Thursday, February 23, 2017

IPSec vs. SSL VPNs

Internet Protocol Security (IPSec) became a leading medium to ensure secure network-layer connectivity for non-secured IP networks, which includes the internet. IPSec established itself within a short span when IP Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) made a foray in the late 1990s.
Although IPSec enjoyed its fair share of popularity among consumers, Secure Socket Layer (SSL) VPNs soon emerged. SSL was capable of providing application-layer access over the Web.


How IPSec VPNs emerged
IPSec’s growing popularity was not surprising since customers found it to be an affordable option when it came to purchasing the internet connection and making WAN connections over the same. In fact, IPSec was considered much more pocket-friendlier than investing in a frame relay, Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) service, or dedicated circuits.
However, IPSec is quite complex. This is because the larger the number of sites connecting to each other, the greater will be the need to maintain and define several secure links. If you are using IPSec for remote access, then you will need to ensure that every remote machine has software that can be installed and maintained.


About SSL VPNs
SSL was capable of enabling application-layer access over the Internet by employing capabilities that were typical for many browsers. With SSL, distribution and maintenance of client software for remote devices were no longer mandatory for businesses who were interested in remote-access VPNs.
However SSL had a limitation, wherein browsers only received access to Web-based applications. Despite this drawback, technology solved this issue by transforming non-Web applications to Web-based ones by using ActiveX or Java which could facilitate access to non-Web-enabled applications. Through these plug-ins, remote computers could generate network layer connections, which were similar to IPSec. Moreover, this could easily be accomplished without dedicated VPN client software distribution. SSL VPNs are therefore creating stiff competition for IPSec VPNs in terms of remote access.

The three modes of access provided by SSL VPN are as follows:
1.    Thin Client
Remote access to applications based on Transmission Control Protocol (TCP), such as Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP), Post Office Protocol version 3 (POP3), Secure Shell (SSH), Telnet, and Internet Message Access Protocol (IMAP) is facilitated because the capability of the cryptographic operations of a browser is extended by the Thin Client mode.
   
2.    Clientless
Secure access to content on the Internet and private Web resources is facilitated through the Clientless mode. It offers users the benefit of accessing everything from databases, the Internet, to online tools, which employ a Web interface.

3.    Tunnel Mode
Comprehensive support for applications is provided by the Tunnel Client mode. This function is enabled because of its Cisco AnyConnect VPN Client, specially designed for SSL VPN. Through Tunnel Client mode, almost any application receives complete network layer access. This is achieved because of Tunnel mode’s centrally-configured and lightweight SSL VPN tunneling client.



Tikona Infinet, Tikona Digital Networks’ Enterprise Services arm caters to the diversified connectivity needs of customers. Tikona has a strong network infrastructure, which makes the brand a pan-India entity. Tikona has provided undisputed services to around 350 corporate customers over the years. Tikona broadband’s VPNs comprise all the features inherent to well-performing VPNs like scalability, manageability, flexibility, and expandability, which are crucial for the growth of networked business enterprises.