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HTTPS vs VPN: What Are Differences Between Them & Which to Use

A brief introduction of HTTPS technology. And introduce the differences between VPN vs HTTPS. And point out the advantages that a VPN service has over HTTPS.

When googling “secured internet connection”, or “internet privacy safety”, the popping up terminologies are sometimes confusing. There is a lot of noises that distract our decision-making. Some suggest using a free VPN to enforce your internet security and digital privacy. Others say HTTPS will be the future encryption telegram of the internet. So, from an ordinary consumer perspective who wants our internet to be more secure and faster, what kind of protocol suits our need is a question that is worth debating.



When talking about the topic, HTTPS vs VPN, which performs better on protecting our internet security? Here we would like to introduce both these two kinds of encryption protocol. A brief introduction to these two kinds of internet protocols is as followed below.

The HTTPS (Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure) is an internet protocol based on HTTP (HyperText Transfer Protocol). Generally, the HTTPS is an extension of the HTTP, with a secured protocol that works on the transportation layer, names Transport Layer Security, thus the protocol is referred to as HTTP over TLS (A protocol with TLS encryption security).

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When debating HTTPS vs VPN, we must understand that the HTTPS is working on the application layer of the internet protocol suite, commonly known as TCP/IP, a comparatively foundational protocol that provides end-to-end data communication. Here we don’t need to debate what is the TCP/IP but to understand that HTTPS works on the application layer, which is, in 5 layers of the internet protocol suite, the most accessible & touchable by end-users.

tcpip 5 layer overview

Theoretically speaking, the overwhelming majority of internet resources are organized by the HTTP protocol. So, everything you do on the internet, like watching videos on YouTube, using Google search to find the content you need, or read this newspaper post. All these operations need to “go through” the HTTP.

As the name indicated, the Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure, or HTTPS, is a safety enhanced HTTP protocol. HTTPS uses an encryption protocol to encrypt communications. The protocol is called Transport Layer Security (TLS). This protocol secures communications by using what’s known as an asymmetric public key infrastructure. With HTTPS, your traffic will be encrypted to nonsensical strings which unreadable even if the packets are sniffed or intercepted by malicious software or hackers.

http request respons attacker possibilities

The Transport Layer Security (TLS) protocol could be adapted to encrypt your network traffic to enhance your data security. But hence the HTTP/HTTPS protocol is functioning on the application layer, the TLS encryption is playing more likely a compliment to your network security instead of a solitary online safety solution.

Simply speaking, a VPN, or Virtual Private Network, is an encrypted communication method that could be achieved by different kinds of encryption protocols, like PPTP、L2TP、IPsec, and OpenVPN. The purpose of a VPN is to protect the data security during the transmission and keep your internet communication anonymous.  Top secured VPN services could encrypt your data & protect you from information leaking & malicious threats just like the HTTPS.

What is a VPN

By using a VPN, your internet traffic will transmit through the VPN tunnel provided by the VPN service provider. And you will be given a disguised IP address to hide your trace on the internet. Your traffic will not send to the target server (like a YouTube server) through your local ISP’s route directly but will reroute & masked by a reliable third party. So, your internet traffic & data pack would not be able to be intercepted & analyzed.

Different from HTTPS, the VPN is functioning on the network layer, VPN reaches the TCP/IP lower-level network protocol (of the internet protocol suite). The basic mechanic of VPN is to create a virtual network proxy through your computer instead of your physical network device. Some of the professional VPN services now support that, for example, the iTop VPN.

Let’s put the conclusion here: for enforcing internet safety & anonymity, you should use a VPN with HTTPS encryption.


The advantage why we should choose a VPN vs HTTPS encryption to protect your internet could be listed as follow:

  •  A VPN works in a fundamental layer of internet mechanics. That means it can affect, hide your IP address which HTTPS could not do.

  • Nowadays, all websites online will need an SSL certification to ensure their safety & reliability. Thus, you don’t need to put any extra effort to enforce your internet safety with HTTPS.

  • As explained, VPN could coordinate with HTTPS/TLS encryption as a complement of security enhancement methods. To have a VPN service with extra HTTPS protection is an all-gain-no-loss deal.

The iTop VPN is a free VPN with enhanced security protection, powered by banking-level encryption (AES-256) to ensure your data transmission is fully protected. The PPTP & L2TP plus HTTPS encryption protocols are supported in iTop VPN.


Identically, the iTop VPN offers built-in HTTPS double encryption to secure your internet. You can easily activate the HTTPS encryption with one click in the “Settings – Protocols”. You can hardly find another VPN on the market that supports HTTPS encryption.


The iTop VPN offers more than 1800 servers around the world located in different countries for you to choose from (which is limited in free version), you can hide your identity & real-time location easily with iTop VPN. With the help from the iTop VPN, the risk for identity theft & information leaks will reduce.


Besides its outstanding functionalities work as a VPN, there are some extra features that iTop VPN presents to you instead of others can do. The browser cleaner can clean up your private data which is stored in your browser regularly. The DNS protection function prevents your DNS been hacked or hijacked by malware or hackers. The Adblocker can disable the annoying online Ads & keep you away from online phishing & pop-up Ads.


Also read: >> How Does A Secure VPN for PC Protect Your Privacy & Security?<< 

HTTPS vs VPN, which one is better? To answer this question, we must understand the mechanic of both internet security enforcers. HTTPS has mainly become the universal standard of website surfing, and the TLS encryption is working on the application layer, which can cooperate with the VPN bottom mechanic & functionality. For ordinary users, a VPN with HTTPS will suit best to our online security needs.  

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