A Virtual Private Network (VPN) extends access to the resources of your office network to a remote location using encrypted communications over the public Internet.
The 'remote' part of the VPN can be either another complete network at a branch office or a single laptop PC connecting using a wireless Internet connection. In either case, the VPN traffic is encrypted for security.
Laptops can also connect to the VPN from temporary connections such as hotel* Internet connections, a home network connection, or from a client's network.
Once a VPN link is established, the resources of the office network are available to the remote laptop or network, subject to the normal access controls. This includes acess to databases such as WinBEAT, and files on Windows file servers.
Email and Intranets can also be accessed via the VPN without making your internal mail or web server accessible from the Internet.
* NB Some hotel internet connections only allow access to WWW and Email services.