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Millions of people who don’t route their traffic through VPN servers unwittingly display a lot of their personal information everyday online. When people email files and upload digital photos, they could be sending personally identifiable information. This information is transmitted along with files in the form of metadata. Hackers can use this data to appropriate your identity and manipulate it further to steal your financial details.
Metadata Contains Your Identity
The page of a website may for instance include metadata that says what language is used, what tools created it, and where to go for related information. This allows browsers to gather statistics used to get to know your preferences. This is because the metadata of a set of data makes it easier for to locate that data. The metadata of an article makes it easy to find that article, in much the same way that a card catalogue in a library works.
Metadata in short is data that describes other data. It provides information about the content of digital data. Think of it as a hidden level of extra information that is automatically created and embedded in a computer file. People don’t normally know what is in this metadata, or where to find it. But hackers do, and the way to keep it hidden is to use a VPN server. VPN services encrypt data and traffic and send it through a secure tunnel that is routed through a secure VPN server. By the time your data goes through all these processes, there are so many layers of protection that all your personally information is safely hidden away.
Metadata can reveal the names of the people who created the data and how it was created, when and from where it was created and sent, and what it is for. Your location, possibly your home, and your online activities can also be easily seen. This puts your safety at risk. Hackers can manipulate metadata by stealing your identity and selling your private information.
Encryption Through a VPN Server
Metadata potentially contains a lot of information, depending on what type of data is sent, and how much of it. Think about the way you use the Internet to communicate and transact on a daily basis. If you are like most people, this means you are giving out a large amount of personal data. This information is leaked, leaving traces of your identity that can be picked up from the data stream when it is not secured through a VPN server and VPN encryption techniques. And this happens every time you share data online. Metadata is potentially dangerous because it identifies what type of data is being sent. This helps hackers put the pieces of your identity together. Usually, hidden metadata can only be seen by using a binary file editor. But hackers can easily get their hands on this.
It can be dangerous even if the data you communicated was sent to an encrypted site. Hackers can use the other bits of metadata to figure out what the data it describes is for. In other words, hackers can use these details to figure out what you have sent. If they have an idea of the data you sent, they can make good guesses and reconstruct the data. The result is a set of information that can be tested and manipulated.
VPN Servers Protect IP Data
Sending encrypted data through a VPN server renders it unreadable and untraceable. But your IP address also contains some identity information. The VPN server gives you a different IP address so that this and all your online activities cannot be traced back to you.
More information on metadata and what it’s used for:
Metadata and What It’s Used For