IPsec and SSL are the two common VPN protocols. IPsec VPNs are built directly on the IP layer using protocol 50, the Encapsulating Security Payload, to encrypt traffic. IPsec VPNs use the IKE protocol to exchange keys; IKE normally uses PKI certificates. IPsec requires both communicating endpoints to run software that understands IPsec. Most routers and security appliances currently support high-speed IPsec.
SSL VPNs are built on top of the TCP layer using port 443, the HTTPS port. SSL VPNs are used extensively to provide confidentiality for web traffic and are supported by all major browsers.
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