You have probably heard of VPNs and HTTPS, and if you are interested in online privacy and security you probably have some questions.

In this article, we are going to look at how VPNs and HTTPS interact with each other to provide more security online.


A person using a VPN on their phone

VPNs can read HTTPS – as in they are compatible with each other – but your VPN cannot decrypt HTTPS, so your VPN provider won’t be able to view your passwords or read your emails, as long as the website and browser you use have HTTPS capabilities.

VPNs like CyberGhost or NordVPN are compatible with HTTPS and will merely add another layer of security on top of that which is already provided by the website in question.

The VPN is something that you install, while the HTTPS is something that the website provides.

Both protect your data, and they should work together to keep it even more secure than one individual protection can do.

The two are fully compatible and should not cause any issues with each other, no matter how you use them.

However, this does not mean that all sites will work with VPNs.

Can VPNs Work With All Sites

Some websites, such as Netflix and Disney Plus, are known for denying access to anyone attempting to connect over a VPN, likely due to the ease with which someone using a VPN can spoof their location.

Because Netflix’s offerings are location-specific and they don’t want a US viewer to be able to access UK content, for example, they do not want their users connecting via VPN in case this is used to dodge their restrictions.

However, this is not a case of conflict between the VPN and the HTTPS technology.

This issue only occurs because the website has taken active steps to deny anyone using a VPN access to their site.

The VPN is not inherently incompatible with their technology, and that decision is independent of whether the site uses HTTPS.

Does A VPN Add Extra Security On HTTPS Websites?

Yes, a VPN does add extra security on HTTPS by creating an encrypted tunnel between your device and the VPN server you are connected to.

This hides all of the traffic from internet service providers and other third parties.

Anyone monitoring your online activities, such as your internet service provider, will only be able to see that you are connected to a VPN server.

There are many ways to protect your data when using the internet.

Unfortunately, there are also many ways that malicious individuals or entities can steal your data, modify incoming packages, or execute malicious code on your machine.

Different forms of protection are effective against different forms of attack, so you need to understand what kind of attack is being protected against by the technology you are using.

Both HTTPS and a VPN provide protection against man-in-the-middle attacks, but if the website has not set up its HTTPS properly then the VPN’s protection should still keep your data safe.

A man-in-the-middle attack is when a hacker manages to position himself in a conversation between you and the website or application you are using.

In short, more layers of security are always better.

A VPN is also useful because it hides which websites you are using.

A properly set up HTTPS website will ensure that any data you send to it is properly encrypted, but malicious users may still be able to see that data was being sent back and forth from your computer to that website.

A hacker may be able to glean some exploitable information merely from the size of the packages transmitted and the times they were sent out.

Being aware of this is an important part of keeping yourself safe on the internet.

Unfortunately, no method is effective against all kinds of attacks and, as such, taking multiple steps to protect your data is always more secure.

Even if two methods both protect against the same kind of attack, you cannot be 100% certain that each one is working properly.

With a VPN, all data sent or received from your computer is directed through the VPN server first.

This means that any malicious entities watching the packets that pass through, for example, the router you are accessing will be unable to tell whether you are accessing your bank accounts, updating Facebook, or simply reading a news article.

All data, whether sensitive or not, is encrypted and routed the same way.

Information that you send to Facebook is not distinguishable from information that you transmit to Paypal or your online bank.

Final Thoughts

VPNs and HTTPS are both useful tools for ensuring that your data is kept safe.

They are not the only tools and they have their weaknesses, just like all security technology.

However (barring cases where a website has deliberately blocked VPNs), they can and ideally should be used together to improve security and keep your data private while you are online.