How to Turn Off Your Vpn
In the modern age of browsing the web, a VPN is absolutely vital for staying safe online. A VPN, or virtual private network, is a privacy tool that essentially puts a cloak of anonymity around your personal web usage. VPNs don’t provide you with total immunity from being tracked or spied on, but they are a huge building block in the wall of personal privacy. So if you don’t have one, you really should – but if you do have one and you need to turn it off for some reason, you may not know how to. This article will provide a brief tutorial on turning off your VPN under Windows, Android, iOS, and Mac OS X.
We will be using ExpressVPN in our examples because it’s reliable, easy-to-use, and widely used. But, the instructions are basically the same for any VPN you will be using.
Turn Off a VPN in Windows
To temporarily disable a VPN in Windows, you use the same method you use to connect it. If you use a vendor app, you disconnect using that app. If you connect via Windows, you disconnect via Windows.
- Select the up arrow next to the Windows Taskbar clock to access running processes.
- Right-click your VPN app and select Disconnect.
- Confirm if required.
The exact steps differ by vendor, but as a rule, you right-click any program in the list to access commands. Disconnect should be one of them.
Alternatively, use the Windows VPN app.
- Select the speech bubble notification icon to the right of the Windows clock.
- Select Disconnect on your VPN.
Lastly, you can disconnect your VPN using the dedicated Windows app.
- Click on your VPN app in the taskbar.
- Click the power icon to disconnect your VPN.
As you can see, disconnecting your VPN on a PC is fairly simple. With so many ways to connect and disconnect, it’s a task that shouldn’t interfere with your other tasks.
Turn off a VPN in Android
Android doesn’t natively support VPN, so users will typically use a vendor app provided by their VPN service provider. You have a few options to disconnect your VPN on an Android device.
The first method we recommend allows you to continue to multitask without leaving another app to search for the ExpressVPN app. Here’s how:
- Swipe down from the top of your screen.
- You will see your VPN running. Tap it.
- Tap the power icon to disconnect it.
The other option is to go straight to the application.
- Select the app from your Android home screen.
- Select the Disconnect option from the menu.
This should be a simple process. Selecting the app should immediately present you with the option to turn off the VPN.
- Open your device’s Settings and tap on Connections.
- Select More Connection Settings at the bottom of the page.
- Select your VPN and tap Disconnect.
Turn off a VPN in iOS
As with Android, the fastest way to get online using a VPN on an iPhone is to use a vendor app. You can configure iOS to run it, but the app is quicker. The app will usually configure your device to use the VPN, and everything is done for you.
To turn it off:
- Select Settings from the home screen.
- Toggle the switch off next to VPN.
Of course, you can also open the VPN app on your phone and press the power button to disconnect it as well.
This process is roughly the same whether you’re using a VPN app or have manually configured it yourself.
Turn off a VPN in Mac OS X
Mac OS X also has the ability to use VPNs which makes a secure operating system just a little more secure. Like Windows, you can use the app to control the VPN or use network settings within Mac OS X.
- Select the VPN app on the OS X desktop or in the Dock.
- Click on the power icon to disconnect the VPN.
When ExpressVPN is active and connected on your Mac, you can disconnect it using the menu icon at the top of your screen. Here’s how:
- In the upper right-hand corner of your Mac, click on the VPN icon.
- Click Disconnect.
You can also click Show ExpressVPN in this menu to access more settings and open the application on your Mac.
Most VPN apps use the word ‘Disconnect,’ but that might change. Use your judgment here. Some VPN apps may add a menu option in the top menu on the desktop; if yours has this, you can select the menu instead of the dock. The result is the same.
If you configured your VPN through MAC OS X and not an app, do this:
- Select the Apple menu icon in the top left of the desktop.
- Select System Preferences and Network.
- Select the VPN connection in the left pane of the Network window.
- Select Disconnect.
It makes sense to keep your VPN running at all times when online. This is even more important if you’re a laptop or mobile user who frequents Wi-Fi hotspots or public networks. The VPN offers a layer of security even the most hardened hacker will find difficult to penetrate!