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What is cloud VPN and why is its popularity on the rise?

(Image credit: Pixabay)

 A VPN, or Virtual Private Network, is a method of maintaining privacy and increasing security while online by routing traffic through an encrypted tunnel to a server, rather than directly to an Internet Service Provider.

Traditionally, companies have used corporate VPNs to simultaneously allow for remote access, while ensuring the safety of the server and privacy of the business's (and its employees') data. Under this model, the company runs the server, as well as the VPN which the employee uses to connect to the corporate resources, such as databases and software when away from the business campus.

But cloud VPNs are changing this.

Cloud computing and its efficiencies

‘The Cloud’ designates software, data and services that, rather than running locally using your PC or devices resources, are run across the internet with a remote server.

The hosted service is accessed via a web browser or smartphone app. Cloud computing is therefore an efficient approach that can be quite cost effective with the company able to outsource the daily running of the server, along with the maintenance. For example, rather than having to update each individual client, the updates can more efficiently be carried out at the level of the server.

Cloud applications also allow for collaboration in ways not previously possible, such as when several folks can write and edit a written piece while all remote, and without transferring the actual document file back and forth. 

What is cloud VPN?

A cloud VPN goes by a few different names that include 'hosted VPN', or a 'virtual private network as a service' abbreviated to VPNaas.

In this setup, rather than the company setting up and maintaining its own business VPN on a company maintained server, the daily operation of the corporate VPN gets outsourced to a VPNaas. The use of a VPNaas is a modern solution that streamlines operations as it is designed to be compatible with Cloud applications to maintain a high level of security.

A VPNaas can also be designed to work via both a browser or a mobile app. A traditional corporate VPN can be quite frustrating to work on a mobile device which is a limitation that a VPNaas easily overcomes.

Traditional corporate VPN’s are difficult to setup, and can take significant time, often months to deploy. With a VPNaas the heavy lifting happens at the level of the provider, so these are much faster for deployment, so it can keep up with the pace of expansion of the business.

This also brings up that in general a corporate VPN tends to be fairly static, and once setup, changing it, or expanding it can be a real challenge. A VPNaas overcomes these issues handily, and is the more flexible solution that can scale a lot more easily.

The rise of cloud VPN

With so many advantages, it is little wonder that VPNaas is growing by leaps and bounds.

According to Reports and Data, this VPNaas market is expected to experience growth from a market of $2.77 (£2.21) billion in 2019, to $8.78 (£6.99) billion by 2026.

Therefore, if you are considering cloud VPN for your organization, you are in plentiful company.

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Jonas P. DeMuro is a freelance reviewer covering wireless networking hardware.