Why Proximity Matters: Choosing a VPN Nearby

A VPN or "virtual private network" server is a way to insure maximum security and privacy while online. VPNs are great for both business and private users due to a large number of different benefits, the most important of which allows you to carve a secure and protected path through even the most unsecured Internet networks.

VPN companies are located all over the world. When choosing a VPN server, however, it is important to choose one that is close to your physical location. Proximity matters when it comes to a virtual private networks for a number of interesting and important reasons.

When you break the Internet down to a basic concept, all transmissions are essentially files being sent from one location and received at another. When you access a website in your browser, for example, your computer sends a request to a server for the relevant information.

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After the request is received, the server then sends the appropriate information back to the request origin and the website content displays on screen. The entire process usually only takes a couple of seconds depending on exactly how much information is being requested.

For the fastest connection, choose a connection that is nearby

Faster Speeds Online

How fast that request can be received and fulfilled depends largely on a number of factors, one of which is how far away the server is from the request's origin. If you try to access a server that is only a few miles from your home, for example, the request will be processed faster than if you were trying to access one on the other side of the world. Though the difference won't be a dramatic one, it can still be noticeable depending on the situation.

When you're using a virtual private network service, the entire process gets a bit more complicated. Information requests are no longer just going from one location to the other - the request leaves your computer, passes through the virtual private network and then continues on to its intended destination. Just as it will always be faster to access servers that are closer to your physical location, the same is true of virtual private network servers.

If the information request has to travel half way around the world before it gets to your virtual private network, at which point it has to make another long journey before it gets to its destination, the process has the potential to dramatically slow down the rate at which your computer can process information even if you're on a fast Internet connection.


While most casual computer users doing basic Web browsing likely won't notice much of a difference, that difference is much more pronounced if you're sharing files. Business users may need to share dozens or even hundreds of gigabytes of information over a virtual private network at a time.

In that situation, a virtual private network that was located in another country could add hours to a particular request.

By choosing the closest VPN server that also meets the rest of your needs, you can make sure that you don't have to deal with a slow Internet connection for the sake of keeping your private information as secure as possible.

Want to learn more about the best VPN providers? Check out all of our expert reviews.

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