A Virtual Private Network app is a must-have app for your PCs and smartphones. But does this app provide the security and privacy that it advertises and promises? Are VPN users digitally anonymous? Can my ISP and Government service get hold of my online activities? To answer these questions, we have compiled certain facts and information that will answer the burning question “Can You Be Tracked With A VPN?”
It all depends on the quality and service provided by your VPN. Different Virtual Private Network Service providers offer various features that may be similar. This blog attempts to highlight What a VPN is and What it can do. Remember, you should always opt for a paid VPN service because the free ones are known to collect and sell data to marketers and malicious actors.
So let us begin our journey on VPN and cover the following topics.
1. What Can a VPN Hide?
When you use a VPN service, your original IP address provided by your ISP is masked with a different IP address that does not lead anywhere. In addition to this, the data that leaves and enters your PC is encrypted. Finally, the VPN service also hides your location provided, you choose a server other than your present country.
So a VPN hides your IP Address, your data, and your location. But this does not mean that you cannot be traced. Your Internet Service Provider and your Government can detect your VPN service and might not get a very clear picture of your online activities. But they do have a fair idea. The main benefit of using a VPN is that since all the data that goes in/out of your PC is encrypted, no malicious actor will be able to snoop on your online surfing.
2. Can I be tracked if I use a VPN?
It is difficult to track a VPN service that provides encryption services but these come for a price. If you are using a free VPN service, then don’t expect to get any security or privacy. You may be able to break through some geo-restrictions but that’s all.
If you use a decent premium VPN service, however, it will be very impossible to track you because your traffic will be encrypted and routed over a wide network of faraway servers. As a result, even if someone sees an IP allocated to you, it isn’t yours. Through DNS breaches, certain VPNs may inadvertently divulge your true IP address.
If you utilize a free VPN service, you may be tracked as well. If you don’t pay for a VPN, the provider is likely to log your actions and sell this sensitive information to third parties.
3. How Can a VPN Be Tracked?
Your IP address will not be used to identify you with the best VPNs. However, there are a few methods for detecting VPN traffic:
VPN IP address
VPN server IP addresses are easy to distinguish; in fact, there are databases dedicated to VPN detection that attempt to determine whether an IP belongs to a specific provider. When you use a VPN to access a website, the website may be able to detect that you’re using one by looking at your IP address. This, however, does not imply that the website will know who is behind the IP address – only that they are using a VPN.
To establish a connection, some VPN protocols employ specific port numbers. OpenVPN (UDP) commonly utilizes port 1194, but OpenVPN (TCP) typically uses port 443. As a result, the port number can reveal the VPN connection type you’re using.
Deep packet inspection
DPI is a method of checking the structure of each data packet that passes by. It has many useful applications, like blocking spam or malware. However, it can also be used to identify VPN traffic. This is what the government of China uses to block VPNs.
4. Can the government track you if you’re using a VPN?
As previously stated, governments can determine whether or not you are utilizing a VPN service. The so-called Great Firewall of China, for example, recognizes and blocks VPN traffic using DPI and other ways. Fortunately, NordVPN’s obfuscated servers circumvent some of these VPN detection measures, making them ideal for connecting from a censored location. They disguise your VPN connection by making it appear as normal internet traffic.
Is it possible to monitor VPN-encrypted traffic? It is contingent on the VPN. Even if the government approached the VPN provider, the service would not be able to send over your activity logs because they don’t have any, to begin with, if the VPN has a no-logs policy.
Some VPN providers agree to provide the government with backdoors, allowing agencies to monitor user activity. VPNs that have been approved by the Chinese government, for example, are permitted to operate in the country. However, given China’s proclivity for censoring all internet interactions, a “legal” VPN in the country is very certain to include backdoors.
5. Can Google Track VPN Users?
It all depends on how you act. If you use your Google account to access the internet, it can track your online actions back to you. Because a VPN alters your virtual location, it may appear that you’re browsing websites from another country, however, Google will still be able to identify you.
Assume you’re logged into your account while connected to a VPN server. You go to YouTube and look at some cute puppy videos. You may still see lovely dogs in your suggestions the next time you visit the website without using a VPN.
Google can also track you online in other ways. Cookies and browser fingerprinting, for example, can be used to track your actions back to your account. Using privacy-focused browsers and cookie blockers, on the other hand, can help you avoid being tracked.
6. Can Employers Track Employee Activities?
This is largely dependent on the VPN you’re using. Commercial VPNs serve a different purpose than business VPNs. Your company could undoubtedly watch you if you’re linked to a business VPN provided by them. Most corporate VPNs keep track of their users’ activity and do not provide complete anonymity from their employers.
But let’s imagine you’re using a paid VPN. VPN detection is possible if your company monitors employee online activities. To observe what you do online, they would need to install monitoring software on your work equipment. A VPN service, for example, will not be able to hide what you type on your device from your employer if your organization has installed keyloggers directly on your computer.
7. How can you tell if someone is using a VPN?
It’s simple to tell if someone is using a VPN if you know what to look for. When using a VPN, all of the user’s traffic is routed through the VPN server’s single IP address.
Without a VPN, data will appear to be routed through a variety of IP addresses, depending on which websites the user accesses. Their VPN-assigned IP address will differ from their genuine IP address, which you may compare to known VPN IP addresses.
However, you can conceal this fact by using the obfuscated servers feature, which hides the VPN metadata so no one knows you’re using one.
8. How can I be untraceable?
It’s difficult to remain entirely anonymous online. There are, nevertheless, techniques to reduce your digital footprint:
- Be cautious with what you put on the internet. For snoopers, the information you reveal about yourself might be a gold mine;
- Use more private search engines instead of Google;
- Use privacy-focused browsers;
- Use a VPN.
Overall, if someone is hell-bent on following you throughout the internet, you’ll need to be extremely cautious and meticulous to remain anonymous. You can still safeguard your data from ISPs, fraudsters, and government spying if you choose a VPN service carefully.
Bonus: Systweak VPN – The Best Bet To Stay Safe Online
Systweak VPN is an amazing virtual private network service that helps users mask their identity online and keep their online surfing activities safe and anonymous. There are many VPN services available but we strongly recommend using Systweak VPN due to its exclusive features listed below:
There are no restrictions based on region
A virtual private network application like Systweak VPN removes all IP region-based restrictions imposed by streaming services like Netflix.
Ensures security and privacy
Because no hacker can track your original IP address or location, a VPN application gives privacy and protection. Additionally, your laptop is free of viruses, malware, and other types of trackers.
Safe file Sharing
If you transfer data over a public Wi-Fi network, you may be confident that they will be encrypted and inaccessible to hackers.
Remote access is available
You may quickly set up remote access from the laptop in your hand to the office or home computer if you have activated your VPN on any network, including public Wi-Fi. This virtual private network will be yours to use and will be impenetrable to hackers.
Enhance your gaming experience
Systweak VPN allows gamers to connect to games from many zones while also reducing lag and ping. It also protects your gaming credentials and other personal information.
The Final Word On Can You Be Tracked With A VPN?
A Virtual Private Network Service is a useful application that may be sometimes exaggerated by its actual capabilities. However, it is still useful with its actual capabilities. The misconceptions about VPN have been cleared up to a great extent in the article above. However, if there are still doubts about VPN that need clarification then you can drop in a line in the comments section below and we will get back to you asap. Follow us on social media – Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.