Always On VPN and Zero Trust Security Framework

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October 5, 2023
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Dealing with the vulnerabilities of remote access into the corporate network can be challenging as such access is difficult to manage and secure. In fact, recent statistics have shown that 60% of remote workers use unsecured devices to access their employer’s network.

Using an Always On VPN and Zero Trust Security Framework can make things convenient by helping businesses reduce exposure to cyber threats. However, prior to using such security protocols, organizations must understand the Zero Trust Security Framework. In addition, they must have a comprehensive answer to what is an always-on VPN?

Decoding the Zero Trust Security Paradigm

In information security, the principle of Zero Trust dictates that one should not trust any user or device, whether inside or outside the corporate network. The Zero Trust security framework upends the traditional security perimeter developed around the defensive mechanism by emphasizing continuous user verification.

The users and devices on the network are all assessed using zero-trust protocols without any exceptions. Various identity verification protocols continuously assess and authorize them before they can access any information or resources. Identity and access management (IAM), micro-segmentation, and constant monitoring are the core technologies. That can help businesses implement Zero Trust security protocols. 

The Fundamental Principles of Always On VPN

When a user turns on a device and connects it to the internet, an always-on VPN automatically provides access to the corporate network without the need for manual activation. This enables remote workers to access the corporate network in a secure manner. Using tunnel policies that emphasize authentication and encryption. 

Developers created Always-on VPN to enhance connectivity, data security, and automation for users and devices. It provides:

  • Increased security as it encrypts all data sent between the mobile device and the business network. This ensures that a third party cannot snoop on or manipulate the data.
  • It decreases the chances of data breaches. Because it stops users from outside the company from gaining unauthorized access to internal systems and data by exploiting vulnerabilities. 
  • It can also assist businesses in meeting. The requirements of industry regulations mandate remote workers to use a VPN connection to gain access to internal systems and data.

Synergies Between Always-On VPN and Zero Trust Model

Businesses can create a synergy between security strategies like using an always-on VPN and a Zero Trust security framework. Both technologies work together to eliminate unauthorized access. It supports authentic devices and users by providing them with secure and seamless access to organizational resources. 

When businesses integrate the Zero Trust security framework and an always-on VPN, the flexible nature of the latter enables the security protocols. It is to validate the authenticity of the connected devices and users through a one-on-one user-encrypted tunnel. The gateway assesses and authenticates the user and device identity, allowing access to a corporate network. 

Continuous Authentication and Its Role in a Zero Trust Framework

A crucial part of a zero-trust security architecture is constant authentication. Maintaining a user’s access privileges requires constant scrutiny, including monitoring and evaluation. Using the Zero Trust security framework helps organizations verify a user’s identity based on different factors that include risk-based and multi-factor authentication. 

However, the role of continuous authentication in the Zero Trust framework is paramount as it triggers authentication protocols whenever a user deviates from the known chain of network activities. This protocol ensures that organizations are able to prevent unauthorized entities from maliciously moving around in the network. 

Network Access Control in the Age of Always On VPN and Zero Trust

Network access control (NAC) can restrict corporate network access for users and devices. Access decisions are typically made by NAC solutions based on user identity, device identity, and device location. These solutions can be implemented into Zero Trust-enabled networks. They restrict network access to only approved remote devices and help organizations manage access for remote devices with ease. 

Mitigating Cybersecurity Threats with an Integrated Approach

Integrating the Zero Trust security framework and always-on VPN can be an intelligent choice for a corporate network. Organizations can help protect their employees from phishing attacks by requiring them to connect to an always-on VPN before gaining access to internal resources.

Using such protocols helps businesses reduce exposure to cyber threats like malware attacks. Such attacks aim to compromise a computer or mobile device by introducing harmful code. The possibility of malware attacks is reduced by securing the access of remote devices to internal network resources.

In addition, using the Zero Trust security framework also allows organizations to detect and prevent insider threats by continuously monitoring user identity and behaviors. This means users can not access resources they are not permitted to access, which greatly reduces the risk of insider threats resulting from compromised credentials. 

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Implementation of Best Practices for Harmonizing VPN and Zero Trust

In the modern business world, it’s essential for organizations to use an always-on VPN and Zero Trust security framework in combination. Some of the best practices for doing so include: 

  • Establishing what it is you hope to achieve in terms of safety first. 
  • Choosing solutions that complement each other and secure your organizational network.
  • Deploying security protocols in stages. 
  • Providing awareness and use training to employees. 
  • Monitoring the effectiveness of security protocols and upgrading them as needed. 
  • Ensuring that security protocols are deployed on high-priority assets first.
Always On VPN and Zero Trust Security Framework

VPN vs VPS: Understanding the Differences

Final Thoughts On Always On VPN and Zero Trust

Businesses today are leveraging talent from all over the world, and this means that company resources are being accessed from remote devices. This is feasible for employees but creates challenges for business as some remote devices might not be as secure as needed. To overcome such challenges, companies can use an always-on VPN and the Zero Trust security framework, as it helps them enforce constant user authentication, which limits vulnerabilities from being exploited.

FAQs

1. Can I use VPN and Zero Trust together?

Yes, you can use a VPN and Zero Trust together for enhanced security.

2. What is the difference between ZTNA and VPN?

ZTNA provides access to specific resources based on strict verification, while VPN gives broader network access via a secure tunnel.

3. What is the difference between ZTNA and SASE?

ZTNA focuses on secure access to specific applications, while SASE combines comprehensive network security and WAN capabilities in a cloud-based service.

4. What is the Zero Trust framework?

The Zero Trust framework is a security model that requires strict verification for every access request, regardless of the user’s location, assuming no inherent trust.

Noor Khan

Noor Khan

Author

My name is Noor, and I am a seasoned entrepreneur focused on the area of artificial intelligence. As a robotics and cyber security researcher, I love to share my knowledge with the community around me.

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