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Windows VPN

Posted on 2004-04-13
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Last Modified: 2013-11-16
Hello, I want to know what the best practices are for setting up a VPN.

I will be using CheckPoint NG Feature Pack 3 and Safaware Safe at Home Pro Devices.

If there was a checklist of things that are essential for adequate security/ best practices to be obtained, what would they be?  

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Question by:sublimation
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The most secure VPN would use:

AES-256 encryption, SHA-1 hash, plus certificates at both ends for authentication.

In practice, many organisations do not have and do not want the extra burden of certificate servers, so the best you could get that is workable would be AES-256, SHA-1 and pre-shared secrets that are KEPT SECRET FOREVER (not written down!).

Also, ensure phase 1 and phase 2 timeouts are set to 14400 seconds (4 hours) throughout.  This means that keys can only be cracked by only supercomputers / arrays within this 4 hour timeout before data is sniffed.  Attackers would have to crack the keys every time they timed out henceforth.

I usually go by what the CESG have to say - www.cesg.co.uk.

Does this help ?

Also make sure ONLY RELEVANT services can pass through the tunnel - eg HTTP, HTTPS.  A lot of people just setup VPNs to encrypt everything between the two networks, but this is not necessary and opens up the risk of 'back infection' by the remote network should it become infected by a virus.
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