How to Check if VPN is Working
A VPN connects you to a remote server that acts as an intermediary for your internet requests. It spoofs your identity with the VPN server’s IP address which lets you access the web privately. But simply connecting to a VPN server is not enough. Often, traffic between the client and server does not pass through, or the connection is not fortified against leaks that can reveal your identity.
It is important that you run the VPN through its paces before deeming it reliable enough to protect your privacy. There are some tests you can do to check if VPN is working.
Check Your IP Address
The fundamental function of the VPN is to safeguard your identity by acting as an intermediary. When you pass a request to the VPN server, it initiates a connection request to the destination server on your behalf. Because the destination web server speaks directly to the VPN server, your identity is concealed and masked by the VPN server’s IP address. Encryption safeguards data while it is passing through between the client and the VPN server. Not even the ISP can see inside the virtual tunnel and read the data.
However, technicalities around a VPN configuration can expose your IP address even when you are connected to the VPN server.
Here is a quick way to check your IP address.
- Go here and check your IP address, or type “what is my IP” in Google Search.
- Now, connect to a VPN.
- Return to step one and confirm the new IP address.
If the IP address matches that of the VPN server, then your IP has been successfully concealed.
But it doesn’t end there. To ensure that the VPN is not exposing your IP address in any way, we need to run a few more tests.
IP Address Leak Test
So, keeping all that we explained about how a VPN masks your IP address, the leak in question is simple to understand. Running an IP address leak test will reveal if there are proverbial cracks in the VPN’s configuration exposing your real IP address.
The IP address can reveal a lot about you. It is a unique identifier assigned to you by the Internet Service Provider (ISP) to communicate on the internet. The IP address can be traced back to the ISP to reveal the ISP’s name and your geo-location.
- Run an IP leak test here and here. Always use more than one tool to be certain about the results.
- Connect to a VPN, then run the tests again.
If the report does not indicate an IP leak, you are good to go.
DNS Leak Test
Domain Name Search (DNS) acts like a phonebook for the internet. DNS lookup is the process of finding the correct IP address behind the requested domain name. Every ISP uses a DNS server to fulfill the incoming requests. DNS queries usually escape notice because the process happens almost instantly.
Your DNS requests reveal what websites you are visiting and when you are visiting them. It is a privacy risk. VPN servers use alternate DNS servers that shift the task from the ones assigned by the ISP.
A DNS leak occurs when your OS uses the ISP’s DNS server instead of using the one designated by the VPN.
iProVPN prevents DNS leaks by forcing your device to always use its DNS server, ensuring that your requests are never revealed to a third-party.
- Run a DNS leak test here and note down the results.
- Now, connect to a VPN and run the tests again.
If you don’t spot a DNS server that your ISP uses, then the VPN is functioning as it should be.
WebRTC stands for Web Realtime Communication and provides web browsers the functionality for voice and video communication without any plugin. It is part of HTML5 and used as default in modern browsers such as Google Chrome.
Because of the way WebRTC works, your web browser can reveal your real IP address. iProVPN prevents this by blocking WebRTC from doing just that. So whether you are using the app or the web browser proxy extension, iProVPN will prevent WebRTC leaks.
- Turn on VPN.
- Go to the link here for the test.
If the fields under WebRTC IP Address Detection do not reveal your IP address, then WebRTC prevention is working.
It is important to understand that you must rely on a VPN built to combat such issues. These issues are among the several reasons why a free VPN or a proxy is not an ideal solution for privacy.
iProVPN is equipped to handle any leak that would expose your identity online. Moreover, as a zero-logs VPN service, your activities are always unknown to us.
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