I am interested in purchasing a VPN appliance for a small company with 15 to 25 remote users. Can you recommend a good VPN solution that provides good network security and is priced for a small business?

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There are a number of IPsec VPN devices that can be used. The most popular ones for smaller companies are (listed alphabetically): Cisco/Altiga, Lucent/Brick, Netscreen, or Nortel/Contivity. You do need to be concerned about the security aspects of a VPN so you should be careful when selecting a product that it is secure -- there are lesser-known VPN products that have security holes. As an alternative, you may want to consider out-sourcing these services to a managed VPN provider who can significantly reduce the internal time you'll need to spend to research/design, implement, and maintain the VPN.

This was first published in May 2002

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