According to a recent Wombat Security survey, VPNs have become mainstream. At least as far as the US and the UK are concerned. The study focused on VPN usage in both those countries. It came out with some unexpected takeaways.
There have been a few recent developments which could explain increased public interest in VPNs. The introduction of the Investigatory Powers Act in the United Kingdom is one of them. The other is changes to what ISPs can do with user data in the United States. Both heavily infringe on online privacy. And I haven’t even yet mentioned Internet censorship in the UK, which takes it another step further.
After surveying 1,000 individuals in each country, here is what the Wombat study found.
VPN Usage Statistics
In the US, a pretty remarkable 65 percent of those surveyed have used a VPN in either a personal or corporate environment. I would have guessed that number to be much lower. In the UK, a smaller but still impressive 44 percent of respondents use VPNs. Personal VPNs include both paid and free services.
Almost a quarter of individuals in the UK (23 percent to be exact) claimed they understood what a VPN is and its benefits. Yet those same people chose not to use one. That’s a surprising stat considering the number of good VPN services for the United Kingdom available in the market. In the US, that number stood at 16 percent.
Sadly, one in three British respondents had no idea what a VPN was, let alone what it could do for them. That number was almost twice as high as the United States equivalent. There, only 19 percent were unsure about what VPNs are.
VPNs in the UK Must Catch Up
No matter what we would like to believe, the Internet is far from being a safe and private environment. The UK is tech-savvy, yet it seems too many people there either don’t realize or choose to ignore that fact. Without taking additional measures like finding a good VPN and using it, anyone’s online activities can easily be intercepted and analyzed by others. It would be great to see the UK VPN usage statistics improved.
The right virtual private network provides many potential benefits. It will keep you safe on public Wi-Fi hotspots and give you an additional layer of security when shopping online. It will also protect you from ISP and government snooping as well as help prevent bandwidth throttling (now that, at least in the US, net neutrality is effectively dead). A VPN will even help you stay connected with home by removing content geo-restrictions while traveling.
Cyber threats and an ever-increasing disregard for online privacy are turning virtual private networks into an everyday tool for many in the UK and the US. It’s something many visitors to FastestVPNGuide already suspected. This latest Wombat Security study just confirms it.