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SSL-VPN stands for Secure Socket Layer-Virtual Private Network.  Pretty fancy name, isn’t it?  Well, this little guy allows you to have a secure gateway to access the network as if you were a part of the network even when your device is not physically connected to the network.  Long story short, you can use your iPad or other device to connect back to your work network instead of sitting at the office where your desktop is physically connected.

There are two main reasons why you would want to use an SSL-VPN connection.

1)  An SSL-VPN connection allows you to securely publish resources that are on a local network that need to be accessed through the internet.  Some examples are Outlook Web Access, SharePoint, Remote Desktop services etc.

2)  An SSL-VPN client based connection protects your identity and credentials so they are not susceptible to a man in the middle attack.  This is very important when using public wireless hotspots.

You don’t want your information out there for anyone to just take, whether it’s business or personal.  There are a few ways that you can create a SSL-VPN connection to protect your data.  SonicWALL offers a client called NetExtender and an iOS app called Mobile Connect.  By using these tools to create an encrypted tunnel, your traffic is securely routed through the firewall, with Intrusion Prevention and firewall rules to ensure only allowed users can access approved resources.

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