Feeling safe on the Internet is an arduous task, thanks to data collection companies and malicious hackers. To stay safe, users have the option of using a virtual private network or VPN like PIA VPN to hide their digital footprints. However, lately we have seen that even VPNs are not safe, as VPN providers can snoop on your data.
This is because they possess the decryption key of the anonymous server located in another part of the world through which your data is channeled. This is where you need a blockchain-based VPN, such as Orchid, to maintain complete privacy. Meet the Orchid VPN based on the Ethereum blockchain.
Meet the ‘Orchid’ blockchain-based VPN
Orchid offers a decentralized virtual private network selling proxy bandwidth from a variety of global service providers. Users can buy the necessary bandwidth using OXT, an Ethereum-based cryptocurrency.
You can think of Orchid as an amalgamation of VPN providers around the world. The idea is to create an uncensored and anonymous network with the help of different VPN providers without relying on a single provider.
One of the main benefits of Orchid is that it does not operate on a subscription model. It operates on the pay-as-you-go model, as you can buy bandwidth according to your usage.
Simply put, Orchid allows you to buy bandwidth from a pool of VPN providers to ensure that a single entity is not aware of the network flow you are using because only a portion of the flow is done through their servers.
You might say that Orchid’s core functionality resembles the Onion Router or TOR project and you are not wrong. However, Orchid has tried to overcome all the bottlenecks faced by the TOR network.
Overcoming TOR limitations
One of the meticulous limitations of TOR is the loss of speed as traffic passes through multiple servers. Orchid, on the other hand, provides a VPN network in which the speed of data transfer is unaffected.
In an interview with CNET, Orchid co-founder Steven Waterhouse said: Currently, with the results we are getting, we are able to do things like streaming video from WhatsApp.
Another limitation of TOR is that it is designed primarily for secure browsing. You can’t make a video call or game traffic over the secure network because TOR must only be used in a browser.
Orchid’s Advantages over VPNs
Orchid works like a VPN, but at the same time, it overcomes the disadvantages of it.
It offers a more secure channel as traffic passes through different providers and no VPN entity is aware of the overall picture of the network flow. Orchid promises an unmarked network flow which is one of the biggest disadvantages of using a VPN.
Is Orchid a promising privacy alternative?
It certainly looks like a privacy-focused alternative to other VPNs that could bring about a paradigm shift in the way the Internet currently works. Owning secure, uncensored bandwidth from VPNs sounds like a masterstroke. However, there is no rose without a thorn. Orchid has its own set of problems that make it not so perfect. The company has disclosed all the problems in a white paper.
You can go to the Orchid website for more information about how it works and to download the application.