Firewalls protect Businesses

  • Large corporations often have very complex firewalls in place to protect their extensive networks.
  • On the outbound side, firewalls can be configured to prevent employees from sending certain types of emails or transmitting sensitive data outside of the network.
  • On the inbound side, firewalls can be programmed to prevent access to certain websites (like social networking sites).
  • Additionally, firewalls can prevent outside computers from accessing computers inside the network.
  • A company might choose to designate a single computer on the network for file sharing and all other computers could be restricted.
  • There is no limit to the variety of configurations that are possible when using firewalls.
  • Extensive configurations typically need to be handled and maintained by highly trained IT specialists, however.

Firewalls for Personal Use

  • For home use, firewalls work much more simply.
  • The main goal of a personal firewall is to protect your personal computer and private network from malicious mischief.
  • Malware, malicious software, is the primary threat to your home computer. Viruses are often the first type of malware that comes to mind. A virus can be transmitted to your computer through email or over the Internet and can quickly cause a lot of damage to your files. Other malware includes Trojan horse programs and spyware.
  • These malicious programs are usually designed to acquire your personal information for the purposes of identity theft of some kind.
  • There are two ways a Firewall can prevent this from happening.
  • It can allow all traffic to pass through except data that meets a predetermined set of criteria, or it can prohibit all traffic unless it meets a predetermined set of criteria.

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