What is TLS VPN encryption?

Transport Layer Security or TLS is a cryptographic protocol that provides privacy and data integrity between two communicating applications. It was first introduced in 1999 as an upgrade of SSL Version 3.0. The TLS specification 1.2 was defined in 2008, and today it is considered to be the most widely deployed security protocol.

How TLS VPN Protocol Works - KeepSolid VPN Unlimited®

Features and technical details

TLS is used for applications that deal with handling sensitive data or performing critical operations, such as web browsers, VPN connections, email services, VoIP, and instant messaging. All the information you send or receive online will be well encrypted so it cannot be intercepted and read by a third party.

The TLS VPN protocol is composed of two layers: the TLS Record Protocol and the TLS Handshake Protocol. The TLS Record Protocol provides privacy and reliability of the connection, while the TLS Handshake Protocol encrypts your shared data and makes it unavailable to eavesdroppers, attackers, and other unauthorized parties.

A TLS stream of communication contains built-in controls to prevent tampering with any portion of the encrypted data. In addition, controls serve to prevent a captured stream of TLS data from being replayed at a later time. However, it should be mentioned here that the above guarantees apply only to data during transmission.

What are the key differences between TLS and SSL for VPN?

The major advantages of TLS that make it more secure and efficient protocol for VPN than SSL are:

  • HMAC message authentication
  • Pseudorandom function (PRF) to generate the key material
  • AES cipher suites, which are more secure algorithms
  • Simpler way of arriving at the CertificateVerify message

TLS VPNs use TCP Port 443. It usually works in just about any environment and is open on most firewalls. Which can be especially useful for remote users and teleworkers when they’re behind another establishment’s firewall. TLS VPN is accessible from any modern computer or device. You can set it up to provide even better protection than IPSec (though this will require certain effort). 

Global businesses often have to manage an extensive network of employees. By using TLS VPNs, they have more control over the network, allowing them to expand safely.

TLS Protocol pros and cons

Pros

  • Uses standard HTTPS protocol that’s usually not blocked in public places
  • Only needs a browser, no additional apps installation required 
  • Requires less administrative overhead and technical support

Cons

  • In VPN Unlimited®, TLS extension protects your browser's traffic only - it does not secure your other apps or the system at large

VPN Unlimited® and TLS

TLS protocol is available in VPN Unlimited® for:

  • Chrome
  • Firefox
  • Opera
  • Edge

Download VPN Unlimited® for free and get TLS today!

You can find this protocol, along with other available VPN protocols, in VPN Unlimited® settings.