information is sent to the right device – so when you type a URL into your browser, the data about the webpage is sent back to your device and not to your neighbour’s.

The problem is there are ranges of IP address which are assigned to particular countries, so IP addresses from the UK will be in one range and IP addresses from India will be in another. Websites can read your IP address and figure out which country you are visiting from, and then adjust the content that is shown to you based on your location. In the case of Hotstar, the site checks whether you have an IP address from India and shows you the video content if you do, but shows you the error message instead if your IP address is from another country.

Use A VPN To Watch Hotstar In The UK

Luckily for users who are based in the UK but want to watch Hotstar, there is a way to get an Indian IP address. The best method to unblock sites like Hotstar is to use a VPN. A VPN works by first installing a piece of software onto the device that you want to use to watch Hotstar. This software then encrypts all of the data that the device sends over the internet. Then, it is sent to a server run by your VPN provider in another location, where it is decrypted and sent on to its original destination. This means that when you use a VPN, you’ll be able to browse the internet as usual, plus download files, stream video, or do any of your other regular tasks online.

The clever part of this process for our purposes is that you can choose where in the world you want to connect to a server. And when the data is decrypted and leaves the server, it is assigned an IP address based on the location of the server instead of your real location. In other words, your real IP gets hidden, and websites only see your proxy server’s IP address.

This means that if you use a VPN to connect to a server in India, you will be assigned an Indian IP address. Whether you are in the UK or anywhere else in the world, with a VPN connected to a server in India it will appear to websites as if you are actually located in India. Therefore, when you are in the UK using this VPN you can go to the Hotstar website, the site will see that you have an Indian IP, and it will let you watch all of the great video content available on the site. You can use this same technique to watch other region locked content too, like watching BBC iPlayer from anywhere.

Other Advantages To Using A VPN

There are more reasons to use a VPN besides just accessing Hotstar from the UK though. Because the VPN encrypts all of the data you send over the internet, it is also important for improving your online security and privacy. To start with the privacy benefits, if you live in the UK then you are likely highly aware of how much monitoring goes on of online communications, and you may wish to stop both the government and private companies from snooping into your internet activities. Using a VPN to encrypt your data prevents any outside parties from accessing your data – even your ISP. This is particularly important if you participate in file sharing as otherwise your ISP might report you to law enforcement if they catch you downloading copyrighted content.

In terms of security, a VPN is also important when you use a public wifi network like the ones in cafes, as without encryption other users on the network may be able to intercept your data and even steal your identity. With encryption, you can be sure that no one else can see your data or interfere with it in anyway. In addition, a VPN helps to protect you from cyber attacks like phishing, smishing, and vishing by ensuring that scammers cannot see your real location and therefore cannot target their attacks at you.

Our Recommended VPNs To Watch Hotstar

Now that you can see how to use a VPN to watch Hotstar in the UK, plus all of the other advantages of using a VPN, you just need to choose a VPN provider. But there are so many different VPN providers out there – how do you know which is best for your needs? First off, you should know that you need to avoid free VPNs as these services are often untrustworthy and make their money in dubious ways like selling off user data.

Instead of a dodgy free VPN, you should use a reputable and trustworthy paid VPN provider to protect your data. You should look for a VPN that meets the following key criteria to let you watch Hotstar:

  1. Servers available in India and elsewhere in the world, so that you can route your traffic via India and access the Hotstar website. It is also helpful to have lots of servers available in other countries so that you can unblock other websites and browse the internet with total freedom.
  2. Fast connection speeds so that you don’t have any issues with buffering when you try to watch videos on Hotstar. You want a VPN with fast connections so that your browsing isn’t slowed down by your VPN.
  3. Excellent security to keep your data safe and private, like the use of strong 256-bit encryption and a no logging policy so you can be certain that your data isn’t being collected and will never be sold off to another company.
  4. Software support for a variety of operating systems so that you can use your one VPN subscription to protect all of your different devices, like your phone, tablet, and computer.

When we looked at all of these factors, we came up with a list of recommended VPN providers to unblock Hotstar and watch it from the UK:

1. ExpressVPN – Stellar Speed And Security

ExpressVPN is a highly rated VPN that you’ll see recommended all over the place. A big advantage of this provider is their large network of servers, which covers more than 2000 servers in 94 different countries. This includes servers at three different locations in India, so you can easily connect to one and watch Hotstar from anywhere. And the connections are super fast which earns the express name, so you’ll have no issues with buffering of videos.

The security offered is excellent, with 256-bit encryption to keep your data safe and a no logging policy to keep your information private. Plus there are more security features in the software like an IP address checker to ensure your real IP address is hidden, and DNS leak protection so you can’t be tracked through your DNS use. The software can be installed on a range of platforms like Windows, Mac OS, Linux, and Android, and there are also browser extensions available for the Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Apple Safari browsers.

Read our full ExpressVPN review here.

EXCLUSIVE DEAL: Sign up for a year with ExpressVPN at $6.67 per month and get 3 months FREE! There’s also an amazing risk-free 30-day money back guarantee, just in case you’re not completely satisfied.

2. NordVPN – Specialty Servers Aplenty

NordVPN is an advanced VPN with lots of extra options. The huge server network covers more than 3500 servers, including 13 servers in India which you can use to watch Hotstar from the UK. But there is more on offer than just the regular VPN servers. There are also speciality servers available like P2P servers that are optimised for torrent use, onion over VPN for best possible anonymity, and anti DDoS servers to protect you from distributed denial of service attacks. For the greatest level of security, try the double VPN in which your data is sent to two separate servers to give you two layers of encryption.

The speedy connections are perfect for streaming video or downloading large files, and the software can be installed on devices running Windows, Mac OS, Linux, iOS, Chrome OS, Android, or Windows Phone.

Read our full NordVPN review here.

HUGE DEAL: Get a 77% discount on the 3 year subscription, just $2.75 a month! All plans are backed by a 30 day money back guarantee.

3. CyberGhost – Easy Interface, Tough Security

CyberGhost is perfect for new users thanks to its simple to use software. When you want to use the VPN, you simply open the software and choose from the options like unblock streaming sites, browse anonymously, or torrent anonymously. The the software will select an appropriate server for you and apply all of the settings that you need. You don’t have to do any configuration yourself, if you don’t want to! Though if you do prefer to use a particular server, you can make your selection from the total 1300 servers in 59 countries. This includes 14 servers in India that you can use to watch Hotstar from the UK.

The security is on par with the very highest industry standard, with nigh-unbreakable 256-bit encryption and a comprehensive no logging policy. The fast connections are great for streaming, and the software is available for iOS, Android, Windows, and Mac OS.

Read our full CyberGhost review here.

Get a 77% discount on CyberGhost’s three-year plan, for payments as low as $2.750 per month.

Conclusion

Hotstar is a popular service in India thanks to its wide range of content and flexible subscription options. However, it’s normally impossible to access the full service from another country like the UK. If you’re an Indian living abroad or simply an aficionado of the country’s myriad entertainment, you’re going to need to find a solution to watch videos. Fortunately, it is possible to watch Hotstar from the UK by using a VPN. We’ve shared our recommendations for the best VPNs for Hotstar users to unblock the site.

How do you watch Hotstar from the UK? Have you tried out any of these VPNs? Tell us about your experiences in the comments below.

Read How to Watch Hotstar in the UK with a VPN by Georgina Jones on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter

Best VPN for T-Mobile to Ensure Privacy Anywhere You Go

While not quite as massive as telecoms like AT&T or Verizon, T-Mobile is nevertheless a popular mobile provider throughout the United States and even Europe. However, as more and more people become aware of the need for greater privacy protections online, many T-Mobile users are beginning to question how well their preferred carrier is doing in this regard. Rather than leaving it up to a massive corporation to care about your wellbeing, you can take matters into your own hands by using a virtual private network on your devices! In this article, we’ll explain the benefits of a VPN for mobile phone users, then share our recommendations for the best VPN for T-Mobile.

Why T-Mobile Users Should Use A VPN

A VPN is a piece of software which you install onto your phone and which encrypts all of the data that your device sends over the internet. The encrypted data is then sent to a server run by your VPN provider, where it is decrypted and then sent on to its original destination. This process of encryption has a variety of security and usability advantages for mobile users:

Get Around Regional Locks

Much content on the internet, especially video content, is restricted so that it can only be accessed from particular regions. For example, the BBC iPlayer website is only useable to watch BBC content from within the UK. But it is possible to access sites like this and others from anywhere in the world by using a VPN. When you use the VPN to connect to a server located in another country – such as in the UK in this case – then your data is routed via this server and it appears as if you are browsing from that country. This means that you can use a VPN to access region locked content from anywhere in the world.

Get Around Censorship

Another way to use a VPN is to get around censorship such as the internet restrictions found in China, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and elsewhere. This censorship is achieved by compelling ISPs within the country to block access to certain websites chosen by the government so that it is impossible to access those sites from the country. With a VPN, you can access the internet from the location of the server rather than from your actual location, so you can access even censored websites. This allows you to browse the internet freely and without restrictions.

Protect Your Privacy

It is important to know that when you use the internet at home, your ISP can easily see what sites you visit online and what files you download. Most ISPs have no qualms about recording this activity, opening the door to inquisitive government or law enforcement agencies should they so inquire. The encryption granted by VPNs allows you to evade this type of third-party tracking.

Improve Your Security

Something that many mobile users don’t know about is the risks involved in connecting to public wifi networks like the ones you find in coffee shops or airports. When you connect to one of these networks, it is possible for other users on the same network to intercept your data, which can lead to identity theft. With a VPN, the encryption stops anyone else from viewing or altering the data that you send over the network. In addition, a VPN helps to protect you from other kinds of cyber attack too like phishing or vishing by masking your IP address and identity.

Why You Should Avoid Free VPNs

When it comes to choosing a VPN provider, you might at first be tempted to use a free VPN in order to save some money. However, we strongly advise against the use of free VPNs. The problem with these services is that if they are not making money through subscription fees, then they must make their money in other ways. Many free VPNs offer limited services such as bandwidth caps which limit how much data you can use per month, or file type restrictions to prevent you from using certain types of file such as torrents.

Even more concerning, some unscrupulous free providers have been found to sell off data about their users to third parties, compromising the very principle of privacy that a VPN should protect. What’s more, some VPNs have even allowed third parties to access users’ devices and made their users part of a botnet. Therefore, free services should not be trusted and you should look for a trustworthy paid VPN instead.

Recommended VPNs For T-Mobile

Now that you know to stay away from free VPN providers, you need to choose a paid VPN provider that will meet all of your needs. When it comes to selecting a paid VPN provider, here are the most important criteria that you should consider in order to get the most from your VPN:

  • High level of security to keep you safe and to ensure that all of your data is kept private, including the use of strong 256-bit encryption to prevent anyone from cracking your data and a no logging policy to ensure that your data will never be recorded or passed to third parties.
  • Fast connection speeds so that your VPN doesn’t slow you down. All VPNs will inevitably slow down your internet connection to some extent due to the extra encryption step required, but a good VPN will have super fast connections that you barely even notice are there. This means you can browse the internet, stream high definition video, and download large files quickly and without interruptions.
  • Plenty of servers in many different countries to enable you to connect to different locations and to get around censorship and region locks of all kinds.
  • Software available for a variety of platforms so that you can use your one single VPN subscription to simultaneously protect all of your devices, like your computer and tablet as well as your phone.

When considering all of these factors, we came up with the following recommendations for VPN providers for T-Mobile users:

1. ExpressVPN – Best In All Areas

ExpressVPN is a highly popular VPN amongst serious internet users thanks to its strengths in all of the essential areas: fast connection speeds, high level of security, and software that is dead simple to use. All the essential security features are there, including 256-bit AES encryption, as well as a no logging policy on all traffic. Also included is an IP address checker to ensure that your IP address is hidden, a kill switch which automatically cuts your internet connection if the VPN goes down (preventing accidental transmission of unencrypted data).

The connection speeds are super fast, earning the service its “express” namesake, so you can download or stream with no buffering or delays. The network covers a total of more than 2000 servers in 94 different countries to allow you to easily get around region locks. The software is available for Windows, Mac OS, Linux, and Android, plus some games consoles and smart TVs. There are also browser extensions available for the Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Apple Safari browsers.

Read our full ExpressVPN review here.

EXCLUSIVE DEAL: Sign up for a year with ExpressVPN at $6.67 per month and get 3 months FREE! There’s also an amazing risk-free 30-day money back guarantee, just in case you’re not completely satisfied.

2. NordVPN – Best For Advanced Users

NordVPN is the provider that we recommend for advanced users who want extra options above and beyond what most VPN services offer. At the core of NordVPN’s offering is 256-bit encrypted connections as standard backed by a strict no-logging privacy policy. Beyond that are numerous advanced features like a CyberSec security option (which blocks ads and protects your device from malware) and obfuscated servers (which allow you to bypass VPN blocking efforts).

NordVPN is perhaps best known for its massive network of servers (number 3500+ in over 60 countries), which includes specialty servers optimised for use cases like double VPN, P2P, and onion over VPN. Connections across this network are super speedy, making for a smooth experience when streaming, browsing, or chatting over VoIP. The software is powerful, yet easy to use with an attractive map to help you visualize your server options. Apps are available for Windows, Mac OS, Linus, iOS, Chrome OS, Android, and Windows Phone.

Read our full NordVPN review here.

HUGE DEAL: Get a 77% discount on the 3-year subscription, just $2.75 a month! All plans are backed by a 30-day money back guarantee.

3. CyberGhost – Best For New Users

CyberGhost makes it as easy as possible to use their VPN by offering a simple graphical interface. When you open the software you are given options to choose from such as browse the internet anonymously, torrent anonymously, or unblock streaming sites. When you select the option that you want, a server is chosen for you and the configuration settings you require are automatically applied. This means that you don’t need to worry about complex settings, as everything is sorted out for you.

While CyberGhost may be easy to use, it is definitely no slouch when it comes to security and privacy, with nigh-unbreakable 256-bit AES encryption and a no-logging policy. Performance is quick and reliable all across their server network, which numbers more than 220 in 60 countries worldwide. Dedicated software is available for iOS, Android, Windows and Mac OS.

Read our full CyberGhost review here.

Get a 77% discount on CyberGhost’s three-year plan, for payments as low as $2.75 per month.

4. PrivateVPN – Best For Streaming

PrivateVPN is the VPN that we recommend for users who use streaming services such as Netflix and Hulu. Most VPNs do not work on sites like Netflix due to VPN detection software, but PrivateVPN does and it can be used to unblock streaming sites so you can access content from around the world. The encryption used by default is 128-bit, but there is an option to raise this to 256-bit encryption if you prefer a higher level of security in exchange for some speed. Finally (and perhaps most importantly) there is a no traffic logging policy so there will be zero records of your internet activities.

The total network of servers available is smaller than others, with 80 servers in 56 countries, however it makes up for it with exceptional performance across each of those nodes. The software is easy to use, and you can install it on devices running Windows, Mac OS, Linux, Android, iOS, and Amazon Fire Stick, or even as a browser extension for Chrome.

Read our full PrivateVPN review here.

Get an extra 5 months FREE on the yearly plan with PrivateVPN – just $2.54 per month. If you aren’t completely satisfied in the first 30 days, get your money back in full, no questions asked.

5. PureVPN – Best For Security Extras

PureVPN is more than just a VPN: it is a whole digital security package. The core VPN service has all the essential security provisions including 256-bit encryption and a zero traffic logging policy. What’s more, there is a network of servers available covering greater than 750 servers in 140 countries worldwide.

Additionally, a subscription to PureVPN includes more security features like DDoS protection, app filtering, a kill switch, a dedicated IP address, and a NAT firewall. Plus more security options available include an ad blocker, anti malware and anti virus protection to your device free from unwanted software, and an anti spam filter to keep spam mail out of your email inbox. The software is available for Windows, Mac OS, Android, iOS, and Android TV devices, plus there are browser extensions available for the Chrome and Firefox browsers.

OFFER: Take advantage of an amazing 73% discount on a 2-year plan, just $2.95 per month! You can even try it risk-free with the company’s seven-day money back guarantee.

Conclusion

T-Mobile users can benefit from a VPN for a variety of reasons, from improving security to enhancing privacy, and getting around regional restrictions and censorship. We have recommended a number of VPN providers who will be well suited to the needs of T-Mobile users.

Have you tried out any of these VPNs? Which VPN do you use for your T-Mobile device? Let us know about your experiences in the comments below.

Read Best VPN for T-Mobile to Ensure Privacy Anywhere You Go by Georgina Jones on AddictiveTips – Tech tips to make you smarter