A VPN, short for Virtual Private Network, is a service that allows you access to any geo-restricted website by changing your IP address. Each device has its own IP address based on what your internet service provider gives you. This IP address determines your geographical location no matter where you are in the world. What a VPN doe is that it changes your IP address into a different one to mask your location.

This allows you to bypass several geo-bans and access streaming websites or even games. There is a huge variety of VPNs in the market that offer several features. These features can determine your safety level and your speed on the internet.  This means that your VPN is essential to keeping your privacy secured and your data encrypted. Therefore, many users wonder whether it is important to leave your VPN on at all times. Let’s find out.

Importance of a VPN service

Having a VPN affects several things while you browse the internet. These things vary from security, to geo-restrictions, to protecting you from cyber threats and malware. Down below, we will discuss the various features of a VPN.  


A VPN service secures all of your information and protects your confidential ones. Most VPNs use military grade encryption to encrypt your traffic data and secure it from breaches. VPNs also offer a kill switch that cuts off your internet if your VPN cuts off.

This means that you won’t face a data breach or leak of your private information. Many websites log in your information at their databases using cookies. This data is then used to spam you with marketing ads or it gets sold to third parties that will use this information maliciously.

Also, with a VPN on, you won’t get exposed even to the authorities if they demand your information.  Therefore, a VPN can secure your identity while online and guarantee a zero-logs policy for your privacy.  


Many streaming services and games restrict users according to their geographical locations. This depends on the licensing issues and copyright sold by certain productions. Therefore, you cannot access certain websites in the United States because of these limitations.

These geo-restrictions also affect other countries including Europe, Canada, China and Australia. Subsequently, you need a VPN service to bypass these bans. A VPN can change your IP address to the location you want. Hence, you can enjoy streaming from any website or playing any game without worrying about geo-bans.  

Cyber Threats and Malware

When you are online, you are vulnerable to many cyber threats. This includes malware which are malicious software that corrupt your files or even steal them. This leads to many privacy leaks and issues with third parties and even the law.

Therefore, most VPNs have anti-malware features that block malware and ads at the same time. Also, VPNs protect you from denial of service attacks which happen when a hacker floods your network with traffic. This slows down your streaming and denies you access to servers. A VPN bypasses this issue by rerouting your data through its own servers. Moreover, you can also avoid IP throttling from your ISP.

IP throttling is the limitation of bandwidth that happens when your internet service provider tracks your activity. By changing your IP address, you can ban your ISP from checking how much bandwidth you might spend during streaming or gaming.  

Is it sustainable to keep my VPN on all the time?

Because of the constant threats of exposure and cyber threats, it is advisable to keep your VPN on at all times.  

When is it safe to turn my VPN off?

  • If you’re trying to download a big file or just gaming and want some extra speed, then turning your VPN off is a good idea. Usually VPNs make your data pass through different servers for security and encryption which makes your internet slower. To avoid this slow speed, you can turn off your VPN temporarily.  
  • If you’re going for Netflix in HDR or 4K, or basically any streaming service, then a VPN won’t make a lot of difference. So, keep your VPN on and choose a server that has a huge movie and shows collection as for a US server.  

When is it unsafe to turn my VPN off?

  • If you’re using a public Wi-Fi or P2P torrenting then it’s definitely a necessity to keep your VPN on to avoid any unwanted traffic. This also means that you are exposed publicly on an unknown and unsafe network, and hence it is better to keep your VPN on.  
  • If you’re sending, receiving or searching for any sensitive information, then turning your VPN on is a must.  
  • When using a VPN to access geo-restricted websites or services, you should always keep your VPN on when accessing these services. If you keep on turning it on and off, the website servers might detect suspicious behavior.  

What are the best VPNs to use?


Nord VPN on all the time

With NordVPN, you can several features including: 

  • Web unblocking features that unblock any streaming service that has geo-restrictions. These servers are optimized for streaming and gaming. 
  • High- speed video conferencing with a 115 Mbps and 4K UHD Video Gaming Support. This helps lower your ping while gaming. Also, there are 5200+ servers found in more than 60 countries. 
  • NordLynx protocol that uses less code and is hence faster and smaller in size.  
  • Availability. This service works on a great deal of platforms starting from Linux, to Windows, macOS, iOS, android and windows. 
  • Six simultaneous connections on different devices. 
  • Zero-logs policy and a kill switch to avoid data breaches.  
  • Cybersec to block malware and ads. 
  • 30-day money back guarantee. 


Surfshark on all the time

Surfshark VPN offers several features to its users which are: 

  • More than 2000 servers in 64 countries that allows you to choose a server and unblock geo-restrictions. 
  • Unlimited simultaneous connections. 
  • Military grade encryption to secure your internet traffic. 
  • A kill switch and a zero-logs policy for privacy. 
  • CleanWeb feature that protects you from malware and ads.  


Cyberghost VPN on all the time

CyberGhostVPN presents its users with: 

  • More than 5000 servers in 84 countries.  
  • Anti-malware feature that protects you from malicious software and ads. 
  • Multi-hop connection that reroutes your connection through two VPN tunnels. 
  • An automatic kill switch to protect you from leaks.  
  • DNS protection and a zero-logs policy.  
  • Seven simultaneous connections. 
  • Accessibility with a clear interface and availability on all devices. 
  • 45-day money back guarantee.


Express VPN on all the time

Express has also proven to be a suitable option with its different features including: 

  • User-friendliness operating on different platforms including macOS, iOS, Firestick, Windows, and Android.  
  • More than 3000+ servers in 90+ countries so that you can choose whichever server you need on your VPN. 
  • Safety and security because of the military grade encryption and a zero-logs policy. 
  • Optimized servers that allow you to bypass geo-restrictions.  
  • Extensions on Firefox and Google Chrome. 
  • Unlimited bandwidth so that you can stream as long as you need. 
  • 30-day money back guarantee. 

Conclusion – When can I turn my VPN off?

Having a VPN is a necessity as it protects you from all cyber threats including your ISP, snooping governments, and interfering third parties. Keeping your VPN connected, however, depends on your internet activity. If you’re accessing something that needs a fast service, you might want to consider turning your VPN off.

But if you’re torrenting, using a public internet, accessing a geo-restricted service, or going for P2P, then you need to consider keeping your VPN on. This service protects you and keeps you wrapped in a bubble of cyber security. Subsequently, if you need to stay safe and keep your information private, keep your VPN active.

About the Author

Raymond is the primary author for Anonymistic. He's a computer scientist with extensive experience in development and cyber-security. He's also a big Marvel fan and a competitive gamer.

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