Your VPN just got a lot less useful — here's why

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If you've been using one of the best VPN services to get PC games for cheap, it turns out that loophole is coming to an end. There is going to be one less reason to use a Virtual Private Network, as one of the biggest online game vendors just found a way to slam the door on a trick that allowed people to save big on video games.

And that vendor is Steam, as a Twitter account that monitors the online outlet just announced that Valve "has recently made changing your store country more strict," to a degree that will pretty much stop people from using this method.

Twitter's @SteamDB (aka Steam Database) revealed that Steam users now need to complete "a purchase using a payment method from [the] country" that matches the location their system appears to be located in. 

SteamDB goes on, saying "This should hinder the ability of using VPNs to buy games cheaper."

As our sister site TechRadar points out, using a VPN to change your location for use with Steam has long been against Steam's terms of service. Steam's language suggests it's comparing present day activity against past activity, and that violations of this rule could lead to punishments. The company states that "If you attempt to redeem a region restricted game and your location is inconsistent with your past Steam activity, a warning will appear."

Of course, our picks for the Best VPN will still give you some perks, such as increased privacy from your snooping ISP and dodging geo-restrictions when you want to watch the best Hulu movies or best Netflix shows.

Henry T. Casey
Managing Editor (Entertainment, Streaming)

Henry is a managing editor at Tom’s Guide covering streaming media, laptops and all things Apple, reviewing devices and services for the past seven years. Prior to joining Tom's Guide, he reviewed software and hardware for TechRadar Pro, and interviewed artists for Patek Philippe International Magazine. He's also covered the wild world of professional wrestling for Cageside Seats, interviewing athletes and other industry veterans.