Providing employees, partners and customers with remote access to servers, applications and network resources, on-premise or in the cloud used to be rare, yet now it’s the norm. At the same time, technologies such as Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) that provide remote access functionality have not kept pace with the security requirements and ever-evolving threat landscape of today.
VPNs, introduced over 30 years ago, can enable safe, remote access to the Internet through a point-to-point secure connection by creating an encrypted ‘tunnel’ through which IP traffic flows. Consumer VPNs make organizations vulnerable, however, because users are granted access to the entire internal network when logging in and not restricted to specific network resources making consumer VPNs one of the weakest points of failure with respect to identity access and credential management.
Critical consumer VPN limitations include lack of network segmentation, traffic visibility, on-premise user security, and lack of Wi-Fi security. Traditional consumer VPNs are not suited for dynamic networks because they require computer hardware, constant management and cannot easily adjust to network or server changes. This makes it more complicated to scale and rapidly adjust for new users and network locations and increasingly difficult to effectively manage hybrid and cloud-based computing architectures.
In contrast, the VPN as a Service model addresses traditional VPN limitations while providing a flexible cloud-based platform, device and application configurability as well as accessibility, increased security, privacy and user-access control granularity and analytics.