A properly configured RADIUS server can have a massive impact on the security of your network. The RADIUS authorizes and authenticates users signing into a network and, with proper configuration, adds identity context about users and devices on the network. As cybercrime has increased, RADIUS-based authentication has become necessary for companies to strengthen their network’s defense.
Many organizations struggle with the technical barriers of a RADIUS-backed network. The good news is that most of these issues can be ameliorated by using a hosted RADIUS. In this article, we’ll delve into how to host a RADIUS server, some benefits that come with it, as well as SecureW2’s hosted Cloud RADIUS solution.
Benefits of A Hosted RADIUS
The most apparent benefit of a hosted RADIUS is the ability to use a RADIUS that’s entirely operated in the cloud. The RADIUS is always readily available with built-in redundancy, and it’s more cost-efficient because you simply pay for licenses, not hardware, installation, and staff salaries.
Apart from that, there are many advantages of hosted radius:
- It is more budget-friendly.
- It is easier to install compared to on-prem RADIUS.
- You don’t have to train staff exclusively for the hosted RADIUS.
- You don’t need a secure physical location for it.
- It is nearly 100% uptime + redundant.
- It enables connection to other cloud applications.
However, a cloud RADIUS enables 802.1x, which encrypts each user’s session, preventing credential theft and securing private information.
Downsides of Hosted RADIUS
- May not financially scale if you are a massive enterprise. It might be cheaper to run on your own if you are efficient with your human resources.
- It may not comply with stringent audit requirements, like for military organizations, which might force you to host your own data locally.
How To Set Up A Hosted RADIUS
You have a number of different options when it comes to providers of a hosted RADIUS.
The FreeRADIUS Solution
An often used hosted RADIUS comes from FreeRADIUS. The benefits of FreeRADIUS can be summarized in 4 points:
- It’s the most popular RADIUS server in the world for a reason; It works like a charm
- It is a no-cost solution.
- It’s multithreaded to process more than one transaction at a time.
- There are no license expenses, meaning that it costs the same to authenticate one device as it does hundreds.
That being said, it can be difficult for admins with little RADIUS experience to set up FreeRADIUS. It doesn’t have a GUI, for starters, and much of the configuration is done manually in PowerShell. It can also be difficult for organizations that have unique use cases to configure and customize FreeRADIUS.
However, many are unaware that FreeRADIUS offers consulting and support services at quite reasonable prices. Oftentimes it’s much cheaper to pay for FreeRADIUS services than paying for some of the traditional options.
FreeRADIUS provides a way to authenticate users to a network, but if you don’t want to host your own RADIUS, a simpler solution is SecureW2’s Cloud RADIUS. Our RADIUS is designed to integrate with any network infrastructure seamlessly, and it comes with our foolproof end-user onboarding software.
Our turnkey PKI solution and JoinNow onboarding software allow users to configure without the risk of onboarding misconfiguration. The JoinNow suite allows users to self-configure their devices for certificates in minutes. Once completed, the user is equipped with a certificate and authenticated. Our solution makes working with any IdP a breeze.
SecureW2’s Cloud RADIUS is a vendor-neutral solution that can authenticate any network device and secure your network. Check out our pricing page to see if our cost-efficient solutions can fit your organization.