Compared to its neighbor, China, Taiwan has an incredibly free and open internet. But that doesn’t mean you don’t need a VPN in Taiwan — after all, the government isn’t the only threat to your privacy!
From opening up new streaming libraries to keeping hackers and trackers off your trail, there are many reasons why a VPN is a must-have in Taiwan.
Here are the top 10 — read on and embrace your privacy!
Top 10 Reasons Why You Need a VPN in Taiwan
1. A VPN Protects You on Public WiFi
Thanks to Taiwan’s status as the country with the world’s highest internet speeds, many of its public establishments offer free WiFi for your enjoyment.
But on public WiFi, you’re a sitting duck for data-hungry hackers. They can intercept your traffic and even create fake WiFi networks to steal your private information.
A VPN uses advanced encryption to make your data useless to anyone who tries to take it. No matter what network you’re using, your data will remain safe and sound.
2. VPNs Keep You Safe from Data Retention
Taiwan offers it citizens strong personal data protection by law.
But if you’re visiting sites from other countries, your data could be subject to other, less-favorable laws. Sites in countries like Australia and the UK are legally required to collect and retain your data for several years.
However, a VPN’s encryption makes this a moot point. Any data that’s retained will be encrypted and useless to anyone who tries to view it.
3. ISP Throttling Can Be Defeated by a VPN
That ultra-fast Taiwanese internet you’re so excited to use? Well, in practice, it might not actually be all that fast — and that’s because of throttling.
ISPs can limit your internet speeds based on the sites you’re visiting. If you’re streaming HD video, for instance, your ISP may throttle your speeds to “even out” bandwidth usage.
As a result, your video will stutter and may even stop playing entirely.
A VPN prevents your ISP from knowing what you’re doing online. If it can’t tell what sites you’re visiting, it won’t be able to throttle your connection, and you’ll be able to keep doing your thing at full speed.
4. VPNs Let You Access Censored Websites
Taiwan’s internet is largely uncensored — a stark contrast to mainland China, which engages in heavy internet censorship.
But Taiwan does limit access to certain sites, including the Chinese video sites iQiyi and Tencent Video.
And it’s certainly able to block other sites in the future if it chooses to do so.
Thanks to a VPN’s encryption, your browsing activity won’t be visible to anyone. If the government can’t tell what URLs you’re visiting, it can’t block them, and you’ll be free to view whatever sites you want.
5. Taiwan is Beefing Up Its Online Surveillance
It’s nowhere near as bad as China, but Taiwan seems to be moving in a more surveillance-happy direction lately.
Edward Snowden revealed that Taiwan paid the US $200,000 for “advanced surveillance technologies” that could be used to spy on private networks. And in 2017, Taiwan spent $16.2 million USD to develop a special app for monitoring digital communications.
If this trend continues, Taiwanese internet users could find their privacy jeopardized and their data at risk. A VPN’s powerful encryption is one of the only ways for the average user to protect themselves against these invasive practices.
6. Taiwan Cooperates with Five Eyes Surveillance Programs
The Five Eyes global surveillance alliance is notorious for spying on ordinary people’s internet usage and secretly obtaining data from web companies.
And while Taiwan isn’t a member of this alliance, it’s been revealed by Edward Snowden that it has cooperated with the group to swap intelligences with the US.
But not even Five Eyes can break a VPN’s encryption. That’s why using one is the best way to prevent these governments from invading your privacy.
7. VPNs Let You Stream Media from Anywhere in the World
If you’re traveling to Taiwan and hope to watch some Netflix or Hulu during your downtime, think again. Most streaming sites have geo-restricted libraries that can only be accessed from their respective countries.
That means that when you log into Netflix, you’ll only be able to see the Taiwan library, not the one you’re accustomed to.
But a VPN lets you change your location and provides you with IP addresses from any country you want. You can simply switch servers and get back to streaming that show you were watching before you left home.
8. A VPN Keeps You Safe When Torrenting
Plan on torrenting or other methods of P2P filesharing? You could be putting yourself at risk — copyright trolls love to hang out in torrent peer lists, snapping up IP addresses of oblivious torrenters and hitting them with huge fines.
Thankfully, all it takes to stop them in their tracks is a VPN. Its easy IP address masking makes it virtually impossible for anyone to trace your torrenting back to you.
9. Many Business and School Sites Can’t Be Accessed from Abroad
If you need to do schoolwork or conduct business while you’re in Taiwan, you might run into a few roadblocks. Many schools and businesses block international IP addresses from their sites for security reasons, even if you’re a legitimate user.
But with a VPN, you’ll never fall behind on your work just because you’re out of the country. You can easily change your IP address to one from your home country and get back to business.
10. A VPN Can Save You Money on Flights and Online Shopping
Booking a flight or buying a new gadget online should be straightforward, but all too often, it isn’t. Companies change their prices based on your IP address, charging customers from certain countries a premium for the same product.
But no matter where you are, you can lock yourself into the best price by using a VPN. It masks your location with the country of your choice, so you can purchase your goods and services from the most cost-effective location.