On April 16th IEEE NH CS and NCC Student Branch hosted a seminar titled Virtual Private Networks, Cisco Software and Hardware Tools. Today privacy concerns are paramount. Employees have grown accustomed to working remotely. How do we make accessing company data and company computers remotely secure, reliable and cost effective? The answer is VPNs.

Cisco has a number of solutions both proprietary and open source. Tom Moran, long time NCC professor who currently works at Dell, presented a great summary of the VPN options available. He explained the IPsec technology which dominates today’s market. VPNs offer a great solution of using public Internet for tunneling private internet traffic in a secure way. They also provide a significant cost advantage over traditional dedicated leased lines. Leased lines like T1 and T3 were secure, but the cost was significantly greater over VPNs and the speed was limited.

Professor Moran explained how VPNs keep the connections secure by encrypting the data. He gave a detailed discussion of public and private keys and different encryption algorithms.


In addition to welcoming students and guest from the general IEEE community we also had several high school students attend. Barbara Bancroft, the IEEE branch councilor and NCC professor took the opportunity to tell everybody about the new Cybersecurity degree offered by NCC. She also talked about new initiatives in the area of Mobile Systems and Internet of Things. Tom Moran teaches the CCNA security classes.