Drawbacks of VPN tunnel
As internet and other public networks like Wi-Fi become more and more unsecured and unsafe due to prying of eavesdroppers and hackers, VPNs play an important role in safeguarding and securing these networks. VPNs are used in various ways to perform usual online activities. Users can access a secured connection at any time of their choice and from anywhere in the world. Remote computing is achieved by VPNs very easily. The working of VPNs are based on a technology called “VPN tunnel”. Data and information is transmitted safely through this “tunnel” from the VPN user to VPN server and vice-versa.
Although VPNs are very reliable if chosen the right one and configured properly, there are certain drawbacks of VPN tunnel which are discussed below:
- Although both the VPN server and users have encryption and passwords for security, the security of “VPN tunnel” can be breached, like any other password protected environment. If the encryption or password strength is not adequate then hackers can easily pry on these networks. This can occur due to human carelessness and error. The network also becomes vulnerable if the users utilze unsecured machines for tunneling the network. This carelessness on the user’s part can occur if the personal computer of the remote user, used for accessing personal files and information, lacks adequate security measures like antivirus, firewalls, etc.
- A new technology related to computer networking called “Split tunneling” has evolved which enables the VPN users to use public networks like internet along with a LAN/WAN simultaneously by using the same network connection. This service is provided through an application called VPN client software. But this tunneling technique has a drawback in the form that users can evade the gateway level security which is set up within a company’s infrastructure. It is the gateway level security and not a client pc which controls content or web filtering . DNS hijacking is implemented by internet service providers with the help of split tunneling for breaking private address’s name resolution. Datagrams go out of local network’s default gateway in case of plain split tunneling. The tunnel is used only by those datagrams which are intended to go to IP networks that exist behind VPN terminator. The rule of least privilege is violated by this feature particularly when the entire internet is not required by any user.
- Access and productivity is also disturbed. VPN tunnels often reduce the connection speed by a great extent because they deal with encryption and packets through internet connections. This diadvantage does not cause too much concern because remote users usually send and receive files using VPN services. After the files are transmitted, the remote users can utilize their own network connection or work offline.
In newer versions of the technology, many drawbacks of VPN tunnel have been lessened. However, the main concern is security. The security issues are mainly associated with users who fail to take adequate measures of security and access. VPNs are mainly plagued with this problem. The solution lies in educating the VPN users to understand the technology better.