Pros and Cons on 4 types of VPN protocols
SSTP (Secure Socket Tunneling Protocol):
- It provides a high level of security as it uses 256-bit SSL keys and 2048-bit SSL/TLS certificates for authentication and key exchange.
- It’s integrated into Microsoft Windows, which makes it easy to set up on Windows machines.
- It can bypass most firewalls because it uses port 443, the same port used by secure HTTPS traffic.
- It’s mostly Windows-only, which means it may not work as well or at all on other operating systems.
- As it’s owned by Microsoft, its code isn’t open to public audits, which could pose potential security risks.
- It’s highly configurable and supports a wide range of encryption algorithms.
- It’s open source, which means its code is available for audit, contributing to its security.
- It’s widely supported across various platforms including Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, and iOS.
- It can be difficult to set up for novice users.
- It might be blocked by some firewalls as it uses uncommon ports (though it can be configured to use common ones like 443).
L2TP (Layer 2 Tunneling Protocol):
- It’s easy to set up and is supported by most modern platforms.
- It often comes bundled with IPsec, another protocol, to provide encryption.
- It’s slower than some other protocols due to double encapsulation and encryption overhead.
- It can be easily blocked by firewalls as it uses fixed ports.
- There are potential security concerns because of alleged weaknesses inserted by the NSA.
PPTP (Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol):
- It’s easy to set up and is built into most platforms.
- It’s faster and uses less processing power than other protocols due to weaker encryption.
- It’s considered to be the least secure of these four protocols, and several vulnerabilities have been found over the years.
- It’s being phased out in favor of more secure protocols.
In general, your choice of VPN protocol depends on your specific needs, including the level of security you require, the types of devices you’re using, and whether you need to bypass firewalls. In terms of security and wide compatibility, OpenVPN is often recommended. However, SSTP can be a good choice for Windows users who need to bypass firewalls. L2TP/IPsec and PPTP are older protocols and are generally less recommended due to their lower security levels.