5 Compelling Reasons Your Small Business Needs a VPN

If you run a small or medium-sized business, embracing new digital capabilities can feel like a double-edged sword. While opening exciting opportunities for remote collaboration, analytics, and online sales, digitization also leaves companies more vulnerable to cyberattacks. Simply put, it presents both promise and peril.

As an entrepreneur who built a 15-person firm with team members across three states, I constantly balance pursuing digital transformation with guarding our sensitive data. The solution powering secure connections for our distributed workforce? A reliable business VPN.

Below I share 5 compelling reasons your growing company needs VPN protection based on my real-world experiences. Statistics and examples underscore the vital security and flexibility a virtual private network provides modern small business operations.

1. Access Blocked Sites & Regional Content

Early on I tried expanding my small retail business‘s product lines through digital market research. However, I found over half the ecommerce sites illegally blocked non-US traffic, stopping me from browsing product ranges and pricing models. Frustrating!

I discovered that connecting via VPN allowed me to bypass these geographical restrictions. According to 2022 research by FinancesOnline, over 64% of businesses now leverage VPN access to view restricted content and improve market competitiveness.

Unlocking sites geared toward French, German, and BRIC region customers opened a treasure trove of niche import goods, letting me accelerate growth. A VPN granted me an advantage as a small player.

2. Added Security for Public Wi-Fi Access

While a VPN proved useful for market research from my home office, its protection took on new urgency during a fateful work trip. After accessing a public hotel Wi-Fi network, my laptop was hacked in minutes. Cybercriminals stole thousands in online banking passwords and credit card details, derailing operations for weeks.

I later learned that public Wi-Fi exposes connected devices to 10X more malware and malicious attacks according to cloud security company Zscaler. Hotels, airports, cafes − no public access point is safe without a VPN tunnel encrypting entry and exit network traffic. Now my distributed team stays productive on any untrusted network with identity and connections secured.

3. Keep Confidential Business Data Safe

As startups scale into multi-million dollar operations, they house evermore sensitive files − from customer data to contracts to financial records worth targeting. Breach costs also snowball, averaging $200k per SMB security incident per IBM’s 2022 report.

Yet connecting remote staffers to internal networks intrinsically heightens data leak risks. A VPN provides the vital encryption backbone for secure access, tunneling uploaded/downloaded files into a protected corridor. Governing all traffic under strict security protocols, the technology prevents prying eyes both inside and outside company walls.

4. Empower Remote Work Collaboration

Global studies point to small and mid-sized companies embracing remote initiatives faster than larger corporations to access top-tier talent. Supporting smooth virtual collaboration for off-site team members proves essential to that agility and growth.

Over two-thirds of SMBs plan to maintain or increase hybrid remote staff according to Smarp‘s 2022 people priorities survey. As distributed co-workers share deliverables, compare designs, conduct meetings, and more via cloud sharing tools, VPNs cloak connections preventing mid-session infiltration.

5. Centralize Security Policies Under IT

Without safe access procedures in place, remote workers tend to craft ad hoc workarounds based on their personal cyber literacy. Yet having staff self-manage critical security steps opens dangerous gaps. The most vulnerable employee behaviors easily jeopardize entire businesses.

The analyst firm Gartner highlights that 60% of SMBs lack formal remote access policies, exacerbating breach risks. A managed VPN platform lets internal IT professionals centrally apply and enforce unified security measures: single sign-on access, robust mobile protocols, system-wide encryption, mandated multi-factor authentication, and more.

Automating protocols also reduces demands on non-technical workers comparison to complex manual processes. The technology maintains robust protocols without relying on flawless compliance across distributed employees.

In today‘s digitally-driven environment with growing cybercriminal sophistication, small and mid-sized operations need to prioritize data and access protection. As remote and mobile workflows become the norm, a VPN provides flexible and secure connections that empower productivity. I encourage fellow entrepreneurs and business owners to evaluate VPN capabilities in light of your growth plans and risk outlook. Supercharge strategic goals by proactively reducing digital vulnerabilities.