[Review] VPNOnly - Disallow Non-VPN Communications On Wi-Fi
Internet security is a huge thing – especially abroad. We take our iOS devices almost everywhere we go and this is especially so for our iPhones. When we do this, sometimes we use free Wi-Fi hotspots. These free Wi-Fi hotspots are wide open and are usually unencrypted, allowing hackers to easily intercept your information. We can help improve our security using a virtual private network (VPN), which sends our information to a remote server making it harder for our data to be monitored.
While VPN technology is nothing new to the iOS world, a new jailbreak tweak dubbed VPNOnly
by iOS developer Aleksey Ovchinnikov will make it so you can automatically route all Wi-Fi data through a VPN of your choice no matter where you are and what Wi-Fi network you are using. The tweak is toggled with a switch, shown in the above screenshots, and it will require you to have VPN services on your iOS device.
When enabled, any Internet data you use on Wi-Fi networks will be pushed through your VPN service. As long as the tweak is enabled this will be the case. You also have to have your VPN enabled so the tweak knows which VPN to route the information to. If you enable the tweak, but disable the VPN, you won’t be able to load anything over Wi-Fi because the tweak won’t be able to use a VPN to route your information through. As soon as you disable the tweak, you'll be able to use Internet data over Wi-Fi without a VPN again.
VPNOnly is intended to make sure none of your information is pushed out to the public in an unencrypted form; it makes your public Internet browsing more secure. It can also be used to bypass firewalls. The tweak does not activate when you’re on 3G, Edge, or other cellular signals as it is a Wi-Fi-only tweak. You'll know when the VPN is turned on as it will show the VPN indicator on the status bar as you are using it:
It’s important to note that VPNOnly doesn’t come with VPN services. You’ll need to either be paying for your own VPN service otherwise you will need to find or create a free alternative to the paid services. VPNOnly will not function unless you have some kind of VPN services configured on your iOS device. A couple of free trial App Store services you can use with VPNOnly include:
If the only Wi-Fi network you use is your own secured home wireless router, then you may not find this tweak to be necessary. Only the people who are constantly out abroad using free, unsecured networks like those at McDonalds or in coffee shops would be able to make the best out of VPNOnly. I can see this being a very practical tweak and it appears to work very well, unfortunately it comes with quite a hefty price tag.