Your Ultimate Guide to Virtual Private Networks

Did you know that Virtual Private Networks, or VPNs, are being used by at least 25% of ALL internet users? And did you know that the current global VPN market has an estimated worth of almost 20.1 billion dollars? With the information and tips below, you can join the VPN conversation.

What is a VPN?

A Virtual Private Network (or, VPN) is a service that provides you with an encrypted connection to a network. This allows you to keep your browsing hidden, and your data private.

We recommend NordVPN for its reliability and speed. You can try it here.

How does a VPN work?

First, you choose a remote VPN server and connect to it. We love NordVPN because it makes this simple. Once you’re connected to this new server, you are assigned a new IP address.

Next, all your traffic goes through this connection and is encrypted so even if someone hacked into it, they wouldn’t be able to understand anything. Once it reaches the server it gets decrypted and goes to the intended destination – all lightening fast without you even noticing.

Let’s look at an example! Adam wants to check his online banking statement. He is at a local cafe, using the cafe’s public Wi-Fi connection. Adam does not want to log in to his bank account on a public connection since he fears his identity and banking information may be stolen by hackers or online snoops.

So, Adam connects to NordVPN so all his activity is encrypted then types in the web address for his bank. NordVPN sends Adam’s IP address and location through a virtual tunnel that encrypts his data and his computer’s location. This means that as Adam navigates his bank account, he is hidden from the bank website itself and everyone else – making it safe and secure.

Benefits of Using a VPN

Feel safe knowing a VPN protects you from identity theft and hackers try to snoop on your online activity. Using an unsafe network connection can leave you and your valuable personal data vulnerable to digital theft. This can lead to identity theft or hacked bank and email accounts that may take months or years to untangle.

Enjoy the Internet carefree and with no restrictions. Travelling out of the country for work and still want to watch your TV shows and sporting events? VPNs allow you to route your connection through servers all over the world. This means you can access content from anywhere, regardless of your actual location!

Have peace of mind knowing your data is always private. With NordVPN privacy is one click away. No one will be able to see which websites you visit or what files you download with a strict no log policy and automatic kill switch.

Regardless of where you are, feel secure. VPNs are most commonly used during travel, as a tool for maintaining security and convenience. Let’s say you landed at Heathrow Airport in London. In this crowded and busy space you can check your travel itinerary or answer some work emails securely with a VPN.

Feel secure across devices. VPNs are compatible with both Windows and Mac laptops and desktops, as well as smartphones, tablets, game consoles, routers and more. With NordVPN you can connect 6 devices at once!


Q. I’m using a wired internet connection instead of a Wi-Fi connection- would I still benefit from using a VPN?

A. Yes! VPN’s remain a critical cybersecurity step even if you are using a wired/ethernet connection.

Q. I mostly connect my computer and phone to private Wi-Fi connections- is a VPN still necessary?

A. Absolutely. While private networks reduce the chance of exposure to lurkers and cybercriminals using the same network, they cannot protect you from a targeted attack on your private network, or a data breach of your ISP (Internet Service Provider). #FixMeTip: With a simple to use app, VPNs are easily accessible on mobile devices!

Q. Can my smart TV be protected by a VPN? If so, why would that be an important step to take?

A. Most smart TV’s do not have a built-in VPN functionality- but do not fear! By setting up your router with a VPN, your smart TV will have a VPN connection from your router. Smart TV’s offer an in-depth look into our lives and habits, and they are indeed hackable. Using a VPN is a strong first defense in locking down these devices!

Still curious about VPNs?

Check out this video for a clear and short introduction to VPNs.


  1. VLASTA DROBNY - Reply

    Does VPN protect cell phonecalls in public from eavesdropping or is it strictly a security measure for online browsing?

    • FixMeStick - Reply

      Hi Vlasta, great question. VPNs will encrypt your wifi calls (through Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp), Facetime has its own encryption, but calls made through your cell carrier are not encrypted.

  2. Irving berkovic - Reply

    Can I get the VPN connected to my router so that all my devices will be protected?

  3. Steven Bomar - Reply

    If NordVPN is connected to my router, do I still need to download NordVPN to individuale laptops and cell phone? How many items will or can be carried on NordVPN?

    • FixMeStick - Reply

      Hey there Steven, connecting Nord to your router means you won’t need it on your individual devices unless you’re using them outside your house! You can attach 5 items to the standard VPN package.

  4. Russel K. Myers - Reply

    I have Express VPN, and every time I run my Fix-Me-Stick, it shows that I could have malware on my computer, I contacted the Express VPN people, and they assured me that their product is safe. Is there anything I can do about it ?

    • FixMeStick - Reply

      Hi Russel, we’ve looked into your accounts and can see the flagged file. This .exe file is flagged often by antiviruses but FixMeStick did not remove it, only wiped it of the malware it identified. Please contact us at if this happens again!

  5. BOBBY GRINDLE - Reply

    I understand that VPN, NORDVPN, cause problems with computer. I would not install to router. If I install to my two computers is it going to work properly???????

    • Linda - Reply

      Hi Bobby, NordVPN can be installed on multiple computers. If you are having trouble using NordVPN, you can contact their support site by clicking here.

  6. Anonymous - Reply

    Is NORDVPN only available in the U.S.? – their page seems to indicate this.

    • Linda - Reply

      Hi there, you can purchase NordVPN online at this link here. You do not have to live in the U.S.

  7. Anonymous - Reply

    Looking for an 800 number, as I use a public library for my e-mails.

    • Linda - Reply

      Hi there, if you would like to have a live agent answer you, please follow the instructions below:

      1. Go to during our operating hours (10 AM to 6 PM, EST, Mondays to Saturdays).
      2. Click on the orange ‘Chat’ button at the bottom right corner.
      3. Type in your name or email, followed by a brief message (you can include this Ticket number #421038).
      3. Click on the “Start Chatting” button.

      An agent will then answer you in real-time and determine if your issue can be better resolved over the phone. This improved customer support system allows us to continue running our services out of our office in Montreal, instead of having to outsource to a call centre. You can rest assured that we are actual people who love fighting viruses and answering your questions.

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