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Why BYOD, Mobility and the Cloud Will Bring the End of Traditional VPNs

January 8, 2014 No Comments

By Todd Krautkremer, VP Marketing at Pertino

Before the onslaught of cloud-based services and mobile devices, and the anywhere work-style that followed, IT had complete control over users and IT resources. Everything was Windows-based and provided on site, including PCs and email, file and application servers. And, employees received standard-issue PCs and with controlled access to specific, IT-sanctioned office applications and files.

This locked-down and local approach meant IT only had to manage a limited number of variables. The Windows monoculture ensured that each PC user was managed, controlled and secured inside the office. For the few users who spent time working away from the office, VPNs (virtual private networks) provided an extension cord back to the the files and applications they need to be productive.

But that was then and this is now. Things have shifted dramatically. Modern employees are more mobile and have an expectation of anywhere, anytime and any device connectivity. They are bringing their own devices (BYOD) and even their own cloud-based services to work. The office applications and files they need aren’t in one place anymore. Instead, more and more are in the cloud. A recent Spiceworks survey of SMB IT professionals confirm these trends:

– Roughly 75 percent said their workers are more mobile than five years ago

– About 8 in 10 IT pros reported employees work remotely a minimum of once per month, with home, public WiFi, and customer sites as the most common remote sites

– 94 percent of mobile workers require access to behind-the-firewall files, emails, and business applications

– 7 in 10 businesses allow workers to BYOD (bring your own devices)

– 62 percent of SMBs are currently using cloud-based services, with hosted internal business apps, file storage and email topping the list

The rise of mobile workers, non-Windows devices, and the adoption of sanctioned and unsanctioned cloud-based services have combined to create new challenges for IT organization. In this new IT reality, the historical Windows-centric approach to providing connectivity, security, management and control falls short, leaving businesses, users and IT pros exposed. In fact, another Spiceworks survey revealed that 42 percent of IT professionals felt “very to extremely concerned” about enhanced security risk related to mobile devices.

Cloud and mobile are both dependent on wide-area networking. For SMBs that have accepted the cloud, BYOD, and a mobile employee work style, the outside network is becoming just as important as the inside LAN. What’s more, since many cloud-based services and mobile devices don’t fall within the Windows ecosystem, IT professionals have to find new and efficient ways to provide secure, managed and controlled access.  So what will be the new, unifying force in the mobile and cloud era? For many, the answer is cloud networking.

Cloud networking combines the power of cloud computing with virtualization and software-defined networking (SDN) technologies. It allows IT pros to create a virtual, cloud-based network in just minutes to deliver LAN-like connectivity from anywhere. Cloud networking platforms, like Pertino’s Cloud Network Engine, use vast amounts of affordable cloud computing resources and software programmability to provide ancillary cloud network services, which can be deployed for only a few dollars a month with just a few clicks.

By virtualizing and integrating security, management and control services in a cloud-based network, they are available to anyone, anywhere, on any device. There’s no need to deploy separate solutions for Windows, Mac, iOS and Android devices. Wherever users go and whatever type of device they use, their provisioned cloud network services will follow them.

While cloud networks are private and virtual, they’re nothing like today’s VPNs. Cloud networks are:

– Hardware-free

– Equipped and ready for any-to-any connectivity, behaving like a cloud-based LAN switch

– Fully elastic, able to scale down or up dynamically depending on traffic or devices

– Always on, demanding no user activity to set-up connectivity

– Equipped with several security layers for the user, device, network and company

– Developed with automatic resiliency and fail-over

– Works alongside your existing LAN and VPN solutions

– Eliminates “hairpinning” of remote traffic through a main site to reach the Internet

Mobile and cloud are changing the IT world, bringing forth new opportunities along with brand new challenges related to security and management. The answers to these challenges don’t lie in outdated strategies and antiquated technologies, but in a new, modern era of cloud networking.


As VP of Marketing, Pertino marks Todd Krautkremer’s fifth startup. Experience includes Packeteer VP of Worldwide Marketing, Gearworks CEO and Red Lambda COO as well as AT&T and Siemens. He thrives on building new market opportunities and speaks networking, security, SaaS, cloud, mobile, Big Data, carriers, and a little Russian.




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