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What Is a VPN

A virtual private network, or VPN, is an encrypted connection over the Internet from a device to a network. The encrypted connection helps ensure that sensitive data is safely transmitted. It prevents unauthorized people from eavesdropping on the traffic and allows the user to conduct work remotely.  VPN technology is widely used in corporate environments.

How does a virtual private network (VPN) work?

A VPN extends a corporate network through encrypted connections made over the Internet. Because the traffic is encrypted between the device and the network, traffic remains private as it travels. An employee can work outside the office and still securely connect to the corporate network. Even smartphones and tablets can connect through a VPN.

What is secure remote access?

Secure remote access provides a safe, secure way to connect users and devices remotely to a corporate network. It includes VPN technology that uses strong ways to authenticate the user or device. VPN technology is available to check whether a device meets certain requirements, also called a device’s posture, before it is allowed to connect remotely.

Is VPN traffic encrypted?

Yes, traffic on the virtual network is sent securely by establishing an encrypted connection across the Internet known as a tunnel. VPN traffic from a device such as a computer, tablet, or smartphone is encrypted as it travels through this tunnel. Offsite employees can then use the virtual network to access the corporate network.

Types of VPNs


Remote access 

A remote access VPN securely connects a device outside the corporate office. These devices are known as endpoints and may be laptops, tablets, or smartphones. Advances in VPN technology have allowed security checks to be conducted on endpoints to make sure they meet a certain posture before connecting. Think of remote access as computer to network.

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Site-to-site

A site-to-site VPN connects the corporate office to branch offices over the Internet. Site-to-site VPNs are used when distance makes it impractical to have direct network connections between these offices. Dedicated equipment is used to establish and maintain a connection. Think of site-to-site access as network to network.

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