International law, codified in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, articles 17 through 22, specifies several rights relating to privacy, freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and freedom of association. Likewise, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights specifies similar rights in articles 12, 18, 19, and 20. UN member states are obligated to protect those rights. Unfortunately, repressive countries such as Russia, China, Turkey, Egypt, and Iran are asserting "internet sovereignty" as a code word for "suppression of global media, free speech, private global communication". Lies! You do have the right to communicate privately. You certainly have the right to access a free press without control by state propagandists. You absolutely have the right to talk and listen to religious discussions of your choice - or to access media free of religious bias. VPN technology protects your internationally recognized rights.
There are plenty of people who would be pleased to tap your network connection and steal your passwords. There are also plenty who are willing to access your private communications (email, voip calls, instant messaging, video or image downloads, and other data). You can freely give up your private data, subject yourself to intimate surveillance, and risk identity theft. You can also choose to protect yourself from such intrusions. A VPN will encrypt your incoming and outgoing data so that local snoopers cannot read it.
Nearly all websites, email portals, and social networks record users' IP addresses. This data can taken by authorities and used to trace the identity of anyone posting on forums, sending emails, or watching videos on a tube site. To keep one's real identity hidden, a VPN service handily shows a different IP address to websites. VPN services are essential tools for anyone sending or receiving sensitive information. Journalists, corporate whistleblowers, and political informants need to use VPNs. Don't get caught sending your Wikileaks documents unencrypted from your home IP address!
Think about it in a practical way. Suppose a person is having health problemsand wants to learn about available treatments without involving his local medical people or allowing the insurance company to find out? On an unencrypted connection, the wrong people could find out if the person is on iFecal.com, reading about treating disease with stool transplants.
Tyrants and dictators thrive on controlling information within their countries. Regimes that can't survive on merit will protect their power with deception protected by censorship. It starts with a pundit saying, "Don't look at the vulgar memes on Republigaffe.com." It ends with writers and journalists being disappeared. Paranoid regimes will block social networks, impede electronic business activity, and restrivt all sorts of person-to-person discourse the internet. VPNs enable escape and evasion of censorship.
Some media sites, government services, and financial institutions block access from foreign internet users. To use these sites, one must have an IP address within the country. Internet TV sites like Hulu.com don't work for overseas users unless they connect through a VPN. Some search engines also filter content based on the user's country. Getting true, uncensored search engine results often requires using a VPN. A VPN will provide encrypted, censor-proof connections through desirable in-country IP addresses.