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When companies are allowing their employees to use virtual private networks, or VPNs, there is usually a reason. Either the employee is accessing the company network remotely, or they are working on tasks that are extremely sensitive, and the VPN provides a necessary layer of protection while they are connected to the internet. In either case, a VPN is not fool proof, and can sometimes fail. Here is a look at three ways that a VPN may fail, and what you could do to counteract the issue. And for those who are looking to get a VPN set up at their business, contacting an IT consultancy such as Prosyn is a good place to start.
1. VPN Disconnects
It is very common that a VPN may disconnect randomly. Perhaps it is because there was an error with the connection your end, or on the cloud. In either case, the VPN may be off, and you may not even realize it. Perhaps you were working on something else, while tasks continued to run on your computer in the background. If the VPN is off for a period, those tasks may have been compromised. Here are some ways to counteract the issue:
- Set up a double VPN, where one runs on top of the other. If one fails, the other is still active.
- Use a VPN kill switch, where your computer’s internet stops running when the VPN is off.
2. VPNs are Not Anonymity Tools
The purpose of a VPN is to hide your connection or IP address, or to create a specific one to allow you to connect to a network. However, the purpose of a VPN is not to provide complete anonymity to the person or business intending to use it. If it is anonymity you are seeking, you must look at other solutions with the help of an IT consultancy.
3. VPN Cannot Stop Website Tracking
Contrary to popular belief, using a VPN is not going to stop a website from tracking what you are doing while you are on their pages. For instance, websites often track the IP address and other computer information of their visitors. They do this to generate as much data as they can about their visitors, whether it is to send you better content through email or to show you ads in the future that are tailored to your browsing history.
But if you are determined to have your employees use the internet without getting tracked by other sites, here are some measures you can take beyond using a VPN:
- Use secure browsers.
- Only go on various web pages with ad-blockers turned on.
- Consult with an IT specialist for more robust tracking solutions.
It is smart business practices to use a VPN these days, especially if you are having employees connect to your network remotely. However, a VPN is not an all-in-one internet security solution, and it is important for businesses to stop treating it as such. Make sure you have backup options if you are worried about specific online threats.