Security without the sweat

Wednesday, 23 July 2003, 11:13 AM EST

For several years, federal agencies have used virtual private networks (VPNs) to reliably secure online information exchanges with remote workers and trading partners. Yet, deploying systems based on the IP Security (IPSec) protocol — the main method until now — is not always as easy or flexible as agencies would like.

In the past year, an alternative has emerged that is taking the market by storm: VPNs based on the Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) protocol. Boasting several attractive features — such as simpler installation, more device flexibility and lower maintenance costs — SSL VPN products are quickly reaching government information technology shops that want to expand the user base for e-government applications without breaking the bank.

In fact, market research firms Gartner Inc. and META Group Inc. both expect SSL VPNs to be the primary way to connect remote users to enterprise networks as soon as next year.

[ Read more ]




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