What Does a Firewall Do and Do You Need It?



What does a firewall do? 

Is a firewall really necessary? Or, is it just another unneeded piece of technology that companies try to scare you into buying?

Although most computers released within the last 7-10 years will come with a built-in firewall, many computer users do not see the point in actually navigating to their settings to turn it on.  

In fact, many computer users find firewalls to be a nuisance that prevents them from opening or downloading programs that they actually want. 

If you want to know more about what a firewall is and what it actually does, keep reading so that you can decide if you need to keep yours enabled. 

What Is a Firewall?

In short, a firewall is a security system for your network.

It’s meant to filter everything that comes from the internet over to your computer’s network to protect you from malicious data breaches. 

You can read this article to learn how you can analyze the different types of layers of controls for your network. 

What Does a Firewall Do?

A firewall creates barriers between non-trusted networks and trusted networks. 

It creates these barriers by establishing a set of security rules for your particular network. If anything comes over your network that breaks those rules it will be blocked and you will be alerted. 

In layman’s terms, it polices all network traffic both incoming and outgoing to ensure the safety and privacy of your network.

The Different Types of Firewalls 

There are many different types of firewalls that can be used for a variety of cybersecurity purposes.

We will touch on a few here.

Packet-Filtering Firewalls

A packet-filtering firewall is the oldest type of firewall there is. It is also the most basic firewall you could have. 

This firewall will quickly check all of the data packets that come through your router. It will look for information such as IP addresses, port numbers, and any other information that can be accessed without a deep search. 

Network Address Translation Firewalls

A Network address translation firewall or NAT firewall will hide individual IP addresses for devices on your network.

It will then use one public address for the devices on your network to protect them from getting attacked individually. 

Next-Generation Firewalls

Next-generation firewalls have quickly become the most popular type of firewall currently in use.    

Unlike basic firewalls, Next-generation firewalls have additional security features that will assist you in protecting your network. 

These features include:

  • Safe VPN network
  • Intrusion prevention
  • Malware protection
  • Encrypted network traffic inspection
  • Complete data packet unpacking

There are many Next-generation firewall vendors out there, but checking reviews can help you find the right one for your needs. 

Stay Protected

So, what does a firewall do? It protects your privacy and the privacy of all those who trust and use your network.

It would be a complete waste to spend time and money on a new device only to use it on an unprotected network, so protect your device by enabling your firewall.

Thanks for reading this article! If you found it helpful, be sure to browse our site for more like it. 

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