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I'm just a bit confused with VPN. My company has VPN when I work remotely. So, I can access internal websites. However, does it mean if I browse my Internet over my company VPN, it will be as secured as getting a third-party VPN provider? In terms of sniffer.

  • "as secured" from what? For many companies, they do what you hope an attacker won't do to you (track your activity, SSL offloading, content filtering, DNS fiddling, etc.) – schroeder May 19 '15 at 21:38
  • For example, sniffer tools. – toy May 19 '15 at 21:39
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    That's what I'm saying - by routing your traffic through your company VPN, they will be sniffing your activity. Do you care about your company having control over your personal traffic? – schroeder May 19 '15 at 21:41
  • I wouldn't use your company's VPN for anything that's NSFW. – Neil Smithline May 20 '15 at 3:01
  • Remember, the company has a VPN for company reasons -- it lets you be as if you're on the corporate network. In general, being on the corporate VPN is pretty much equivalent to being at work on the corporate network. – cpast May 20 '15 at 3:13
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Assuming that your work VPN routes all of your Internet traffic (which is not always true as others have mentioned), your workplace can still monitor and log your activity if they desire to, though anyone sniffing between you and your workplace will only see encrypted data. The appeal of third-party VPNs is that many promise to keep minimal to no logs of your activity. If your goal is to prevent the guy next to you at the coffee shop from sniffing, either one will probably work; If you're trying to make yourself more difficult to trace, a third-party VPN or Tor is probably a better bet. Note that there are important distinctions between VPN and Tor; see here for a good read on the subject.

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It depends on how the VPN is set up. One of the possible setups is the following:

  1. VPN connection to allow remote access to internal network servers of the company, but all other traffic is direct from you to the internet (so not routed through the VPN).
  2. All traffic is routed through the VPN making all traffic between you and the company secure. All other traffic is secure from you until the first hop of your company's VPN server but from there on it's plain internet.

Without more information / testing it's impossible to tell how your setup is or if your company uses 1 of these schemes or a different one (there are a few more that are basically somewhere in between these 2).

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The traffic from your remote location to your company will be secured in a tunnel (in a typical VPN scenario). But the traffic from your company to the final destination will not be in a tunnel.

Your company and any point between the company and the target can have access to your traffic.

If you are ok with your company having access to all your personal traffic, then your corporate VPN can be a useful tool if you do not trust the network you are local to (e.g. public wifi). Just remember that only the VPN link is secured.

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