How Does Encryption Work in VPNs?

2 min

We have previously discussed how VPNs route your traffic through another IP address to make you near anonymous. But have you wondered how a VPN encrypts your traffic? How does it protect your communication from discovery and potential interception?

There’s a lot that happens behind the easy interface of a residential VPN. In this article, we’ll see what happens in a nutshell, how VPN encryption works, and how TuxlerVPN does it better to protect your privacy.

VPN Encryption: Why Do You Need It?

Before we dive into the workings of VPN encryption, let’s first understand its importance in online security.

As we have noted before on the TuxlerVPN blog, a VPN has two chief purposes. One, and this is the more important part, it should hide your web location (i.e., the IP address) by routing all your traffic through another IP. This separates you from your web activity, thus making you anonymous to an extent. 

Secondly, a VPN should cover your web traffic so that your communication stays protected and “unreadable” should there be an interception. Your ISP, law enforcement agencies, or cyber frauds may have reasons to intercept your communication and access your web activities. VPN encryption should thwart any such attempts.

VPN Encryption: How Does It Work?

The process of encryption involves scrambling an input such as your web traffic, an email communication, or file information into an unreadable format. This is called a ciphertext and it blocks illegal and unspecified access. In a VPN, this ciphertext then travels through a tunnel (this is where the routing takes place) and reaches your destination where it’s decrypted for consumption by the recipient. 

This process of scrambling content into ciphertext is governed by the protocol used by the VPN. As we have discussed before, there are several types of VPN protocols such as OpenVPN, PPTP, and WireGuard. These protocols also influence the authentication required to carry out the encryption and decryption. This is done using an encryption key or an algorithm – a series of numbers used to encrypt and decrypt the content of a communication. Some of the most common encryption algorithms are DES, RSA, and AES. Out of these, AES is the most advanced and secure.

When it comes to authentication, there are chiefly two types of encryption: symmetric and asymmetric. While symmetric uses a single key for both encryption and decryption, the asymmetric methodology makes use of shared and private keys. 

There is still a lot more technical operation that goes behind the encryption models of VPNs. But the premise involves using a VPN protocol to govern the encryption and decryption of your web traffic to move it securely over the web.

As a user, it’s wise to know the basics of VPN encryption. Knowing what system your VPN provider uses can help you measure its performance and make a better decision. If you’re worried about your current provider’s system, you can always switch to another one that uses the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES), the most secure encryption algorithm around. 

If you are looking for options, consider TuxlerVPN’s residential IPs and military-grade encryption. Download today!

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