Why has the use of VPNs increased so much?
The use of VPNs has increased a lot in recent times, both on mobile devices and on computers. This is no coincidence.
Some statistics indicate that even in the last year (2021) their use has tripled, which is extremely striking.
Why has this happened in the year 2021? Why are so many users joining the trend of using virtual private networks?
Pandemic triggered the use of VPNs
2021 is a year marked by the covid-19 pandemic. Millions of people around the world started working as teleworkers, which essentially means working from home. This shift has profound social as well as technological implications.
The pandemic, that extraordinary and terrible event, generated an unusual interest in maintaining secure connections and accessing business services with guarantees of stability and efficiency.
Along with working from home also came an increase in the number of cyber-attacks by hackers using man-in-the-middle attacks to steal business data through teleworkers’ unprotected connections. This backdrop caused the popularity of VPNs to increase dramatically. These networks became indispensable for teleworkers.
Another factor driving the use of VPNs was the definitive take-off of streaming video platforms. As we know, being at home has boosted audiovisual consumption to unprecedented levels.
Today, many users consume audiovisual content over the Internet and VPNs are perfect for circumventing content geo-blocking. In other words, in parallel with the rise of streaming services, the use of VPNs has increased, which seems quite logical.
VPNs against Internet censorship
The events described above occurred in countries with broad freedom of information and Internet browsing. But the increase did not occur only in these countries.
The use of VPNs has also increased in countries that are not very democratic and have a strong tradition of censorship. Examples include Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore and the United Arab Emirates, where there has been a significant increase in the use of VPNs to bypass government censorship.
Users are looking to bypass censorship and also avoid being spied on, and to achieve this goal, the use of a VPN is the best option to browse freely and bypass almost any blocking.
Many countries, such as the ones I mentioned above, block access to popular and widespread social networks without which the democratic and Western world could not conceive life today. Can you imagine being banned from accessing Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or YouTube? There are those who could not live like that!
Forecasts indicate that during 2022 we will continue to experience an increase in the use of VPNs. Every day, Internet users attach more and more importance to their security and, in this sense, VPNs provide an answer to a specific user need.
Online games and VPNs
Another sector that grew a lot during the period of mandatory pandemic seclusion was online gambling.
Much has changed in the world of online gambling since the mid-1990s, when the casinos took the plunge to dominate the new world of the Internet.
From then until today, the popularity of online gambling has also increased considerably. The same has happened with sports betting. It’s a business that moves billions every year. But can you imagine a banned gambling site?
Gambling online or having fun at an online casino can be a bit tricky in some countries with restrictions on access to these types of sites. Some nations have even banned and outlawed any form of gambling. At least we know of more than a dozen that have done so. Meanwhile, more than fifty have strong legal regulations to restrict gambling.
These restrictions have to do with politics, but also with the prevailing culture and ideology of each country. China and North Korea, for example, have totally banned gambling for their citizens, while it is legal for tourists visiting those countries. Ah, contradictions!
However, gamblers living in or connecting from these countries are not giving up and have already started using VPNs on a massive scale to modify their IP addresses, encrypt their connections and be able to access their favorite online casinos.
In this way, the use of VPNs makes it possible to quickly and easily access forbidden websites that would otherwise be inaccessible or whose access could entail legal risks and even prison sentences.