If you occasionally use a free wifi connection for internet access, I think it is important to use a VPN (Virtual Private Network) to secure and protect your connection. If you use the Chrome browser, as I do, I just became aware of a VPN extension from Keep Solid VPN Unlimited that will encrypt and protect your browser traffic. I downloaded and installed it just moments ago, and am connected to a server in Los Angeles.
I did a speed test to see if this extension adversely affected my download speed. I couldn't see any significant degradation.
So far so good using this extension, which will only encrypt traffic through the Chrome browser. A VPN app, on the other hand, will protect all traffic from your computer. Which do you want or need? It depends, and the info below may help your decision.
I just pass this on FYI and possible benefit.