Should your Online Business be Using a VPN?

Is your business or company making use of a VPN – or are you just leaving everything to chance?

A VPN (Virtual Private Network) is basically a technology that enables you to establish or create a secure network within a public network like the World Wide Web. A VPN, just like the internet itself, is a tool that every business or company should have at its disposal.

It has never been more necessary to keep your online activities private like it is today because of the widespread occurrence of Firesheep, phishing, Wi-Fi spoofing and many other malicious activities. Virtual offices and telecommuting are being used more and more by businesses from around the world. Employees are being forced to use unsecured public networks to undertake these activities and this can be quite risky.

Do your employees find themselves making use of unsecured networks to upload files to company servers? How many times do they make use of the free Wi-Fi at the airport or local coffee to finish their work and meet their deadlines? Employees working on such unsecured networks has become a norm in today’s world. What they do not know is the danger they are exposing themselves and the company to.

Virtual Private Networks are very similar to firewalls as the help to protect the files on your computer as you browse the web. In technical terms, a VPN is like a wide area network (WAN). On the end-users side, your digital workspace has the same functionality and security that you would expect on a private connection. The real benefits of a VPN exist behind the scenes.

Today, VPNs have become very popular among businesses and individuals who are already know about their benefits. VPNs make use of various dedicated connections combined with strong encryption protocols to establish secure P2P connections. When a person with malicious intent accesses the data being transmitted, the strong encryption ensures the data is useless to the attacker.

online business vpn

VPN Treatment

Still not convinced that your business needs to have a VPN? Read on to find out the benefits of a VPN.

According to BestVPN.com VPNs significantly reduce the risk of cyber-attacks and security breaches. You may assume that hackers only attack other companies or other people. However, companies and individuals get hacked every day. Only the biggest attacks make the headlines. Between the year 2014 to 2015, Symantec observed a 125 percent increase in zero-day vulnerabilities. By making use of a VPN, you are making sure that your company is less likely to become a target of these malicious attacks.

VPNs improve productivity. Nowadays, employees and staff are aware that public networks are not safe. This may make them reluctant or wary of logging into company databases and systems using unsecured networks. If they travel frequently, you can be sure that they will not want to work on unsecured networks while on the road. When you have a VPN, your employees feel safe and free to work from anywhere.

VPNs make clients and customers feel safe and secure. If your company collects data from customers, clients or patients, you can make them feel at ease when providing this data by making use of a VPN. Although many of them may not really understand what a VPN is, most customers and clients will appreciate a company that takes extra measures to keep their information safe and secure.

VPNs allows you to remain in the U.S while traveling abroad. VPNs provides alternative IP addresses that your employees can use to access numerous websites and system while traveling abroad. It is worthy to note that some countries have strict internet access restrictions (for example China which greatly restricts access to Facebook). In order for your employees to stay connected, they will definitely need a VPN. Also, many customers and clients are normally wary of opening emails that appear to be sent from abroad. However, there is no reason for employees not to send emails when abroad as a VPN redirects the communication to appear as if it is coming from the company offices or HQ in the U.S.

VPNs are very affordable. VPNs are actually very cheap considering the numerous benefits they have to offer. Prices may vary but most VPNs may charge anywhere from $10 a month. VPNs are therefore an affordable and budget friendly security solution for your business.

A VPN can easily be established for employees working offsite. In this case, the VPN only works when every single employee is on board. Everyone needs to understand how to access the VPN protocol as well as the importance and the benefits of using it. This concept should be regularly reiterated to involved parties so that it becomes part of the norm.

VPNs are user friendly and easy to use. The first step to use a VPN is to access the World Wide Web through your ISP like you would normally do. Next, you need to initiate a VPN connection with your specific VPN server using the dedicated software or program provided. The VPN software or programs ensures that your connection to public networks is safe and secure.

(NB: While it is possible for businesses to establish their own Virtual Private Networks with the help of specialized network equipment, consumers still have a wide variety of free and paid VPN services that they can opt for. Lucian Constantin from Computerworld says that “Free VPN services have slow connection speeds, are overcrowded and usually display ads.” He goes on to add that Free VPNs are suitable for the average internet user looking for privacy and security.)

Improving your business’s security does not have to be a time consuming or costly affair – with a Virtual Private Network, you get an instant boost in security.

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