Since High-speed Internet access is available to residents, secure remote access is becoming increasingly popular. The low cost implementation and the high availability of Internet access makes it a smart solution for any size company. MCS can provide your business with the necessary tools to integrate this effective tool into your existing network. Whether its server based remote access or implementing an Internet appliance that has firewall protection, MCS can provide the solution that’s best for your business. All installations are proven and secured by our network engineers.
Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) have attracted the attention of many organizations looking to both expand their networking capabilities and reduce their costs. VPNs can be found in the workplace, but also in the home, where they allow employees to safely log into company networks. Telecommuters and those who travel often might find VPNs to be a more convenient way to stay plugged in to the corporate intranet. A few years ago, employees working from home, traveling, or working in small offices would connect to a corporate network via dial-up sessions into their corporate Remote Access Server (RAS). This would require long distance calls in some cases plus required the corporation to support modems and dial-in lines, similar to what Internet Service Providers have to do. Since most employees have Internet connections from home, it made sense to be able to connect to the corporate site over their dial-up Internet connection. This also allows employees to use their local ISPs fastest connection such as cable modems, DSL, and ISDN. For traveling users, all they would need to do is dial into their ISPs local phone number.
To enable this connection to be encrypted, protocols needed to be developed. The first remote user VPN protocol to be widely distributed is the Point to Point Tunneling Protocol (PPTP) from Microsoft. Windows 2003 includes PPTP for free so its become the popular VPN protocol for Windows networks, even though it doesn't have the strongest security. Today, the IP Security (IPSec) protocol has emerged as an industry standard protocol. While the IPSec protocol provides strong security, you will also see it used with the Layer 2 Tunneling Protocol (L2TP) to help out with IP addressing management on the VPN clients.
Site To Site VPN
Before VPN, companies would connect their offices together via expensive point-to-point leased lines. With the Internet explosion, companies wanted to utilize the Internet as their Wide Area Network (WAN) link to save cost. For security, the data being transmitted over the Internet must be encrypted. The IPSec protocol is being used for site-to-site VPN.
VPN Within The Intranet
Now that the IPSec protocol is becoming the de facto standard, the next logical application is to extend IPSec within the intranet. This allows data throughout the intranet to be encrypted. This application is also being called Virtual Private LAN (VPLAN). Microsoft's Windows 2003 and XP O/S includes IPSec which will allow encryption all the way down to the server (or client).