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I've been researching how to set up a VPN with a proxy as a learning exercise and also for the obvious benefit of increased "anonymity" and "protection" from prying eyes. I've found several tutorials on setting up a home VPN such as this one.

I understand that a remote VPN can obfuscate activity because its IP address is different than the client.

What I can't seem to find an explanation for is: How are the outgoing requests from a HOME VPN to an arbitrary destination on the web considered "secure" or "anonymous" if the requests are still coming from the IP address that can be tracked to my physical home address?

Doesn't that defeat the goal of "anonymity"? What am I missing?

  • It all depends on what you want to accomplish. If hosting at home, then yes, you can be traced to a physical location, but there are many other reasons to host your own VPN. – schroeder Sep 2 '16 at 20:13
  • Ah, so in theory, the only way to accomplish anonymity would be with a remote server, not associated with you in any way, which also doesn't log connections. Not to digress, just trying to wrap my head around the concept. Thanks. – offbyone Sep 2 '16 at 20:41
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It is not secure and anonymous per se. VPNs like that (RasberryPi VPN at home) will only make sense when you are in some insecure location (like starbucks, airport, public wifi etc) when there is very reasonable expectation that your connection will be monitored (and probably hijacked).

Using VPN to your rPi at home will (ideally) make all those connections as secure/anonymous as you were sitting at home at the time (instead of, say, starbucks). Which is by no means totally secure or anonymous, but is way better than what you'd get in hostile environment which is targeted all the time by many crackers (like airport wifi).

  • Glad I'm not crazy. Couldn't figure out what I was missing. Thanks. – offbyone Sep 2 '16 at 20:42

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