Virtual Private Networks and Secure Sockets Layer certificates are used for a Encryption purposes. VPNs usually establish an encryption tunnel between the network and an IP address. SSL certificates are used for encrypting communication between web servers and browsers. However, whereas most webmasters know the essence of the two elements, the idea of an SSL VPN is still new to most people. This article will try to demystify the concept of SSL certificates on VPN servers. Let us start by answering the most common question: why I need an SSL certificate for my VPN server?
Do I Need an SSL Certificate for my VPN server?
SSL certificates on VPN servers enable devices with an internet connection to leverage the power of encryption to establish a secure remote access VPN connection with website browsers. The client uses this connection to connect to the internet safely. Does that seem complicated to grasp? Let us look at it from another angle- An SSL certificate for VPN servers uses end-to-end encryption (just like the regular SSL certificates) to safeguard the transfer of data or information between the client software (on the endpoint device) and the SSL VPN server.
Organizations are adopting the aspect of SSL VPN to establish a secure connection with remote users and ensure safe access to data. Therefore, An SSL certificate for VPN servers is essential because it helps in the provision of end-to-end encryption on internet sessions for clients. Even more interesting is that the SSL VPNs can be quickly implemented without needing specialized client software. Part of their reliability emanates from their high compatibility with almost all client platforms and configurations, such as firewalls.
Users using SSL certificates on their VPN servers can remotely access restricted networks via a secure pathway. And this is enabled through traffic encryption that makes it look as if a user is using a local network, irrespective of the user’s geographic location.
How Do SSL Certificates for VPN Servers Work?
SSL certificates for VPNs rely on the TLS protocol (the modern version of SSL protocol). SSL VPNs will allow users who have been authenticated to launchsafe connections to internal HTTP (HyperText Transfer Protocol) and HTTPS (HyperText Transfer Protocol Secure) services via web applications that give ground for direct and secure access to networks.
Users should be well-acquainted with the functionality of two types of SSL VPNs (the SSL VPN tunnel and the SSL VPN portal). A VPN tunnel is like an established tunnel existing between the VPN server and remote users. The tunnel provides users access to multiple network services. Unlike the SSL tunnel VPN, the SSL portal VPN only provides encryption for one connection at a time.
How Do I Get A VPN SSL Certificate?
There are different methods to get SSL certificate for different VPN service providers like Sonicwall, Fortiget,etc. We have given installation process of installing SSL onFortigetVPN.
Importing your SSL Certificate:
- First you need to login in your FortiGate VPN.
- Now, Browse to Certificates under “System”.
- Now click on Import and fetch Local Certificate by browsing the certificate location.
- Click OK.
Importing your Intermediate CA:
Now, it is time to import intermediate certificate.
- Again browse to Certificates under “”System”
- Choose Import>>CA Certificate and browse the intermediate certificate path. The intermediate certificate should be in certificate list.
- Click OK.
Configuring your FortiGate VPN to use Signed certificate:
- After completing above processes, you need to configure FortiGate VPN to use the certificate.
- You need to follow path: Browse VPN > SSL > Settings.
- Find Connection Settings and under the Server Certificate drop down list, choose new SSL certificate.
- Click Apply
- Your SSL certificate is configured now.
Is SSL Certificate Necessary For Security?
Yes. An SSL certificate is one of the most critical ingredients of security. It ensures that data is encrypted and concealed from evil third parties. If you value your clients’ data, you must buy and install an SSL certificate for your network. Encryption is where plain text data is converted into an indecipherable ciphertext. It is almost pointless for attackers to try and get hold of encrypted data since they will not decipher it. Always ensure you include an SSL certificate in the cybersecurity strategy.
What Type of SSL Certificate Do I Need for My VPN?
Several SSL solutions work perfectly for VPN servers. These certificates are used for different SSL needs. It is also vital to get the certificate from reputable certificate providers. For instance, Thawte SSL certificates, Comodo SSL Certificates ,RapidSSL Certificates etc.. offer many benefits to users, which is why I highly recommend any of them to use. Before you buy And Install an SSL certificate on your VPN servers, it would be best to first understand your VPN servers’ needs and requirements. Here are some SSL certificates that you can use.
- 2048-Bit Encryption Certificates
These certificates secure a single domain with a single certificate.
- Multi-Domain SSL Certificates
The multi-domain certificate is suitable in situations where you have several domains running under a single server. As you notice, buying single certificates for each domain would not be a great idea. A single multi-domain SSL certificate can secure up to 25 domains.
- EV Certificates
One great thing with EV SSL certificates is that they provide added assurance to the users because of their unique indicators. Browsers will display visual cues like padlocks in the address bar and information about the organization in the certificate details.
How Do I Use a VPN Certificate?
To use a VPN certificate, you should click on the Advanced tab and select Certificates. Here, you should be able to select an online storage service and choose the one you wish to upload. There are several options available for you, such as the type of VPN certificate, upload and encrypt status for the certificate. Your web browser should automatically save the certificate.
What Happens if you Don’t Install An SSL Certificate on Your VPN Server?
You can still run your networks and connections without using an SSL certificate. However, this is not a good practice as it opens your website to security vulnerabilities. Additionally, search engines like Google will decline to display security indicators on the website. Those running websites might experience a decline in rank in the search engine results pages. Such websites will experience a decline in visibility, leading to a decrease in conversion rates and revenues.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some frequently asked questions on the aspect of SSL VPN.
- Do I Need Any Application to Install the SSL VPN?
No. Installing an SSL certificate on your VPN servers is a simple process that occurs through the browser. You do not need any application to install an SSL certificate on your VPN servers.
- Do I Need a virtual private network for my website if I already have an SSL certificate?
Yes. The virtual private network will provide encryption between users’ computers to VPN servers. The SSL certificate will initiate the HTTPS security protocol to provide end-to-end encryption between web servers and end-user browsers. Using both VPNs and SSL certificate offers advanced security protection to your website.
- Does SSL Certificate for VPN Servers Provide Complete Security?
Although SSL certificates do not provide the utmost security, they play a critical role in bolstering the security walls of networks from many forms of attack. They are more effective when used alongside other security measures.
To enhance the security of your network, you need an SSL certificate on the VPN servers. SSL certificates and virtual private networks are among the best security protocols being used by webmasters. However, most web admins use them individually. The aspect of SSL VPN is yet to hit the ground as it should. Those who have already heard about it have questioned its security implications. This article has explored different aspects of SSL VPNs. It has explained the benefits of the SSL VPNs, how they work, how to get a VPN SSL, and answered a few frequently asked questions on SSL VPNs.