If you’ve traveled outside the US recently, you may have noticed that streaming sports and entertainment is different around the world. Some services like Netflix offer different catalogs in different countries, and many sports options are different even depending on the city you’re watching.
But you don’t have to travel to see these differences if you use a virtual private network, or VPN. In addition to providing security and anonymity to users via an extra layer of encryption, it routes traffic through another state or country of your choosing, essentially taking you on a virtual journey to experience the internet from anywhere. VPNs are legal in the US, Canada, and most countries with a free and open Internet, but banned in nations like Russia, China, and North Korea.
For sports fans, VPNs have become a key way to avoid blackout areas or to watch sports not broadcast in the US. For example, in the UK, BBC iPlayer and the ITV player will stream this year’s World Cup, while in the US, only subscribers to Hulu + Live TV, Sling or DirecTV will have access. That’s why fans of international football or global sports like cricket and rugby have been early adopters of VPNs.
Private Internet Access has servers in all 50 states and 83 different countries, so you can surf the web as if you were there. This applies to more than just sports blackouts – you can also access local websites that are blocked across state or national borders, including local news stations and online banking details. It even lets you watch TV premieres before they appear in your time zone, avoiding the dreaded Twitter spoilers.
Your streaming service may frown on their user agreement, but using a VPN is legal and can help you avoid geoblocks when you’re traveling – or when you’re at home but need to be across the globe to get that telenovela, Bollywood movie or Australian rules football matches. A PIA VPN can help with streaming access, as well as local content or social media.
Work from your local coffee shop with greater security. A PIA VPN offers another layer of security when you’re on public Wi-Fi to protect you from being spied on by strangers – especially if you bank online or have access to some of your financial data. It can also protect you if you get into heated arguments online and hackers want to track your location.
It’s not just strangers at a Starbucks trying to access your device; many apps actively track your location and browsing history. A PIA VPN can prevent them from using your IP address to track you and share this information with third parties – or even authorities. Don’t think that just because you surf “incognito” that no one can see where you’ve been.
Some services have different fees depending on where you are. Try buying that flight ticket from different places using a PIA VPN and see what you can save.
This article is sponsored by Private Internet Access and Paste has partnered with PIA to bring you an 82% off VPN plus four months free – that’s $2.03 per month for the 2-year plan. Click here for more info.