Security Flaws: The Worst Thing for A VPN to Have
VPNs are made to be secure, but with how fast threats are evolving online, it’s hard to make sure you’re completely safe with your VPN provider without in-depth testing. But that’s what we’re here for!
Over the years, security researchers have explored various loopholes in some famous VPN services. Some of these loopholes weren’t known until the researches were published, and that’s a lucky thing — when white hat hackers learn of a flaw first, the VPN providers have a chance to plug in the holes. It’s a different story if cybercriminals find the loophole first, since that means they can exploit it and none will be the wiser.
Around 2019, a team of researchers in Asia found that it’s possible to access some VPN networks without the secure credentials normally needed to log into them. A few other VPNs have been known to respond poorly to (and sometimes even act as conduits for) WiFi borne threats. These threats can bypass your VPN by using the app itself to prompt a dialog box that can inject malicious code into your device. There are also hackers who are able to squeeze into the gap between the VPN connection and the backend of the VPN app, allowing them to see your data and even infect your device well before the data enters or after the same leaves the encrypted VPN connection.
For the most part, the developers of VPN software are pretty agile when patching up security loopholes. However, not all of them have policies that lets them inform their subscribers that such a breach has been detected. This is a really bad idea, since users won’t even know they have to protect themselves against something.
In our reviews, we look not just at existing VPN security issues. In fact, it’s not really so bad to have an open issue, since many famous VPN providers go through that over the years (though the best ones, notably, have few to no instances of breach at all). What’s much more telling is how these VPN services act once they know a security breach is present. Do they cover it up? Do they make a public announcement? How long does it take before they patch the issue up? How are updates rolled out to their subscribers? These are just some of the things we look into.
Remember — while VPN services can be breached and fixed at regular intervals, your own data is much more fragile. It’s very hard to recover from a cyberattack, especially once your personal information and other sensitive details have been exposed. So even if you use a VPN, be very wary when browsing the Internet. This is so that even if a security breach is logged, your own browsing habits can protect you from falling victim to online criminals.