60 Second Rundown…
- Proxy Firewall—Creates a gateway between your network and the Internet, providing enhanced privacy and security.
- Stateful Inspection Firewall—Individually tracks network connections with dynamic packet filtering.
- Unified threat management (UTM)—Brings together a strong defense against many types of malicious activity.
- Next-Generation Firewall (NGFW)—Actively identifies and blocks malicious attacks.
What is a firewall?
A firewall is a security system that creates a virtual barrier between a local area network (LAN) and outside networks (i.e., the Internet). The appliance monitors incoming and outgoing traffic and blocks or allows packets based on predefined rules.
Firewalls have been around for decades, protecting our trusted systems from untrusted networks. They act as filters between your network and the Internet at large. By following pre-set security rules, firewalls block unwanted traffic from entering. Since the network owner gets to decide what traffic is allowed in and out, they need to understand the basics of firewalls for small businesses.
Proxy servers act as web filters. Incoming and outgoing traffic flows through the proxy, adding layers of security and privacy. When a user visits a website, the request first goes through the proxy, changing the IP address and encrypting the data. This type of firewall lets you control and monitor web traffic and block specific sites.
Stateful Inspection Firewall
Stateful inspection firewalls are the industry standard when it comes to protecting private networks. This type of firewall uses sophisticated packet filtering to monitor and control web traffic. It also monitors the state of each web session and closes the connection when the session ends. Many small businesses use a hybrid of proxy and stateful inspection to protect their networks.
Unified threat management (UTM)
UTM is a security solution that integrates multiple layers of protection. It combines a network firewall with antivirus, intrusion prevention, content filtering, and leak prevention. UTM is a unified way to prevent malicious activity on your network. Often, small businesses enjoy the simplicity of having one appliance for multiple security tasks. Companies that are faced with compliance issues have to report what level of security they have in place.
Next-Generation Firewall (NGFW)
Cyber-threats have increased alongside the growth of remote-work and cloud-based applications. NGFW is a type of stateful firewall that takes protection to the next level. In addition to packet filtering and network monitoring, NGFW can identify and block malicious attacks on the network. This updated technology has the flexibility to evolve with the changing landscape of security threats. We can block or make social media read only. We can enable DLP(data loss prevention) which watches for personal information(credit card, Social security) being transferred in and out of your network
Firewalls for Small Businesses
All the firewalls listed above protect networks from untrusted traffic. However, picking the right firewall for your network can be daunting. At SMB Support, we know the ins and outs of firewalls for small businesses. SMB Support sells Watchguard Firebox equipment and subscriptions. It’s a right-sized firewall for small to medium businesses. Protect your business by using a business-grade firewall solution versus a home-based router. We can help you decide what is right for your organization. Give us a call at (908) 895-0273.