The use of a VPN to protect privacy and security for personal use is nothing new. But sometimes companies need to use a VPN for business purposes as well, such as remote access, connecting to resources in another country, or using a different service/browser version. In these instances, it’s beneficial to set up a proxy so that your company’s network traffic is sent to the VPN instead of going directly to the target website.
There are a variety of scenarios where you may need to use a VPN for business purposes, such as remote access, connecting to resources in another country (for which you may need to use a VPN that supports these types of connections), or using a different service/browser version than the one your employees use internally (for example, if your company’s Internet connection is restricted to Chrome, but you need to use Firefox for business). In this article, we’ll discuss what a VPN is and why you’d want to use one, along with tips on how to set up a VPN for business use so you can avoid potential problems.
What is a VPN and Why Should You Use It?
A VPN (Virtual Private Network) is an online service that allows you to create a private network inside of a public network (usually the internet). The service then encrypts and secures all of your company’s web traffic, so that no one can access or view your sensitive information (such as credit card numbers or personal data) as it travels to and from websites. In essence, a VPN allows you to create a secure “tunnel” through which all of your Internet traffic can flow, so that any website or service you try to access, no matter where you are, appears to be accessible only from within your company’s network.
The reason you’d want to use a VPN is that, in today’s world, your digital footprint is never truly truly private. With the vast majority of data being stored online, it’s only a matter of time before your personal information is put in the wrong hands and used against you. With a VPN, all of your personal data is encrypted and protected, ensuring that no one can access or view it (unless they have access to your encrypted private key), and allowing you to rest assured that your identity will not be compromised.
Why would someone want to access your personal data or use it against you? Think about this for a moment. Where do you go to get your news and information? Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and other social media platforms are all great examples of where your personal information can be found and repurposed. So the next time you feel the urge to share a bit of information about yourself on social media, think twice before you hit that “publish” button.
Setting Up A VPN For Business Use
Now that you understand what a VPN is and why you’d want to use one, let’s discuss how to set up and use a VPN for business purposes.
The first step to using VPN for business is to identify the type of VPN that will suit your needs. Your company’s needs will determine which VPN to use; if you have a specific one in mind, search for it on our website or reach out to the vendor directly. With regard to selecting a VPN for business use, you want to look for the following factors (in no particular order):
- Encryption strength
- Support (Do you need assistance with installation and setup? Does the company provide good customer service? Does it have a live chat function?
- Location (Do you need to access resources in another country? If so, is this available in the United States or other countries that you frequently access from? If not, consider a VPN that supports a location-based server selection)
- Features (Check out the website for the vendor to see what their product offers. This will help you identify features that might be beneficial to your needs. For example, will you use a VPN to access content restricted to specific countries? What level of security does it provide? Is there any kind of kill switch that will disconnect you from the internet if your connection is interrupted or broken?)
Once you have identified the type of VPN that will suit your needs, the next step is to choose a provider that meets your needs. Again, depending on your needs, you may want to consider purchasing a VPN that is dedicated to business use (this would be especially beneficial if you have several employees accessing the VPN for work) rather than purchasing a consumer-level product and using it for business purposes.
Why Purchase A VPN Dedicated To Business Use?
By nature, a VPN is meant to be used privately between individuals so that they can remain anonymous or have their identity concealed. If you have a business that uses the internet for any type of transaction – whether it’s buying something, reading an online review, or just accessing information – then you need to ensure that your business’ digital footprint is secure and that no one can compromise your identity. A VPN that is dedicated to business use is the perfect tool for achieving this goal.
If you’re interested in using a VPN for remote access, setting up alerts for malware and ransomware, encrypting your company’s sensitive data (such as credit card numbers and customer emails), or need additional security for your business, a VPN that is dedicated to business use is the perfect choice. The service encrypts all of your company’s data as it passes through the internet (a notable exception is customer credit card information, which is already encrypted through PCI compliance as part of the credit card industry’s security standard), so you don’t need to worry about protecting this information yourself. A dedicated business VPN provides the added benefit of a kill switch, which automatically disconnects you from the internet if your connection is interrupted or broken, protecting you from accidentally accessing websites that might be harmful (such as those that host malware or contain spyware).
How Do You Set Up A VPN For Remote Access?
If you’d like to use a VPN to access resources, such as a company website or online database that is not located in your area, you’ll need to set up a VPN on a remote server. When choosing a VPN for remote access, you want to ensure that the server is based in a country that has good wifi reception and ample bandwidth so that you can maintain a good connection without experiencing any lags or interruptions. As a general guideline, try to avoid using an ISP provided VPN, as they often have restrictions on the countries and servers that they can offer. In these instances, you’ll need to search for a VPN that is compatible with your area code and will work with your ISP’s network.
Why Use A VPN With Other Security Measures?
VPNs work in conjunction with other security measures as a way of further protecting yourself and your business. If you have a specific country you need to access content from, you can use a VPN that is location-based so that your traffic is redirected to a server based in that country. If you’re traveling abroad, you can use a VPN that has a location-based app so that you can change your location without having to reconnect.
Additionally, if you use other security measures (such as a password or username manager, two-factor authentication, IP masking, or VPN on an app), you can protect yourself from man-in-the-middle attacks (a type of assault where an intermediary device is used to capture your personal and banking data). A VPN with these additional features can help protect your business from spear phishing – a type of attack where an unsuspecting user is tricked into providing sensitive data – and ransomware, which encrypts your data unless you pay the criminal demands.
Do You Need To Configure A VPN Ahead Of Time?
Once you have purchased and set up a VPN, you will not need to configure it each time you use it. As long as your employees log into their accounts and enter the correct username and password, they will be able to access the service without any configuration. However, if you have a large department setting up VPNs and you want to ensure that they are all configured the same way, you can create a configuration file and share it with everyone. This will help ensure that your VPN works across all of your devices and employees can access the service without any problems.