Most small and medium sized businesses require their employees to create, edit and update data remotely. Whether working while travelling, at home or during vacations, remote employees need to have a constant access to central files to ensure data accuracy and continuity of the organization. The best way to allow employees to access office files remotely is to setup a virtual private network or VPN.

This cable-like connection provides internet access between a remote PC and the office server. Whenever you want to access the office server from home, for instance, the VPN software installed in your PC creates a secure point-to-point ‘tunnel’ through the internet with your office to access data.

Here are the 5 important steps to setting up a VPN to access office files remotely:

1.     Get a Router

Make sure you get a router that has wired and wireless connectivity with built-in VPN functionality. Moreover, it must support up to 10 workstations.

2.     Use Quick Start Setup Guide

Most of the VPN enabled routers come with a quick setup guide. This guide is extremely useful as it guides step-by-step through the entire process of plugging in cables, setting up the wireless network and connecting to the internet. Ordinarily, VPN enabled wireless routers are complicated so vendors provide a soft copy manual to its customers along with a product CD when purchasing the router.

3.     Choose Security Settings

Setting the highest level of security during the setup process is an important aspect of having a good VPN connection. It wouldn’t be wrong to say that security is the strongest as well as the weakest link in establishing a VPN connection. Usually, cyber criminals easily break into your network connection because users tend to go with the default password provided in the router. Ideally, opt for a strong password that is difficult to break in yet easy to remember. Generally, there are 2 kinds of configuration options; the first one is WPA Personal with TKIP/AES and the second one is WPA2 Personal with AES that is much stronger and secure.

4.     Enable Users

Once the router configuration is complete, follow the small steps stated below:

  • Read through your router’s user manual to enable VPN functionality,
  • Enable remote management in router’s software settings,
  • Establish user accounts for every user wanting VPN access,
  • Request each user to install the VPN software onto their computers. This software is available on the router manufacturer’s website for free.

5.     Connect!

This is the final step where you connect your home computer to the one at your office. Here’s what you need to do if you have Mac or Windows systems:

  • For Mac: Go to Apple Menu and click System Preference, then click Network. Click Add (+) at the bottom of the network connection services list and finally choose VPN from the Interface pop-up menu.
  • For Windows: Go to Control Panel, click Network and Sharing. Go to Create New Connection, choose VPN and enter the IP address provided by the VPN services provider.

Express VPN is the top VPN recommended by VPN Finder rated No.1 with 5 stars. The Express VPN cost is as low as $8.23 per month with more than 50 high speed server locations and unlimited bandwidth. Find more VPN options and enjoy a secure surfing experience!