If you’ve traveled outside the U.S. recently, you may have noticed that streaming sports and entertainment is different around the world is different. Some services like Netflix offer different catalogs in different countries and many sports options are different even depending on the city where you’re watching.
But you don’t have to travel to see those 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 routs 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 U.S., Canada and most countries with free and open Internet, but outlawed 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 that aren’t broadcast in the U.S. For example, in the UK, BBC iPlayer and the ITV player will be streaming this year’s World Cup, while in the U.S., only subscribers to Hulu + Live TV, Sling or DirecTV will have access. That’s why fans of international soccer or global sports like cricket and rugby have been early adopters of using VPNs.
Private Internet Access has servers in all 50 states and 83 different countries, allowing you to surf the web as if you were there. This applies to more than just sports blackouts—you can also access local websites which are blocked outside of state or national borders, including local news stations and online banking details. It even allows you to watch TV premieres before they show up in your timezone, avoiding those dreaded Twitter spoilers.
Your streaming service may frown on it in their user agreement, but using a VPN is legal and can help you avoid geographic blockers when you’re traveling—or when you’re home but need to be across the globe to get that telenovela, Bollywood film or Australian rules football match. A PIA VPN can help with streaming access, as well as local content or social media.
Work from your local coffee shop with greater peace of mind. A PIA VPN offers another layer of security when you’re on public wi-fi to protect you from getting spied on by strangers—especially if you’re banking online or accessing any of your financial data. It can also protect you if you get into heated online arguments and hackers want to trace your location.
It’s not just strangers at a Starbuck’s trying to get access to your device; plenty of apps are actively tracking your location and browser history. A PIA VPN can prevent them from using your IP address to keep tabs on you and sharing that information with third parties—or even governments. Don’t believe that just because you’re browsing “incognito” that nobody can see where you’ve been.
Some services have different fees depending on where you are. Try buying that airline ticket from different locations 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 offer you a VPN at an 82% discount plus four months free—that’s $2.03 per month for the 2-year plan. Click here for more info.