free stats

How to use VPNs without compromising your banking apps

7

Using a VPN — a virtual private network — to browse the internet can give you more security and privacy online. It can also be used to access websites that might not be available in your location. (For instance, Netflix may not be available in some countries, but you can access it with a VPN). 

Some people may also use a VPN to make it appear that they are in a given location, even if they aren’t. This may help them to more easily navigate websites that put up blocks to people in different places.

But because of these security measures, some VPN users like Ernie from Blue Ridge, Georgia, who wrote to us, may face the opposite problem of being blocked out of websites, like online banking sites, that they usually would have no problem accessing. This can be frustrating and time-consuming to simply check something online, and it may lead many people to reconsider using a VPN altogether.

But is this the right move? Here’s what you need to know if this happens to you.

CLICK TO GET KURT’S FREE CYBERGUY NEWSLETTER WITH SECURITY ALERTS, QUICK VIDEO TIPS, TECH REVIEWS AND EASY HOW-TO’S TO MAKE YOU SMARTER

VPN 1

A person using a VPN on a laptop  (Kurt “CyberGuy” Knutsson)

FOX NEWS AI NEWSLETTER: EMILY BLUNT’S AI ADMISSION

What does a VPN do?

If you already have a VPN, you might know how it works. But, in case you’re unfamiliar or to give a little recap, a VPN essentially creates a secure tunnel between your device and the internet. This tunnel helps protect your online activities from being spied on by others, including hackers, your internet service provider or even governments.

When you connect to a VPN, it encrypts your data, meaning all the information you send and receive is jumbled up so that it becomes unreadable to anyone who might intercept it. This encryption helps ensure that sensitive information like your passwords, emails and browsing history remain private.  

It does this by masking your actual IP address, which stands for “internet protocol address,” a numerical label that identifies your device and your device’s general geographic location, with one from the VPN server, making it appear as though your online activities are coming from a different location.

This helps with privacy and allows you to access content that might be restricted in your actual location due to censorship or licensing agreements. Essentially, a VPN provides anonymity and freedom online by encrypting your data and hiding your online footprint.

MORE: BEST VPNS FOR BROWSING THE WEB PRIVATELY 2024

Why do some banks and websites not work when your VPN is on?

Because VPNs are designed to provide an additional layer of security and privacy to your online activities —including your banking transactions — some users run into trouble when they try to log into a bank with the VPN on. This is because some banks may block VPN connections as a security measure to prevent fraudulent activities. When you go to the website to log in, it might not let you proceed or give you an error page.

However, this is not a universal practice, and many banks allow VPN connections without issues. It can still happen, not just with banking websites, but with other websites.

VPN 2

A woman using a VPN while shopping online  (Kurt “CyberGuy” Knutsson)

MORE: WILL A VPN PREVENT APPS FROM TRACKING ME? 

What to do if you can’t log in to your online banking with the VPN on

If you’re facing issues logging into your online banking or other websites, it could be due to your VPN. In fact, there have been many times when we thought there was an issue with a website or getting online, and it turns out the VPN was the culprit! So, here’s what you can do:

1. Contact your bank’s customer support: They may be able to provide you with more information on why the app is not working with a VPN and offer a solution.

2. Try a different VPN: Some VPNs with your banking app may work better than others. Try using a different VPN service to see if it resolves the issue.

GET FOX BUSINESS ON THE GO BY CLICKING HERE

3. Disable the VPN when using banking apps: If none of the above solutions work, you can disable the VPN when using your banking app and enable it again when you’re done. VPNs with a plugin or widget pinned to your browser’s navigation bar can make enabling and disabling it very easy with a click of a button.

Disabling your VPN while using banking apps may be inconvenient, but it’s always better to err on the side of caution and prioritize your online safety.

If you’re concerned about privacy and security, ensure you’re connecting over a secure, private network and not public Wi-Fi.

VPN 3

A VPN on a laptop  (Kurt “CyberGuy” Knutsson)

MORE: HOW DO I USE A VPN FOR ONLINE BANKING WHEN I TRAVEL? 

The ultimate solution for private web surfing

While VPNs occasionally complicate access to certain websites, their privacy benefits cannot be overstated. So, consider using a VPN to protect against being tracked and identify your potential location on websites you visit. Depending on their privacy settings, many sites can read your IP address and display the city you are corresponding to. A VPN will disguise your IP address to show an alternate location. See my expert review of the best VPNs for browsing the web privately on your Windows, Mac, Android and iOS devices.

MORE: UNFORGETTABLE MOTHER’S DAY GIFTS 2024

Kurt’s key takeaways

Ultimately, regularly using a VPN when accessing the internet can be a great way to enhance your privacy and security while allowing you to access sites you may not otherwise be able to because of your location. However, this benefit is also a problem, as the VPN can prevent you from accessing sites you commonly need to get into, like your banking site. Despite this frustration, we recommend using a VPN whenever possible and taking the above measures to make your bank login seamless.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

Have you ever encountered unexpected limitations or benefits while using a VPN?  Let us know by writing us at Cyberguy.com/Contact

For more of my tech tips and security alerts, subscribe to my free CyberGuy Report Newsletter by heading to Cyberguy.com/Newsletter

Ask Kurt a question or let us know what stories you’d like us to cover

Answers to the most asked CyberGuy questions:

Copyright 2024 CyberGuy.com.  All rights reserved.

Source

Comments are closed.