What is a Mobile VPN?

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  • Written By: Sherry Holetzky
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 11 October 2019
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Mobile VPN refers to a mobile virtual private network. The word private as used here is not necessarily due to high privacy protection or security features provided by such networks. However, a mobile VPN can utilize the security features of underlying resources. The main “job” of the mobile VPN is to create seamless transfer of data or communication over different types of systems, technologies, and networks.

For a simple example of how mobile VPN works, let’s take a look at a busy executive. This person may move from the desktop computer at the office that uses broadband, to a palmtop that requires a wireless hot spot while en route to his next location, and then finally to his laptop when he arrives at his hotel room for a meeting. The hotel may utilize a LAN or local area network, which combines one or more other systems that communicate via the same dedicated line or wireless connection.

As the executive moves between various technologies and networks, his IP or Internet Protocol address, a string of numbers that identifies his account, is likely to change. This can and does often create disruption. Mobile VPN allows seamless transfer from one to the other, using a logical IP address rather than a physical one. A logical IP follows the user from one physical IP, device, or network, to another.


A mobile VPN can be very beneficial in the business environment. Not only does it tend to be less costly than typical routed networks, but it also allows for greater versatility. People can take work home and communicate seamlessly from their home offices. Allowing employees to telecommute or finding ways to outsource certain tasks are clearly more feasible options with Mobile VPN. This can mean a great deal of savings for businesses that no longer have to provide office space, parking space, or other necessities that are required for on site employees.

Mobile VPN is also essential for sudden or on demand exchanges of data that may be crucial to a successful presentation or transaction. An employee who is home sick, on vacation or leave, or who is called away for any reason, may have important information that is needed. It can be quickly and easily retrieved utilizing mobile VPN, generally without fear of interruption.

As far as security goes, companies can choose between the administration of a mobile VPN server within the company or can seek a managed VPN if the Internet Service Provider offers it. It is important that sensitive data be protected. This is especially true in situations where protected information must be kept confidential.


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