Virtual private networks or VPNs allow internet users to send and receive data across public networks, as if their devices were connected to a private network, bypassing barriers such as geo-blocking and opening up access to protected content. At present, 11 percent (166 million people) of the world’s online population use VPNs to access restricted sites and social networks and the majority of them are in Asia. 23 percent of Indonesia’s internet users access content via VPN, placing it first worldwide, according to GlobalWebIndex. Several high profile websites including Vimeo, Reddit and Imgur are censored in Indonesia as the government has accused them of hosting content including nudity. Turkey is in second place with 22 percent, unsurprising considering the country has banned networks like Twitter in the past. Vietnam rounds off the top three with 20 percent. The growth in global VPN use has prompted Netflix to add a paragraph to its terms and conditions, reserving its right to ban any users accessing content of a Netflix service abroad, via VPN.
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