Security and Privacy. Are you protected? The Next Generation of Firewalls and Firewall Protection
Updated November 27, 2018
Once upon a time, a firewall was only necessary for large companies. But, as we move deeper into the digital age, firewall protection and safeguarding your business network becomes increasingly important. The first line of defense in protecting your data is your network firewall.
A Network Firewall: your first line of defense
Some people think that only small companies are more vulnerable to hackers, but over the past year there have been security breaches in large companies. Even with hundreds of thousands of dollars being spent on the best network security, corporations had their customer’s email addresses, credit card numbers and personal data stolen. If large companies are getting hacked, how safe is the average small business owner? One step you can take is to look at your firewall protection. If it’s been a while since you’ve looked at this crucial first line of defense, now might be good time to start thinking about updating your firewall. But there are now many types of firewalls now on the market. Which is best for your business?
Traditional Firewalls and Next Generation Firewalls
A traditional firewall was the first type of firewall developed. Traffic through ports, protocols, and IP addresses is either blocked or allowed into your network. Although important, this type of firewall has limited defense capabilities.
Next Generation Firewalls are just that – the next generation of traditional firewalls. A Next Generation Firewall is a “smarter” firewall with added security features. It has evolved from the Traditional Firewall models and can help detect application- specific attacks. It uses advance filtering technology to decipher what kind of content is being sent and who is sending it. With Next Generation Firewalls, you can also set the filters to exclude specific IP addresses, or certain types of content. Next Generation Firewalls can also detect the presence of malware on your network.
A Next Generation Firewall solution like Cisco Firepower can also help you manage your firewalls by providing application control, intrusion prevention, URL filtering, and advanced malware protection. It also alerts you to investigate and remediate malware outbreaks. And, it continuously updates itself as emerging threats evolve.
Your choice of firewall defense also now includes Container Firewalls. Like Next Generation Firewalls, Container Firewalls can detect and defend against internal level Denial of Service (DDoS) and Domain Name System (DNS) attacks. And, like Next Generation firewalls, they allow blacklisting of IP addresses. But, in very simple terms, Container Firewalls are designed to provide protection to “containers” (virtualized applications). Container firewalls monitor internal traffic in these containers and can automatically drop suspicious connections or quarantine containers when abnormal activity is detected.
Organizations using many containers have difficulty in keeping on top of vulnerabilities that crop up with each software package being used. Container firewalls provide an extra level or security by keeping watch over a company’s cloud microservice activities. If you are small business owner, it’s unlikely that you will need this type of firewall.
Web Application Firewalls
As you look at today’s firewall market, you may also encounter Web Application Firewalls. These type of firewalls protect a specific web application or set of web applications. They do their work by monitoring, filtering and blocking data packets to and from a web application. They defend your network against cross-site scripting attacks (XSS) and SQL injection, session hijacking and buffer overflows. This type of firewall is useful for companies that provide products or services over the internet.
Best Small Business Firewall?
Which firewall device is best for your business? Nettology’s engineers will be happy to discuss options that fit your specific business needs and budget. We are “vendor agnostic” and will recommend and implement a firewall that fits your company’s unique criteria and will best safeguard your data.