Despite the Netherlands’ pro-privacy legislation and high regard for internet freedom, we recommend using a VPN when in-country.
“Why?”, you may ask.
Well, it’s because the Netherlands is a member of international surveillance alliances, in particular … Nine Eyes and Fourteen Eyes.
Have you heard of them? Most folks haven’t.
Did you know that the Netherlands works alongside other member states to collect and share data? As such, the recording of an individual’s internet activities is inevitable.
So if you care about your online privacy, it’s best to use a VPN when connecting to the internet.
What is a VPN, and how can it protect you? The acronym VPN stands for “Virtual Private Network.” It’s a means of adding security and privacy to the networks you use (e.g., a coffee shop’s publicly accessible Wi-Fi) to connect to the internet.
Internet Freedom in the Netherlands
Internet freedom is a broad concept that conceptualizes the following:
- digital rights
- freedom of information – to share it, and to own it
- the right to access the internet
- freedom from internet censorship
- net neutrality
And because every country has a different interpretation concerning the term “internet freedom,” laws that govern the internet in your country are more than likely very different than the laws elsewhere.
According to Freedom House, a pro-democracy think-tank, governments throughout the world “are seeking more control over user’s data.” The think-tank found that states are enacting and using laws to address alleged cases of fake news with the end view of inhibiting so-called dissidents. Also, it found that an increasing number of governments are resorting to online surveillance – a method that makes governmental access and storage of private data easier.
Interesting Facts About the Netherlands
Called and known to the world as the “Kingdom of Netherlands,” the Netherlands has a landmass of 41,850 square kilometers and approximately 17 million residents (the 62nd most populous country). It shares internationally-recognized sea or maritime borders with the United Kingdom, Germany, and Belgium.
By comparison, the U.S. state of Maryland (the closest state in terms of landmass) is 32,100 square kilometers, which has a population of 6 million.
Concerning internet usage, the Netherlands is among the 27 European Union (EU) countries with the broadest internet access. In fact, 98% of all Dutch households have an internet-accessible device. This is 11% greater than the average European state.
Smartphones are the most prevalent device in the Netherlands (as is the case in most European countries) and are the primary means by which people access the internet.
The internet is fast in the Netherlands, measuring an average of 82 Mbps, which is the sixth-fastest in the world.
Mass-Surveillance in the Netherlands (Video)
If you’re having any doubts about what you’ve just read, watch the below video for an awakening.
Why You Should Use a VPN in the Netherlands
If you care about your privacy online, here are some compelling reasons why you should consider using a VPN when you’re in the Netherlands.
1. A VPN Protects You From the Netherlands’ Data Retention Laws and Policies
While admittedly there’s internet freedom across the Netherlands, Dutch intelligence agencies have the authority to acquire sensitive data from internet service providers. This means that if you’re living in the Netherlands, your online information could become accessible to them.
By using a VPN, your online identity is kept secure and private through encryption and by the routing of your data through remote servers. In effect, you’re bypassing the Netherlands’ data retention laws.
2. A VPN Ensures a Safe Wi-Fi Connection
A VPN encrypts your data using highly secure protocols, obfuscating your online activities.
3. A VPN Can Protect Multiple Devices Simultaneously
It’s standard practice today for VPN services to allow up to five simultaneous connections. Some offer even more, such as NordVPN, which permits six.
4. It Frees You from Bandwidth Throttling
If you have difficulty streaming your favorite online shows, chances are that your ISP is throttling (or slowing down) your internet access.
ISPs are known to do this when their automated systems detect excessive use of video streaming services. And depending on which country you live in, this could be illegal.
To completely avoid this problem, take control of your data and hide it from ISP personnel and systems.
Because VPNs route your internet traffic through encrypted tunnels, your ISP doesn’t know that you’re watching your favorite shows and doesn’t throttle your access. It’s as simple as that.
5. A VPN Blocks Malicious Content
Many VPN companies leverage advance cybersecurity controls that detect malicious activity before your computer does. (e.g., DNS lookups to malicious websites). Your VPN can then take preventative measures to block access to harmful websites.
VPN Services with Servers Around the Globe
|VPN Service||Price||Jurisdiction||# of Countries||# of Servers|
/ PER MONTH
|For those who prefer the premium experience, NordVPN has you covered. Offering innovative privacy features like Double VPN and the CyberSec malware and ad blocker, it’s ideal for anyone looking to amp up their online security.|
/ PER MONTH
British Virgin Islands
|An ultra-secure server array, a stunning app and impressive streaming capabilities – what’s not to like about ExpressVPN? It’s one of the most trusted names in the VPN industry, keeping you and your data secure no matter where you go.|
/ PER MONTH
|No logs, no Netflix proxy errors, no chance of your data getting hijacked – what’s not to like about CyberGhost? Excellent customer service and a huge range of compatible devices make it one of the top choices for all types of VPN users.|
/ PER MONTH
|The first personal VPN to implement split tunneling, Ivacy’s got a lot more to boast about: over 1,000 servers, an effortless streaming mode and very affordable pricing.|