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SSL VPNS Are Most Popular Remote Access Tool: Report

Novelty sells when it comes to virtual private network (VPN) hardware and software, according to a new report from Infonetics Research. The firm's just-released "User Plans for VPN Products and Services, North American Verticals 2005" report finds that the introduction of new technologies like SSL VPN are the principal motivator for enterprise VPN upgrades.

According to Infonetics, enterprises typically use their VPN products for two to four years before upgrading, though organizations in verticals like education and retail, where equipment budgets are tighter, tend to hold onto their investments for four to six years. Indeed, these verticals typically see cost as the principal barrier to implementing VPNs.

Nevertheless, Infonetics principal VPN and security analyst Jeff Wilson notes that VPNs and firewalls remain the most popular security devices in all sectors and verticals. "There is some variation by vertical and size, but they are not significant," he said in a statement "All VPN/firewall appliances are folding in additional security technologies, and the line between VPN/firewall devices and integrated security appliances is rapidly disappearing."

Indeed, SSL VPNs are quickly becoming a remote access technology of choice, with 39% of respondents to the Infonetics survey currently using these devices. Fully managed VPN services are somewhat less popular, with only 14% of respondents reporting that they use such services from a wide range of providers.