What is a Firewall and should you use one?
A Firewall is a barrier that protects your devices from malicious threats on the internet. It monitors packets of information that passes through it on both sides and checks to make sure the packets meet the security rules. A properly configured firewall can help give the user control over what applications and programs do within a computer system as well as what degree of communication they are allowed to have via the internet. A firewall is very effective at keeping out
There are 2 types of Firewalls available:
#1- “Hard Firewall” is a component commonly installed into networks to protected large systems most common in the corporate environment. They are more robust than its software counterpart however a great level of expertise and knowledge is required to properly configure one to get the proper level of protection that the unit is capable of.
#2- “Software Firewall” is commonly included with most high end paid anti-virus programs but also purchasable as a stand-alone item that can run alongside most software’s. They provide adequate protection against most common threats and usually come pre-configured for the most common security settings that allows most users flexibility. These types are not as robust in protection but are usually adequate for the average user benefiting from low cost, ease of installation, and virtually no maintenance.
No matter which method you choose understand that some protection is still better than no protection. One should not be lulled into a false sense of security because good security measures to follow are to always know what programs you are installing and what are safe websites to visit. This safe practise will reduce the chances that a firewall or anti-virus suite will need to back you up. Although companies often provide security updates, understand that there is usually a delay between the time that a vulnerability is discovered to the time an update is released.