SMBs Dissatisfied With Restricted Remote Access Options

SonicWALL has announced that, according to its recent survey of over 1,000 IT administrators, small and mid-sized businesses (SMBs) are frustrated with the lack of choice available to meet increased demand for remote network access. Respondents rated affordability, security and ease of use as the key factors driving the selection of remote access technology, but found that solutions combining all three were limited.

Almost half of the survey respondents believed that SSL VPN, which provides secure access via a simple web browser interface, would be a desirable option for remote access, although over 80% believed that existing SSL VPN solutions were priced beyond their reach. The survey indicated that more than 80% of SMBs use some form of VPN connectivity to enable remote and mobile workers to access their networks with the majority of this segment using technology that requires a high degree of IT support. SonicWALL research also indicates that, among organizations deploying alternatives to VPN for remote access, most use remote point-to-point computer access software which, while offering comparative ease of use, provides access only to a specific computer, and involves high per-computer license costs.

With the recent introduction of its powerful, simple and affordable SSL-VPN appliance range, SonicWALL has removed the cost penalty for SSL-VPN use. Following extensive market testing, SonicWALL launched a new approach to SSL-VPN pricing by allowing an unrestricted number of concurrent users for each device, unlike competitive solutions which charge substantial per-concurrent-tunnel license costs. Integrating seamlessly with third party firewalls, the SonicWALL SSL-VPN 2000 provides organizations with scalable remote access that is simple to deploy, manage and use at a fraction of the total cost of most other SSL-VPN appliances.

“The SonicWALL SSL-VPN series is a perfect complement to any existing VPN/Firewall infrastructure,” said Todd Barrett, manager, Security and Networking Sales, CPU Sales and Service, a SonicWALL Gold Medallion partner. “Remote access that’s easy to manage, easy to deploy and easy to support is what IT professionals want from SSL technology and SonicWALL has delivered just that. The SonicWALL SSL-VPN 2000 meets those needs and provides it at a very affordable price.”

“Our organization already has a migration plan to SonicWALL SSL VPN under way,” said Richard Grey, network administrator at Cyclades, the leader in next-generation IT infrastructure management. “We have many locations around the world with multiple remote contributors. These road warriors – sales people, systems engineers and developers – will all benefit from using SSL VPN. SonicWALL’s solution was easy to set up. Moreover, file sharing is efficient and fast enough for all our needs. We find SonicWALL’s NetExtender application very appealing. The ability to reach any TCP/IP based application securely from our laptops is a great feature. We envisage offering Intranet, file sharing and versioning tools through the SonicWALL SSL VPN.”

Tammy Barrett, network engineer for outdoor clothing specialist, Patagonia, Inc., said, “SonicWALL’s SSL VPN will be instrumental in improving access for our outside contractors. It’s great not to have to put a client in place on each laptop. Moreover, SonicWALL’s NetExtender technology will provide an easy-to-access virtual office for factories that need to review designs to freelance designers working with our internal team. Patagonia’s traveling sales people also require easy access to our web servers, in turn providing support quickly to our dealer network. Remote access to email is just critical. Keeping infrastructure costs in line is just as important. We need the best bang for our buck. In this regard, SSL VPN is a great overall alternative.”

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