Let’s talk security. Real security. For many years now startups on shared hosting plans or dedicated servers have become familiar with the web server (and browser) encryption method commonly referred to as Secure Socket Layer (SSL) that protects buyers during an online ecommerce transaction. This digital seal offers a high measure of trust and legitimacy for an online business.
It’s a great method and works well although we remind our readers that not all SSLs are created equal since their inception in 1996 by Netscape (and their current day integration into leading web-hosting platforms). Only a few providers, including UK2, offer 2048 bit signatures and up to 256 encryption means, regarded as the highest level of protection.
Furthermore, while SSLs are great for protecting a transaction on a web browser, they will not protect you from other malicious eavesdropping that might take place on a VOIP call or via your wirelessly connected laptop at Starbucks. These activities need an extra layer of protection and encryption found in a technology called a Virtual Private Network (VPN).
Figuratively speaking, a VPN puts your Internet communications inside an encrypted ‘tunnel’, protecting your voice and data transmissions as they flow from your laptop, tablet or smartphone to others over the Internet. This tunnel takes your data from the device it is installed on past the Internet connection point to a server where it is decoded so it can be read by those you intended. This prevents Eavesdroppers, including hackers, will have a tough job accessing your communications once you have implemented a VPN service through your hosting provider.
Generally, you will find various types of VPNs available, including personal and employee VPNs. However, it makes sense to contact your hosting provider to leverage their experience and expertise in providing a secure network through which to communicate, no matter where you are currently situated in the world.
Using both an SSL and VPN, when possible, will give you a comprehensive layer of protection to communicate with clients, friends or family via the Internet.
Although no technology is fail-safe (and we doubt it ever will be), the above two technologies are being rapidly enhanced, overhauled and extended to make sure you have the most secure environment to communicate personally or for business.