What Is a Multi-hop VPN Server?
- January 23, 2024
- 8 minutes Read
- VPN Service
Double VPNs or multi-hop VPNs are an extra layer of security that hides your IP address and encrypts your connection through multiple routes. Normal VPN secures your internet and passes it through one server. Muti-hop VPN creates a chain or tunnel that bounces your internet connection through multiple locations.
Multi-hop or Double VPN is commonly used to unblock blocked sites or content by bypassing geo-restrictions. Additionally, it’s used for secure P2P transfer (torrent download), public Wi-Fi safety, and advanced privacy protection.
In today’s blog, we will explore the characteristics of a Double VPN or Multi-hop VPN, the benefits and drawbacks. Let’s hop into a detailed discussion on this to[pic.
What is a VPN?
VPN or Virtual Private Network is a technology that allows you to hide your real IP address and browse the internet anonymously. It creates a secure tunnel between you and your devices and encrypts all the data that passes through it.
As a result, a VPN protects you from potential hackers, snoopers, and all kinds of cyber threats. It also helps you bypass geo-blocks and strong internet censorship to access websites or content worldwide. VPNs are an all-in-one solution for security and privacy.
How Does a Double VPN or Multi-hop VPN Work?
Normal VPN encrypts your connection and passes through one VPN server only, whereas a mu;ti-hop or double VPN encrypts your traffic and routes it through two or more consecutive VPN servers, making it harder to track you.
It obscures your original IP, making it harder to trace the original source of your location or to track your real IP address. As a result, it ensures stronger protection against IP leaks, hacking, phishing, or being compromised on the internet.
Double VPN or Multi-hop VPN secures your connection in multiple steps.
Here’s how a double VPN works:
Step 1: You initiate a VPN connection through the application on your device.
Step 2: The VPN connects you to a secure virtual server, assigns your device a new IP address, and encrypts the whole network.
Step 3: The encrypted traffic then gets routed to a second VPN server in a different country or location.
Step 4: The second connection gets encrypted again being connected to a third VPN connection in a different location.
Step 5: Now your connection is finally sent out to the internet for access. When the data is sent back to you it goes through the same hop and all servers to your device. As a result, the connection can be slow and laggy oftentimes.
While using a Double VPN or Multi-hop VPN, your original IP address and all online activities are disguised since all the traffic appears to be coming from the exit node (the last server or hop the VPN connects to).
If you’ve ever used the TOR browser, you’ll notice in the address bar how many hops you’re connected to. It looks something like the picture below.
The above picture shows the double VPN feature of the Tor browser named “Tor Circuit.” At first, your internet connection is encrypted through the server in France (220.127.116.11), and it connects to the second server in Germany (18.104.22.168).
Finally, it is connected to the third server in Poland (22.214.171.124) and gives you access to the internet; here, we browsed Startpage for an example.
It works on the browser level and encrypts all the sites you visit through the Tor browser. Also, it randomly changes the hops automatically for security.
Is a double VPN overkill?
Yes, Double VPN is overkill since it offers AES-256-bit military-grade security. However, encrypting the data multiple times may eliminate the privacy and security risks, but it significantly slows down the internet. So, a double VPN is not recommended for everyday use.
Is double VPN illegal?
No double VPN is not illegal and should be used for extra security and privacy protection. It also helps to access blocked sites or content from anywhere without exposing your identity, even in countries with strong internet censorship, such as China.
Is Double VPN fast?
No, double VPNs are comparatively slower than normal VPNs due to using a heavy encryption process. The data gets encrypted in multiple layers, which causes a significant delay in data transmission, resulting in a slower connection speed.
How Powerful is a Double VPN?
Double VPN or Multi-hop VPN comes with additional security and privacy features. Here are some potential advantages of Double VPN:
Robust Security: Compared to a normal VPN, a connection is harder to trace with a double VPN. As the VPN connection gets encrypted multiple times, it causes a delay in data transfer. But if security is your primary concern, then double VPN is worth using.
Torrent Download: Torrent download or P2P file sharing is extra secure with a double VPN. As it obscures your IP address by adding an extra layer of security, it gets harder to track your real IP address.
Bypass Censorship: Bypassing strong internet censorship and geo-blocking effortlessly with a double VPN. When connecting to countries with extreme surveillance and monitoring, a double VPN will give you more confidence in browsing.
A double VPN likely provides no noticeable advantage for basic web browsing or streaming content. It’s only recommended when security is a priority over speed.
Use Cases of Double VPN
Below are some common use cases where a double VPN or multi-hop VPN is used.
Accessing Highly Censored Content
Double VPN can be helpful in highly censored areas like China, Russia, North Korea, etc. It can help you access anything you want without risking your identity.
Enhanced Privacy and Anonymity
Having connected to multi-hop servers enhances your privacy and anonymity, making it harder to detect or trace back to your real IP address and location.
Political or Religious Activism
In countries with extreme surveillance and monitoring, double VPN can help protect human rights and promote freedom of speech.
Activists, journalists, and dissidents can protect their identities and prevent the government and other officials from tracking them.
Dark or Deep Web Access
Double VPN is comparatively safer and better when accessing the dark or deep web. Since it’s a dangerous place to visit, it’s better to be geared with the best security.
How do I connect to a double VPN?
Many popular VPNs offer double VPN or multi-hop features like Nord VPN, Express VPN, etc. If you’re using one of them, just select the server from the list and connect. If you don’t want to pay for a double VPN, the best free option is using the TOR browser.
Follow the below step-by-step guide on how to use Tor browser.
1. Go to https://www.torproject.org/download/ and download the Tor browser for your desired device. This will start downloading the installer file.
2.Once downloaded, hit install, and it will automatically install in the background. The application.
3.After installing, launch it from the desktop icon. It may automatically connect or prompt you to connect manually.
4.Hit connect, and it will take some time for the first time to connect to the Tor network. It automatically connects you to the Tor Circuit.
5. Once connected, start using Tor browsing and enjoy double VPN or multi-hop VPN on the go confidently. You can also manually change the VPN connection by clicking “New identity” from Tor Circuit.
Note: For added security, avoid logging into personal accounts or sharing your credit card information or social media accounts while browsing Tor.
Can you have 2 VPNs at once?
Yes, you can use two VPNs simultaneously for extra security and privacy. It’s known as VPN chaining, where one VPN is connected to another’s exit node. The exit node connects you to the internet, making it harder to trace your real IP address.
Are you 100% safe with a VPN?
VPNs enough cannot make you completely safe online since there are other important factors to consider. VPNs may fail, or once human error can leak your online identity to hackers or advertisers. VPNs also cannot protect you from downloading malicious files.
Is it OK to always be on VPN?
Yes, it’s absolutely fine and recommended to be always on a VPN. Keeping the VPN connected all the time will protect you from many unwanted threats and public Wi-Fi. You can set up a VPN in a way that it will automatically connect to unsecured networks.
VPN is an essential tool for protecting your digital privacy and security. Double VPN or Multi-hop VPN adds an extra layer and assurance to your security and privacy, making it bulletproof. Despite its advantages, It’s not recommended for normal users who don’t need military-level security since a double VPN can slow down the internet.
People who need security over speed are recommended to use a double VPN. The advanced security and untraceable feature will prevent the government or any law officials from detecting or tracking and will provide you with complete peace of mind.