CNET GLOSSARY: Terms for the techie
virtual private network
A private network of computers that's at least partially connected by public phone lines. A good example would be a private office LAN that allows users to log in remotely over the Internet (an open, public system). VPNs use encryption and secure protocols such as PPTP to ensure that data transmissions are not intercepted by unauthorized parties.
Can't find your term here? Have a question about the glossary? E-mail us.