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Are VPNs Worth the Investment Right Now?

Safe, remote access is a priority... right?

May 12, 2020

In these turbulent times, your business is adapting to new challenges every single day. Between slashed budgets and high-stakes strategic decisions, it's crucial to determine which new systems or products are valuable investments right now. While we may be biased, a VPN is one of the smartest purchases your business can make right now. 

A virtual private network (VPN) will go from an underused luxury to an absolute necessity for many businesses.

Businesses should consider the following factors before investing in a VPN: 

  1. Determine Your Network Needs
  2. Identify Your Budget
  3. Communicate with Your Employees

Determine Your Network Needs

Extensive remote work is a reality for the foreseeable future. While working from home, each employee may be using a device or WiFi network that may be unreliable or insecure. As a result, many companies must turn to a VPN-based login system to keep their vital data and communications safe.

Get your VPN questions answered

Allowing employees to keep data on their home computers or transmit information via questionable connections is a recipe for disaster. Network security should not be compromised. 

Data breaches already went up by 17% in 2019, and the increased pressure on resources will make them all the more common as new circumstances emerge.

Statista Data BreachesGraphic from Statista. 

 

Before the pandemic, a VPN was useful for employees to occasionally access information on a shared drive or network while away from the office. Now, a VPN must handle all kinds of logins and usage as employees are logging in at all times of the day.

Ensuring your network can handle increased usage while remaining viable and secure can be a considerable hurdle for your business. As you determine your specific situation, it's crucial to find a trusted IT professional to implement what you need fully.

 

Identify Your Budget

IT requests and company-assigned budgets don't always play nice together. In other words, your non-technical leadership might scoff at the price of an appropriate VPN. However, by presenting a few key considerations, you can make a case for the substantial investment. 

Having multiple VPNs and investing in proper cybersecurity for the network is key to staying secure. 

Basic DDoS attacks on VPN services could prevent your employees from doing their jobs and damage your organization. Even secure sockets layer (SSL) VPN can be vulnerable to attack. How much might a breach cost your company in productivity? 

You should also consider how many users can log in at the same time. If you need dozens of users, setting up a single VPN system with limited bandwidth won't cut it. Make sure to invest in a system that fits your needs.

Your current technological situation is also a major contributing factor. If you have an outdated VPN, it makes sense to make a significant investment at this critical hour. Likewise, if your company-wide hardware is not up to par, it's probably time to make a sizable attempt to alleviate the situation. A company's multi-factor authentication (MFA) process may also undergo significant changes as remote work becomes more prevalent. Those changes should be synced with your VPN access.

Conversely, if your VPN is well-organized, you may be content to make minor adjustments and service changes. Make sure to consult with your team to determine the best course of action, especially with tightened budgets during the crisis.

 

Communicate With Your Employees

Having a functional VPN is useless without educating and informing your employees about the risks and benefits. Many employees may have never used a VPN or will be unfamiliar with the correct operating protocols and login information.

Ensuring that your employees are up-to-date on your tech situation is another investment that will pay dividends in the future. Be sure to work with your product team and legal team to ensure everything is above board—open communication during this time is more critical than ever.

 

VPNs Can Provide Long-Term Benefits

Get your VPN questions answered

After performing reviewing your needs, it's time to determine whether an investment is right for your business. 

At this time, you are likely balancing many different factors when determining how to spend resources. 

Keep in mind that local governments may extend remote work until there is a COVID-19 vaccine. A long-term VPN solution can be both cost-effective and convenient for the foreseeable future.

As long as your company remains flexible and adaptable, weathering the storm is possible. An investment in a VPN can be a big step in keeping your company on the ball.

Tristan Jung

 

Guest post by Tristan Jung 

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