VPN stands for Virtual Private Network. A VPN enables you to make a secure connection to other networks over the internet. Initially, VPNs were a means of creating a secure connection for business networks over the internet or allowing workers to access their business network remotely. However, nowadays, consumer surfers also rely on VPNs to secure their internet activities. Here is a look at how VPNs work and reasons why businesses should use them.
How Does A VPN Work?
Although VPN services have changed over the years, the technology is still the same. Every VPN works like a tunnel. If the internet is a cloud and your surfing session is a stream of bits traveling through the cloud to whichever site you are viewing, then a VPN is the tunnel that connects the cloud to the website you are viewing. A VPN provides a safe tube for your traffic to travel safely from prying eyes and hackers. VPNs ensure the security of your session through encryption.
In the past, VPNs were implemented through solutions that used both hardware and software. For example, if your company wanted to use a VPN, your IT personnel would purchase a router or firewall that allowed VPN tunneling. They would also buy several VPN software clients to service the number of sites or users. Every tunnel started from the user’s device to the company’s router. Your company would have to incur costs for hardware and software.
Nowadays, things are much easier. VPN clients are now sold as services. The companies that offer this software will sell them to consumers as a VPN application. When the app is installed, it will establish an encrypted tunnel with a server operated by your VPN vendor and not the router in your organization. When you start surfing through the web, it will be as though you are surfing from the VPN vendor’s server and not your actual location.
This type of secure internet connection will hide your IP address or location from the government, corporations, or data miners. Anyone trying to track your location will not get further than the address of your VPN’s servers.
Benefits Of A VPN For Your Business
A VPN is aimed at maintaining your privacy while you surf the web. While this is important for consumers who casually log into websites, it is also essential for businesses. Businesses use VPNs to prevent outsiders from gaining access to their data centers without authorization. VPNs also help businesses to connect to other field offices. This connection allows staff to securely log in to the servers of their company’s network from a remote location.
Here is a list of some of the reasons you need to consider employing a VPN service for your business:
1. Helps Clients Feel Secure
If your company has stored resources in the cloud or has remote users, a VPN service will ensure your security. When you install VPN applications to your employee’s devices, you create a secure connection to the resources they’re accessing, whether it’s an app provided by Microsoft Office 365 or files stored on Dropbox.
2. Quick Remote Access
Nowadays, many companies store their applications and data in the cloud. In the past, remote users would need access to a company’s data center when in need of applications or data. Currently, a VPN service enables your IT personnel to employ a secure access fabric without the use of expensive hardware equipment. You need to choose a VPN service that will allow your IT personnel to monitor the logging data acquired by remote users. This enables you to beware of who is accessing your VPN and for what reasons.
3. Geographical Freedom
Some countries have strict internet laws. In such countries, business travelers may be blocked from accessing company resources through the internet. If your chosen VPN service is supported in that region, your users will be able to access company resources as though they’re still at the local offices. A word of caution is that you should carefully read your VPN provider’s logging and privacy policies. A VPN provider that maintains thorough logs has a lot of information they could easily share if prompted to by government authorities. However, if a VPN provider does not keep detailed records, they could limit their services to your organization. Be keen on familiarizing yourself with the implications of a VPN provider’s logging and privacy policies.
For small organizations, investing in a VPN service may seem like an extravagant venture. However, the cost of employing VPN services is now very affordable. For as little as $10, you can get secure access to the internet and encryption of your business data.
VPN services have come a long way, from being implemented using hardware and software applications at the office to now requiring just a software application to be installed on the user’s computer. Surfing the internet is a dangerous affair that poses all sorts of risks to your business’s resources. Investing in a VPN service is the smartest way to secure your office resources and maintain the privacy of your activities.