How to Check If Your Web Traffic is Encrypted?

2 min

Have you ever tested your VPN’s encryption claim?

Almost all VPNs claim that they encrypt your web traffic before routing it through one of their servers. But how sure are you? Can you take their word? Is your connection encrypted?

It is possible that your VPN is hiding your IP address but not encrypting your network traffic. This is not an ideal situation, especially if you’ve been paying for the VPN.

Perhaps the larger concern then is if you can check that by yourself and not depend on the VPN provider.

Let’s find out if and how you can check whether your web traffic is encrypted while using a VPN or not.

How to Test If Your VPN is Encrypting Your Traffic

We’ve previously discussed different ways through which you can test your VPN. These include IP and DNS leak tests, which are easy to do and effective. Simply turn on your VPN app and use a WHOIS tool to check if your IP address changes. If it does, your VPN works fine and is doing what is intended.

However, these VPN testing methods do not check if your connection is encrypted. For that, you’ll need to scan your traffic data packets. This will give you a quick idea if your VPN is encrypting them or not.

Steps to Check Your VPN’s Encryption

  1. Download and install any network scanning software on your device.
  2. Run the software.
  3. Turn on your VPN app.
  4. Open a web browser and visit any website.
  5. Go to the scanning software and check the packets being exchanged.

If you can read the contents of the data packets, your VPN is not encrypting your traffic. You can also check the protocol being used to further verify what system the VPN provider is using to create the virtual network. If you see HTTP or HTTPS, for instance, your VPN is likely not providing any form of encryption.

If you see protocols like Encapsulating Security Payload (ESP) in your scans and gibberish text as content of your packets, you can confirm that your VPN is encrypting your traffic. Such gibberish is what any attacker would see if they try and succeed to intercept your web traffic.

If traffic encryption is why you installed a VPN, we recommend testing it every few months. With the mushrooming of VPN providers, it’s important to choose a VPN that’s effective in protecting your privacy online. A service that both encrypts your traffic and tunnels it through physical servers is considered the best.

Try TuxlerVPN to enjoy high-speed connections and uninterrupted browsing through residential IPs. 

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