The Internet privacy is one of the biggest which most of the people used to believe few days back. The internet users are now getting smarter. They have realized that their Internet connection is not totally anonymous. Even if there is no risk of spies, the Internet provider is watching them. Most of the users have started using TOR or VPN to protect their online privacy. But, the major problem for the users looking to protect their online privacy is whether to go with TOR or VPN.
So, we have confined a brief post differentiating between a TOR and VPN on different basis. If you are confused among the two, you must go through the post thoroughly.
Tor is a decentralized system allowing users to navigate through different websites or servers by establishing a connection via network of relays. The user traffic is routed through a number of nodes while using TOR and every node is aware about the IP address of the nodes which are just adjacent to it. This makes the path completely non-traceable.
A Virtual Private Network is rather more centralized than TOR as it is created by establishing the virtual point-to-point connection to a gateway via use of virtual tunneling protocol, dedicated connections, or traffic encryption. To the network beyond the gateway, the user appears coming from one of the IP addresses of the gateway. The actual user remains anonymous in this way.
A TOR connection is encrypted through random servers before being decrypted to be sent to the destination website. The first server to which you connect only knows about your location while the second server in this chain knows that the data is sent by the first server and the last server can never track the origin of data.
A Virtual Private Network is recommended to the people who want better encryption. The military-grade encryption requires the best selection of the supported protocols, the authentication method, and a strong data encryption (OpenVPN with AES 256-bit Encryption and keys having 8196bit strength).
A TOR may not be an ideal choice if you are looking to access the restricted websites. You can only access the desired websites if the last node is in the desired nation. It can be achieved easily for USA, but might be difficult for less Internet connected nation.
It is a child’s play to bypass the geo-restriction when it comes to the VPN. You can connect to the server of desired country and hence access the restricted websites easily within seconds. So, use a Virtual Private Network to access the geo-restricted content easily.
Ease of Use
The installation of TOR is not at all difficult. Moreover, it is available for Windows, Linux/Unix, OSX, and Android platform. The user just needs to download the TOR package and run it. It will be self extracted and once the setup is complete, you can see the TOR browser icon on your desktop. To start private browsing, click on the icon.
Almost every Virtual Private Network is available for Android, iOS, Windows OS, Linux, and many browsers too. The VPN is also easy to download and install. The installation can be done within seconds and you can start using it effortlessly.
The TOR is relatively slow. As the data is routed via number of nodes, the latency added by each node makes TOR much slower. It is not at all suitable for P2P file sharing and streaming your favorite videos.
The new modifications and the advancements in the Internet technology have improved the VPN speeds significantly. A Virtual Private Network is very much faster than TOR and have negligible impact on your Internet speed. Moreover, it is ideal for P2P sharing and streaming.
TOR is available for free. You just need to download it from the TOR’s website and you can start using it after completing the installation process.
There exist both types of VPNs in the market – Free and Paid. The free VPN comes with a few limitations like limited bandwidth, limited protocols, and a few numbers of countries. The paid VPN are available at a price range of $2/month to $20/month.
The Final Views
Both TOR and VPN are good for preserving your privacy. But, I would recommend you to go with a VPN when it comes to the overall performance. Though TOR is available for free, it is very much slower than VPN and offers limited features. You can always go for a premium VPN when you have more requirements that cannot be completed using a free VPN.