In Focus Magazine Network Security

eduVPN – Supporting Safer Remote Learning

With so many staff and students working from home, the need for safe and secure WiFi access is paramount.

eduVPN aims to offer both secure access to campus networks as well as the ability to be safer when using the Internet, when eduroam is not available and you are relying on insecure WiFi networks to connect.

The essential eduVPN user experience should be: “open your laptop and be securely online”. eduVPN service instances offered by NRENs
or universities, research labs and other institutions allow students, researchers and staff from participating institutions to obtain a VPN connection on their devices to known end-points. It offers two different usage types, depending on what is needed where you are: institutional access and secure internet access.

Institutional Access

Today many thousands of students, staff and researchers work away from the main campus yet still need access to central services and data. Until now, providing this type of secure access has been either difficult or very expensive with the need to purchase and support
commercial VPN solutions and software. Institutional Access provides access to private networks: a ‘corporate’ VPN solution as it were, where end-users can access internal resources within the internal network of their university. In this case, eduVPN has similar functionalities as a typical VPN concentrator box. The service can also be used to connect different campuses or networks (VLANs)
within a single institution. Using eduVPN allows secure eduGAIN authenticated access for students and staff in a cost-effective,
scalable manner.

Secure Internet Access

With the rise in public WiFi, more and more students and staff are accessing information across potentially insecure networks, risking their data being accessed and shared. Secure Internet provides secure and privacy-preserving access from public networks: by providing secure gateways to trusted networks that end-users can tunnel to when using insecure networks, in particular public WiFi hot spots.
eduVPN provides a low-cost, secure way to preserve privacy when using public networks using easy-to-use software on laptops, mobile phones and tablets.

eduVPN Growing Rapidly

Following the recent widespread lockdown measures, more than 40 eduVPN installations have been createdaround the world to help support safe, private access for research and education.

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