How To Stay Secure On KodiBy Jonathan Sternberg / June 19, 2016 / Tags: How-To, Kodi
Here’s how to stay safe and private while streaming Kodi TV. Start using Kodi securely in only 5 minutes.
Kodi is a great TV streaming platform. But unfortunately, it isn’t secure. Your personal information is exposed when you use Kodi, leaving you vulnerable to hackers and other prying eyes. Thankfully, there’s an easy way to protect yourself on Kodi.
In this article, I’ll answer some common questions, and then walk you through you the simple, 5-minute method to stay 100% safe and secure on Kodi. All you need is an online security and privacy tool called a VPN. I recommend NordVPN (and use it myself everyday). It’s a PC Magazine Editor’s Choice two years running, and offers the highest level of protection and the overall best service for the best price. Now through Feb. 28, it’s only $3.29/month for two years of service (get the deal here). They have a 30-day money-back guarantee. Compare top VPNs for Kodi.
Why do I need to use a VPN with Kodi?
For a more detailed breakdown, see: Why You Should Always Use A VPN With Kodi.
Briefly, you need a VPN for two main reasons.
1) To prevent tracking and monitoring of your activities (including by your Internet Service Provider.) Especially if you use certain Kodi TV add-ons to watch content you didn’t pay for, a VPN is a must. It’ll protect your privacy and make you anonymous and invisible online.
2) To keep from getting hacked. A VPN secures your connection and protects your entire network against security breaches. More on this in the next question.
Best VPNs For Kodi
Is Kodi safe?
No, not by itself. Kodi has known security vulnerabilities that expose users to safety and privacy threats. There are two big areas of concern.
First, there are the bad guys — the hackers, scammers and spies who use Kodi as a portal into people’s personal information. The biggest threat is from so-called “man-in-the-middle” attacks. That’s when an attacker infiltrates the connection between you and Kodi and wreaks havoc.
A recent post on the official Kodi website acknowledged the problems, saying a number of popular Kodi add-ons may be untrustworthy, leaving many users “open to numerous security exploits.”
It’s easy for hackers to attack Kodi users because Kodi is an open-source platform. Lots of unknown, third-party sources — most of whom are anonymous — develop the technology for Kodi, and there’s little to no oversight before turning the technology over to users. So it’s just the smart thing to use protection against privacy breaches.
Kodi add-ons pose an additional, and perhaps even bigger, security problem. Great as they are, third-party add-ons are untested and unmonitored. And many of the most popular TV add-ons are the riskiest of the bunch if you don’t secure your connection.
Second, there are those who think that you are a “bad guy” if you use Kodi to stream bootlegged content. This includes copyright holders, corporations, the government, your ISP, and others. So if you’re using Kodi to watch free TV (stuff you know isn’t supposed to be free), you’re putting yourself at risk if your connection isn’t secure.
What kind of personal information is exposed on Kodi?
The main thing is your IP address. This is out in plain sight. Your IP is like your digital fingerprint. It reveals your physical location and other personal details, and can easily be used to discover your identity and additional private information. A VPN hides your IP address, among other security measures.
I got a letter from my ISP — should I be worried?
Maybe. Your Internet Service Provider (ISP) routinely monitors your online activities. They frown upon using Kodi to watch bootlegged shows and movies, and have taken to sending out alarming letters to customers, followed by nobody really knows. If you haven’t yet received a letter, you probably will.
How can I stay safe on Kodi?
All you need is a VPN. A VPN (Virtual Private Network) is today’s best protection against hackers and online data breaches. It’s highly recommended for everyone who uses the internet because it will keep all your personal information secure and your identity private, even on public WiFi.
There are lots of different VPN providers out there, and we’ve tried most of them. The one that has consistently delivered the best service for the best price is NordVPN.
NordVPN tops our list of the best VPNs for Kodi. It’s the winner of the PC Magazine Editor’s Choice award for two years running. It encrypts your entire connection and essentially makes you invisible online. Since hackers, spies, and snoops can’t see you, they can’t take any action against you. NordVPN is at the top of the class for security and privacy protection, and will keep you safe on every internet-connected device you use. It works so well even NordVPN can’t tell what users are doing.
What exactly do I need to be secure on Kodi?
Just a NordVPN account. There’s no other hardware or software required.
Can I still use Kodi on any device?
Yes. You can use Kodi with NordVPN on any device — Smart TV, phone, tablet, computer, or router if you want to use a streaming device like Amazon Fire TV/Stick, Apple TV, etc.
How does NordVPN maintain privacy and security on Kodi?
When you connect to NordVPN, a “tunnel” is created. A tunnel is just another word for the connection between you and Nord. All the data you send down that tunnel — like your IP address — is then encrypted. This prevents anyone — even NordVPN — from seeing your personal information. Nord encrypts data to 2048 Bits. This is an excellent level of security while maintaining good levels of performance, even on older machines and lower powered devices such as phones and Netbooks.
How do I set it up?
Here’s exactly what you need to do. It will only take about 5 minutes, and then you’ll be totally safe and private on Kodi from here on out. (Scroll to the end you’d rather watch a video guide.)
How To Use Kodi Securely: Step-By-Step Guide
STEP 1) Get a NordVPN account.
Click here to open NordVPN in a new window to sign up. They have a 30-day money-back guarantee. Through Feb. 28, it’s only $3.29/month for two years of service (get the deal here). Otherwise, it’s $5.75/month for a year.
STEP 2) Download the NordVPN app.
2.1) Click here to open the downloads area. You can also log in to your account on Nord’s website select the ‘Download area’ tab.
2.2) Find the device you want to set up service on (computer, mobile, router, etc.) and download the app, software, or configuration files.
TIP: Instead of setting up NordVPN on your different devices individually, set it up on your router to use it with all the devices on your network: Amazon Fire TV & Stick, Android TV, Roku, tablet, smartphone, gaming console, computer, etc.
If you want full-service setup, you can actually buy a router that already has NordVPN installed. After you’ve created an account with Nord, head over to these router pros. Nord has several custom routers available, and you can even have your router preconfigured with your NordVPN account before it’s shipped out to you.
2.3) After getting the app, install it. I’m on a Mac, so I’ll go through how to set up on OS X, but it works in a similar way with other systems and devices. If you need more help, NordVPN has step-by-step instructions for each device displayed nicely in their tutorials section.
After downloading the software, open it up and install it in your Applications folder (on the pop-up screen, just drag the NordVPN icon into the folder). Then go to your Applications folder, find the newly added NordVPN application, and open it up.
STEP 3) Get connected.
3.1) Open the NordVPN application and log in with the email and password you entered when you created your account. (If you haven’t yet created an account, you can do so from within the app).
If you want, you can set a few options settings. You can select a server to automatically connect to when you open NordVPN. If you want to start NordVPN every time you boot your computer, switch on the ‘Start On Boot’ option.
3.2) Connect to a server. First, hit the little glasses icon in the upper right corner. Now you’ll see the long list of servers available for you to connect through.
You can choose any server. All of them will keep you secure and private on Kodi.
I recommend using one of the ‘Ultra-fast TV’ servers, as these give the fastest streaming speeds.
If you’re streaming bootlegged content, you may want to connect through a Tor Over server. The ‘Tor Over VPN’ servers offer the highest level of privacy protection.
After you pick a server, hit connect and you’re done.
STEP 4) Use Kodi safely and privately.
You’re now good to go. NordVPN will work quietly in the background to send your connection through their server, giving you complete and total protection.
You can disconnect any time you want, such as when you’re not using Kodi.
You can switch servers/locations at any time with just a click. The ‘Kill Switch’ feature is very handy you want to make sure you’re never unprotected.
You don’t need to change anything in the ‘Configuration’ tab. But, if you’re more experienced and know you have a need to make a change, only one click to switch protocols or add a custom DNS setting.
How to use Kodi now that you have NordVPN
Before you start using Kodi, just open the NordVPN app and connect. Then use Kodi exactly the way you’ve always used it — only now you’ll be safe and anonymous. That’s all there is to it.
Bonus: NordVPN will also let you watch more stuff on Kodi
Protecting yourself comes with a fun bonus. NordVPN will also let you unblock new content sources on Kodi (and elsewhere). You can get around those annoying geo-restrictions on streaming sites and services by using Nord to connect through the country that’s home to the content you want to watch. For example, if you want to watch BBC iPlayer, connect to the U.K. If you want access to U.S. Netflix from outside the U.S., just connect through any U.S. server.
When you’re not using Kodi, try turning on the Smart-Play feature. This will let you stream content on popular sites like Netflix, Hulu, and many others without needing to change your settings. It’s super fast and slick, and opens up a whole world of great TV.
Full list of security & privacy features
Here are NordVPN’s main security features:
+ Zero data logs stored
+ No DNS leaks
+ Double data encryption
+ Tor Over servers
+ Private servers with no third-party access
+ Secret notes and chat encryption
Here are some other popular features:
+ Fastest streaming speeds
+ Super easy to set up and use (easiest VPN I’ve ever tried)
+ Connect up to 6 devices at once
+ No throttling (even P2P traffic)
+ Lots of apps available
+ Unblock content around the world, and stream from different regions simultaneously
+ Servers everywhere but Antarctica
+ 24/7 support, including live chat
I use NordVPN myself everyday and it has never let me down. It’s the fastest, easiest, most reliable VPN I’ve found — plus total, iron-clad security and privacy protection. You’ll be able to enjoy Kodi more when you know you’re safe.
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WATCH: How To Stay Secure & Private On Kodi
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