What is VPN and How the VPN Work


VPN is defined or explained on this page. The term “VPN” stands for virtual private network. The page discusses how VPNs operate and lists their benefits. It talks about VPN ports, their benefits, and their drawbacks.

VPN explanation:

The abbreviation for virtual private network is VPN. It is a method for browsing the internet safely and anonymously. Any data a user sends or receives through a less secure public network is encrypted by a VPN. No one can snoop on your online activity thanks to VPN.

At layers 2 or 3 of the OSI model, VPNs operate. Remote access VPN, intranet VPN, and extranet VPN are the three basic types of VPN networks and VPN definition.

How a VPN Operates

The next part explains how a VPN operates.

From a system standpoint, the VPN needs the following to be functional and prepared to offer the service.

  • A VPN switch or router; • Tunnel management software
  • A firewall or other security measure; and • An internet connection
  • You can use the hardware you already have, such as servers and workstations.

As previously indicated, VPN uses both layer-3 frame format (IP packet) and layer-2 frame format (ethernet).

Senders can encapsulate their data in IP packets using tunnelling in a VPN, which conceals the internet’s routing and switching architecture. This will protect data from unauthorised viewers or hackers.

From the user’s standpoint, using a VPN is fairly easy. A VPN programme or application is required, and it must be installed on your computer, laptop, tablet, or smartphone. The VPN programme or app has to be installed or switched ON once it has been downloaded. The user must then set up the device’s VPN. After setting up a VPN and turning it on, nothing you do online is visible to the general public.

  • To sum up, three elements—protocols, security, and appliances—are the foundation of how a VPN operates.
  • It employs protocols like PPTP (Point to Point Tunneling Protocol), L2TP, and IPSec (IP Security) (Layer-2 Tunneling Protocol). L2TP vs PPTP is a good resource for more details.
  • To access plain text information, it employs encryption, which scrambles the data that will be transmitted and decodes the encrypted data that will be received. It operates on keys of various sizes to scramble and decode data. Security is also provided by user- and system-level authentication.
  • To offer protection against infiltration, it makes use of devices like firewalls at the packet and application levels.
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The following VPN ports are really helpful. For VPN traffic to pass through, the firewall must have these VPN ports open.

  • IP protocol 50 is used by IPsec for ESP. UDP ports 500 and 4500 and IP protocol 51 are employed for AH.
  • SSL makes use of TCP port 443. Additionally, it uses the 465 secure SMTP port, the 993 secure IMAP port, and the 995 secure POP port.
  • L2TP makes use of TCP port 1701.
  • TCP port 1723 and IP port 47 GRE are used by PPTP.

Why use a VPN?

The following are the benefits of using a VPN:

  • People who wish to update their leave and daily attendance while away from the office can use the VPN to access the office intranet, accounting system, or human resources system.

In order to access sensitive private information via an intranet VPN type, a VPN provides a secure internet connection.

  • To safely view content from another country utilising extranet or remote access VPN types.
  • To use a VPN to access blocked websites or apps because it gets around censorship.

Benefits of VPN

The following are benefits of VPN:

  • Businesses are able to expand geographic connectedness. They can increase the output of their workforce.
  • It offers excellent scalability.
  • It offers protected online access.
  • It gives users mobility; • It makes it simple to add or remove people.
  • It lowers the price of long-distance communications.
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Disadvantages of VPN The following are VPN’s drawbacks:

  • It is challenging for the average person to comprehend security problems.
  • Variable online traffic
  • It is challenging to accommodate goods from many merchants.
  • Inadequate standards
  • Unintentional use of some free VPN programmes can result in intrusion and security breaches.

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About the Author: John Watson