Double VPN and Onion over VPN are two sides of the same coin.
They’re excellent solutions for people who need to surf the internet practically incognito. When privacy is of utmost importance, you can’t go wrong with either.
Then again, there are times when one is more suitable than the other. And there are cases where neither makes sense.
To learn which route to take when, let’s discuss how they work and what sets them apart.
What is double VPN and how does it work?
Double VPN is a feature that lets you route your traffic through two remote servers instead of one. This way, it can change your IP address and encrypt your data twice.
In a regular VPN connection, the software encrypts outgoing traffic before sending it to a remote server in your chosen location.
Then, the server replaces your IP with its own and decrypts your scrambled data. So when it reaches its destination site or service, the traffic is in plain text and bears the VPN’s IP.
Conversely, in a double connection, the first server encrypts it one more time before passing it to another piece of hardware.
Then, this second server converts your data into plain text and includes its IP in the traffic. As a result, the site or service you’re visiting thinks that the request comes from it.
This offers extra protection in cases where remaining anonymous is a must.
What is Onion over VPN and how does it work?
Onion over VPN is a feature that lets you access the Tor network more easily, privately, and securely.
Using a Tor browser, you can surf the dark web and land on sites most people can’t visit.
But here’s the problem:
Some Tor network participants have bad intentions. They can see your real IP and may monitor your activity for different reasons. Plus, you generally can’t explore the darkest corners of the internet without drawing the unwanted attention of the authorities.
With VPN protection, however, you can cloak your IP from and hide your identity from any snoopers. Combined with the additional encryption the Tor network brings, this solution makes your traffic virtually impossible to decipher and track.
What’s more, Onion over VPN doesn’t require extra configuration. It even eliminates the need to install a special browser for Tor. Once you connect to your service provider’s Onion over VPN server, you can surf with any basic web browser like Chrome.
Double VPN versus Onion over VPN – which one to use?
The benefits of these two features are quite similar. However, they aren’t interchangeable. You should choose Onion over VPN when you need to visit Tor sites. Otherwise, use double VPN.
Both connection types can help you obscure your internet traffic through multiple layers of encryption. Likewise, either keeps your ISP out of the loop and masks your IP to prevent outsiders from linking your activity to your identity.
Compared to regular VPN connections, these two options increase latency. That’s because your traffic has to travel a longer path to reach its destination. The only difference is that double VPN puts fewer remote servers between your device and the internet.
For most uses, both solutions may seem overkill.
After all, you don’t need to spoof your location multiple times to defeat bandwidth throttling and unblock geo-restricted content like TV shows and games. In addition, a single layer of encryption is enough to safeguard your data when connecting to a public WiFi network.
Unless you’re a journalist, a political activist, or a whistleblower whose true identity must never come to light, you may find double both options not worth using.
Like regular VPN hardware, using these features can make the internet more borderless and open. But double VPN doesn’t automatically connect you to the Tor network. So, Onion over VPN is the better option when you need to browse through the dark web.
Here’s the roundup:
|Privacy||Security||Speed||Setup||Access to Tor sites|
|Double VPN||More private||Less secure||Slow||Preconfigured||Difficult|
|Onion over VPN||Less private||Potentially more secure||Potentially slower||Preconfigured||Easy|
Comparing the merits of double VPN versus Onion over VPN matters only when you need to surf the dark web.
If you only want more privacy and security without accessing Tor sites, double VPN will always be the better choice.
Severe speed loss may be the unavoidable consequence of either connection. But it’s a small sacrifice to keep your identity hidden in situations that require it.