Geeks2U Promise
We guarantee you'll love our fast, friendly service - or we'll refund your money.  
133,572 Happy Customers & Counting
Need tech support?
1300 769 448
Extended hours, 7 days a week
Home  /  geekspeak  /  Stealth VPNs help you slip past security roadblocks when travelling

Stealth VPNs help you slip past security roadblocks when travelling

A Virtual Private Network is a great way to protect your privacy and security when travelling for business, but there are times when you might need stealth mode to beat a VPN block.

A VPN is an important security precaution when you’re using a third-party Wi-Fi hotspot and you’re not certain that it can be trusted, whether it’s in a cafe, airport lounge or your hotel room. The VPN creates an encrypted tunnel which stops people snooping on your web traffic, whether they be nefarious Wi-Fi network operators or external hackers who’ve hijacked the network.

To make things complicated some network operators add VPN blocks which prevent your VPN software from connecting to the VPN server, in an effort to force you to use an open connection so they can keep an eye on you. It’s a common problem when travelling in countries like China and Iran where internet access is regulated, but you can also encounter VPN blocks in Australia.

If you’re not prepared to compromise your security then you need a VPN which can operate in stealth mode, basically disguising itself as normal web traffic in order to sneak past the VPN block.

Stealth VPNs rely on a protocol known as SSTP (Secure Socket Tunnelling Protocol) in order to camouflage your VPN. SSTP is only supported by some VPN providers and it goes under a range of different names, so it’s important to do your research.

Rather than blocking VPNs completely, some network operators throttle VPN download speeds as a way to discourage their use. A stealth VPN can help with this, as the network provider can’t detect that you’re using a VPN, although it’s offset by the fact that SSTP tends to be a bit more sluggish than other VPN protocols. As a general rule a stealth VPN should be your fallback option when other VPN options let you down.

If you’re using your Australian mobile phone with global roaming enabled in countries like China then you might find that services like Google and Facebook aren’t blocked, even though they’re blocked when using your hotel Wi-Fi. This is because some Australian telcos divert their international global roaming traffic through Australian servers when you’re in a country like China, so to the outside world your phone appears to be in Australia.

If you find that you can access services like Google via 3G/4G which are blocked via the hotel Wi-Fi then one option is to create a Wi-Fi hotspot on your smartphone and connect your notebook to that Wi-Fi network, although keep an eye on your roaming data usage.

If you value your privacy and security when you travel then it’s important to have a range of VPN options in your bag of tricks.


Recent News

Later this year, Apple will start selling a new Mac computer. While Apple – like most technology firms – loves a bit of hyperbole, it’s absolutely going to be true to say that this will be a Mac like no Mac ever before. That’s because amidst announcements around new versions of its iOS, iPadOS, WatchOS

Microsoft diversified its Surface portfolio of tablet devices a number of years back to include more laptop-style designs, including the Surface Laptop – no prizes for guessing what that is – and the Surface Book design. At first glance you might just think that the Surface Book is just another Surface Laptop with a weird

Adobe is one of the big names in productivity software, with the vast majority of creative professionals relying heavily on applications like Premiere Pro, Audition and especially Adobe Photoshop. For better or worse, Photoshop is the expected default image editor for everything from print publications to the web, so much so that it’s often used

I’ve been writing about the Internet for long enough now that I’ve seen every iteration to date of the competition in the web browser space; from simple browsers like the original NCSA Mosaic which made way for the browser that dominated the early visual web, Netscape Navigator, through Firefox, Opera and Google’s near-dominant Chrome browser

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Learn about the precautions we are taking and our new contactless pick-up and remote service options. Read More
Get help setting up your home office or homework area today. Learn More