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8. Conclusion

SSH and MindTerm together can provide local and remote users with a high-level of security with a simple and small drop-in application. It can also be used from nearly any platform available. Java was chosen because of its cross-platform compatibility. If there is a JRE available for a platform that someone uses then they can use the MindTerm application to communicate securely over long distances. Since ssh is becoming the standard for remote administration and logins, soon nearly all platforms will be able to run an ssh server. MindBright is currently working on a Java SSH server.

This tutorial also shows how someone can tunnel through a firewall. This is by no means the intention of this paper. It is hoped people will use it for a secure, quick, and free drop-in VPN-like replacement for remote administration, traveling business people, and a hope that other sectors can see the usefulness in this excellent program. As long as you are allowed to make ssh connections then you can tunnel services through to a remote machine. System and Security Administrators should establish policies against tunneling through firewalls because that can cause internal security breaches if used improperly. Remember that the communication is secured but the commands and files that you access and/or download are still being executed on your local and remote machines. Also, any commands you type on most servers are being logged as well. SSH will protect the data over the network or the Internet but what is done on the remote machines can be logged. SSH and MindTerm will not protect against someone gaining access to a remote user's computer and installing key logging programs or other snooping devices.

It is very simple and quick to set up secure communications but the only way to increase the use of secure communication is for users to encourage their company, financial institutions, health care providers, and other businesses to offer secure services.