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firewall benefits, firewall for business, firewall: pros and cons

You can think of a firewall as a sturdy fence around the perimeter of your company’s network that keeps external threats out while allowing trusted customer and vendor traffic to enter by using a key that you have given to them.

For any business, regardless of its size, a firewall should be one of your most essential and best-maintained digital security devices since it will protect your vital data from theft or breach.

Benefits of firewall security

There are a number of benefits of firewall security:

  • Polices packets. Data is transferred in small packages known as packets. It is your firewall’s job to monitor all packets leaving and entering your company’s network. How do firewalls “know” what to guard against? As the end-user, you can set filtering and traffic rules to customize the system to meet your unique business needs.
  • It blocks trojan attacks. Threat actors engineer tiny pieces of code known as trojan horses that attach themselves to your files. First, they gather intelligence about your server; then, they are sent on to an unwitting recipient via a message or attachment from you. When equipped with the proper rules and capabilities, your firewall is adept at preventing these from entering your system in the first place.
  • It stops hackers and other intruders from gaining entry. Whether it is a competitor who wants to snoop on your intellectual property or a hacker hoping to co-opt your data for profit, many entities seek to usurp your cyber boundaries. A firewall for business closes the holes in your perimeter, securing your assets and minimizing the chances of unwanted breaches.
  • Halts keyloggers. When allowed to do so, these bad actors infiltrate your system with spyware that records the keystrokes of your users, enabling them to gain access to sensitive passwords and other proprietary data. A good firewall minimizes the chances that this software will infect your cyber environment.

Considering the above advantages of firewall protection, it is no wonder that the comprehensive firewall has become an essential element of any personal or corporate security management and support solution.

Types of Business Firewalls

Although private citizens should also employ firewall software to safeguard their computers and networks from malicious internet traffic, businesses need more robust protection solutions. 

There are four levels of business-grade firewall protection:

  • Network-level. These solutions inspect packet headers, filtering traffic based on the IP addresses of the source and destination computers, the services requested, and the port or ports used.
  • Circuit-level gateway. It works at the circuit layer of the open systems interconnection or the transmission control protocol/internet protocol layer (TCP/IP). By monitoring the “handshake” or interaction between packets, this type of firewall determines the legitimacy of a session. It can hide the network from outside invaders and restrict access via customized rules.
  • Application-level gateway. Also known as a proxy, this firewall works as circuit-level firewalls do except on specific applications. It can block websites based on their content instead of their IP address to guard against malicious attacks, spam, and viruses. Because of their thoroughness, these types of firewalls are slow, and they require manual configuration for each user system.
  • Stateful multi-layer gateway. Packets are filtered at the network layer; legitimacy is evaluated, and packet contents are assessed at the application layer. This type of firewall also offers a fully transparent connection between the host and user. This type of firewall is faster and just as thorough as its application-layer counterparts but is more expensive.

In addition to providing a shield against outside bad actors and antivirus protection, an advanced business-grade firewall also ensures the internal safety of an enterprise. When this protection is set up properly and programmed with the right rules, it can produce reports on any activities on the networks it patrols that are not business-related. 

It can also block users from going to online sites such as shopping or social media destinations.

Furthermore, the firewall can provide employees accessing the network from a remote wireless device with a seamless and uncomplicated user experience.

Now that you understand how these cybersecurity guardians work, you can probably identify the critical benefit of a firewall.

When it comes to the best means to protect your hardware, software, networks, and office systems, you need to obtain the best firewall service that addresses your company’s needs and meets industry compliance requirements. 

Once your firewall is in place, it will boost your cybersecurity posture, enhance staff performance and enable your IT and security teams to maintain a constantly evolving, secure boundary around your vital information systems and website.