The popular VPN extension called Hola has been making headlines for all the wrong reasons this week. Hola has been allowing people to watch online video content outside of your viewing area which is considered a 'good thing' by many. However, people have also been using the Hola network for bad things and you probably don't want your idle computer being part of those shenanigans. PCWorld has the full article and probably does a better job of explaining the whole situation.
Sometimes a free service isn’t really free and you can end up paying for it in unexpected ways. If you’re running the Chrome extension Hola Better Internet or the Firefox add-on Hola Unblocker, well, that’s exactly what’s happening. What’s more, your payment might be unwitting participation in a botnet, according to one site moderator.
Hola is a very popular virtual private network (VPN) service that routes your traffic through different countries to mask your true location. That way you can defeat regional restrictions to watch the American version of Netflix from Argentina or BBC’s iPlayer from the U.S.
Typically, a VPN service routes your traffic through dedicated servers, but Hola uses the idle resources of its users’ PCs to route traffic. This essentially turns a Hola user’s computer into a VPN server, or a small part of one. If you’re in Nebraska, for example, and Hola is running on your PC, you might help users outside the U.S. watch Hulu.