A strong firewall is a critical part of any system’s security infrastructure, but what exactly is it? Typically broken up into two core types, network firewall, and computer firewall, all firewalls monitor all incoming and outgoing traffic, either on a network or an individual computer.
A Network Firewall is a security device used to prevent or limit illegal access to private networks by using policies defining the only traffic allowed on the network; any other traffic seeking to connect is blocked.
Network firewalls are located at the network’s front line, serving as a communications link between internal and external networks.
The default firewall protects all connected computers from unsolicited incoming traffic on a home router system, such as someone trying to hack one of your computers. That group of computers is known as your home network and, in many ways, it’s a simpler version of your business’s network, which may include many more computers, servers, and other devices; both are network firewalls. But while a home network’s firewall is fairly low-stakes, you need to take a more active approach to firewall management when employing a network firewall for your business’s security needs.
Some types of malicious traffic are obvious. As known threats, even low quality systems know to block them. In professional settings, though, you need to actively manage your network firewall’s settings.
There are several ways to approach this customization process. One option is to create narrow restrictions, such that only pre-authorized traffic is permitted. This can be excessively restrictive, making it hard for team members to complete tasks, but it does offer a high degree of security. Alternatively, you might opt to set strict, but less clearly defined settings based on your typical activities.
Traditional firewalls have been around since the 1980s – essentially since there was any type of network to protect – and in the most basic sense they remain unchanged. More recently, though, there’s been a shift toward a more advanced type of firewall known as Next Generation Firewall.
In addition to monitoring incoming and outgoing traffic on your computer’s network, Next Generation Firewalls can also inspect the content of incoming information packets, such as application downloads, to better protect your network. This allows it to identify and block malware, among other dangerous incoming traffic, while maximizing productivity.
Next Generation Firewall, while offering a number of added features compared to conventional security systems, is also a type of network firewall – and it may be exactly what your business needs by combining the typical network monitoring capacities of a classic firewall with advanced threat detection and scalable capabilities for even the largest businesses. And, as more business functions move into the cloud, and threats become more advanced, your business needs a threat detection solution that can manage these emerging concerns.
As the latest iteration in network firewall, Next Generation Firewall integrates a much wider set of capacities than older systems for the ultimate SMB security solution. Integrating features like VPN, antivirus, and identity awareness, our security gateway offers the widest possible range of security solutions, enabling it to guard against zero day exploits and ransomware, along with other high-level threats.
Conventional network firewalls have served businesses well for years, but as digital threats evolve, firewalls have had to evolve with them. It’s not just the threats you need to worry about, though – it’s the expanding nature of the network as well. As your network expands to include public and private cloud solutions, it becomes harder to protect. Don’t let your business be caught with an out-of-date security strategy – invest in a system meant for the hazards of the modern world.