JAN-FEB 2018

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INTECH JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2018 27 AUTOMATION IT The decision to use a hosted VPN versus a traditional VPN hinges on four primary factors: l Will all of my remote access needs fall under similar information technology (IT) condi- tions, with each site able to use the same router configurations? l Is IT expertise available to support a tradi- tional VPN? l Is the IT team willing to support the tradi- tion al VPN? l Will high bandwidth be required? As shown in the decision tree (figure 1), if the answer to any of these questions is "no," then the hosted VPN solution is likely the best option. When the answers to these four questions are "yes," then a traditional VPN may be preferred. Option 1: Hosted VPN Hosted VPNs provide a secure connection with simple setup and network configuration. Typi- cal hosted VPN solutions include a VPN router, a hosted VPN server, a VPN client, and connected automation system components (figure 2). A secure connection between the VPN client and the router is established after the router and VPN client each make a connection to the cloud-hosted VPN server. The router makes this connection im mediately upon startup, but the VPN client only FAST FORWARD l The two main ways to implement secure remote access are with a hosted VPN and with a traditional VPN. l A hosted VPN works well in most applications and is much simpler to implement and support. l A traditional VPN may be necessary in applications with very high bandwidth requirements, but requires extensive IT involvement and support. Figure 1. Decision tree Do I have similar IT conditions at all remote sites? Is IT expertise available to support a traditional VPN solution? Is IT willing to support a traditional VPN solution? Will high data bandwidth be required? I need a VPN solution. No No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Hosted VPN is likely your best choice. Traditional VPN is likely your best choice.

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