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Using VPNs to Maximize Work from Home Efficiency and Security

With many states issuing stay at home orders as a quarantine measure to combat the spread of COVID-19, the ability for employers to switch from relying on the typical in-office work structure to remote work from home teams is critical–especially in the states which have issued stay-at-home orders.

For some employees, a transition to a home environment may prove to be no big deal, requiring only the hardware necessary to do work that could already have been done from any place so long as there is a stable internet connection.

However, for most employees who typically work in office, a connection to a private network server is required to fully perform their tasks. This is where Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) prove their worth.

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Why Does VPN sound familiar?

If you already know what VPNs are, it’s likely because of 1 of 3 reasons:

-You are an IT or generally tech-savvy person.

-You are really concerned about internet safety.

-You have used it to watch a different country’s version of Netflix.

How to use a VPN to your advantage

My first foray into the world of VPNs was the last of those three above options, but I digress. Prior to the coronavirus outbreak, the main selling point of VPNs was their ability to improve their users’ online privacy and security. Typically when a person turns on their VPN service, they connect their computer to a server network operated by the VPN, which all of their own web traffic then proceeds to go out of. So, instead of an individual’s IP address being recorded by websites that the user accesses, the IP address of the VPN’s server would be recorded. Simply put, VPNs mask their users’ computers’ identifying information by changing the IP address. Scarlett Cybersecurity, a business that provides cybersecurity consulting services, warns that espionage is a very real threat for legal firms.

VPNs can also be used for more than just connecting to a server for privacy reasons. VPNs can also be used by employees to connect to their own company’s private network. A lot of businesses already utilize VPN firewalls to prevent the wrong people from trying to access their servers, but the same software can be used to allow employees with the proper credentials to login and access the network from a home desktop or on the go from a laptop.

Creating your own VPN

So, how do you create a VPN for your work needs? If your company has an IT department, they will likely set this up for you and require you to use a VPN client application in order to access your network. However, it is also entirely possible to establish a VPN straight through Windows 10. Just go to your “All settings” tab, go to the “Network & Internet section”, then click “VPN”, and finally “Add a VPN connection”, where you will be asked to provide the following information:

-A connection name

-The server’s address

-The type of VPN being set up (PPTP, L2TP/IPsec with certificate, L2TP/IPsec with pre-shared key, SSTP, or IKEv2–Pro tip: PPTP is more than likely going to be the one you will want to use if you are doing remote work.

-Type of sign-in info needed

-Username & Password

We’re here for you

If you don’t have an IT team and think you will struggle too much with setting this up, we can help. We can easily establish a VPN that suits your needs and is easy to use! Just give us a call today at 877-422-1907 to talk to one of our certified technicians!

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