VPNs and Poker: Everything You Need To Know

Poker is one of the world’s most popular card and betting games. If you want to try poker, don’t worry because there is no better time to play poker than the present. Advancements in our technology have made poker more beginner-friendly by making learning more accessible. Since it has existed for nearly two centuries, you can find many free resources for learning online. Countless poker guides, video analysis of gameplay, and even forums where you can chat and play with your fellow poker players. 

Technology has also made poker even more accessible and was a big reason for the poker boom between 2003 and 2006. Now, online poker has almost no limits to when and where you can play. You don’t need to go to a casino and plan your trip; instead, you can play from the comfort of your home anytime you want. All you need is a device with an internet connection, and you’re all set. Or are you? This article will focus on a missing piece many people do not use when playing online poker: The VPN. It will explain how it works and why you should use it when visiting poker websites.  

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VPNs and how they work

VPN stands for Virtual Private Network. It modifies your network connection and encrypts your data by sending it to a host server. When you use one, the VPN provider effectively becomes your internet service provider (ISP) and is the one allowing you to see the website. That causes numerous effects, and one of the most important is an internet protocol (IP) address change. Your IP address is your address on the internet, so your ISP and potentially hackers can use it to track you down. With an IP, someone could get a rough approximation of where you used your device in real life. They could also impersonate you, gain control of your device, or make a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack, which effectively shuts down your internet. 

Benefits of a VPN

A VPN has many benefits that make it crucial to those who care about online privacy and security. Here are a few reasons you should use a VPN:

  • Data encryption. It is essentially impossible to read a VPN user’s data barring a security breach of the VPN provider. VPNs encrypt your data, scrambling it many times and making it unreadable to others. Even if a hacker manages to see your data, if you have a VPN, it would be useless to them. 
  • Disguising your location. VPNs change your IP address and make it look like you are in the same area as the VPN server. Many websites can use your IP to approximate your location; some shadier ones do this without your knowledge, selling out your information.
  • Data transfers and downloading. Whenever you interact with a website, primarily through accessing files or submitting information, there is always a chance your connection has a security flaw allowing hackers to steal your information. VPNs minimize this risk and make it safer to give sensitive information online by adding an extra layer of privacy. 
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VPNs for poker

VPNs are good every time you’re online, but they are fantastic for online poker. If you are an online poker regular, here are a few reasons to consider using a VPN when playing:

  • Secure payouts. When signing up for online poker, you must give your personal information, like online bank account details to receive money. Hackers are well aware of this and can try stealing your data to see this sensitive information. VPNs are easy to use and considerably lower the risks of someone getting access to your data.
  • Circumventing region bans. Another big reason to use VPNs is that online poker is not available in every country, given the different laws about online gambling worldwide. VPNs are perfect for you if you live in a country with strict online gambling laws or want to play on sites outside your region. Most offer a wide variety of servers and regions to choose from. Selecting a region will change your displayed location, allowing you to access sites you usually wouldn’t be able to.
  • Protection from hackers. Finally, a VPN is good practice whenever you visit a website. When playing on shadier sites with weaker security, you could very well be the target of a hacker exploiting the site’s vulnerabilities. The added layer of security a VPN gives is exceptionally useful on every site you visit.  

Finding good VPNs

When looking for a VPN, many people don’t understand what makes a VPN worth using. There are lots of VPNs out there, paid and free, so here are some qualities you should consider when choosing one:

  • Server locations. If you plan to use VPNs to circumvent regional restrictions, you should ensure that your provider offers servers in your desired locations. It’s best to pick the closest area to your location without online gambling restrictions, as being closer will speed up your connection.
  • Tracking policy. VPN providers have different policies on your information. While none sell your data (hopefully), some track your information in the form of logs. It’s best to look for providers that do not have logs, as that means even they cannot see your data.
  • Data amount. Most VPNs with a paid subscription offer unlimited data. You usually get a finite amount of data from free VPN providers that gets refreshed monthly. If you don’t plan on spending, look for generous yet trustworthy providers that give you a large amount of data to work with.
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The best online poker site

We hope this article taught you about VPNs and why you should play online poker with them. If you want to try your VPN, you can head to GGPoker, the world’s largest poker room. They offer a free, built-in poker tracker and heads-up display, which is a fantastic deal since the majority of poker software is paid for. They also have the usual selection of games, multiple stakes, and poker variants like Omaha and Short Deck.