Can Ransomware Attacks Be Prevented with a VPN?

With the immense advancements in computer technologies and the evolution of the internet, risks and loopholes that can expose you and your data to attackers have also increased. Compared to the past few years, computer users are more worried about their identity and data safety regardless of the type of security infrastructure that they have installed or the type of computer that they are using.

Today, computer users are not only worried about Trojan horses and computer viruses but also other recent attacks. Newer threats are emerging every day and keeping up with the latest information about these threats has become a norm. One of the common cyber-attacks that is relatively new is ransomware.

What Is Ransomware?

Ransomware is a group of malware usually used to extract money out of target victims by holding them ransom. Most of these programs are creatively designed to silently enter your computer system and encrypt all or most of your files, leaving you at the mercy of the person who created the malware.

You will only realize that your computer has been infected with ransomware when the program is through with encrypting your files and when you receive a notification that you either pay up or lose your data forever. Keep in mind that no system is 100 percent secure. Malware always makes a point of being one step ahead in the game. Fortunately, there are lots of things that you can do to deal with the ransomware when you are attacked.

Does a VPN Protect You Against Ransomware?

Virtual Private Network (VPN) is software designed to encrypt your data and traffic specifically. So, in simple terms, VPNs don’t keep computer viruses and ransomware at bay. This is the primary reason why you should always ensure that you install top-quality antivirus software and keep it updated to help you deal with some of these security issues. Many people out there tend to have a misconception that a VPN can keep both viruses and malware at bay. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case since VPNs are designed to perform a different function.

Can a VPN Protect You Against Malware Online?

After debunking the myth of VPNs and ransomware, the next big question that comes up is whether VPNs can protect you against malware online. Well, several security experts claim that a VPN is really useful if you want to protect your PC from malware when accessing the internet, especially from a public WI-FI hotspot.

However, it is your responsibility to evaluate the kind of material that you download to ensure that you stay safe. Also, check out VPN reviews to identify the best VPN to use to minimize your risk of being exposed to cyber-attacks.

With good VPN software, all your data and online activities are encrypted, and your IP address is masked. Therefore, it becomes somehow tricky for hackers to obtain crucial information from your personal computer.

Are VPNs a Target for Ransomware and Viruses?

Not exactly. As long as you are using a reliable VPN service with some powerful encryption and well-secured servers, there is nothing to worry about. It is highly unlikely that hackers will try to infect a VPN connection with malware and viruses in the first place since that is too much hassle for them.

However, you need to wary when using free VPN service since it might get targeted by a wide range of computer viruses and ransomware as well due to the lack of sufficient security measures. If you are relying on a free VPN service but you have decent and up-to-date antivirus software, nothing should worry you so much. But never underestimate the chances of your data getting in the hands of the bad guys.

What Can a VPN Do for You Security-Wise?

The truth is that using a VPN service enhances your system security to a certain level. Although it can protect you from ransomware attacks fully, the overall security level of your system is boosted. When you use a VPN, your IP address is masked, which means that you enjoy the privilege of accessing the web with anonymity, making it harder for these ransomware creators to target your computer.

Remember the factor that hackers are always looking for vulnerable people to attack. Furthermore, when you send, share, or access data online, the data is usually encrypted and remains largely out of reach for these hackers. A reliable virtual private network will also blacklist all the dubious and suspicious URLs keeping you safe.

Wrap-Up

Looking at all these factors, it is safe to conclude that using a VPN service boosts your computer security level, making you less vulnerable to ransomware attacks. To ensure that your vital data stays out of reach of hackers, using such a service can really be helpful. Apart from keeping your data encrypted, a VPN also helps you to remain anonymous and untraceable online.

However, make sure that you conduct thorough research before you settle on a particular VPN service provider. Always go for a reputable service that offers the necessary expertise when it comes to online security. Keep in mind that complementing your VPN with safer online usage habits can make you almost untouchable.

Alex Mitchell is an experienced cybersecurity enthusiast from VPNpro team who is fighting against hackers, malware, ransomware data leaks and breaches -- testing VPNs, antivirus softwares, different proxies to find most efficient ways to improve online protection and privacy.

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