If you want to become a privacy savvy internet user, you should be wary and careful with every internet-connected device.
It doesn’t matter how small or large the device is or how insignificant you think it is. If you’re connecting and using it over the internet, you must think of your privacy before using it.
Check the Amazon fire TV stick, for instance; there’re many things you can do with that little device. But did you know that it can compromise your privacy? A malicious third-party can access your data through the Firestick.
Amazon Fire TV Stick allows you to stream all kinds of content from your favorite streaming services such as Hulu, Netflix, and Amazon Prime Video. The device also allows you to access apps like Spotify, Amazon Silk browser, etc., to ensure optimal user experience during streaming.
Yet! The Amazon Fire TV Stick is a perfect channel for your ISP to track your online activities relative to streaming. Your traffic is usually visible to the ISP you’re using, and that’s why some of them can throttle your bandwidth and reduce your speed.
That is why you need to install a reliable VPN to hide your data from the prying eyes of your internet service providers. You can stream all the contents you want, and no one can monitor you. Privacy and security resource centers out there today keep emphasizing the use of VPNs.
Another reason is that your VPN will enable you to bypass geo-blocking and censorship on many contents. Please note, though, that’s an illegal act that is not recommended because it may land you in jail. So, tread with caution.
As with any other market, the VPN market is bombarded with products and everyone claims to be the best. Make sure you choose actually the best service that has fast speeds and is tested to protect from cybercriminals. Digital security resource centers such as VPNMentor and Privacy Savvy can help you find the right VPN.
Continuing with our post, this guide will share some simple methods of installing a VPN on your Fire TV Stick. Even though the process may seem daunting, we’ve tried our best to simplify it.
Let’s go ahead and get it done.
How to Set Up the Fire TV Stick
If you’re new to the Amazon Fire TV stick, you can follow the steps below to set it up.
- Plug your USB cord into the Fire TV Stick micro USB port.
- Plug the power cord into your Power Adapter
- Connect your Power Adapter to your available power outlet
- Plug the Fire TV stick HDMI cord into an appropriate HDMI port on the television or your computer monitor. Note the HDMI port number where you plugged in the cord.
- Switch ON the TV and open the same HDMI input Channel on the television
- Pick your Fire Stick Remote controller (insert the 2 AA batteries that come in the box)
- Allow the remote to pair automatically with your Amazon Firestick. But if it doesn’t, press &hold the remote’s “Home Button” for ten seconds. It will take the Fire Stick to “Discovery Mode” to kick start the pairing.
- After pairing successfully, press the “Play/Pause” button for the set-up to start
- If you have an Amazon account, you can register the Fire TV Stick with it. But if you don’t, create a new one or deregister an old one to create a new one if you want
- Connect your Fire Stick to the Wi-Fi
- After that, follow the available sections and enjoy your Fire TV Stick
- Don’t forget to install available updates to keep your hardware functional and up to date
- For easy navigation, install the App on your mobile device (phone/tablet)
How to Install a VPN to the Fire TV Stick
There’re two ways to use the VPN of your choice on the Fire Stick.
- Installing a VPN from the Fire Stick Apps center
- Through the Android APK of your VPN service
Installing a VPN from the Apps Section
This is the easiest method to install your VPN, and anyone can do it. Follow the simple steps below for this method.
- Open the Fire Stick Apps Section
- Go to the “Utility section” click on Categories to get to VPNs or,
- In the Search bar, type in “VPN” to bring it up faster
- You’ll find many VPN services such as ExpressVPN, NordVPN, IPVanish, CyberGhost VPN, PureVPN, TorGuard VPN, and many others
- Choose your preferred VPN service (you’ll need to subscribe to them)
- Visit the apps details section
- Download the VPN of your choice
- Wait for the installation to be complete (it won’t take more than a few minutes)
- After installation gets done, you’re set to use a VPN on your Fire TV Stick
Installing a VPN through Android APK
This method is a little bit complicated than going through the Fire TV Stick’s in-built apps section. But you need to follow this process if your VPN service is not amongst the ones in the apps section.
The good news is that Amazon Fire TV Stick runs an Android version so, an Android APK will work on your Fire Stick. But you must carry out some tests to ensure that your VPN is working on the Fire Stick after installation. That’s the only way you can be sure that the VPN is not leaking your IP or any other information.
So here, you need to download the Android APK of your choice VPN Service. This part can be confusing, especially if you can’t find the APK on the download pages. But if they have it there, you’re facing a more straightforward task. So, to download the Android APK of your VPN service from their website, do the following:
- Open the “Settings” section of your Fire TV Stick
- Go to “Device” and click on “Developer options”
- Enable “Allow Apps from Unknown Sources”
- Go to the “Search” section and type in “Downloader”
- Install the “Downloader” and “Launch”
- Open the Main page of the App
- Type in the download link for your VPN’s Android APK
- Hit the “Download.apk” button to download the file
- Follow the prompt and Install the App
- If the prompt didn’t come up automatically, go to “Downloads” in your Downloader App
- Click the Android APK file you just downloaded
- Go to “Settings” to find the VPN
- Under settings, click on “Applications” to locate the VPN
- Click on it and select “Launch Application.”
- After launching it, sign in and select a location in the USA.
- Click “Connect”
- Don’t forget to disable the “Allow Apps from Unknown Sources” through the Developer Options under Device in the Settings section.
Note that you may not find the Android APK of your VPN on its website. In that case, you may have to download it from other sites like APKPure or APK Mirror.
Unfortunately, these sites may host malware that looks like official apps. So, be careful when using them (double-checking with your VPN’s customer support is always a good idea). Moreover, you may get the APK, and it won’t work on your Fire Stick. In such a case, you may have to consider the next method.
Other Ways of Using a VPN on your Fire TV Stick
Install a VPN on your Router and Connect Fire Stick to it
If you discover that there’s no APK file for your VPN, but there’s a router application to use, you can use it. The good news is that there’re lots of benefits to installing the VPN directly on your router. One of them is that it’ll cover all the devices using the network. All you must do is install the VPN on the router, connect the Fire Stick to your router, and choose a USA location.
Use Kodi & Plex to stream media from your Fire TV Stick
These two applications are other ways to access your favorite content on the Fire Stick. If you use either Kodi or Plex, you can add many media library sources & personal servers. Use a VPN on Kodi, and through the app, you can get all the content you want on the Fire TV stick.
To install Kodi on the Fire Stick, do the following:
- Go to “Settings”
- Choose “Devices” and go to “Developer Options”
- Enable “Allows Apps from Unknown Sources”
- Launch “Downloader”
- Go to the App’s “Main Page”
- Type in the link https://kodi.tv/download
- Select “Android,” then choose “ARMV7A” (32 Bit)
- Follow the download & installation prompts to tee
- Go back to “Settings,” choose “Device,” and select “Developer Option” to disable the “Allow Apps from Unknown Sources”
As for Plex, you can find it from the Apps section of your Fire Stick and download it. If you don’t want that, you can install its Add-On for the Kodi app and use its interface instead.
The Fire TV Stick is an internet-connected device that is prone to attacks by malicious third-parties. This is why you must get a reliable VPN service to protect your privacy while using the Fire Stick.
There’re two ways to install your chosen VPN service on the Fire Stick, as we’ve shown above. But if you can’t do either, connect the device to a VPN-protected router or Kodi and stream your favorite contents with ease.