With employees working from home amid today’s pandemic, virtual private network (VPN) servers have now become vital to a company’s backbone. Their security and availability must be the focus going forward for businesses.
Most organizations, up until this time, had only a small percentage of their employees needing to securely access their business’ VPN remotely. But now it is critical you are thinking about tech issues back at the office that could impact your employee’s ability to work from home and maintain remote security. For example:
- Can your VPN handle the additional capacity to support all your remote users?
- Even if your VPN hardware and licenses can handle it, does your corporate location have enough bandwidth to support all those tunnels and connections?
- Is your VPN service up to date in order to mitigate potential cybersecurity risks?
Our goal is to ensure you are positioned to effectively and securely support your Work From Home staff. In this blog we want to make you aware of the security risks a vulnerable VPN poses to your business.
What’s a VPN, How it Works, and Security Risks Involved
Simply put, a virtual private network (VPN) is a connection between a secure server and your computer, through which you can access the internet. Think of your office or home network, as private networks. Through a VPN connection, your mobile phone, tablet, and computer (BYOD devices) are able to securely connect with others on the internet as if they were part of the same private network. Your VPN secures the communication between you, the user, and your business’ computer network.
Now, while VPNs are a great way to protect your internet traffic and privacy, if left vulnerable, they can easily expose your business to significant security risks. Over the past few weeks, several cybersecurity experts have published alerts notifying organizations to the threat vulnerable VPNs pose to their security. The Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency and the cybersecurity firm Radware have all addressed the critical role VPNs will play in company security while employees work remote.
Some VPN cybersecurity considerations to be aware of include:
- The more VPNs used, the more vulnerabilities are found and targeted
- VPNs are less likely to be kept updated with latest security updates and patches
- As more people are working from home, the amount of malicious cyber actors like phishing emails increase
- Companies without multi-factor authentication in place are more prone to phishing attacks
- Critical business operations may suffer if there are only a limited number of VPN connections available
We Can Help
Your focus right now needs to be on what you can do to keep the business running. We don’t know how long people will be impacted, how bad things will continue to get, and what the overall impact will be.
During this time, you should be ensuring:
- Your VPN can handle the additional capacity to support all your remote users
- Your corporate location has enough bandwidth to support all those tunnels and connections
- You are mitigating potential cybersecurity risks with an up-to-date VPN
Please know we are here as a resource for you. If you need assistance with any of the above, feel free to contact any member of our team. Our goal is to help your organization navigate this time and come out the other end stronger.
Jeremy Rasor, Vice President, Sales (540-443-3379)
Eric Thompson, Director of Sales Engineering & Data Center Operations (540-204-1859)
Trever Berry, Client Executive (Lynchburg, Roanoke, New River Valley) (540-443-3565)
Pam Shutters, Client Executive (SWVA and West Virginia) (540-443-3385)
Mitch White, Client Executive (Northern and Central Virginia) (540-443-2595)