SD-WAN vs VPN: Comparison and Review

It’s an impressive time for IT business networks. Over 40% of employees in America have worked remotely during the pandemic, according to USA Today. And more than half of them wish to work from home after the pandemic as well. IT teams face the new challenge - how to manage a remote work process and connect workers from different corners of the world safely.

How should IT companies develop their networks to stay efficient? Should the company build its network and how can they securely protect the personal and business details of their employees? It is a good starting point to discuss which way is better - SD-WAN vs VPN.

SD-WAN vs VPN Review

What is SD-WAN

SD-WAN is a programmed Software Defined Wide Area Network to manage your business remotely. It allows companies to use software-defined networking to build an intelligent hybrid WAN interface. Unlike other WAN technologies, SD-WAN is completely managed by a centralized software app, establishing a virtual network on top of the circuits, known as an overlay.

What is VPN

A VPN is a Virtual Private Network that allows users to transform a public connection into a private one. When a user sets a connection with a VPN tunnel, he keeps it safe from external observation or monitoring while on the internet. The VPN service also encrypts the traffic and makes it impossible to read for third parties. 

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Why VPN is Better than SD-WAN

Both networks, SD-WAN and VPN, offer unique benefits, and when you choose the best one, you should know what your business needs. Nevertheless, SD-WAN is not an ideal solution to a company’s networking and safety challenges due to the following reasons:

Cost of SD-WAN. Both network solutions are web-based. Though SD-WAN and VPN are affordable options for businesses, VPN tends to be more reasonable due to its ease of use. This makes VPN great for companies that need a simple WAN network for a small number of sites.

Safety of SD-WAN. Means of security are poor in SD-WAN. The need to protect your network according to security standards is still acute, as your network remains exposed to outside threats. One simple data breach could compromise the entire company database.

Adoption of SD-WAN vs. VPN. SD-WANs have not been fully adopted yet. Companies still rely on standard VPN connections to keep internal and external operations ongoing. 

Convenience and maintenance. IT staff will have to handle all SD-WAN deployment and maintenance issues, as the help of external specialists will be rather expensive.

VPN and SD-WAN Conclusion

Choosing the best solution for your business you should consider what your business needs because both networks have their benefits and differences in security measures, performance, cost, maintenance, and bandwidth.

VPNs can be different, from IPsec tunnels to SSL. An IPsec VPN brings any type of traffic from the client to the server. SSL VPN is a good browser solution to provide secure, internet-based access to the company network.

VPN is a common solution for companies to safely connect business networks or remote employees to the business network. VPNs create a safe tunnel between parties protecting their traffic from third parties and providing the best user experience like in network connection.

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