TLS and VPNs the Symantec Way

Transported to a more secure environment

Virtual private networks (VPNs) are a real boon when it comes to reducing the cost of business communication, while at the same time extending secure remote access to teleworkers, travellers and mobile professionals. But deploying and managing a secure VPN can be challenging, to say the least. So, what are your options, if you want to be really safe?

Transport Layer Security (TLS) – successor to Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) – should certainly be high in your thoughts. For those not too familiar with the technology, this is a point-to-point communication encryption mechanism that can be used in a variety of applications for securing traffic (HTTPS, SMTPS, POP3S etc). A TLS-based VPN enables otherwise non-encrypted traffic to travel down an encrypted path. The upshot is the safeguarding of sensitive data on websites, intranets and extranets.

A VPN can be configured to only route secure traffic, destined for the remote site, down the VPN; or the remote site can act as a gateway for the local workstation, thus encrypting all traffic between that workstation and the VPN router. Like other VPN technologies, a TLS-based VPN will encapsulate the underlying data into TLS-encrypted packets. This means that you can have VPN packets which are TLS-encrypted HTTP packets – the VPN acting as a lower level in the OSI model stack.

That’s what’s happening inside. What about the view from the outside, where the reputation and success of your business is measured by the trust your customers place in the security of their online transactions? Naturally, this faith is something you will always want to ensure is beyond rebuke. To that end, SSL/TLS has been the key to trust on the Internet for more than a decade and will continue to be so when it comes to providing the highest levels of protection against evolving cyber security threats. While TLS 1.2 is not yet enabled for all web platforms and programs, there is little doubt that it represents the transport layer of a more secure future.

This is where Symantec’s Website Security Solutions (WSS) can help, combined with a top-notch VPN vendor. And the measure of their effectiveness?  100%  of Fortune 500 companies employ Symantec’s SSL certificates within their businesses. So they have been put through the hottest part of the fire, in some of the most demanding and highly trafficked environments.

Symantec’s SSL suite uses a military-grade data center infrastructure – scalable and robust, and averages  over 4.7 billion SSL/TLS validations a day. And that’s an awful lot of hits! All this with zero downtime in more than eight years.

And while the technology is sophisticated the goal is simple: To make the internet safer to transact business – for you and your customers. TLS is one part of the puzzle; for an additional factor of security for your VPN you could consider a 2 factor authentication solution such as Symantec Validation and ID protection that enables companies to secure access to networks and applications while preventing access by malicious unauthorised attackers.

Putting modesty firmly to one side for a moment, there is no more trusted marque than the Norton Secured Seal. Protecting the things we value most in life is something on which none of us ever wants to compromise. Doubtless the same principles extend to the reputation and security of your business. Symantec’s solutions can help to ensure that both remain beyond reproach.


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