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What Is a VPN Tunnel and How Does It Work?

Here’s how a VPN tunnel keeps your online activity hidden from spying eyes.

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CyberGhost Tunnel VPN

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What is a VPN Tunnel?

When you connect to CyberGhost VPN, we reroute your traffic through a VPN tunnel. This is a secure link between your device and the internet. We encrypt traffic flowing through the VPN tunnel, so it’s impossible to intercept for ISPs, the government, or cybercriminals.

Think of it as a tunnel that starts from your VPN-protected device and ends at the VPN server. Only data from your device can enter and once it’s in, it goes 100% private. This means no one else knows what you do on the internet.

A VPN tunnel also hides your real location. You appear to be surfing online from the server’s location. No one can identify your real location due to the encrypted tunnel. Go completely anonymous and surf the internet without privacy worries.

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How Does a VPN Tunnel Work?

CyberGhost VPN establishes a secure tunnel when you connect to one of our servers. You also get a new internet address when you connect to a VPN server. The tunnel hides your original IP address and makes it impossible for anyone to know your actual location.

We then encapsulate and encrypt your traffic before it can travel. Encapsulation involves making smaller packets of your traffic and covering them up with another layer of data. It’s like if we split a book into pages, and then put each page in a different envelope before it’s dispatched. This way, no one can see or tamper with your data while it’s in transit.

Encryption adds an extra layer of security. CyberGhost VPN uses 256-bit AES encryption to protect your traffic. We encode each data packet, so only you and the intended recipient can see what’s inside. The level of encryption depends on the type of tunneling protocol used to encapsulate and encrypt the data.

Choose the Best VPN Tunnel for Your Device

CyberGhost VPN protects your internet connection with a VPN tunnel on any device. If you’re using Windows, macOS, Android, or iOS, we have a dedicated app for you. You can even install CyberGhost VPN on your router to protect all devices in your network at once.

Powerful features like our automatic Kill Switch and Split Tunneling ensure your data is absolutely safe online.

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VPN Tunnel Protocols to Know

The VPN protocol defines how we format and encrypt data in the tunnel. Different tunneling protocols offer varying levels of security. When you connect to CyberGhost VPN, we’ll automatically pick the right configuration for you. That said, you can also set it up manually.

CyberGhost VPN has 3 different VPN protocols you can choose from. Here’s what you can expect from each.

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1. OpenVPN

OpenVPN is the most widely-used tunneling protocol. It offers a high level of security with 256-bit AES encryption and a 160-bit SHA-1 algorithm. OpenVPN is also compatible with all major operating systems, including Linux, Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS. It’s an open-source project, so we can inspect and customize it to resolve any security loopholes immediately.

OpenVPN is the best option for security and speed. It runs on either TCP (Transmission Control Protocol) or UDP (User Datagram Protocol). TCP gives you a reliable connection, but if you want higher speeds, go for UDP.

2. IKEv2

IKEv2 (Internet Key Exchange Version 2) was originally developed by Microsoft and Cisco. It’s lightweight and works well on mobile. This protocol offers 128-bit AES encryption with an SHA-1 algorithm for integrity.

Use IKEv2 if you want to maintain a secure VPN connection when switching networks. That said, it only runs on UDP, which isn’t compatible with every network.

3. WireGuard®

WireGuard® is the fastest and most secure tunneling protocol yet. It uses the powerful ChaCha20 encryption algorithm and is much lighter than OpenVPN. This VPN protocol is open-source too, so we can make improvements to it as soon as we discover a security flaw. It supports UDP only.

WireGuard® is the newest protocol to enter the world stage, although it's quickly entering the mainstream. That said, we'll continue to closely monitor it for any potential vulnerabilities and backdoors.

Which VPN Tunnel Should I Choose?

Every VPN protocol has its pros and cons. Here’s a guide to help you choose a VPN tunnel that suits your needs.

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CyberGhost VPN lets you switch between protocols so you can optimize your connection with ease. We make your digital identity completely untraceable as soon as you activate our VPN tunnel. Join the Ghostie club!

What is Split Tunneling?

Split Tunneling allows you to protect a part of your traffic with a VPN tunnel. You can choose which websites or apps use the VPN tunnel and which ones have direct internet access. You can secure sensitive traffic on your device while not having to reroute your entire connection through a VPN server.

Split Tunneling lets you maximize connection speeds and encrypt only the traffic that needs protection. This feature is only available on Android devices for now. We’ll be bringing it to additional devices soon though.


A VPN tunnel encrypts your internet traffic and reroutes it through a VPN server. This makes your traffic impossible to intercept for ISPs, governments, or cybercriminals. A VPN tunnel also hides your IP address, so you can surf anonymously.

Reach out to our 24/7 Customer Support team to learn more about what CyberGhost VPN does for you.

The CyberGhost VPN tunnel protects your traffic with unbreakable, military-grade encryption. Our strong encryption standards ensure your data is completely secure. This way, no one can see what you do online (not even us).

CyberGhost VPN offers 3 VPN protocols: OpenVPN, IKEv2, and WireGuard®. Each protocol has its pros and cons. We let you choose the VPN protocol that suits your needs best.

Get CyberGhost VPN to secure your traffic now.

Yes, a VPN tunnel can be hacked. That said, it’s nearly impossible if you use a quality VPN like CyberGhost. We use 256-bit AES encryption, which is the highest standard used by governments for top-secret communications. If your VPN connection ever drops, our automatic Kill Switch cuts off your online traffic to ensure your data remains protected.

No one can track your web traffic and IP address when you use a VPN. At CyberGhost VPN, we hide your IP address and replace it. We also route your data to encrypt your connection. This way, you can surf the web anonymously.

Try CyberGhost VPN risk-free with our 45-day money-back guarantee.

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