A private network is any connection within a specified network wherein restrictions are established to promote a secured environment. This type of network can be configured in such a way that devices outside the network cannot access it. Only a selected set of devices can access this type of network depending on the settings encoded in the network routers and access points. On the other hand, a public network is defined as a network that anyone can freely connect to little or no restriction.
A private network is more of a usage designation rather than a proper network type or topology. There is not much of a technical difference between a private and a public network in terms of hardware technology and infrastructure, except for the way that access rights and security measures are set up. The terms "private" and "public" simply denote who can and cannot use the network. However, it is more complicated to set up a private network due to all the security measures and access restrictions that need to be put in place; sometimes even extra hardware not that's not required on public networks is used.
Private networks are most preferred in businesses and private organizations because they provide high security for vital information. There are some factors that need to be addressed in order to have a secured connection, making private networks more complicated to set up. First is the number of users or devices that can connect. Next, Web servers need to be protected, since exposure to the Internet makes these networks susceptible to malicious attacks. Lastly, high-security hardware and applications like firewalls need to be installed, as they can greatly help in making the network private and secure.
There is no doubt that a private network, with all of its bells and whistles, is more expensive to set up compared to public networks, which only needs to have some access points and a proper connection to the Internet to function.