​LE VPN, a must for VSEs/SMEs

In recent years, the importance of digital in our professional lives has considerably increased the exchange of confidential data. One of the first steps aimed at protecting these exchanges on the Internet for companies appeared with VPN technologies. This system makes it possible to create, via public telecommunications networks, a direct, secure and encrypted link between remote computer equipment. How can VPN offers adapt to new challenges, such as digital sovereignty and respect for privacy?

Respond to the reality on the ground of VSEs/SMEs

Today, using a VPN is not so easy. This requires either technical skills or specialized solutions. However, VSEs/SMEs do not have the means to integrate competent resources in cybersecurity. They are looking for a service that requires little configuration and is easily adaptable to their needs (teleworking, one-off remote missions, etc.).
The VSE/SME market in France represents nearly 600,000 companies with 2 to 20 employees [1]. A concrete response must therefore be provided to enable them to work in a trusted environment via next-generation VPNs. This is a major competitive and economic challenge for French companies.

Rethinking traditional VPN

Working and communicating from anywhere, at any time, from any computer equipment has very quickly become a universal use and acclaimed by all. These new uses require securing, controlling and protecting exchanges and remote digital access, while protecting the internal resources of a company or a home, for example.

However, this movement has revealed the security limits of existing VPNs and highlighted a clear incompatibility between the proper functioning of a VPN and the Cloud. Cybercriminals are increasingly exploiting these flaws to gain access to internal corporate network resources. [2]. The configuration and maintenance of the VPN are essential so that it can fulfill its role of sealing against computer threats. Since these actions are not systematic, VPN technologies are compromised and are among the top 5 infection vectors for computer systems. Despite constant optimization of solutions, current VPNs are reaching their limits. They are not sized to cope with the massive amounts of data exchanged. This leads to significant slowdowns, impacting the quality of working conditions. Moreover, the offers that are on the market today are for the most part of extra-European origin. Therefore, they are not subject to the European policies and standards that exist to protect the user. Anyone sensitive to the issue of data privacy should be able to choose a solution that respects privacy and digital sovereignty.

Switch to next-gen VPNs

From now on, the objective is to design a network, with the highest level of security, making it possible to connect two computer equipments, without intermediary for an absolute confidentiality. The quality and stability of exchanges would depend on their own Internet speed. MFA methods would be required to authorize access to the service. The connection would be established through a VPN that would be exclusively dedicated to them during their communication time, protecting them from any attack surface. This approach would revolutionize current standards when communicating over the Internet. No IT management involving human resources with IT skills would be required. VSEs/SMEs would then be perfectly autonomous to establish their own connections in complete security, without any technical configuration. Beyond the security promised by a new generation VPN, it is by its simplicity of use that it will have to distinguish itself. It is on this point that the social impact will be felt since people will be able to communicate in complete safety, without complexity. Working conditions will then be significantly improved.

In addition to meeting the needs of teleworkers, such as remote collaborative work, a next-generation VPN must allow companies to achieve complete sovereignty over their data. Regaining control of data with fully sovereign tools for companies is the key to developing French and European competitiveness around the world.

By Nicolas FOURNIL, cybersecurity expert at ÉHO.LINK

[1] INSEE – 2019
[2] The Cyberwire, Widespread Exchange operating. Chinese threat actor exploited SolarWinds vulnerability. Camera breach monitoring.

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​LE VPN, a must for VSEs/SMEs

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