What is VPN? How Does it Work? Types of VPN
VPN is an increasingly popular and useful technology because it provides individuals and companies privacy and anonymity by hiding their sensitive and confidential online information. In other words, it encrypts everything you surf on the web by creating a private network from a shared or public internet connection. To understand the uses, characteristics and benefits of this service, let’s first define VPN.
What Is a VPN?
VPN stands for virtual private network. It is used to disguise your online identity and encrypt your internet traffic, making it extremely hard for hackers and people with malicious intent to view, track or steal your data. Using a VPN service connects you to a server that is run by a VPN provider through an encrypted connection. So, all data that is transferred between the VPN server and your device is scrambled. You can call representatives of internet services such as Cox customer service number and others to check if they offer a VPN to suit your needs.
How Does a VPN Work?
To understand how a VPN works, take the example of a tunnel where on one end you have the VPN while on the other end yourself. When you search for something on the web using a VPN, you travel through the tunnel, get the data you want and bring it back safely without anything watching you. So, using a VPN means that you have an increased level of privacy where even your internet service provider would not be able to track your online activities.
How Secure is VPN and How?
VPN is a step ahead of other privacy protection methods. Every computer has a unique IP address just like every person has unique fingerprints. By gaining access to your IP address, hackers can trace your location, identity as well as be able to see all that you have touched on the internet. The VPN covers your IP address just like gloves cover your fingerprints.
The level of security VPN provides can be gauged by the fact that today nearly all big companies are using it to protect their online data from hackers and manipulators. But its use is not limited to the corporate sector. An increase in the utilization of VPN connections for personal use has been observed over the last few years.
Different Types of VPN
While the advantages of a VPN connection are many, before deciding to get one, you must be familiar with the different types of VPN. This would help you make the best choice according to your requirements.
1#. Site-to-Site VPN
Site-to-site VPN is suitable for large-scale business environments. Companies with fixed office locations around the world can use this to share and exchange information and resources privately. For example, if you are working in the Los Angeles branch of a multinational and need to collaborate with colleagues from the Calgary branch, site-to-site VPN would allow you to do so without having to worry about third-party access. But bear in mind that for this type of VPN to be functional, both offices need to have specialized equipment. There are further two types of site-to-site VPNs.
A company that has offices in remote locations can communicate securely and quickly by creating an intranet VPN. It connects each LAN (local area network) to a single WAN (wide area network).
For companies who have business ties with other organizations, extranet VPN is the recommended choice. An extranet VPN is created to connect to each other’s local area networks. While it enables all parties to work in a shared network environment, it also restricts access to their respective intranets.
2#. Remote-Access VPN
These are the most popular types of VPNs. A remote-access VPN connects you to a secure remote server to enable you to access a private network. The encryption ensures that privacy is not compromised.
Remote-access VPN service providers let you use their network when surfing the web and hide your received and sent data from local networks. As a result, you can browse and access content that’s otherwise restricted to your region or connection.
Remote-access VPNs are easy to set up and allow hassle-free use which is why they are ideal for personal use.
3#. Client-Based VPN
Client-based VPNs are used to connect users to a remote network via an application/client which manages to establish as well as maintain the communication process of the VPN.
In order to access the safe connection, a software needs to be installed, launched and authenticated on the device with a VPN username and password. This is how the encrypted link between the remote network and the device would become functional and allow for secure exchange of data.
Client-based VPNs are a suitable solution for small-scale businesses and remote employees who require access to the company’s main network.