VPN protocols are a set of rules that define how a virtual private network is set up. They handle important tasks like authorization, authentication, encryption, traffic capturing, and transportation.
A VPN provider implements them to allow you to safely send your data through the internet – to browse websites, use social media, or do just about anything else online.
The benefits of a VPN protocol depends on how well a VPN provider has established their infrastructure. It is also supplemented by various benefits that the provider baked into their client (read: app), like obfuscation and GPS spoofing.