A virtual private network (VPN) creates a “tunnel” between a private network and a public network. This allows users on the public network to exchange data, acting as if they were still on a private network.
VPNs are a popular choice for people looking for more anonymity while surfing the web, but their use in the business sector has grown significantly in recent years.
What is a VPN protocol?
Now that we’ve answered the common question of “what is a vpn?”, let’s move on to the relevant protocols.
All VPN protocols control how data is routed through a connection. These protocols have various requirements based on the benefits and intended uses. For example, some VPN protocols prioritize data transmission speed while others focus on encrypting or masking data packets for privacy and security.
Common VPN protocols
There are two basic types of VPN functionality. That is:
- Both protocols are used (one to transport the data through the tunnel and one to encrypt it)
- A protocol is used for both data transmission and data security.
Here are the most popular VPN protocols:
PPTP (Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol) is one of the oldest VPN protocols. Microsoft created PPTP in the mid-1990s as a medium for dial-up connections and was included in Windows 95.
However, as technology advanced, PPTP’s basic encryption was quickly broken, revealing its fundamental security. It lacks many security features found in other contemporary protocols, but it may offer the fastest connection speeds for those who don’t need high protection.
Although PPTP is still used in a few applications, most ISPs have since moved to faster and more secure standards.
WireGuard is an open-source VPN protocol that was first released in 2020. It’s only 4,000 lines of code and has a small attack surface, ensuring fast secure connections.
WireGuard is a free and open source encryption standard. Because anyone can view the code, it’s easier to deploy, audit, and troubleshoot. It’s also modern and fast. With only 4,000 lines of code, it is “the lightest” among the protocols.
OpenVPN is open-source software that allows third-party developers to access the code behind it. This protocol, which uses AES-256-bit (virtually unbreakable) key encryption with 2048-bit RSA authentication and a 160-bit SHA1 hash function, has grown in popularity.
SSTP (Secure Socket Tunneling Protocol) is well known because it is fully integrated into all Microsoft operating systems since Windows Vista SP 1. For authentication, SSTP uses 2048-bit SSL/TLS certificates and 256-bit SSL keys. bits.
The most serious drawback of SSTP is that it is a proprietary technology invented by Microsoft that developers do not have access to.
IKEv2 is a VPN tunneling protocol that uses a secure key exchange session. IKEv2 is typically used with IPsec for encryption and authentication, as is L2TP (and IKEv1).
This protocol is effective for reconnecting after brief outages and for changing connections between network types (such as Wi-Fi to cellular, for example).
What is the best VPN protocol?
There is no “perfect” VPN protocol for everyone. The answer to this question depends on your needs and what you do online. If you’re a frequent gamer, you might use a VPN for different reasons than someone who watches a lot of TV shows or frequently works in cafes.
For choose the best VPN protocol for youthink about what you need most from your VPN connection.