Security

What Does a VPN Use to Ensure That Any Transmissions That Are Intercepted Will Be Indecipherable?

By Novak Bozovic / June 5, 2021

To ensure that any intercepted transmissions are indecipherable, VPNs use tunneling protocols that allow for two-way data traffic encryption. Today's encryption protocols (even those widely used in commercial VPN services) are incredibly strong and practically impossible to crack. With that said, VPNs really do transmit data in a highly secure way, without the possibility of someone deciphering it.

In case you’d like to take a deeper look at the process that ensures that any transmissions that are intercepted are indecipherable, keep on reading as we’ll talk about VPN tunneling.

What Is Tunneling?

As this term already implies, tunneling is a process of transmitting data across various types of networks, often using special protocols (providing encapsulation instructions).

In its essence, tunneling refers to a wide range of protocols capable of creating unique routes on the Web, which can be invisible to anyone else (except your device and your traffic's destination). That's why tunneling has found its use in the world of VPN services primarily.

What Is a VPN Tunnel?

A VPN tunnel is a highly secure and encrypted connection that most often exists within a publicly shared network.

When it comes to commercially available VPN services, the core part of their tunnel is VPN servers whose location can be anywhere in the world. As soon your outgoing traffic reaches any VPN server, your IP address changes, and your data becomes encapsulated and encrypted. Then, your data becomes readable as it reaches its destination, and vice versa.

Tip

There’s plenty more to know about VPN services. An excellent place to start would be our guide to the basics of VPNs. Then, learn how VPNs workwhat you can do with VPNs, as well as what they protect you from.

How Does Packet Encapsulation Work?

VPNs transmit your Web data via packets, which are essentially small pieces of data put together once they reach their destination.

A typical packet has two equally important parts. First, there’s the header, which provides data on where the packet travels and which protocol it uses. And, there’s the payload, which has the packet’s actual contents.

In the world of VPNs, packet encapsulation happens in an incredibly sophisticated manner. Most often, encapsulated packets exist within other packets, which are encrypted on top of that (using a secret encryption key).

Since VPN connections encapsulate packets and make them encrypted, this makes its header encrypted as well (making that data unreadable by network routers). So, for a network router to send your data to the correct address, your VPN wraps your traffic into another unencrypted packet, which is how that packet travels across the Internet.

This is where we conclude our short guide to tunneling protocols, presenting the way for VPNs to ensure that any intercepted transmissions are indecipherable. If you have any questions for us, make sure to post them below. Lastly, thanks for reading!



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