Our Virtual Private Network (VPN) helps you access on-campus computing resources when you are not on campus. Plus, VPN is recommended for on-campus wireless users when transmitting or receiving confidential data.

VPN provides wireless users with a layer of security by encrypting (protecting against interception) all information passed between your computer and the wireless access point. Having all of the data encrypted by the VPN is required when using Ball State services such as:

  • FTP
  • TELNET
  • Programs such as Outlook (not Webmail)
  • Fetch

Web Browsing

If you are using the wireless network only for web browsing, VPN is generally not needed because most reputable web sites where confidential information (such as a credit card number, username and/or password) is transmitted utilize a secure sockets layer (SSL) connection. SSL encrypts the information that is sent and received between your machine and the web site.

You can usually determine if a web site is using SSL, if the web address begins with “https://” and a lock is displayed near the address bar or near the bottom of the window. If the web site does not use SSL and is a Ball State web site, you should report it by submitting a ticket to the Technology Helpdesk at www.bsu.edu/helpdesk or calling them at 765-285-1517. Passing confidential information via an unsecured web page can leave you vulnerable to identity theft or other types of problems.

Everything Else Besides Web Browsing

VPN is required when using Ball State's FTP, TELNET, POP3, IMAP, and SMTP, which do not encrypt your confidential information (including your password) from attackers who may attempt to intercept your communications. Keep in mind that neither VPN or SSL (https://) will protect you if the remote server is compromised or you willingly respond to a phishing attempt.

To protect yourself, don’t enter any confidential information if you don’t trust the remote server. All students, faculty, staff, and visitors should report suspicious web sites or servers by submitting a ticket to the Technology Helpdesk at www.bsu.edu/helpdesk or calling them at 765-285-1517.

Get VPN Now

Download the VPN software. For more information read our frequently asked questions.