A VPN connection comes in handy to establish a link between private servers and remote users. As a protected data path, the presence of the VPN tunnel paves the way for improved data security. Therefore, data transmissions between the network and device have the additional security of data encryption.
But at the same time many inappropriate IPs can access your VPN, putting data security at stake. So, how do you deal with such situations? You definitely can’t stop using VPNs right. This is why VPN monitoring is an essential component of network security nowadays.
What Is VPN Monitoring?
VPN tunnels and communication channels are at risk all the time. More often than not, they are at risk of losing their integrity, leading to data leaks. This is what brings VPN monitoring into the picture. Let us see how VPN monitoring can help you out.
VPN monitoring is the process of monitoring and keeping tabs on some of the VPN channel metrics to ensure that the communication stream is robust and secure. In other words, this is a way to ensure that the data transmitted through this channel is secure, and there can be no openings for outside intrusions.
But, what kinds of metrics can actually help you monitor this VPN? There are a number of different metrics that can help determine the health of the VPN connection. The VPN session count, for instance, is one of the primary features that VPN monitoring companies look at. This refers to the number of VPN sessions that are currently active.
Next comes the all-important VPN tunnels count that, as the name suggests, gives the number of client-to-site VPN tunnels. The other two essential metrics include the VPN received bytes and VPN sent bytes. While the former measures the number of bytes received between the endpoint pair, the latter is a measure of the bytes sent by the endpoint pair.
Consequences Of Skipping A VPN Monitoring Solution
A lot of companies choose to compromise on an adequate VPN monitoring solution. This could have a lot of adverse impacts on the company.
Data loss and security breach
This is one of the most common consequences of avoiding the use of a VPN monitoring solution. The idea here is simple. When the VPN connection is not guarded or monitored, it leads to easy access for intruders and hackers. As a result, unauthorized entry into the communication channels might cause a loss of data.
Block in data traffic
VPN traffic, if unmonitored, could lead to suspended connections. This is all thanks to the irregularities in the connection. This will eventually block all the data traffic from the VPN. All of this together could pave the way for improper VPN channel functioning and unsecured connection.
How To Monitor VPN Connections?
Making use of a good VPN monitoring tool means you can track the data that flows in and out of it to avoid unnecessary intrusion, and you can monitor the health of the connection. There are three different aspects to this. Let us discuss them in detail.
Installation of performance monitors
The first step involves installing the necessary performance monitors that can help you track the VPN connection’s health. There are a lot of other essential metrics also that go into the area of performance monitors. Some of these include VPN session count and VPN session status.
Apart from the usual bytes received and sent, it also deals with VPN tunnel traffic in and out, VPN bandwidth, concurrent VPN tunnels. All of these metrics monitor how the VPN stream is performing and how well it is handling the pressure of traffic going in and out.
Once you have added all the relevant monitors to the system, it is time now to set the threshold limits for each of them. The idea is to keep a real-time check on the metrics so that they stay within the threshold value only.
It gives you a certain customization level since you can set the metric threshold depending upon your requirements. Once you configure it to your needs, the next step involves continuous real-time monitoring.
This monitoring process produces some metric stats that are visible on the primary dashboard of the tool. From the snapshot, you can have access to all the stats. In the situation that any metric crosses the required threshold, it will be flagged on the dashboard for you to review and take necessary actions.
While the dashboard only provides you with a snapshot of the whole process and its relevant statistics, you also get access to a more in-depth report with the monitoring tool. These reports are generated on a weekly or monthly basis to indicate the health of the VPN connection over the last few days.
A tabular data set with visual representation gives you the best view of the VPN performance. Moreover, you can also drill down on each metric to get a more holistic view of the performance. Visuals collated from this metric do provide useful insight into the VPN connection.
This is the overall process that is involved with VPN monitoring. However, there are tools that provide a lot of additional features that could enhance your monitoring experience. For instance, some VPN monitoring tools give you the flexibility to deal with customized dashboards, incorporating VPN widgets to make your experience smoother.
The performance metrics you want to be displayed on the dashboard depends upon you entirely. Another popular feature here is the reduced manual intervention in VPN monitoring. If the process is well automated, it proves to be a definite advantage for the users.
Owing to the rise in cybercrimes, the importance of a secure VPN connection has gone up manifolds. Irrespective of your location or the kind of devices you are operating with, it is imperative to ensure that the VPN communication channel is working smoothly.
In this context, VirtualMetric is a popular choice when it comes to VPN monitoring solutions. It offers special agentless monitoring solutions that can appropriately guard your technical infrastructure. It offers additional features, like inventory reporting too. These solutions are easy to work with, can be deployed quickly, and can take care of the VPN network in its entirety.