How to pick a VPN app

Using a VPN is one of the popular ways of anonymously browsing web content or securing your web traffic from potential eavesdropping. Unfortunately, most of the VPN apps on app stores are potentially malicious and might even let third parties snoop on your traffic. The key to safer communications is to carefully select your VPN provider. Here are some tips on picking the right one:


Nothing in life ever comes free, and that couldn’t be more true for VPN apps. According to Ryan O’Leary, vice president of the Threat Research Center at WhiteHat Security: “I don’t think VPN apps are secure, especially free ones,” O’Leary said. “The lower the cost of the app, the greater the chance they have security problems.”. The best way to ensure that your traffic isn’t the source of income for the VPN provider is to give them money for the service.


Question the permissions of any app that you install on your smartphone. A VPN app, for example, should not request access to your contacts, camera, microphone, or anything else that does not involve network connectivity.


Stick to VPN apps by known brands and companies. A lot of the popular antivirus providers sell VPN services. Often, you will pay a monthly subscription for the service. Running a VPN service is not cheap, and a secure system will cost more, making the monthly subscription worth the cost.

“When done correctly, VPNs are a good option,” said O’Leary. “But never forget that, in the end, you get what you pay for.”