Firewall can be either software or hardware and its main function is to protect your computer, data and network from unannounced and unauthorized access.
It acts like a barrier between the outside world and your computer by inspecting the incoming and outgoing traffic.
Benefits of Firewall
Just mere presence of a firewall doesn’t ensure fool proof security of your computer.
It’s the properly conducted configuration that makes the difference.
A correctly installed firewall will inform you about an illegal activity from a computer or a program instantly.
Additionally, if any of the software installed on your computer attempts to connect with an outside source, firewall will promptly identify it.
If you are a home user trying to install a firewall then remember the following tips.
Keep your firewall permanently turned on so that it is able to monitor incoming and outgoing information and block illegal actions.
Always observe firewall software after installation at regular intervals.
You need to keep it updated to ensure its proper functioning.
3. It is important to keep the software patches updated as newer software vulnerabilities and flaws are coming up every other day.
Software vendors readily release advanced security patches for fixing the issues.
You must check your software vendor’s official website for further details.
4. You must install anti-spyware and anti-virus software too alongside firewall.
Two types of firewalls are available nowadays Hardware and Software.
In many computers, hardware components (like routers and modems) already have built-in firewall abilities.
These firewalls stay effective whether you configure or not.
That’s because these appliances are always activated regardless if your computer is turned on or off.
Moreover, there is no risk of firewall crashing when your computer’s operating system fails/crashes because hardware firewalls are far more strong and powerful than the software based type.
Installing hardware firewall is a task in itself.
The most feasible option is to get it done by a security expert.
Professionally configured firewall will ensure optimal computer and network security.
You must remember that it is the configuration which makes the firewall weak or robust.
Blending is the key for conducting a perfect configuration because if it is too strict and secure then users will find it difficult to work.
Therefore, enable a combo between your computer and hardware firewall which is both secure and flexible for the users.
Hardware firewalls are most appropriate for users having broadband connections.
The dual-function routers and modems offer internet connectivity and also restrict unauthorized connections.
Installing software firewalls is not a difficult task as these come in soft copy and can be easily configured on your computer.
A majority of these firewalls contain user defined controls for creating safer printer and file sharing and for blocking unsafe applications.
These may also contain web content filtering and privacy control options.
For installing software firewalls, you need to firstly check the required system resources and its compatibility with your OS otherwise it will not run.
An effective software firewall will actively protect your computer by running in the background and using minimum system resources.
The limitation with software firewalls is that only your computer will be protected and other devices available or connected on your home network will not be protected.
After the firewall is setup and running it is important to apply correct blocking rules.
In order to block off traffic from specific countries or toxic IP ranges.
And further more it must be tested from a third party location to verify that the rules blocking is setup correct.