22/10/2013
VPN is Still Secure. Encryption Works

Over recent months there have been numerous revelations showing the extent to which the NSA and other national surveillance agencies are able to circumvent online privacy methods and encryption.  It came as no shock that the NSA had been decrypting data – that is the organization’s central purpose. What is more worrying, however, is the revelation that the NSA has exerted influence to introduce weaknesses when encryption standards are developed, and has covertly worked with commercial companies to exploit privacy vulnerabilities in their closed-source software.

It was particularly shocking to discover that Microsoft has been alerting the NSA to security vulnerabilities before fixing them for customers. This was a clear betrayal of trust, leaving millions of customers worldwide at risk of US government spying.

Despite all this, we shouldn’t lose faith in cryptography. Edward Snowden - who should know what he’s talking about - has the following to say on the matter:

Encryption works. Properly implemented strong crypto systems are one of the few things that you can rely on. Unfortunately, endpoint security is so terrifically weak that NSA can frequently find ways around it.

Snowden takes care to highlight the importance of endpoint security. This means that encrypted information may be safe during transmission, but is at risk before it is encrypted and after it is decrypted. In practical terms, the endpoint is your computer, which is likely to be running a US-based company’s operating system, such as Microsoft Windows or Apple Macintosh. If so, your computer is at the mercy of the NSA.

Another recent piece of news is that the anonymity network Tor has been a target of the NSA. For a long time Tor has been known as one of the most secure ways for activists to safeguard their security. This has been learnt the hard way by activists in repressive Middle Eastern countries: those who didn’t use the Tor browser in their activism soon vanished.

Despite this worrying trend of privacy solutions being compromised there is one that remains secure: VPN technology. The reason why VPN technology has remained secure may be due to its use of open standards, or perhaps because since so many corporations use VPN for remote working there is a huge volume of VPN traffic online.

Maintaining your own privacy is and will always be your own responsibility. It’s important to realize that unencrypted information in plaintext can easily be acquired by spying agencies. In contrast to this, strongly encrypted information – be it stored on a hard drive or in a VPN tunnel – is completely safe from spying agencies, except for in the unlikely event that they break the encryption.

We take a unique approach when it comes to VPN privacy. Since we are the sole owners, managers, and engineers of our VPN servers we can ensure dependable and fast connections. As the only VPN provider to fully handle and protect your data from end to end, Faceless VPN is the natural choice for security and privacy.