A VPN, or virtual private network, is a private network whose purpose is to add security and privacy when connecting to the internet.
Normally, when you connect, you go through your ISP (Internet Service Provider) with an unsecured connection, which is monitored by the ISP itself for security reasons, such as preventing malware attacks or hacking.
Smart Working Using a VPN: User Guide
Most internet activities are obviously harmless, like reading the news or looking for an address, but in the enterprise environment, the need to keep the connection private becomes primary.
Using a VPN, a kind of preferential connection is created where all data is “diverted” through a secure server, which will then take care of getting it to its destination.
In the enterprise environment, this allows for example a collaborator who is abroad to connect to the corporate VPN and “mask” all incoming and outgoing traffic, while maintaining high levels of privacy and security.
But this is only one of the advantages: having a VPN in the company also allows differentiating the accesses : sometimes it can be useful to decide a priori which data to give access to, depending on who requests it. Through a VPN this is possible, adding an additional level of internal security.
Another not insignificant advantage: many states block access or prohibit the entry of particular countries to IP. This could be a problem for a collaborator who finds herself having to connect from one of these countries: through a VPN, you can “mask” your IP so that you can connect from any geographical area.
The VPN offers
Until a few years ago, VPNs were used almost exclusively in the corporate environment. As concerns about personal data and security have made their way into the public debate, a multitude of more or less reliable VPN offerings have been seen, including for end users.
Plans of a few dollars a month already allow good security and acceptable latencies, and they can be a good choice even for small companies, provided that some disadvantages are considered: being a “third party” service, for example you will not be able to have particular controls on incoming connections.
A corporate VPN should be created limited to the company itself, so that it becomes a kind of network in the network, inaccessible from the outside except from verified IP addresses.
Also in this area, there are numerous commercial solutions, which normally require the installation of a client, a server (also cloud) and a router. Prices are quite varied, but good solutions are found at low costs.
VPN and Smart Working
As we said before, a VPN allows you to maintain high security and privacy especially in the event that a collaborator, a representative, an agent who is working remotely from the company headquarters, needs to connect to internal servers and access to the data they contain.
For these reasons, it is the ideal tool to keep data transmissions efficient and secure in the so-called smart working.
The anti-virus, firewall and best practices are already essential tools for computer security company.
Business-level VPNs do nothing but add an additional level of security to these technologies, by encrypting the remote connection, controlling access and ensuring the privacy of the data exchanged: especially for decentralized companies, these aspects become crucial.