© Danny144 – pixabay.com
Access to the company’s internal network is becoming more and more important these days. Anyone who regularly works in the home office or is at customer appointments will know the problem: There is no access to the company’s own server when on the move. Important files and documents are then inaccessible. A VPN can solve this problem. For this purpose, a small network is created on the Internet that acts like a protected space. Only authorized persons have access to it – from anywhere.
What is a VPN?
The abbreviation VPN stands for Virtual Private Network. This is structured like a tunnel: If you redirect your data via a VPN, it will be transported through an opaque tunnel. The data is well protected as it cannot be viewed from the outside. For this purpose, a hardware or software solution is installed on the company server, with which the employees can contact them from anywhere. To do this, they need special VPN software that is simply installed on laptops, PCs and smartphones.
Before you establish a virtual private network in your company, you should be familiar with some important terms relating to the topic. Let’s start with the VPN client. This is the program that you and your employees use to establish a connection to the VPN server. It can be installed on a wide variety of devices such as mobile devices, computers and even your router.
VPNs are recommended for small and medium-sized companies because they effectively protect the data being transported. This is done through one or more VPN protocols. These basically represent the material from which the walls of the tunnel are made. You will find out which different encryption protocols are available later. Another important term is the VPN server. If you access the company network with a VPN, all data is securely transported through the VPN tunnel. They are then decrypted again on the server – because that’s where the data should arrive and trigger something.
What are the different encryption protocols?
So that you can be sure that your data is really securely transported through the Internet, you should always take a look at the encryption protocols used. One of the most secure protocols is OpenVPN. It is used by most VPN providers and uses encrypted TLS / SSL connections over OpenSSL. L2TP / IPSec is also a well-respected encryption protocol. It uses a UDP port 500.
The Secure Socket Tunneling Protocol is also very well known and popular – you probably know it under the name SSTP. The protocol developed by Microsoft also ensures that your data is transported securely.
Different usage scenarios for VPNs
VPNs are very popular with many companies because they are suitable for a variety of purposes. In everyday life there are often complicated situations that can be resolved quickly with a VPN.
Networking of several company networks
One of them is the networking of several local company networks to form a large communication network. This is necessary, for example, if you have different branches and branch offices. In order to network these, VPNs are installed on the routers at all locations and then networked. This is called a site-to-site VPN.
VPN: Access to the company network
If employees want to access the company network while on the move or at home, a virtual private network can also help. To do this, they install the client on their end device and connect to the company network via a tunnel. This is called end-to-site VPN or remote access VPN.
VPN: Access to individual company computers
A third purpose is remote access to a single computer. This can be necessary, for example, if a commissioned company is to make changes without being on site. Authorized partners can access your desktop via the remote desktop. This is called an end-to-end VPN.
EXTRA: Cyber security & data protection: Every fifth employee is afraid of making mistakes
Benefits of a VPN
With a virtual private network, you enable your employees in the home office, at customer appointments and in branch offices to have quick and convenient access to the company network. This increases data security and ensures secure communication. In addition, VPNs are low-cost and easy to set up and use.
Disadvantages of a VPN
MMM © PrivacyTutor
Of course, disadvantages can arise if you come across an insecure provider who does not encrypt the communication sufficiently. Some VPNs can also slow down the speed of your internet connection.
Conclusion: secure access to the company network
If employees want to access the company network but are not currently in the office, then a VPN is an absolute relief. Secure access to internal company data is also made possible from a customer appointment or from the home office. The advantages clearly outweigh the advantages: Your employees’ work is made easier, data security is increased and remote access can also be of great help for maintenance work.